Every January, as the last of the holiday decorations come down, homes everywhere feel empty. Not in the spiritual sense or emotionally, but quite literally our houses feel empty once we’ve removed an entire sparkling tree (or several), a nativity that covered an entire table, figurines that filled a shelf, garland that lined our cabinets and mantles, and whatever other holiday decor you fill your house with. After you close the door of the room that holds all your holiday décor in bins and boxes, you turn around to find a home that you vaguely remember after the three-month-long revolving door of ghosts to scarecrows to Santas.
As the last pieces of loose glitter and tree needles are sucked up into our vacuums around the same time the ball drops us into a new year, it’s a perfect metaphor for the clean slate we are given.
Our home is rebirthed just as our spirits are renewed. Our house feels empty as we embark on new beginnings. Our dwellings feel clean and fresh as we start over and set out on accomplishing our new year’s resolutions. The motivation we feel to keep our home looking like this for a while coincides with the motivation we find within ourselves to read that first book of the year, or lose those first five pounds, or update that resume for our new job search.
As I sit on my couch looking into the empty corner where the tree recently stood, I sigh a breath of relief that not only is my house put back in order, but that my mind is at peace with where I am, yet also focused on the goals ahead. With school back in session I’m ignited by the structure and schedule that I so crave. I set forth to conquer my goals and resolutions, knowing from all previous years that hurdles will try to stop me. But my clean slate is mine to control. I get to choose how that slate will look a year from now.
As you set out on your 2023 ventures, what do you want your current clean slate to look like by December? We’ve waved good-bye to 2022. We’ve wiped away the messes and the beauties and the struggles and the accomplishments of that year. While they stay fresh in our minds, we can use what we’ve learned to forge ahead with new enthusiasm.