2016 isn't the year of new beginnings until I make it so. I can create a vision board (which I am). I can write out my list of goals (which I am). I can declare up and down my Twitter feed what I plan to do (which I'm not). I can buy all new everything (which I'm not). And still carry the same mindset, the same habits, and the same unbelief into the new year.
The key point of change is what I tell myself about myself.
If I only ever think of myself in the dull shades of being "someone's employee" or "barely able to make it" or "Dang, am I ever going to pay off this car?" or "Let's see how long this diet plan lasts..." I am defeating myself and my declarations of newness before I even begin the journey. If I nurture self-defeating thoughts, I am defeated and no one can make me believe differently because *I* have indoctrinated myself. My voice is loudest one in my ear. If I feed poison to me, what work does any enemy have? I've put him out of a job.
There have been days when I was dressed to the nines; hair fried, dyed, and laid to the side; makeup flawless... and I still compared myself to every other woman in the room, feeling some unmerited measure of inadequacy. Because that was the message I nurtured in my own heart and mind. I thought I didn't measure up, so I believed I didn't measure up. I then behaved as if I didn't measure up and soon... I didn't measure up.
You do until you don't.
You are until you aren't.
And no calendar reset can fix that. It's an inside job.
The miracle is not in the stroke of midnight. The miracle is in the moment-to-moment decision to be my best self and to support my best self - come what/who may.
There will always be someone prettier, smarter, faster, quicker-thinking... but there will never be another person who has walked 365 days consecutively in my shoes, year after year after year. There will never be someone who knows all of my story and who can give the world what I can give.* It's not about comparison. It's about self-awareness, purpose-awareness, and self-love.
It begins with how I think of me and what I am created to do. That takes work. It takes daily abandoning of every harmful thought process I've ever nurtured. It starts in the mind. It takes a demolition crew of positive thoughts, quotes, sayings, prayers, conversations, and actions to level the old and make way for the new.
I am bigger than my car note. I am bigger than the nights I can't afford to have drinks at a posh bar in Midtown with my girlfriends. I am bigger than the mornings that anxiety would force me to cover my head and never start the day. I am bigger than the Michael Kors bag I don't own. I am bigger than unfinished To Do lists. I am bigger than the meeting I was 5 minutes late to. And I deserve to begin a new year, remembering that I am capable, I am counted worthy and I am commissioned by my Creator.
Cue the wrecking ball.