My New Year’s resolution might surprise some people. I resolve to be more empathetic. Yes, I am generally a pretty empathetic person. But I want to be less judgmental and more understanding of where people are coming from when I don’t agree with them. Especially, I resolve to accept my daughter-in-law’s parenting decisions and to truly listen to her when she explains why she has made these decisions. There are many approaches and philosophies that are good ways to raise children, and her way (and of course our son’s way as well) do not have to be the same as our way. So, if they have decided that their son will not be babysat by anyone until such time as he says he wishes to be, so be it.

And if everyone resolved at the start of this year to raise their level of empathy toward others, wouldn’t this be a much better world? It’s not so hard. When a judgmental thought about another person pops into your head (and maybe is on the verge of popping out of your mouth), take a mental step back and try to appreciate that person’s actions or statements or beliefs from his/her point of view.

What do you say? Are you up for it?