New Years Resolutions

The blue planet, in spite of dire predictions and the Mayan calendar, has once again spun aground the sun and given us a new year. If we lived on Pluto we would only experience the new year once every 248 earth years. The custom of the new year’s resolution goes back 3000 years to the Babylonian Empire. They would return anything that they borrowed and would make promises for the coming year. But I digress…

The new year: Many people take the opportunity to change something in their life. The media would have us all on diets and doing exercise to lose weight. But what about mind and spirit? Perhaps you might resolve to read a book every month or attend a lecture, or even take a class in something that you’ve always been curious about.

Then, of course, there’s the spirit. Is there something spiritual that interests you? Being more mindful of others? Being helpful is always appreciated and does wonders for the soul.

Whatever you decide on should be simple and doable. Not something that will exhaust you and will be abandoned come March. There must be something in your life that you wish to change. Don’t be like a friend of mine who says he’s against change even if it’s for the best. All change, if it is to last, must come from within. If you decide on a resolution, take it inside and muse upon it. Does any part of you have any objections to it? If you were to attain this change, would you be happier? Would the people around you be happier? If the answer is yes, then your new year’s resolution is a good one.

The Monthly Musing series is written by Fr. Francis Schemel, Chaplain to the Staff at Georgetown University. Dive deeper into his spiritual ponderings on his blog.

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