I hope you are looking forward to the new year, not just because you will be glad the old one is over but because you know 2012 will be full of opportunities and challenges that will bring you pleasure and fulfillment.
It’s traditional to start the New Year with resolutions designed to help us live healthier, happier, and more rewarding lives. But the ritual of starting a new calendar also allows us to reflect on some of the important things we’ve learned over the years, the insights we want to pass on, and the things we’ve learned that make us not only smarter, but wiser.
For instance, I’ve learned that I am still a work in process; that as long as I can think I can learn.
I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn but if I keep learning I will get better and thebetter I get, the happier I will be.
I’ve learned that trying to be a good person doesn’t get any easier and that being a good person often requires me to do the right thing even when it costs more than I want to pay.
I’ve learned that kindness is more important than cleverness and that carrying grudges is foolish and self-defeating.
I’ve learned that my dad was right when he told me, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way,” and that tenacity is more important to success than talent.
I’ve learned that pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional and that I have a lot to say about my own happiness.
I’ve learned that a life focused on fun and pleasure rarely leads to happiness or fulfillment.
I’ve learned that in my personal relationships and in the workplace I’ve got to set limits because whatever I allow, I encourage.
I’ve learned that the things I like to do least are often the things that need to be done most.
I’ve learned that it’s easy to fall into self-righteousness and that neither the intensity of my feelings nor the certainty of my convictions is any assurance that I’m right.
I’ve learned that unless I translate my thoughts into actions, my great ideas and good intentions are like unlit candles.
I’ve learned that I cannot lie myself out of a problem and that the problems I ignore don’t go away, they just grow bigger.
This is Michael Josephson reminding you that character counts.