New Year, New Beginnings!
Amber Lea Easton
Have you ever wanted to hit the reset button and get a do-over on life? As far as I'm concerned, we can do this at any time of the year, but it's universally acceptable to reflect and "reset" on New Years' Eve.
Although I like to reevaluate, I don't necessarily make resolutions anymore. I find they're too easy to reject come January 31. I've started making broad assessments instead, sort of like a pro and con list about what worked during the past year and what I'd like to improve on for the next.
I'd like more free time next year because this past year was spent in overdrive 24/7. All work and no play definitely makes Amber boring...and grumpy. So as I go into 2014 I'm looking at how I can achieve more balance in life rather than making a resolution like "join a club" or "learn tennis" or anything specific. Perhaps I'm too rebellious for resolutions, I don't know. I've learned that setting a broader goal helps me stick to it.
This truly is a good time to look at what makes you happy and what doesn't. Make a change that will bring you more joy and toss out all that doesn't. I used to think life wasn't as fluid as that, but then I realized I was stopping myself because I was scared of change. Once I figured that out, it became much easier to embrace the "new" in my life...new opportunities, new friends, and new beginnings.
In my new release, "Anonymity", Alyssa McNeil is reassessing her play-it-safe-stick-to-the-rules lifestyle. Her ex-fiancé of eight years is getting married on New Years' Eve to someone he knew only a few months. Tired of always doing the right thing and yet falling short of her dreams, she sets out on a trip to Belize where she's trying new things and pushing herself from her comfort zone. Love isn't on her agenda, but sometimes Fate has it's own plans.
I loved writing this story about new beginnings in the new year because it struck many chords within me. At first Alyssa feels at a loss, as if she's been stuck in a holding pattern for too long, and has missed out on living the life she really wanted to live. I have felt that way myself many times in recent years, as if I veered off course and couldn't figure out how to get "me" back. From speaking to a lot of my friends, I realized I wasn't alone in this idea of needing to break free of the habits that were no longer serving me in order to create the life I truly wanted for myself.
I've started over multiple times so far on my journey. As I look ahead to 2014, there will be more changes. My oldest daughter is graduating from high school and moving on to college, for one. I'll probably cry, but I'm also excited to see how her life unfolds. This looming life event is definitely making me reflect on the new year and who it is I want to become in this next stage.
Change isn't easy. Sometimes letting go of the tried and true is terrifying. It can also be the most freeing thing on the planet to realize that you alone have the power to control your life.
Happy New Year to all of you! I hope it's filled with more joy than you can stand and more success than you ever dreamed possible!
"Anonymity"—New Year, New Alyssa!—can be found at Amazon (http://getBook.at/Anonymity) or All Romance Ebooks (https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-anonymity-1379776-153.html)
(For all of you Nook lovers, Barnes and Noble has been slow to show it with all of my other books, but it is available at All Romance Ebooks right now.)
I'd love to know if you make resolutions, reflect on life this time of year, or if you agree with my broader approach to starting the new year.
I'm giving away one ebook copy each of "Kiss Me Slowly" and "Riptide", two of my contemporary romance/romantic suspense crossover novels. If you're not an ebook fan, don't worry. I have paperbacks available that I'll happily send. All you need to do to enter is comment below!