2022 Will Be My Year to RISE!

While I love Ohio, I don’t love the gloomy winter months. I’m learning that it isn’t the cold that gets to me, it’s the lack of sun. Give me 20 degrees colder in exchange for a sunny sky, and I’ll take it! So, to combat the winter, I’m also realizing the need to do something about it – take a vacation!

Recently, we made plans to go to Florida over Winter Break. We boarded the plane under grey skies and a hope at warmer weather. The plane lifted off, and already I felt my head begin to clear at the prospect of what’s to come. As we ascended, the dark clouds got closer and closer. Soon, we were enveloped by them.

And, just like that, we were above the clouds! The sun was bright and warm! I made it!

There’s nothing better than rising above the dark clouds to be surrounded by the light!

Last year, I definitely felt the pull to stay down below the clouds. The news was filled with negativity. People seemed to always be in a state of complaining and unhappiness. I also found myself, at times, miring at the problems unable to see anything else.

So, as I reflected on my One Word for 2022, I began with a gut check. While I consider myself a positive person and have chosen “Inspire” as my One Word for life, I had to confess where I was in my own personal journey – I stayed under the clouds more times than I should have. While I know I can’t control the world or circumstances around me, I can choose to RISE above them. Although I may not always be able to change my actual position or the outcome, I can alter the state of my head and heart.

I can choose RISE above the things around me to see a better future.

In order to not just have a Word and no action, I created these reminders to help me stay focused in making sure I RISE throughout the year:

  • Anticipate that there will be grey clouds. Sometimes, the worst thing to do is to pretend they don’t exist. If you can anticipate, you can prepare.
  • Choose when to RISE. You can’t RISE all the time – it will take energy and time.
  • Wait for the right timing to RISE. We sometimes RISE too late. Don’t wait too long that it becomes harder to pull up.
  • Secure a safe and private refuge when needed. Don’t take to social media to air your frustrations or negativity; it doesn’t make it better. Find trusted friends to lean on to talk and get perspective to move forward.
  • Keep focused on being above the clouds when you are in them. There might be times during the RISE that it may feel easier to go back down; find a momentum and trust the future.
  • Surround yourself with people who also share the same mission to RISE. A lot of people are fine in living below the clouds; don’t allow them to steal your sun.
  • If you are comfortable too much, question whether you aren’t rising enough. Don’t settle for what’s comfortable. You were meant to soar!

This is a beginning of reminders I plan to use to start my day and reflect each night on how I will RISE.

What other reminders should I add to this list – would love your thoughts in the comments section? Finally, I am putting a playlist of songs that help to reinforce RISE – any recommendations?

The day will be what you make it, so rise, like the sun, and burn.

William C. Hannan


  1. Thank you for this message! I especially like this suggestion, because it reminds me of having the opportunity of working with you: “Surround yourself with people who also share the same mission to RISE.” Here’s to an Above the Clouds New Year 2022!

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