Ringing in a fresh start

It is customary for my first blog of the calendar year to focus upon themes of resolutions and goal setting.

While many students feel they do not have much “power” or ability to alter their life’s purpose and destiny, most parents and adults have a very different perspective on this. With decades ahead, we know that young people will actively direct their own path by pausing to consider macro issues in their life – such as their own value system and long-term priorities – as well as micro decisions along the way, which might include selecting their friend groups and co-curricular activities.

Anytime is a good time for kids to talk about and write down their short-term and long-term plans. It’s just that, in this month, there are many more of us penning our plans as soon as the calendar turns to January.

The start of anything new brings a fresh hope. An “in with the new and out with old” attitude. To this end, I thought I might offer a few select stanzas from Lord Tennyson’s In Memoriam, published in 1850:

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind
For those that here we see no more;
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes
But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease;
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.

A happy new year to you all.

new year students plans