There’s something special about fresh beginnings; a clean slate to show the world what you’re made of.
At school I always loved the feeling of writing on the first page of a new exercise book. That first page always showed off your best handwriting skills, am I right? This book was the one – no more scrawl, in fact – it would be a work of art. And so, that inevitable but painful first spelling error which necessitated a line scraped through it (or a splash of Tipex if you were one of those rebels with the contraband little white pots hidden in your pencil case) really stung. Your new book no longer felt special, no different from all previous books you’ve scribbled your way through. Deflated, you keep going, only without that enthusiasm that initially nudged you on. And because if you didn’t, you’d have to stay in at playtime to finish the work.
A new year brings the promise of a fresh start, with so many high hopes, plans and expectations. But it’s easy to fall at the first hurdle. The first sign of any wobble, stumble or stray off the designated path, and we slam ourselves for ruining it. For failing. We disqualify ourselves before we’ve really got started.
Here’s the thing; we were never made to be perfect. And so when we set our expectations on the avoidance of imperfection we’re setting ourselves up to fall hard.
Just imagine what life would and could look like if we weren’t so afraid of making mistakes, of getting it wrong, of looking silly. If mistakes didn’t mean it was game-over.
We’re one day into 2018 and so many of us will already be sitting in the disappointment that the year didn’t start the way we planned or hoped it would. But the beginning of the story doesn’t have to dictate its’ ending. Whether it’s down to our own doing or someone else’s; whatever happened, it’s not game-over. Far from it.
Don’t be afraid of mistakes. Those detours that might look like setbacks may end up taking you on a remarkable adventure.
And above all, if it’s not okay, it’s not the end. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get some sleep (sleep always helps. That, and a cup of sweet tea).
Tomorrow is always a new day.