It’s 2017. Happy New Year!

Did you overindulge in the new year? Did you eat drink and spend too much? So I bet you felt bad and disappointed in yourself and so you set some new goals


Yes, having gone through 66 years of my life I got great relief in finding out I did not have to be perfect and I could falter either as a father, teacher or friend . Guilt, anger, depression and disappointment overshadowed my effort to be a good person.  I always thought that no matter what, I had to do things perfectly if I was to be a good person. In setting such high standards for myself I felt more like a failure in many ways.  Does that sound familiar?


How Good Do We Have to Be? by Harold S. Kushner also author of “When bad things happen to good people”  (which I also recommend you read) released me of much guilt that I held onto in my life and gave me an understanding of forgiveness which we all need in order to be free and live our life to the fullest.



Isn’t it amazing how when the new year comes, we set new goals for ourselves and with all good intentions to succeed we fall short of our new goals.  Then, we proceed to beat ourselves up so much so that we get depressed and angry at everyone including ourselves . That is what I did for the longest time.


Without being too religious( not that religion is bad by any means) the content of the book helped me to become less judgmental and more forgiving of myself and others. What a relief it was. Lets face it, thinking I was the best partner in the world then failing as a husband and father was devastating to say the least. I wanted so much to have a perfect family.  I read books, went to church, watched what I said and did with a goal that I could be perfect and have a perfect life. What a mistake! But what a relief it was as I said before that perfection isn’t the goal in life and that when I failed I did not have to beat myself up or hold onto guilt forever.

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For the most part many of us make yearly  new year’s resolutions. Lets keep in mind not to set such high standards for ourselves and that when we don’t succeed it is more important to look at our intentions and not whether you failed or succeeded. In addition, stop from thinking you should or can do things perfectly.  If things don’t work out the way we wanted them to be, as a good friend of mine says-“Oh well” and move on.

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Lets move forward  in 2017. As Kushner says in his book. “Our goal is not to go all year without ever losing a game. Our goal is to win more than we lose and if we can do that consistently  enough, then when the end comes, we will have won it all”


I wish you all the Best of the New year.
Mike Sr.