New Year, New You?

New year, new you. It’s one of my favorite slogans. I love setting new year goals. I like everything about it. The planning and the vision boards and the journal tracking. I’ve been doing it for more than twenty years.

Goal setting became important to me when I started my wedding photography business. It never occurred to me to set goals or write down my dreams. I had dreams. Lots of them. And I’m so good at daydreaming. Dreams and visions of what could be and what should be fill my head all day long. Some of them are elaborate. Some are even realistic. I’m an idealist…I guess. I like to think.

Then one day I heard someone quote a statistic about writing down your dreams and goals. The ones we write down are more likely to be accomplished. It makes sense. The first step to reaching your dreams is to get it out of your head and into the world. Paper seems like a good place to start. You can see it, touch it, even taste it if you really want to. Weird, but ok.

But it’s 2021. New year, new you seems dubious. Ludicrous. And my mind is filled with questions rather than dreams. Does it matter? What’s the point? Will it make a difference? Have I really accomplished anything all these years anyway? Am I simply circling the same mountain?

There is a reason for setting goals beyond the goal itself. It creates habits. It creates body memory. It gives direction when the world is filled with chaos. After twenty years, it has become part of me and the rhythm of my life. Why would I not do it? It is a new year. It is a new day. And I can also be made new.

The chaos of the world doesn’t have to stop me from becoming a better person. The chaos could even inspire me to be a better person. It could inspire me to lean into God and my family and my dreams. Who knows? My dreams might become reality if I get them out of my head and into the world. It could be that there is someone else dreaming the same dreams, hoping the same hopes, looking for a reason to be made new, too.

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