The Fallacy Of The New, Or Why I Don’t Want To Wish You A Happy New Year
People like a clean slate. A new year, a new decade, a new day, emphasis is on the word new. New job, new house, new country, new partner. New body. Just think about the word new for a moment – it has a sense about it, a freshness, a potential. New – as in renew, as in brand new, clean, spotless, fresh.
Focusing on the new you forget about the real you. You’re not new, you’re not clean, fresh or spotless, okay you might have taken a shower so your body is clean, but you have scars, that time you caught your finger in the window, or the stretch marks around your underbelly, a cut on your knee from where you fell. Your body has aged with you, it will never be new. And you don’t want a new body anyway, new bodies are the babies that come forth from us, you’d have to learn to speak and walk and feed yourself all over again and you’ve already done that, and I guarantee you have no interest in doing that now. Your scars are memories, are part of you, they’re proof that you’re alive. Learn to love them.
The attraction around new is about the clean slate, the second (or third or fourth) chance, that’s why we all love the newness of the new year. And today we wake to a new decade. A collective chance for all of us to have a clean slate, to start again, to do it ‘better’, or do it the way we would have done it if we knew what was going to happen. A chance which is heightened by everyone’s agreement that this is a moment in time where we all can change/try again/fix whatever it is that you think is broken. A chance to leave ‘it all’ behind.
But you can’t wash your experiences off of you like you can wash off dirt. And how you carry your experiences are your scars, emotional scars, they cannot be seen by the eye but they’re most certainly there, just like the ones on your body. They’re proof that you’re alive. Have they faded as easily as the physical scars? Perhaps some have, perhaps some others have not. That’s the beauty of being who you are, it’s part of your chemistry, your biology, the essence of who you are.
Gain weight lose weight you are still you. Be unfit or get fit, you are still you. Cut your hair, leave it long, dye it or leave it natural, you are still you. That’s the secret to all of this new stuff. Knowing that the new thing that you want is superficial. Knowing that the real you is always there beneath it all. You cannot run away from you, no matter how hard you try, and some people spend lifetimes trying. At the end of the day, you go to bed with yourself and you wake up with yourself, you are always there. And this is a good thing. Because the one thing you can change, or heal, or have any control over whatsoever, is you.
If you have made resolutions, and have woken to the potential of this new year fresh and clean in your approach and pure in your enthusiasm, then call me in a few weeks, or a few months, when the resolutions fall away. In fact, no, don’t call me, because there will be too many people calling at my door. Call yourself, call yourself out on it. Because it won’t keep, it won’t stick. It will not stick if it does not come naturally to you.
But here is what will stick if you put the effort in: improving your relationship with yourself. Supporting yourself instead of abusing yourself with your thoughts. Spending just as much time noticing what you do well as the time you spend criticising yourself for doing badly. Slowing down and asking yourself how you are really doing, instead of deciding how you are doing. Detaching from the things around you to find who YOU are again, and working with yourself instead of against yourself. And not only working on your body, but work on your energy, purify and cleanse it so that you are not influenced by other people’s thoughts needs and desires, so that you are clear of energetic blockages and ancestral pain. There’s nothing like owning your own pain, because it is yours. It’s such a beautiful thing. And it frees you up to transform it, rather than being stuck trying to transform something that is too big for you to do alone.
Happy New Year, happy new decade, well, I don’t wish that for you either. Because if it was all completely happy then what would you learn? How would you grow? No. This is what I wish for you instead – I wish you would stop fooling yourself that you’re okay when you are not okay, I wish that you get the strength you need to break free from what is holding you back, I wish that you get the courage to ask for help and that the people that come are the people that genuinely want to help you without any agenda of their own.
I wish for you that you no longer fear looking inwards, and are brave and courageous enough to go there so that you heal yourself instead of run away, or look to someone or something else to do it for you. I wish that you accept yourself completely for who you are, in all of your complexities and eccentricities, so that you have a better understanding of what you can do to become happy, instead of creating superficial happiness. I wish that your heart opens and holds more light, and more love, so that your compassion for yourself is expanded, and with it is enhanced and expanded compassion for others, for animals and for the world.
I wish that you find the energy you need to pick yourself up from the ground, shake off the dirt, and own and love your scars, all of them – physical, metaphysical and emotional. And that you allow yourself the space to be who you are, even with those aspects of you that feel awkward, difficult, uncomfortable. That you set your intention to stop trying to fix yourself, and to start learning how to love yourself. Because love is the only way forward, love is why we are all going to make it. And it starts with you.