by Phoenix A. Desertsong, The Perpetual Prose Machine
s we head into the new year, many of us are working on our New Years’ Resolutions. Since many of my own resolutions never get resolved, I’ve instead decided to create a list of “Holiday Hopes” instead. My thinking is to take the positive energies from holiday-time cheer and goodwill and channel it into a series of hopes that will hopefully resonate throughout the year.
Here are my holiday hopes, not only for myself and those dear to me, but to all of us reading this piece.
I hope we each resolve to do something creative every day
It could be making a little craft, a do-it-yourself project, a blog post, taking a picture or video… anything that requires creative energy… Be sure that you do something creative at least once a day. It’s good for your brain! But it’s also good emotionally and spiritually. And as Maya Angelou once said, “You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
I hope we each perform a few spontaneous good deeds every day
You could call them “random acts of kindness” but that phrase has become a bit cliched. Still, helping someone carry items they’re dropping across the street or to their vehicle can really help someone’s day. Helping someone who’s short of change at the store is another one.
But beyond that, it can be as simple as giving a heartfelt compliment to someone have a bad day. Kind words go a lot further than you might think. Even if it’s just on Facebook or Twitter, helping someone who’s having a problem or tough time is a very important way to spread positive energy - something we could always use more of every day.
I hope we each do something to build up one or more people each day
In the online world, we like to like and retweet to help each other get more exposure. But what we should do more often is add thoughtful commentary to our shares. We should also reply and comment on every post that truly interests us, whether it’s on social media or a blog. Finding new ways to help others should be a priority, because wouldn’t we want others to do the same for us?
Also, in “real life” we can really do much the same thing. Just because you can’t hit like and retweet doesn’t mean you can’t help build appreciation for something a friend or other loved one cares about or invests their time into.
I hope we each find quality time to spend with friends and family
The holidays are a great time to spend extra time with friends and family. While that’s a great feature of the holidays, we really should each resolve to set aside time just for friends and family to do things that they like to do with us. I feel like many of us get too busy with work these days and we don’t spend nearly enough time with those around us that we love. This is something I need to work on myself, for sure.
And if your friends and family are primarily online, that’s OK, too. As long as you set aside time to give others dear to you your time, that’s what counts.
I hope we each manage to save at least one life this year.
For all the good that goes around at the holidays, the sad truth is that the holidays are also some of the worst times for many people. I’ve had some very crumby holidays myself. So I have an idea what it can be like to see others spending money they don’t really have to spend on Christmas presents when you can’t even give your kids a good meal more than once a day.
This hope goes way beyond doing spontaneous good deeds for those less fortunate. It’s more than giving spare change or an extra dollar to your favorite charity - although that can do something. This is about actually connecting with people that could use your help, and it doesn’t have to be money. It needs to be personal, though. Your compassion could actually save a life.
Same with people who are thinking of committing suicide. Talking someone out of it is a big deal, especially if you help someone to realize that they are important. This is something I have done before online and over the phone. Those people are still alive today, so I feel that I may have saved a few lives over the years. I believe that it should be a goal to save at least one life this year. Hopefully, we can all save many more than that.
If you are feeling in any way depressed or even remotely suicidal, there are plenty of hotlines with wonderful people to help you through. You can also always message me at any of these places:
I’ll get back to you ASAP :)
Happy holidays, everyone. I hope that we can all each resolve to do one or more of these things next year and for all years to come.
What are your resolutions and hopes for the new year?
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Often known by her nickname "Ami," Ms. Phoenix Amelia Desertsong has written for many online publications, often under pen names.