It’s a good thing to be excited by your future. What you don’t want to do is go so far as to develop an attachment to it going well. If you get attached to the idea that your year will go great then you’ll inevitably be disappointed because a year’s a long time and life’s always and for everyone a mixed bag. You can easily avoid that disappointment by anticipating rather than expecting the year to go well. Obviously you won’t enjoy every individual collection of moments, but if you’re focused on realizing rather than just having a better year then you absolutely can. You just have to live assuming that something good is coming your way. Just don’t be specific and expect. It makes all the difference in the world to live knowing that you will be fortunate. Because what you watch for is what you’ll see, so it’s important to remember to keep a keen eye out for things to be grateful for. This is also why pessimists have so much evidence for pessimism—they’re also looking for what they perceive is confirmation that they understand the world. But again, the only truth to see or understand is the truth behind the fact that you simply see what you look for. So don’t expect a good year, look for it. Be like an archaeologist who digs for happiness. Because what pessimists fail to notice is that optimists live in the same places as pessimists yet their views are much more enjoyable to the optimist than a pessimist’s views are to the pessimist. So choice has everything to do with it. And you can absolutely use the new year as a marker for when you consciously chose to change your life by simply acknowledging, on a routine basis, more of the legitimate reasons for you to feel genuinely grateful every single day.
Note: Everyone who posts or shares a quote does so with the very best of intentions. That said, I have created the series of Other Perspectives blog posts in an effort to prevent some of these ideas from entering into people’s consciousness unchallenged. These quotes range from silly to dangerous and—while I intend no offense to their creators—I do use these rebuttals to help define and delineate the larger message I’m attempting to convey in my own work. I do hope you find them helpful in your pursuit of both psychological and spiritual health.
Following a childhood accident should have left him dead, Scott McPherson spent his life meditating on thought, consciousness, reality and the self. Seeing the emotional damage done by ego-based overthinking he began dedicating a part of his life to guiding students toward more peaceful and rewarding lives. He is currently a writer, speaker and mindfulness instructor based in Edmonton, Canada.