Within 2016 we’ve all cried, laughed, been mad, and smiled. We felt disappointment and immense happiness. We celebrated another round of holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries. Some of us made resolutions and few of us actually stuck to them (you can only pass up a donut so many times). Another year that flew by right in front of our eyes. As every year comes to an end, many people take a look back to reminisce on what has changed, what they accomplished, or what they’ve lost.

As this year comes to an end I realized that I didn’t do everything I wish I had. I didn’t go skydiving. I didn’t take enough time to fluently learn sign language, Spanish, or the piano. I let people come and go out of my life with no question. I held a few grudges and occasionally let one bad moment affect my entire day. Within the next year I hope to continuously do something to better myself, and I wish you the same.

I hope you pray a little harder when life gets tougher. I hope you stop fearing change and living in the past. Forgive those who don’t deserve it (for your peace, not theirs). I hope you spread kindness to every passing face and don’t expect anything in return- even when some aren’t so kind to you. Compliment a stranger, hold a door, start a conversation with someone you've never met, or check on a friend you haven't talked to in a while. On your worst day, I hope you wake up every morning with love in your heart. Pick one thing you're grateful for and appreciate it. I hope you can stop trying to please everyone and stand up for yourself. You don’t always have to explain your decisions, but I hope you try to be understanding of other’s choices. Never let someone crush your happiness. If it won't matter tomorrow, let it go. Do what you need to today because tomorrow will have its own agenda. Workout, eat healthier, and finish that project because we all know “tomorrow” translates into “never.”

I hope you take care of yourself mentally, physically, and emotionally. Jump at every promising opportunity without fear and spend this year making each day count. I hope you make new friends and cherish your old ones. Spend time with people who enrich your life and show gratitude daily. I hope you enjoy 2017, but most of all, I hope you spend this year doing what makes you happy and spreading that joy.

Here’s to a new year, a new chapter, a new beginning. I hope your journey is everything you desire.