Before You Leap into 2014 . . .

The temptation is so strong to make a list of changes necessary in 2014. There are hundreds of ways to be better, kinder, thinner. We are never enough for ourselves. I have nothing against self-improvement, it’s a never-ending project. A renewable resource for your psyche.

11401998-largeBefore you make a six-volume improvement list for 2014, there is unfinished business in 2013. Take a seat. Take a few deep breaths, too. Then look back at 2013, and see what you did right. What you are doing better now than you did last January. What you struggled with, figured out and made progress on. What you conquered.

None of these victories have to be permanent to make them count. There are some improvements we have to make over and over again. Not unlike painting the trim on the house, rotating the car’s tires, or doing laundry.

Each year, you’ll meet the same problem over and over again until you understand it fully. Rather than becoming impatient and angry with yourself for “not fixing the problem,” give yourself some credit for recognizing and working regularly on the problem. Think over what you were bad at and see if you have made progress.

Look over what you were good at and see if you are doing more of it. Don’t start making a list of improvements just yet. Take a minute first to see how far you have come. That’s an important part of being strong enough to continue.

–Quinn McDonald has a feeling 2014 is going to be a busy year.