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The Best Days to Start Something New (and Why New Year Isn't Always the Best)

Today is February 22, 2022, or 2/22/22, which can mean a lot of things, or it can mean nothing at all, depending on who you ask. What I like about it is that it feels like an auspicious date to forge ahead with your goals, and it isn’t New Year’s—a date notoriously filled with high expectations, with a sprinkle of success stories that follow, but a lot more stories of disappointment and defeat when the lofty goals we have set for ourselves get lost in the pile of Christmas bills, seasonal ailments, the catching-up after time-off, and the overall January blues.

Maybe we imbue the first of the year with too much meaning, but there is something to be said for starting something new, something different, and something big on an auspicious date. If you are one of the millions of people who have made New Year’s resolutions in the past, only to find them fall by the wayside, or someone who has ever made a less than stellar start on a new journey, fear not—you can always start again.

Choosing the right day to start something new can make a huge difference. Author, Daniel H. Pink, in his book When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing, refers to such dates and “temporal landmarks,” or intangible and abstract points that we use to navigate time. These types of landmarks can either be ones that are recognized culturally speaking, or landmarks that are important to us personally, like a birthday, for example.

Using a meaningful date on the calendar such as today’s date, also known as “Twosday,” can work like the starting line of a race, with a clear distinction in our mind of where the new journey begins, and it can also draw a clear separation from the past. This starting line can also serve as a welcome disruption from the routine and the clutter in our brains that is holding us back from moving forward. It can give us a fresh start and fresh perspective on where we are now, where we want to go, and how to get there.

I know it’s cliché, but I’ve always loved the saying that today is the first day of the rest of your life, because every day is a chance to start again and to do something meaningful and important. Some days just so happen to take on outsized meaning for us, and those days are even better for starting over and starting something new.

Maybe 2/22/22 is the right date to begin something new, maybe it’s not.

If not, what date is that for you?

And what are you going to do with it?

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