The New Year is here


Saleh Al Shaibany

As the New Year is here, many of us are thinking about the missed opportunities, the brave things we should have done and the disappointments we have had. It is natural to look back with some gloom. The last twelve months can be a revelation despite the frustrations, if we are willing to learn something from the experience. 

Personally, I should have taken more time off my working schedule. I should also have paid more attention to my family and certainly refused to delve into matters that were not important to my life. But having said that, when one is engrossed with a pressing situation, everything else becomes a priority. You try to live several days in just a few hours in a bid to accomplish a host of things in just a short time. As you rush through, you give little time to each and do little justice to all of them. I pledge, though I doubt that I would have the resilience to adhere to the promise, I would slow down without slamming the brakes on my ambitions. 

I would also like to do so many things but I will resist, try to resist at least, the temptations to overload my work schedule. Does it make me feel good now by saying that? Of course it does. The challenge is for us to make our words good when it matters. But the question is why wait? I can start right away by filtering my desk and throw away all the useless papers that clutter my office. I can also clear out my mind with thoughts that bog me down at this very instant. I am sure I will be surprised to find, just less than 20 per cent in that list, what I see now as priority, is important. If I go further down for another short list, I am confident I would just find a couple of items that are really important to me. 

If I can do it, then I would start the year with a fresh enthusiasm giving myself time to flush out all the undesirables in my mind. If I am successful, than I would free my life with all the unnecessary confusion and see things quite clear. As usual, I would refrain from making silly resolutions that I would not follow. I hate shackling my routine with a few scribbled words. A year is not a lot but it can be a lot of trouble if you don't take care of the minutes that go by. I have been writing about new years for the last fifteen years and yet, I have learned very little about life itself. But it is never too late and I am not going to wait for another decade-and-half to do something about it. 

We might all celebrate the closing of the year but the beginning of the new calendar must bring fresh hope, a new start and looking closer at the finer detail. Before we know it, another year would swish past and we will be stuck with the same song like a broken record. Let's put our words in practice. Let's also learn to spend more time with our families and address their needs even if they seem not to demand it. Life starts at home and if the domestic is not taken care for then it can be unpleasant place to go back to. You don't sleep with your business partners, bosses or even customers. They are not permanent. They are just faces that put pressure and can do irreversible damage. For 2014, the priority should start at home before it starts spilling out of my doorstep.

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