“I hope 2016 doesn’t get renewed. The plot is ridiculous and none of the characters are likeable.” Does this quote sum up the past year for you?
It seems like everyone saw 2016 as the worst year ever. As proof, people cite the number of cultural icons who died, the upsurge in violence here and abroad, and the most contentious presidential election in recent history. But for most of us, defining a worst year or a best year is very personal.
The years that hit us hardest are those where we experience loss firsthand. It can come in many forms. Learning you have cancer is laden with loss – loss of health, of life as you know it, of a sure future. Losing someone you love to cancer is a heavy burden indeed. If cancer changed your life last year, no one would blame you for seeing 2016 in a negative light.
So how do you step boldly into 2017? The dawn of a new year marks more than the turn of a calendar page. It represents what keeps us going in the best and worst of times, the emotion that fuels us forward: hope. A new year gives us a blank canvas, an opportunity to see our lives through a different lens and change them for the better.
There’s no magic. A new year doesn’t change the cards we’re dealt, but it helps us look at our hand differently. When the past year has been dismal, a new year gives us a chance to claim all that is potentially good.
If you have cancer, hope won’t change your diagnosis, but it will change your quality of life, which in turn promotes healing and well-being.
Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey toward it, casts the shadow of our burden behind us.
— Samuel Smiles
Each day is an opportunity to choose hope. Greet the morning by recognizing the promise it holds. Practice self-care. Spark hope in others through kind words and deeds. Take time to name the blessings of the day before you fall asleep.
Everyday hope is a powerful thing. It won’t change the world, but it will change your world. Start today and see where it takes you.