Door into the New Year
Antigua, Guatemala, 2010
I’m back from Guatemala. Resigned to the weather of the Pacific Northwest. Uninterrupted rain. Thankfully, we still have our Christmas tree up. And if it were up to me, I’d be playing Christmas music. You know, the really good stuff, like Sarah Mclachlan’s “Happy Christmas,”or maybe, Kenny Chesney’s “All I want for Christmas is a real good tan.”
Last month Loyola Press asked me to write 30 resolutions for the new year. Each of them connected to The Power of Pause. It started January 10 and continues for 30 days (it’s not to late to sign up). Loyola Press will send you an email pause reminder — a powerful pause for each day. Gentle reminders as a way to trigger those parts of our soul that can stop and listen and pay attention.
I’ve been thinking about the small steps that make a difference.
Here are a few from the the list I wrote for Loyola. . .
1. But a small notebook. Each day make a notation using this sentence, “I never noticed that before. . .”
2. Go to your garage. Find something that you have moved at least three times. Give it away—to a friend, St. Vincent de Paul, or the charity of your choice.
3. Write a letter to someone you love. With real paper, pen, envelope, and stamp.
4. Grab a box of crayons. If you feel overwhelmed at any point today sit down for a 10-minute coloring break.
5. Watch this brief video for today’s pause.
6. For today, give up your cell phone, email, and internet.
and a few more I’ve added. . .
1. Ask you Doctor to write a prescription for Chocolate. Be specific.
2. Write in your journal, left handed. (Or right, if you are a lefty.)
3. Throw a party for National Disturbed Day. Invite everyone you know who is “slightly off-plumb” (or at least wishes to be).
4. Make a business card, “I’m in charge of celebrations.” (Acknowledgement to Byrd Baylor)
5. Carry a card that says, “LEARNER’S PERMIT: Student Hugger. Licensed to practice.“
6. Carry a first aid kit: include chocolate, your favorite CD, a favorite poem, quote from a favorite book or a favorite scripture.
7. Give a friend The Power of Pause.
There will be more to come in the days ahead. . .and. . .if you have any to add. . .I’d love to hear from you.
I wish for those I love this New Year an opportunity to earn sufficient, to have that which they need for their own,and to give that which they desire to others, to bring into the lives of those about them some measure of joy, to know the satisfaction of work well done, of recreation earned,and therefore savored, to end this year a little wiser a little kinder andtherefore a little happier. Eleanor Roosevelt