Happy New Year, bellas!!

This isn’t a post about resolutions or lists or the promises we make to ourselves every year — that post will come next week, after some much needed R&R&R. That’s Rest, Relaxation, and Reflection. I need some time to think and prepare for this new year.

This is about my New Year’s attitude. It’s best expressed in this photo of me, taken in 2007. I blogged about it here, on my first bloggiversary.

I’ll explain in a bit.

My New Year’s attitude is this: 2008 wasn’t so great. But in 2009, I’m gonna shine!

Corny rhyme yes, but that reflects how I feel today. I haven’t been this excited about a new year since Y2K. And that was a different excitement, one laced with wonder and fear. (Remember how people were all like, buying extra canned food and stocking up like the apocalypse was coming?). This new year, I feel hopeful. Optimistic. And ready to take on the world. Is it the Obama factor? Maybe.

I’m sick of making resolutions I can’t stick to, and finding myself slinking back to old, bad habits by February and March. I’m sick of letting myself down. I’m sick of saying, “next year this, next year that, next year, next year, next year.”

Next year is THIS YEAR.

2009 is MINE.

My year to grab life by the reins. My year to be the change I’ve been looking for. My year to stop wishing and hoping and praying for things that are within my grasp. MY. YEAR.

I feel like a spark has been ignited in me. And I want to pass it on!

Are you looking for a new job? Are you trying to lose weight, or quit smoking? Are you trying to finish a project or achieve a goal? Do you want to see your life improve in a specific way, that you see glinting ahead of you like the light at the end of a long, dark tunnel?

I’m here to tell you — I’m right there with you. And we can do it, whatever it is. We can do it, but any goal in life that is worth achieving, is worth working hard for.

In 2007, my husband took that photo of me. It was one of those important little life experiences. What Oprah might call, an “aha” moment.

And here’s what I had to say then:

The photo at the top of the post was taken last Friday, when we were en route from Las Vegas to Lake Tahoe. It’s an eight hour drive through desolate desert, abandoned towns, and incredible mountains. We parked by the banks of a river in the mountains of California. My husband wanted to climb down a steep, rocky embankment to the water below. I didn’t. I said “I can’t.” But he climbed on down like a billy goat, and left me on the side of the road. “Come on,” he called up to me. “You can do it.” I was scared, but I tried. Slowly I made my way down the rocks, to the steep and shifting sand, down to the river with him. He took that photo of me as I climbed back up. I did it! I didn’t think I could, and I did! YAY!!! And that’s totally how it’s been with this site.

So often we limit ourselves by thinking we can’t. Sometimes all it takes is that first burst of courage, that push to try, to make you realize that you really can do anything you put your mind to. If a scaredy-cat like me can do it, so can you — whether your goal is to go natural or be fit or find a better job or take better care of yourself or do something new that you’ve been afraid to try.

That was in 2007, and I sincerely meant those words when I wrote them. Since then I’ve taken baby steps towards the kinds of changes I was hinting at. Now we’re in 2009. The time for baby steps is over.

Bellas, fellas — I’m about to embark on a journey of self-improvement, and I know the road is going to be rocky and the incline is going to be steep. It won’t be an easy road, but it’s a worthwhile one. I’m going to tell you all about it, along the way. I’d love you to come with me.

What are your goals for the New Year? What are your dreams, and are you ready to achieve them? How do you feel about 2009?

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