2021 & The Back Nine

The New Year is often synonymous with a fresh start. Regardless of how daunting the previous year may have been, we can't help but anticipate the possibilities that lie ahead.

As a junior golfer, I distinctly remember staring at my tournament scorecard after a particularly poor performance on the front nine. Nonetheless, the fold in the center of the scorecard was the promise of nine new holes undefiled by shanks, three putts or water hazards. Only slow draws and tap-ins from here on out. The empty squares on the back nine scorecard always calmed and encouraged me.

Humans thrive on new beginnings. We always have.

As the front nine of 2020 slips aways, the challenges of this surreal year will surely continue and may prove to be even greater than we imagined. May we remember that life consists of a series of choices and circumstances that shape us daily. We are not the people we were yesterday, a month ago, a year ago. Our thoughts, habits and interactions are shaped by the choices we made well before 2020. Our ability to bear the weight of 2021 starts with the smallest of decisions we make at this very moment.

So, what about that fresh start? Perhaps it lies with the conscious decision to reflect on the little things we often miss. The careless thoughts, the overlooked poor habits, the ignored relationships.

I'm not one for epic resolutions. Instead I choose to reflect on the ways 2020 made me more grateful, more patient and more hopeful. I will also have a heart-to-heart with yours truly and admit that I retreated from certain relationships that became more difficult with distance, that I filled the void of quality time with technology and that I sometimes gave into apathy when I should have cared more deeply.

I hope 2021 will focus my heart on the value of each person in my life, joy with every unique interaction, care with meeting every need and gratitude in every relationship.

Our New Year is one moment at a time and one shot at a time. May each one bring joy.