My goodness. What to say about 2020? Perhaps it’s better to offer a few miscellaneous ideas for 2021:

Rethink Resolutions

Some of you may have read in one of my books about a little experiment I do with trainees showing that self critical thoughts actually physically weaken a person. But the really amazing thing is, thoughts that begin with terms like “have to,” “must,” “got to,” or the like have the same effect. That’s what most resolutions do–“lose weight,” “exercise,”–they are things that come across as have to’s, but thinking in those terms weakens you. You approach them as chores.

Instead, you might try choosing a theme for the year. Possible themes could be: growth, quiet time for myself, the beauties of nature, Mozart, or anything else that makes you feel that you want to, rather than have to.

Stay the Course on COVID19

We have vaccines now. Yea! But it will take a while before enough people have been vaccinated to begin seeing the effect on the numbers of cases, which are still rising. Also, there are unknowns about these vaccines. The scientists and doctors don’t yet know how long the vaccines will last, whether they will protect us against mutations, and various other things.

Once the number of deaths in the US got well into the six digits, our minds became sort of numb to them. They became rather meaningless. Meaning returns when we compare these numbers to other events. We have had single days when the number of deaths exceeded that of the September 11 terrorist attacks. It’s fast approaching the number who died at Gettysburg. The total number of deaths now exceeds the number killed in all US-foreign wars, excluding World Wars 1 and 2.

So please be a generous person, and take care of yourself as well. Mask up and social distance.

Say, “Good Morning”

I get an email from my congregation with some type of inspirational or thought-provoking quotation each day. Dec. 31’s offering was from a poem by Maya Angelou:

Here on the pulse of this new day
You may have the grace to look up and out
And into your sister’s eyes, into
Your brother’s face, your country
And say simply
Very simply
With hope
Good morning.

Let’s all look up and out, with hope, and simply say to this new year, “Good morning.”