This new year’s practice is one of Honeybee’s most requested, so we share a reprise here, with best wishes for a plentiful year to come.
Like many people, my year end used to be shadowed by “should’ves”. I would reflect on resolutions from years past, and instead of feeling great about all that had transpired, I’d end up focusing on the leftover items on the list – work un-done, trips un-taken, marathons un-run.
Then, a few years ago, I tried flipping this process around. I spent an hour reviewing my calendar from the past twelve months, noting all of the things I was glad to have done. Some entries – family reunions, long-anticipated vacations, big professional events – naturally were already top of mind. But what surprised me were the smaller moments that jumped out – afternoon tea with a long-lost friend, a free evening to read a whole novel in one big gulp, a blissful autumn hike.
I looked at the calendar for the coming year, with all of its promising white space, and started gleefully filling it up, based on my joyful list from the year before. I added placeholders for some big things, like those trips and family events…
and then I stopped.
Because I also wanted to protect the ability to have that tea, or read that book, or visit that relative. Against all of my natural tendencies to over-plan, I wanted to intentionally leave a bit more blank space. It turns out that “carpe diem” does not actually mean, “schedule each moment, squash it all in.” As we look ahead, we have a chance to choose not just more, but different. Better.
Dear friends, as this fresh new year dawns, I wish you the joys of plans well made, and the joys of spacious surprises. May both be plentiful.
In case you missed it during the holidays, here is our winter book list!