The Dawn of a New Year has broken, a leap year none the less, and many of you still have no idea where you want to set sail.
To be sure, you want this year to be different- you want this to be the year to make deep and profound changes in your life. For some those changes are personal, for others financial; yet for others the changes are more spiritual. But beyond that vague ache in your heart, you’re not sure where to set your course.
I say to you, to set a new course in the new year, follow your Pirate Heart. “Follow my Pirate Heart?” you ask incredulously. Yes, and if you haven’t before, go to my website Uncommon Mariners and read the section “About Me.” It’s all about discovering your pirate heart and following your pirate dreams.
Pirates more than 200 years ago especially Caribbean pirates became pirates for a lot of reasons, only one of them being financial gain. Beyond money was the underlying hunger to regain control of their lives. In 2016, that’s what being a pirate is all about, at least on a more profound and symbolic level.
The quintessential question posed before you at the beginning of this new year is very basic. What do I need to do to reclaim my pirate life, the life I was born to lead?
Here are a few questions you should consider before you go to bed each night of 2016 or at least when you start each day:
…Where am I going Today on the far side of the world?
… What are my wild pirate dreams? Those dreams that make me feel alive and close to the heartbeat of creation?
… What do I need to do today if I do nothing else, that will put a big smile on my face before I drop into bed tonight?
…What is the one thing that I can connect to… the one thing that brings a big smile to my face when everything else in my life is full of drudgery and despair?
…What is the one thing that makes me forget about time and hunger and sleep and brings me to a world filled with wonder and joy?
…What is the one thing that makes my heart beat faster like a Geiger counter when it’s close to that thing it was created for?
…What is the one thing that brings a smile to my face while others about me are losing their hearts and their dreams?
…What is the one thing that if I were on my deathbed I would regret not doing?
…What is the one thing that wakes my inner child and makes him want to come out and play?
Another year has slipped by. All of you reading this think you will have many years to answer these questions. The fact is some of you won’t see another year. My advice to all of you is to answer each of these questions beginning today because one day there will be no more days to pursue the dreams of your pirate heart.
I use the image of a pirate because the dreams of our hearts were stolen from us in tiny pieces- a little bit at a time- over a lifetime. And like pirates, it’s time to steal those dreams back and our lives along with them.
This is the year to reclaim your pirate heart and your pirate dreams. All your New Year Resolutions should be about that. Forget about trying to be a better person. Instead try to be the pirate you were meant to be- not the image someone else has of you. Do that and you will be a better person, the person that this world needs.
And suddenly you will find Anything is possible. Then when you wake up in the morning, you will be torn, as E. B. White once said, “between the desire to make the world a better place and the urge to have fun.”
May 2016 be the year to realize your Pirate Dreams. May he who created the wind that fills your sails and the seas that your pirate ship sails on help you to steer a course straight and true.
The Uncommon Mariner