Blog: New Year, New You: Begin Anywhere

Blog: New Year, New You: Begin Anywhere

January 1, 2012

According to the Gregorian calendar, these are the first days of the New Year. We feel an obligation to begin again, to renew ourselves, make a resolution, resolving to be or to do something.

Somehow these early days of January represent a chance to start over in many aspects of our lives, with projects that may have begun and been abandoned, new work implementations in the fiscal year, or maybe a “new you” after the December month of excess.

In a musician’s life, December is so packed with unbelievable amounts of much appreciated work that you do believe in Santa Claus. The New Year however can yawn open with gaping mouth and razor teeth. The year stretches out in front of us, empty, cavernous, scary. Not much in the book, few contracts lined up, thoughts of mustering the creative energy for yet another year — fearsome.

Begin Anywhere.

Right next to the harp in my music studio I have posted a quote from the 20th century composer, John Cage. I see it and contemplate it everyday. He says, “Begin Anywhere.” Simple. A short pithy aphorism. A reminder that inspiration and creativity is available to us at anytime, anywhere and with any medium. What is beautiful about it’s simplicity is that we decide at any given moment, with our next breath perhaps, to be renewed. The human brain has this capacity to chemically put together the feeling of “renew.” It allows for a change of thought and a shift in outlook in an instant. A decision to be inspired can happen anywhere during the course of the day. A Roman calendar marking a day as “time to make a resolution” is not necessary. Certainly, it’s important to honor these special days and celebrate time passing with love, reverence and respect, but it can be incredibly freeing to know that you can “Begin Anywhere,” which in my mind, includes anytime.

Carrying daily “stuff” to our place of creative work makes it challenging to do that deep work. Past negative thoughts and feelings bubble up and we wallow in this darker place instead of rejoicing in the creative moment that we are given. By wiping the slate clean and realizing that right now I can begin to express myself as I am, as I have come to this moment – we feel lighter, connected, free and able to do our deeper work of creativity.

When I teach this theme in my yoga classes I include basic breathing techniques within the postures. Every breath is the renewal; every breath joins the body to the light and a closer relationship to the divine creativity. Every breath gives that promise that we can begin with a clean slate and make a closer connection to the creative Self. It’s possible then to begin right now; reading this blog, on your mat, in the car, cooking a meal and playing your instrument. Here’s the moment of creativity, fresh, new, joyous, and certainly different than the last. Open consciousness to thoughts of possibility, and seek the feeling of renewal. In an instant 2012 is no longer yawning open and empty, but rich with new opportunity, full with new possibility and promising endless moments of beginning anywhere.

Happy New Year!

I wish you days of freedom, possibility, renewal, and always, always, love.

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    Basic Yoga Class: Tuesdays, 7:45–8:45 p.m.
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