Fuzzy Armed HugHappy New Year to all of you. Yeah, it’s getting that time of year  when we look back and think about the ‘IF ONLY’ parts of our lives. To be honest, that is exactly what they are, the past thoughts we did not complete. Ahead of us are the new avenues of a New Year, and we start making our lists or resolutions. These will soon turn into the ‘IF ONLY’ parts again and again.

Let’s do something different this year and look at all the opportunities we have each day to enjoy. Resolutions can make us feel like failures, when we do not accomplish each one we write down. Opportunities are spontaneity reactions, unplanned surprises, accidental choices, and make us feel alive.

A walk in the sunshine is an opportunity to view our neighborhood, wave at neighbors, and walk with a friend. Helping someone get something from a high shelf in a store is a great opportunity to realize we all need assistance at one time or another. Opportunities include smiles to a stranger, a good belly laugh between friends, a good book to share and look forward to discussions about the story. This is your year not to make  a list of resolutions and become an active person, not just an observer of life.

Bucket lists are great for the soul, mind, and fun. These are things you’d like to do, places you’d love to visit, new adventures to think about, and opportunities to learn something new. The list here can come from pictures in magazines where you visit in your mind and enjoy the adventures. All you have to do is look around your own city and find out what is happening. A trip to a museum, taking your lunch to a park and eating on a picnic bench. People watching at an ice cream parlor, outdoor restaurant, or the local coffee shop. Who knows, maybe this is the year you take your pen and tablet with you and jot down your own thoughts.

Remember to enjoy life, be active share and you will be happier this coming year. AND, do not forget to give a big hug to someone, no not the bear squeeze, but the fuzzy-armed hugs that make you feel warm inside. Look at the picture and you will have a hug from me.