One Thing You Can Do to Make It a Good Year

One Thing You Can Do to Make It a Good Year


We welcome every new year with celebration. It’s easy at the beginning of the year to call it happy and expect good things. Will it last?

If we don’t do something we’ll find ourselves with a good riddance attitude at the end of the year.

Would you like this year to be good? There’s one thing you can do.

If we don’t do something we’ll find ourselves with a good riddance attitude at the end of the year. Click To Tweet


What is a Good Year?

Problem free? Happiness, rainbows, and unicorns? No. That’s ridiculous.

A good year isn’t a perfect year. A good year isn’t a problem-free year. A good year is a year you can call good in spite of the troubles that may arise.

A good year is something you can make. I know because I’ve done it—even with years containing tragedy.

One thing made the difference. A gift I’ll share with you.

A good year is something you can make. Click To Tweet


Even with Seesaw Circumstances

Last year my life had a mixture of things happen both bad and good. There was grief and celebrations.

  • Deaths in the family and additions to the family.
  • Financial losses and gains.
  • Business failures and successes.

Back and forth. This seesawing of circumstances caused complicated emotions.

It was difficult in many ways but still, I can call it a good year. That one thing made the difference.


Even with Tragic Circumstances

Five years ago my life contained an epic amount of emotional devastation. There was grief upon grief in my immediate family.

  • A death in the family.
  • A life ruining diagnosis for a family member.
  • A devastating rupture in the family.
  • The near loss of two more family members who had to fight for their lives.

Emotionally it was the most painful year of my life.

Yet when the year was coming to a close I could call it a good year. Am I nuts?

No. I was just as surprised as you are now.

I was given a gift by the Spirit of Grace that I’ve been unwrapping ever since—one thing I could do.


The Gift of Focus

When first offered the gift I scoffed at it.

Deeply entrenched in my pain I didn’t understand it. To me, it was just a bunch of words* that hurt to read because they were so contrary to my circumstances. The Spirit of Grace gently pressed and I opened my broken heart to accept it.

I didn’t understand it wasn’t just a bunch of words or what Christian’s call a prophecy—it was the gift of focus.

Every day after I accepted this prophecy* I read it out loud and it directed my attention to hopeful expectation.

Good became what I was looking at and looking for instead of the pain and my circumstances. By the end of the year, my hope and faith became stronger in the face of the pain.

I didn’t understand the gift of focus at that time but have seen it work in the years following as I continue to focus on what is good directed by the Spirit of Grace.

By the end of the year, my hope and faith became stronger in the face of the pain. Click To Tweet


One Thing to Do

This past year I did one thing that helped me tap into the gift of focus in a different way. I had what I call a Good Things jar. Every morning I’d write at least one good thing from the day before.

One Thing You Can Do to Make It a Good Year

Some days were easier than others. Some days I wrote a list of good things. But every day, all 365 of them I sat and pondered the prior day looking for good.

Then I’d write it down, fold up the colored paper and put it in the jar.

On New Year’s Day, I emptied the jar and read the evidence of a good year. I was reminded of things I’d forgotten about that were worthy of celebration.

One Thing You Can Do to Make It a Good Year

But even before I read them I’d already celebrated the good all year—by focusing on it.

I started it again for this year.

One Thing You Can Do to Make It a Good Year

A Good Things jar is a great tool to direct your focus to the good.

Actively seeking good fosters positivity and helps overcome negativity and rumination. When you look for the good it will appear. Even within the confines of grieving, there is some good to be found. There are those who comfort, support and help.

Even on your worst day celebrate you’re alive and breathing. I’m glad you are.

Celebrating the good causes good feelings to rise up inside you and will make any day better. Add those days together and they can make a year good.


What Next

What do you think?

  • Will a Good Things Jar serve you well? You can start one any day of the year. Let me know if you do.
  • Do you feel surrounded by trouble and want to feel surrounded by God instead? Watch this music video Surrounded
  • If you want prayer, send me an email or comment below.
  • Here are some free resources to help you endure, feel loved, known and empowered. 


*For more about the prophecy I talked about see page 167 of Emerging With Wings, the Puzzle Piece Full Recovery.


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16 thoughts on “One Thing You Can Do to Make It a Good Year

  1. I like the gratitude or good things jar. I did it for awhile then it drifted away. I need to get back to a gratitude focus. Thanks for the reminder with your post Danielle. I like reading what you are writing.

    1. You’re welcome, Karen. I hope you enjoy getting back into the good things jar practice.

      I’m happy to hear you’re enjoying my writing. Thank you for reading and letting me know.

  2. I am loving this idea. I plan to put my first good thing from the day before in my jar starting tomorrow. Tonight I will pick out a cute jar and get some colored paper ready for in the morning. Thanks for the idea.

    1. Thank you, Ashley! Glad you enjoyed it.

      I like how you put that – sleuthing for good.
      Thanks for reading and commenting.

    1. Thank you, Michael. Glad you enjoyed it. You’ll be amazed how much good you’ll find because of that focus.
      Thanks for reading and commenting.

  3. Great post! I struggle daily with faith, focus and gratitude. I have a lot to be thankful for, but those are things that I had to work hard for. I definitely need to focus my energies on things that are attainable then continue to build on those achievements.

    1. I’m so glad you found it beneficial, Bernadette and I celebrate your victories with you. Focus is an easy word to say but much more difficult to actually do. If you haven’t read it already heck out last weeks post. It can help with obtaining the attainable.
      Thanks for reading and sharing your struggles. If I can help, please let me know.

    1. That’s awesome, Belinda. I’m so happy to hear it. Hope is so important.
      Thank you for reading and commenting.

  4. Danielle, we had emotional up and down 2017 with wonderful news and some news not good. We continue into 2018 with the same. However, I will say your posts are truly encouraging, because you invite us all into your world to do life with you through your writing. I may not comment on every post, but I do read them. I actually look forward to reading them because I find then uplifting. Appreciate it you! Thank you for caring.

    1. Thank you, John. That’s what I’m here for. To encourage and build up. Life can tear us down in a moment. We need each other to help each other. Thank you for sharing. I appreciate you as well. You’re such an encouragement yourself. God bless you and your lovely wife.

Please share your thoughts!