Every newsletter I write begins in the same way…with a blank piece of paper, wide open with possibilities. I begin with an idea…an intention for what the article will be about. And then onto that paper flows thoughts, ideas and words, which turn into sentences and paragraphs, and ultimately completed articles. Along the way there are additions, subtractions, and changes, as the article and I take each other where we need to go.

As I was writing this morning, it occurred to me that the writing process is similar to setting goals or resolutions for the New Year. At the stroke of midnight, each of us is handed blank piece of paper, a New Year wide open with possibilities.

How do you want to fill your blank slate this year?

Is this a difficult question for you to answer? Maybe you’ve tried to be intentional about filling your year with positive changes in the past, but then there were additions (obligations you hadn’t counted on), subtractions (things you had counted on that ultimately weren’t there for you), and changes (things that didn’t go at all as you had planned). And so…you stopped. You thought Ah…this goal stuff doesn’t work for me. I must be doing something wrong.

New Year Goodbye + Hello Printable from simplify 101But wait just a minute. What if you could look at those additions, subtractions and changes as simply part of the process? No piece of writing, and no great life, is created without an editing process. You try something out, and decide it’s not quite right, so you try something new. You add new things that feel like they will work, and subtract out things that aren’t working. Things pop up that throw us off course. It’s all just part of the process. The key is to keep moving forward, trying new things, adding and subtracting, all while holding your intention at the forefront.
The first step is to decide how you want to fill your blank slate. Since this can be a difficult thing to do, this year I came up with a fresh approach—making a simple list of the things you want to say goodbye to as you wish the old year farewell, and all the things you want to say hello to in the New Year ahead.

Below is a goodbye / hello list…to get your creative juices flowing. Try this process or use one of your own. Just be sure to decide how you want to fill your blank slate in the months ahead. You can capture your goodbye and hello plans on this free printable.



Negative self-talk Encouraging words
Complaining Gratitude
Fast food / fried food Fresh food
Hard Easy
Sitting Walking or running
Worrying Dreaming about possibilities
Winging it and hoping for the best Planning it and making it happen
Television Books
Stress Relaxation
Working hard Playing hard
Clutter Clear spaces
Disorder Organization
Complicated Simple
Anger Forgiveness
Debt Prosperity
Fear Faith
Electronic devices People
Criticism Praise
Darkness Light
Noise Quiet
Sadness Happiness
Conflict Resolution
Talking Listening


What would you like to say goodbye and hello to as we welcome in the New Year? Thanks for sharing your thoughts in the comments.

Happy New Year!


The following two tabs change content below.
Aby Garvey is a creative organizing expert and simplify 101’s founder. She has created 14 online organizing classes, which she has been teaching since 2007, helping thousands of people around the world get organized. Aby loves to help people create positive change in their lives through her online classes and organizing eBooks.

Latest posts by Aby Garvey (see all)