..Lese Dunton..

That Old Third Week in January Feeling

Last year, a psychologist from Wales developed a mathematical equation. It stated conclusively that the third Monday of January is the most depressing day of the year and could set the tone for the week.

Not this year. Now is the most hopeful of times. Yes, really. A day off for Martin Luther King, followed by the beginning of Obama's presidency. New start city.

Cliff Arnall, or "Dr. Feelbad" as he's probably known to friends, made his calculations based on factors such as gloomy weather, lack of daylight, holiday spending debt, already-broken New Year's resolutions and "other morose variables."

For those brave souls who tilt their faces toward sunbeams all year long, create new resolutions daily, and are undaunted by debt, it's merely the "other morose variables" that provide a fresh challenge.

Sometimes the sullen specifics are unique to each person. Most other times you can locate a friend whose variables are similarly morose. Either way, you can find uplifting solutions together — or have a good laugh, knowing the answers will be revealed in time. Hope could cometh in the morning. Maybe it will even cometh later tonight.

Many people are just so glad the holidays are over that a readjustment of thoughts and goals — while gazing into the wide-open landscape of bare trees and possibilities — is actually rather nice.

Martin Luther King, no stranger to downers, was born in the stark of winter and dreamt of seeing a mountaintop, perhaps covered in sparkling snow. He said, "Sometimes I get discouraged and feel my work's in vain, but then I feel the pull of God and my soul rises up again."

So feel the exhilaration of all possibilities no matter what day it is. Lift your face to the sun and don't let a cynical, I mean clinical, psychologist's mathematical equation throw you off the trail. March on triumphantly, laughing at every morose variable in your path.

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