“And now we welcome the new year. Full of things that have never been.” – Rainer Maria Rilke
Each year at this time we make resolutions, or think about making resolutions, and as I’ve written in the past its actually more important to be resolute. In truth, I prefer to think of this time of year as a chance for new positive beginnings.
After the holidays while it’s quiet, and everyone is hiding inside away from the cold, is a great time to begin anew getting your creative brand out there. It’s the optimal season for figuring out new ways to make positive moves into new things, or maybe old things.
We all know the gnawings and cravings of our creative soul calling us to get back to the thing that drives us. The music, the writing, the art, the ideas, the unfinished works; these are the things we can run from when we know we need to make money, but we can’t get very far from them. They are the things that define us, that make us different, that when people experience them they are agog with wonder that we can do that.
This time of year is my favorite time to not make resolutions that I “have” to do these things, but to actually begin making changes in my daily routine and my life so that I “will” do these things. That may mean some serious changes that you’ve not been prepared to make in the past. Maybe you were afraid of the sacrifice. Maybe it was easier to stay the course and make sure you didn’t make waves. Maybe you weren’t willing to make changes to your career, your sleep patterns, or your schedule.
“Successful people maintain a positive focus in life no matter what is going on around them. They stay focused on their past successes rather than their past failures, and on the next action steps they need to take to get them closer to the fulfillment of their goals rather than all the other distractions that life presents to them.” – Jack Canfield
Instead of resolutions, what about just deciding on a new beginning. Taking positive steps toward being what God made you to be. Accepting the call, taking a leap, putting away the things that may have been hindrances all this time (even things that seemed like good ways to spend your time). These are the hardest to do.
Yes, I can teach, but is THAT why God put me here? Yes, I could start a business doing this or that, but is THAT why God put me here? Yes, I could work for others my whole life helping them achieve their goals and dreams, but is THAT my true purpose, or simply something God has blessed while He patiently waits for me to remember why He put me here.
In this reflective time, it’s easier said than done. Bills must be paid, food and shelter attained, and responsibilities met. But there comes a time in our life when we begin to look at the time we have left on this earth to achieve what He gave us to achieve. The recent passing of my creative mother (church organist for 43 years, piano teacher for decades, and in the past few years an avid painter) has made me see that we all have a limited amount of time to create here in this life.
The time is now to get to the creative projects, songs, films, paintings, routines, sculptures, books, poems, and whatever other artistic leanings we have. The projects we have left unfinished. The ideas we have left unattended. The goals we set for ourselves long ago that we let lapse as we worked to make a living, a family, or build a business.
This is the time of year to think positive again not just about the “dream”, but the call, the works, and maybe most important, the legacy. What will we leave behind for this world? What positive, lasting change can we make with the gifts God has given us?
I wish you good luck finding these answers, as I also seek them. Be positive, no matter how hard it seems. You can do it, and you’ll be glad you did.
“Every revolution seems impossible at the beginning, and after it happens, it was inevitable.” – Bill Ayers
I hope you have a great new year, filled with creating, achievement, and fulfillment.
Eric Copeland is a composer, author, pianist, short film maker, and graphic artist. Find out more about his creative things at cre8iv.com, and EricCopelandMusic.com