Editorials, Opinion

Happy New Year’s! Goodbye to 2021. Hello to 2022?

By the time you read this, there will be less than 24 hours left in 2021. Hard to believe, isn’t it? So many of us are still trying to process 2020, and now we’re saying “see ya” to 2021 — not that we want it to stick around any longer.

We thought we were glad to say goodbye to 2020 …

As we brace for 2022, we must remember that we can’t control everything around us, but we can control ourselves.

We can make any number of New Year’s resolutions— to eat healthy, to exercise, to use social media less — but resolutions mean little if we can’t keep them.

Which is why it’s important to choose attainable goals. It’s difficult to plan for an uncertain future, but as we said, even though we can’t control the world around us, we can control ourselves.

We can choose what we engage with and how. We can disconnect from the news entirely — ignorance is bliss, yes, but it is still ignorance — or we can consume it thoughtfully. We can fight with that internet troll — using profanity and calling them names — or we can open a dialogue with people willing to listen and be listened to in return. We can passively complain about things happening that we disagree with, or we can put effort into making changes. We can learn from the past, or we can continue to make the same collective mistakes.

We can choose to dwell on the dark or we can search for the light. We can linger over the things that make us sad or anxious, or we can focus on the things that bring us joy or comfort. We can remind ourselves that a bad hour is not a bad day, that a bad day is not a bad life. We can be mindful and grateful. And we can remember that negative feelings are valid — we can’t be happy all the time — but we also don’t need to hold on to those feelings.

And after the last two years, it’s OK if your resolution is just to do your best.

As we create our personal roadmaps for 2022, we need to leave room for unexpected detours and delays. We can still reach our goals, but we’ll need to be flexible and patient — with ourselves and others.

When the clock strikes midnight tonight, we get a reset. Not a physical or literal one — we can’t undo the events of the last 365 days — but an emotional one. We get to start fresh and wake up in the morning with new resolve. That is, after all, why we call them “New Year’s resolutions.”

We hope this coming year brings half as many obstacles and twice as many blessings as the past year. Happy New Year’s!