new years reminder

I think Winnie the Pooh might hold the key to all peace, love, and happiness. Seriously. Just look up “A.A. Milne quotes” and I dare you not to smile through your tears. Reading a little A.A. Milne makes even the most anguished heart feel hopeful. How can you say that, Daryn? Don’t you know there are starving children and horrible disasters and evil dictators in the world? Why don’t you tell those anguished souls to read Winnie the Pooh. And you know what? I would. Because behind all of the evil, pain, and heartbreak in the world lie people. People with souls that crave tenderness and understanding. Forgive me if you think I’m being dramatic, but I really think Winnie and the gang have a lot of tenderness and understanding to offer. Let us never take ourselves so seriously that we cannot learn from Christopher Robin.

Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

As we begin the new year, I hope you’ll memorize these words spoken to Pooh by Christopher Robin, as penned by the incomparable A.A. Milne. I have them written in giant chalk letters on a giant chalkboard wall in my garage. What with the start of the year, a promise of fresh beginnings and second chances, please don’t forget that.

You’re braver than you believe. The proverbial “they” say it’s healthy to do one thing per day that scares you. I’m not so consistent with this one, but I can tell you that every time I have decided to do something that scares me for not other reason than to stare it down, I feel a little stronger. Just do it.

You’re stronger than you seem. In my yoga practice, I’ve started just trying things that I have always thought were too tricky. No… that I thought I was too weak, too tight in my hamstrings, too whatever to do. Guess what? I can do stuff I never knew I could because I had always written it off as beyond me. I bet there is something in your life that you have written off. I bet you could come up with something that you would really like to do, but think yourself unworthy or incapable. You really could surprise yourself. Just try it.

You’re smarter than you think. I’m having to get creative with some previously straight forward parts of my life. I’m staring down some things that have always fit into place, and now, for whatever reason, they do not. As it turns out, I can deal with it. I’m discovering new paths to where I need to travel. Paths I’ve never taken. Paths that intimidate me. Paths that I’m not entirely comfortable with. Nonetheless, they are paths that I haven’t seen before and discovered exactly when I needed to discover them. Think differently. You have what it takes.

So here we are. Resolutions, goals, and dreams abound. It’s the honeymoon phase of the new year, and we’re all in love with the idea of where we could be a year from now, if we will only stick with it. So, stick with it. Don’t be overwhelmed. You can do the things you set out to do.

Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

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