A New Year – A New Way to Live

In the madness of the year, we consume ourselves with many things. The things at hand blind our thoughts and take over our minds. We jump from one moment to the next with no real regard for its preciousness. We feed our senses with meaningless stimuli and run this race like a rabbit going nowhere, hopping from weed to weed.

A new year is beyond us and the light of a new beginning haunts us like a sunrise yet to come. We seek in life meaning, satisfaction, purpose and hope, yet many of us don’t know where to find these treasures or how to get there.
The key is living. That’s what we are doing everyday and every minute. We are alive. We breathe. We dream. We hope. And we wait. Mostly we wait to live when we should be doing it. What it means to live is different for each of us, but regardless, we must seek to rise out of the weeds and into the sunshine that feeds our spirit.
A New Year doesn’t have to start on January 1st, it can start at anytime. A New Year should start with a New Day, everyday. Here are 5 ways to embrace a New Year:
1.       Do your Duty – In front of you now, you are responsible for something. It may be a job, a role, a house, a car, bills… on and on. You can determine what your duty is by simply taking a look around at how life is seeking your action and involvement. What is due from you is your duty. A new beginning is asking you to not only know your duty but to meet it head on. You may not be thrilled with your duty, you may want something else, something more or something less. You may be in the clouds hoping you will find a new duty. It is great to set goals, and in time you will achieve them, but realize this, you cannot ignore your duty for it will always find you and the longer your put it off, the worse the results. Take on your duty and do it well. When you do your duties to the best of your abilities, whatever they are, when you are ready for a new duty, it will come. Better to do your own duties as humble as they may seem, than to steal the glorified duties of someone else. Take on your own life and work through your own path, and in return, life will show you the way.  

2.       Always do your best – If we put in 100% effort and heart into everything we do, then we really can’t have any regrets in life. Focus on your duty and do it your best. Regardless of win or lose, or what the results are, we can be freed from highs and lows of life, knowing that we did our best. This equanimity can bring us peace and calmness, and in this state of mind life can show you its treasures.  

3.       Embrace the Mask – We all wear masks to the world. Many of us want to be seen from behind the mask but don’t know how, while others would prefer never to be seen past the mask. Whatever the mask is, we all wear one so why not embrace this with open arms. Embrace your own mask and the person behind it. Be comfortable in your mask and how it can serve you in life. Having a mask is not a bad thing, it is simply a tool. This tool can help you as long as you know your duty and know how to use the mask. How do you present yourself to the world? This is your mask. You should not be attached to the mask for it is only a tool and don't be fooled into thinking the mask is the real you. There is something deeper. Use the mask to reach your goals knowing if you make it your friend, it will serve you. The mask is not a crutch, a lie, or anything deceitful. It is there as apart of yourself and is a buffer between you and the world. Behind the mask is a beautiful person and you must nurture this person. It is the person behind the mask that we must be good to and love. We must respect the mask but nurture our deeper self. Everyone has a mask that they also present to the world. Knowing this can help you to see people in a new light by knowing that there is more to others than might meet the eye. Learn to respect the masks of others and seek to nurture the person behind it, even if you can see that far. In time, seeing  past the masks of the world will be easy and in this you will see more truth.

4.       Sacrifice  – It’s easy to get caught up in what we want, our own desires, and me me me. This leads to a trail with no real satisfaction because as each desire is met, a new one arises. It’s a never ending flow of desires that feed each other and create attachments that create more desires. Take a moment to detach from your desires and focus on being selfless for a moment. Sacrifice something, anything. It could be your time, by volunteering, helping out a friend, donating to others, or simply taking a moment to send love to others without your needs and wants at stake. Sacrifice comes in many forms, but abundance will come to those who sacrifice with love without thinking of themselves.  

5.       Read Between the Lines – Life is full of moments that have meaning. We sometimes are hit hard by these moments and they mean something to us. Sometimes something big happens to us and sometimes it’s a small moment that reminds us of big things. It is easy to wait for these moments, the big ones, but instead read between the lines of your life. Everything around you has more to offer. There are lessons all around, there are jewels hiding in the rough and there is an essence to the air you breathe. In other words, even the world is wearing a mask. Everything is wearing a mask. Contemplate this. There is more than meets the eye in every area of life. There are answers and gifts all around us that we fail to recognize. It is not what is right in front of your eyes, it is what is there hiding behind it. If we can see past the illusions and read between the lines, we might capture something amazing.  

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