Dawn of new year drives out the past

Published: Monday, January 1, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, December 31, 2006 at 12:38 a.m.
Dear Readers: Rise and shine, my friends, and welcome a brand-new year! This is our chance for a new beginning. It is the day we discard destructive old habits for healthy new ones. With that in mind, I am printing Dear Abby's often-requested list of New Year's resolutions - adapted by my mother from the original credo of Al-Anon.
Just for Today: I will live through this day only. I will not brood about yesterday or obsess about tomorrow.
Just for Today: I will be happy. I will not dwell on thoughts that depress me.
Just for Today: I will accept what is. I will face reality. I will correct those things I can correct, and accept those I cannot.
Just for Today: I will improve my mind. I will read something that requires effort, thought and concentration.
Just for Today: I will make a conscious effort to be agreeable. I will be kind and courteous to those who cross my path, and I'll not speak ill of others.
Just for Today: I will do something positive to improve my health. If I'm a smoker, I'll quit. If I am overweight, I will eat healthfully - if only just for today.
Just for Today: I will gather the courage to do what is right and take responsibility for my own actions.
And now, Dear Readers, I would like to share an item that was sent to me by I.J. Bhatia, who lives in New Delhi, India: "Dear Abby: This year, no resolutions, only some guidelines. The Holy Vedas say, 'Man has subjected himself to thousands of self-inflicted bondages. Wisdom comes to a man who lives according to the true eternal laws of nature.'
"The following prayer of Saint Francis contains a powerful message: "'Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
"'Where there is hatred, let me sow love; "'Where there is injury, pardon; "'Where there is doubt, faith.
"'Where there is despair, hope; "'Where there is darkness, light; "'Where there is sadness, joy.
"'O Divine Master, grant that I may not as much seek to be consoled as to console; "'To be loved as to love.
"'For it is in giving that we are pardoned; "'It is in dying that we are born to eternal life."
May we finally find peace and joy in this New Year. To one and all, a happy, healthy and prosperous 2007.
Write Dear Abby at www.DearAbby.com or P.O. Box 69440, Los Angeles, CA 90069.

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