Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath!
Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.
That is my New Year’s resolution for 2015.
Like many I take the time at the end of each year to reflect on the past year and then look ahead to the New Year.
I’ve always tried to keep my resolutions simple and to the point.
For a number of years when asked “What is your New Year’s Resolution?” it was this, “To make more money than last year.”
And for a number of years I was able to keep my resolution.
But as each year wore on the stress and frustration that came with meeting this commitment began to take a toll on my health, both physical and mental.
Then when the economy went in the toilet this resolution became more of a burden than a goal.
I kept that resolution for at least 10 years.
Finally I stopped to look at what I had gained from meeting this commitment.
I gained some material things, and some financial peace, but the emotional battles that I fought each day with co workers, customers, vendors and myself were taking their toll. There was no life outside of work. And when I was away from work I was still tied to my virtual desk. There was no rest.
“Fret” was my companion.
It would keep me up when I would try to sleep and wake me when I was asleep.
It cut me off from enjoying my family and the possessions I had gained.
It cut me off from myself.
Was I tending to evil? You bet I was.
Not evil like actually doing physical harm to anyone, lying and cheating or planning to run out and commit a felony.
No this was the evil that prevails with wrath and anger towards others.
I truly hated some of the abusive, arrogant, narcissistic customers that I had to deal with. I was at the point of wishing harm upon them like the Old Testament wrath of God. I still struggle with this and some of the customers I no longer deal with.
That is no way to go through your days and live your life.
I finally got tired of being pissed off every day.
So I fully understand “Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil” and the truth in that verse because I lived it.
When I finally had enough of this kind of life I decided to shed the frustration of the days and move on to something else in my career.
At that time I changed my New Year’s resolution to an even simpler statement.
So now when I’m asked “What is your New Year’s Resolution?” my answer is simply “To be happy”.
That is not as easy as it sounds. You have to work at it even more than making money.
When I read the verse in Psalms that I cited at the beginning, I read it again and thought to myself follow this and you will be happy.
I’m a worrier by nature but this year I’m going to work even harder at kicking “fret” to the curb.
Happy New Year everyone!
© Otis P Smith and About the Groove, 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Otis P Smith and About the Groove with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.