Well here it is. Here we are. It’s 2011 and we made it through another holiday season and a whole other year.

How do you feel?

Was it everything you expected and hoped for? Did it exceed your expectations or underwhelm you?

Oftentimes high hopes and unrealistic expectations set us up for disappointment. We place our bets on the new year, putting our dreams and wishes to be thinner, happier, more successful all on the chance that something will change just because we want it to.

If we’re lucky, sometimes it does. But more often than not, a day is just another day whether it’s 2010 or 2011. With that being said, ordinary days provide extraordinary opportunities. We can choose to walk a different path, changing our usual responses and reactions to the same triggers. In the end, it’s not something magical that causes big transformations in our lives.

It’s us.

I hope you’ll remember that as the holidays become a distant memory as visions of Christmas trees, trimmings and excitement of a new year wanes.

Every moment can be as, or even more, wonderful than the holidays. It can be a new year every day. It just takes attitude, perspective and faith. Oh and a few posts like this week’s top 5 to help get you on track.

Happy New Year and have a great week!

The Value of Relationships for Being Creative

(The Creative Mind) – Most people think of artists and other creative people as loners. And truth be told, they often are. But here’s a post that will change your mind about this solitary pursuit. Oftentimes, positive relationships can help foster creativity. Find out how here.

Tips for Couples Driving With Less Stress and More Safety

(Healing Together for Couples) – Planning a road trip? Or just a trip to the market? Driving can be a relaxing time or it can be a stressful one. Increase your chances of experiencing the former with these driving tips.

Set New Year’s Goals You Successfully Achieve, Part 1 of 3: A Fear Busting Mindset for Success

(Neuroscience & Relationships) – Want resolutions that actually stick? If you want to accomplish your goals and stick through with them past January, then you’ll want to read this. Here are 4 ways that will help you make this year more successful than last.

Body Image & Creativity

(Weightless) – Maybe one of your goals this year is to have a more positive body image. One thing you might not have tried is expressing your creativity. What does creativity have to do with body image? Read Weightless’s take here.

Joys of Volunteering

(Mental Health Humor) – If you’ve helped vote for the Child & Adolescent Bipolar Foundation, you’ve done your part in volunteering last year. So has Mental Health Humor’s Chato B. Stewart. Find out what he has to say about participating in the cause and learn how you can get a free copy of his 2010 Mental Health Humor e-book.