Published on Wednesday, 30 November -0001 00:00
Birds are falling from the sky. Fish are floating belly-up. The calendar has turned to a new year.
If this doesn't make you want to pad your nest and take stock of your life, I'm not sure what will. New Year's resolutions? They're for the birds. I prefer to think of it as exploring life options. Which options will you exercise this year? Here are some of my suggestions:
Talk to people. Not only people you know, but everyone around you. Each person you meet has a story. A history. They have hopes and dreams. Remember that.
Talk to yourself. I know I do. Sometimes I am the only one who will listen. It's comforting, in a bird-brained sort of way.
Be kind. It doesn't matter if we are talking about animals, humans or birds. Being kind is one of the greatest things you can be. (Some say it's even better than being rich. If I ever get rich, I will let you know.)
Be truthful and honest in all you doÐunless doing so would be hurtful to another person.
Today is the best you're going to get. It is your bird in the bush. Relish the moment; it will be gone tomorrow.
Never underestimate the power of touchÐhowever slight or seemingly insignificant. A hugÐeven a touch on the hand or shoulderÐcan do wonders. If you have someone in your life who may go through his or her days touch-free, attempt to alter that.
Make one lifestyle change just for you. Go to a movie. Learn how to knit. Read a good book. Take a long bath. Call a friend. Get a parakeet. I understand; you are busy. We all are. If you don't take time to do something for you, who will?
See the glass as half full. While you're at it, make it half full of a crisp and fruity chardonnay.
Let your life be a little messy. I'm not talking about mud or dust bunnies; I'm talking pets and kids. They bring dirt and disorder into your householdÐalong with love and a bit of magic. Invite them in when and if you can.
Don't be afraid to fly. We all have goals we keep hiddenÐpersonal goalsÐthat push our comfort zones and ignite our adrenaline. There's something you've always wanted to do, butÐfor one reason or otherÐhaven't. Now is the time to go out and soar. Aim for the clouds.
Love others. This doesn't need to be romantic love, although that certainly could be part of it. Demonstrate love in everything you say and do. This is, most often, a basic and simple gesture. A smile. A wave. Eye contact. A peck on the cheek. An acknowledgement. There is not enough love in this world. Let's work together to change that.
Use it or lose it. Muscles. Brainpower. Manners. You name it. If you don't practice flying, you end up earth-bound. Live life to the fullest by utilizing your potential whenever possible.
Birds are falling from the sky. That's undoubtedly bad newsÐfor the birds. But you know what they say about optimismÐone person's half empty vessel is my glass of wine. I believe I'll sip slowly and think about the different ways I can spread my wings this year.
Oh, and if you do witness a bird falling from the sky, help the poor thing out. If it is dead, see that it gets a proper burial. Then go back to your warm bath. Or chardonnay. Or both. A little bird told me it's going to be a good year.
Jill Pertler, award-winning syndicated columnist and author of "The Do-It-Yourselfer's Guide to Self-Syndication." is collecting fans on Facebook on her Slices of Life page. Please visit, or e-mail:
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