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(In looking back, I saw that I wrote and posted these thoughts on New Years Day last year.  Although not everything turned out perfectly which of course is to be expected, there were more than enough blessings throughout the year to believe that the following mindset and approach still applies as the remainder of 2017 awaits to reveal itself.)

“The quality of our lives can simply be broken down and measured through the following:  the initial choices we make from what we know, the circumstances which arise that impact those choices, and the choices we make in response thereafter to what we learn from both!” – Joe Dicochea

As we exit the previous year and enter the new one, we should remember not to dwell too much on the past because I’m not sure what good it will do.  I encourage all of us to take the good memories from 2015 and cherish them for as long as we can recall them.  As far as any mistakes, we should make whatever retribution necessary, learn from them, act accordingly, and just move on.  We need to avoid beating ourselves up over them and anyone who wants us to continue to do so is doing it more for their benefit, not ours! I cannot engage in that latter practice because Lord knows, it’s hard enough focusing on my own physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual growth, welfare, happiness, and harmony.

I hear a lot of people say that 2016 is either going to be a “good year” or “better year”, probably since it’s like the beginning of the MLB Season where all teams start with a clean slate with the unrestricted hope of the possibility of a championship season.  As for me, I love optimism since as Winston Churchill once said, “I’m an optimist because it doesn’t make sense to be anything else!”  However I have figured out that truly great things rarely happen by accident or mere chance.  “Good” things happen to good people because they generally do good or correct things, or they have “good” people surrounding them for support and protection when needed.

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(Big Sur, California – contributed by Jason Dicochea)

I suggest we all take a moment today to at least take an overall look back on this year and then imagine where we see ourselves.  If we want a better year, I suppose it’s logical to simply start by continuing to do what works but maybe doing it better.  For those things that didn’t or haven’t worked, it makes sense to just simply change or approach them differently if we haven’t already learned to do so.  Resolve to be consistent as the year progresses and just look back at the end of each month and see how 2016 is unfolding.  I’m guessing that if we do so, we’ll get the year we’re looking for and probably a little (or a lot) more!

Along with your other New Year’s resolutions, please incorporate the following into them.  “Go for it now.  The future is promised to no one.”

I’m optimistic that we’ll all have a Happy New Year because it doesn’t make sense to envision anything else, you know?

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