Take one day at a time. It might be easy to let days blur into weeks, whether we’re busy or bored, up or down. But so much can happen in a day; we shouldn’t let them slip away. We can try something for the first time. We can make someone’s day brighter. We can decide not to give a damn about what people think. We can catch our breath. We can take a spontaneous opportunity. We can spend time on a project we really care about. Life will become so much clearer. And even if it’s just for one day, that day gives hope for every other day afterwards. We must lay one brick at a time, take one step at a time.
A great part of our life is made up of our interactions with other people. People influence our mood, our actions, our sense of self. And we influence others in the same way. So we’ve got to be careful what we put out there. Encouragement, politeness, guidance, kindness, positivity, hope – these we should pour into the world. Because if we surround people in darkness, they will either run from us or try to cover everyone else in it too. But if we emit light, people will absorb that light and glow too. And the world will be a happier place to live in. Be the person others want to be around. Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go.
The idea of beginning again or trying again is daunting, overwhelming and disheartening. We’re creatures who find comfort in sticking to the way things are. It’s what we know. But the truth is that not everything we know works to give us our best chance at life. And when things aren’t working, we have to find a way to change them in order to give ourselves that best chance. Sometimes our relationships with other people are restricting or our relationship with ourselves is unhealthy. Sometimes our environment weighs us down or our day to day life doesn’t inspire us. Sometimes what we desperately hope will work won’t. And this is when we should tell ourselves that it’s ok to turn over a new leaf, whether it’s to plunge into the unknown or take a little dip. Because we all deserve our best chance at life. And we’re the ones who bestow that gift to ourselves. Don’t hide it away.
Hope is deemed by some as weak, impractical and useless; it’s an excuse for those who are caught up in delusion, because they cannot face reality. But although some of what we hope for cannot always materialise, hope is powerful. It illuminates possibilities. It offers encouragement. It provides strength. It brings direction. It can make the difference between a good and bad situation or even a bad and worse situation, because it gives us something to hold onto in all the darkness. Don’t blow out the candle. You never know when you might need it.
Sometimes it feels as if life will never get any better or any easier. Sometimes it feels as if the world is against us and nothing will go to plan. Sometimes it feels as if we’re falling further and further, and there’s no ladder at the bottom.
But the moment we thought was the greatest misfortune might actually be the biggest blessing. That forceful pull backwards might actually be the strongest catalyst to propelling forwards. That drop into the unknown might actually be the place we learn the most.
Do not give up hope. Do not give up on yourself or your life. Keep trying. Keep fighting. You’ll be okay. Nothing lasts forever. Your life will be amazing, no matter what happens, as long as you choose to embrace it.
Hold onto that glimmer of hope and that flash of passion, which you held in your pocket not long ago. Hold on for that peek of starlight in the suffocating darkness and for that stretch of calm in the unrelenting storm. Hold onto consciousness through the piercing feeling of drowning and through the penetrating feeling of suffocation. Hold onto faith in yourself, even when you’re hanging off the cliff edge and even if you fall off. Hold onto those memories of accomplishment and celebration, defeat and renewal. Hold onto the people who not only bring out the best in you, but who most important make you feel your best. Hold on for that extra mile, that extra minute, and you will be better because of it.
A New Year squeezes our shoulders again and guides us forward into the future. It is a time where we reflect on the year gone by, the good memories we will cherish and the mistakes we made that we now have learnt from. The New Year inspires optimism and hope for that which we wish to accomplish, and provides us with a clean slate to redefine ourselves and our lives to our choosing, even if by the time we return to school and work and routine nothing much will feel different except the date you sign on a piece of paper. But although it may be the case that the newfound optimism and hope can slip away at times, you must never lose the feeling of taking control of your life and dedicating yourself to becoming the person you want to be, however small the resolution is; this is how we grow. We must take these moments, because they create the catalyst. So I encourage everyone to make a resolution, something attainable, that can remind you of the special feelings that the New Year produces to last throughout the whole of 2013, and motivate you towards what you aspire to be. If I have learnt anything from 2012, it is that there is nothing more important than staying true to who you believe you are and should be, regardless of anyone else’s opinions. As Dr Seuss once said, “Why fit in when you were born to stand out?” Don’t let anyone dull your sparkle. Happy New Year!