What a year!
2023 was a year of paradoxes. Up and Downs! Contradictions and Consistencies! Set-backs and Set-ups! Joy and Pain! Mountaintop Moments and Valley Lows! Inclusion and Exclusion! Happiness and Horror!
But despite the individual and collective polarities we have experienced and witnessed in 2023, I am still convinced that goodness will prevail. I believe we ALL still have the power to change the world for our common good. I still know that we ALL are bright lights, and we can illuminate the darkness that robs us of our shared humanity. Even though I am shocked, angry, and grieved about some of the trauma happening in the world, I am also STILL resolved, empowered, and committed to work for change.
First, I am grateful for my life!
Also….I still believe in US – you and me!
So, as we embark on a new year, I hope and pray that:
You can keep making the right choices for yourself even when the choices feel risky.
You keep speaking up for yourself and others even when finding the right words is difficult.
You keep standing up for yourself and others even if you stand on shaky legs.
You keep seeing the best in yourself and others, even if you must strain to see beyond your biases, constant propaganda, and great complexities.
You keep raising your hand to advocate for yourself and others, even when others act like they don’t see you or hear you.
You keep walking your own path even if the path is unclear, uncharted, and unconventional.
You keep listening to your heart and the wisdom of your ancestors even if you must ignore the crowd and leave long-term relationships.
You keep holding onto your faith even if you must cling tighter than you’ve ever clung to an unwavering hope in a Higher Power.
You keep protecting your integrity even when you are tempted to compromise who you are and what you believe for perks, power, and privileges.
You keep saying “no” even when saying “yes” is more comfortable, convenient, and profitable.
You keep establishing boundaries to protect and promote your health, healing, and wholeness, even when others call you divisive, selfish, or standoffish.
You keep making rest and restoration priorities, even though society keeps telling you that rest is earned and reserved for others who don’t look like you.
You keep learning history so you can appreciate the lived experiences of others, courageously confront your assumptions, and value differences in ways that honor and restore the humanity and dignity of others.
You prioritize your total health so that your mind, body, spirit, and soul get the nourishment you need to be the happiest, healthiest, and highest version of yourself.
You stay rooted in your truth while remaining open to new ideas so that you can evolve and transform without guilt, pressure, or fear.
You keep loving yourself even when your mistakes and memories fill you with shame, feelings of inferiority, and crippling doubt.
You keep choosing and working for justice even when the world keeps misleading you to believe in the policies of “JUST-US.”
You keep creating ways to generate income and financial freedom for yourself and your family so you don’t have to subject yourself to the soul-draining effects of assimilation, code-switching, microaggressions, and other types of corporate trauma.
You keep dreaming even when your current reality convinces you that your dreams are pointless, too big, or beyond your ability.
You keep hearing, prioritizing, and honoring your intuition, insight, instincts, and inner voice so you know what to do and when to do it.
You keep taking value-inspired action, so you don’t have to live with the pain of regret.
You keep reclaiming, reconnecting, and remembering parts of yourself that you left behind to fit into unwelcoming and unsupported places.
I hope you can keep DOING YOU – courageously, unapologetically, and effortlessly because you believe in YOUR FREEDOM, identity, humanity, and joy.
I am praying….
I am praying, dreaming, and hoping for all of us. I am praying because we – YOU AND ME – are essential to the world. The world needs us, and we need the world. We need each other to be more human and humane.
What I know for sure is that there is so much more in store for you.
There is so much more in store for me.
There is so much more in store for the world.
And if we dare to soar higher than everything we have been taught, told, seen, or experienced, we can create a safer, saner, more equitable world. And when we do that, we can create spaces to thrive and experience a little heaven on Earth.
Blessings to you!
I wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year!
The Dare To Soar Mentor and Strategist