27 Dec

My tech-savvy six-year-old granddaughter set her kid’s Alexa dot alarm to wake her up at 4:30 am on Christmas morning so that she could see what Santa Claus brought her. She came bounding down the stairs and into my bedroom to wake me up.

“GoGo, wake up! I think Santa came. I heard the reindeer walking on our roof! Can I go see what he brought me?”

I sleepily nodded my head and told her she could go check out her stocking. Off she ran into the living room to find her stocking.

Suddenly, I could hear her sobbing! I called out to her: “What’s the matter? “She came running back into my bedroom, clutching her new, pink, plush unicorn. Still sobbing she uttered: “Tears of joy! Tears of joy!”

As we put 2020 to rest, I hope 2021 gives you many opportunities to experience “Tears of joy”! If there is one thing, I hope we have learned from the trauma of living through a pandemic it is to look for the good that is always present in the midst of adversity.

We watched as so many were forced to die alone without human contact and without the warmth of loved ones next to them as they passed on. Loved ones were devastated, not only by the loss of someone they cherished, but by the guilt from not having put more effort into showing that person, in life, how much they meant to them.

Have we been living lives in such a way that we feel we can count on “someday” to express love and admiration to those who have supported us throughout life? Do we feel love in our hearts, yet never actually utter the words, “I love you” to those we love?

As Jerry Stiller said in a Seinfeld episode, he invented a new holiday called “Festivus for the rest of us,” where we gather our family around an tell them all the ways they have disappointed us throughout the year. Do we really need to live in such a negative way? What effect has that had on our family and friends? What ripple effect has that had on everyone in the world?

My new year’s resolution is to look at things, not through the filter of criticism, but through the filter of love and acceptance. My new practice will be to let the feelings of love I have for others flow from my heart through my lips and into your heart.

Oh, I may slip sometimes, but I am counting on you to remind me because that’s what friends are for. I give you permission to tell me how you feel about me, too.

I love all of you: family, friends, and clients who have supported and encouraged me by telling me when you agree with the thoughts I have expressed through my writing. 

I love those of you who have pushed yourself to try something new and to trust in yourself enough to take the first step to up-level your life.

I love those of you who have realized that all the roadblocks you perceive to have, have been placed there by you and can be removed by you. What power you have exerted to create a better life, and in doing so, developed the confidence that will help you tackle every daunting task until it is behind you.

I love all of our shared memories, both the good and the bad because each memory held a lesson we needed to learn, and each brought us greater understanding of who we each are on a soul level.

…and so, as a new year approaches, I wish you renewed hope, the ability to express love freely and many, many “tears of joy”! 

As always, I am rooting for you!

Happy New Year!

Angela I. Schutz

Driven to Succeed Consulting LLC

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