It’s a new year, and advertisements and company emails are once again inviting us to create a brand new version of either ourselves or our home, our workspace, or our life ad nauseam. Putting on a new coat of paint, buying new furniture, or taking a yoga class may change our exterior, but in the long run, what does it do to improve the interior?

That’s right, the real change must come from the inside. I realize that it can be difficult to have that long talk with yourself, but to start anew, one must address the real issues. There is no way to cover up what’s really going on inside our hearts and our mind.

Last year left me with the feeling that I didn’t do enough, I didn’t accomplish everything that I set out to do. I felt that I had left something behind. In today’s get-up-and-go world, I failed. When the new year finally did roll around, and the calendar page turned, I felt sad. Instead of looking at how far I’ve come, and giving myself credit for those steps, I focused on what remained incomplete. Does that sound familiar?

We draw in what we can’t let go of. It seeps deep beneath the surface of our consciousness. If we harbor guilt, grief, anger, regret, doubt, distrust, it all eats away until we start bringing that into our everyday life. The strife brings chaos, and sometimes, it is all we know, so normal somehow doesn’t feel right to us, we seek out abnormal because, over time, that’s what we get used to.

How do we flip that recorded script, what are the steps to change and really become a newer, improved version of the person we see in the mirror each day?

These are the keys to becoming a new you. It is a new year, who do you want to be?

  • I’m not a believer in resolutions, but I do resolve to be as gentle to myself as I am with others. That means the inner dialogue is softer. No, I’m not dumb because I forgot something, I’ve learned to use sticky notes both physically and on my computer to keep on task. I have also learned to plan things out better.
  • After having a mild stroke, while mostly recovered, I still have a few problems with words now and then, and I’m being fully transparent here, I’m glad that I have Grammarly. There’s no shame in utilizing tools when you need them. Trust me, it saves on the stress level later on. Use what you have available to you.
  • Be as forgiving to yourself as you are to others. I resolve to let it go at the end of the day. Rest, meditate, pray, exercise, do whatever you need to do, but lift it up before you close your eyes. It feels good, and it will do your soul good to not hold on to the mistakes that you or others make.
  • Be teachable. That means a willingness to not only be open to new things but being open to failure. That is truly the only way we can learn. Life does teach us lessons, let’s look at that instead.