This is the first day of the rest of your life. And although this is a cliché, it is true that we don’t have to wait for New Year or a birthday or the last Friday of the month to decide on a new direction for our lives. According to the Buddhists, life means suffering, in the ego mind at least.

Until we aspire to become detached from and connected to each other at the same time, we tend to suffer from the illusion of separation and aloneness. Many fears, though they appear as realities, ultimately fade back into the ether. And in the end we realize that it is our minds that are making it all up. Most of it is just an illusion.

“When we remember we are all mad, the mysteries of life disappear and life stands explained,” Mark Twain wrote in his Notebook, (1898.)

There is real pain, of course. Those of us who have lost loved ones through death, separation or betrayal would know. Sometimes pain might have taken the form of job loss, diminished health, a changed lifestyle or eroded confidence. For those people without families–and often those with families—anniversaries can be hell. Often memories, happy or tragic, can leave a void in our hearts. Most of us survive these bad times, physically at least. So if we perceive ourselves, or our lives, to be lacking in some regard, how can we rise above that and make our spirits soar?

It could be time for a new beginning.

We can choose a happier experience, not just for tomorrow but for every moment of our lives. If we want to change our reality, we have to change our ways of thinking.

Whatever your current reality–whether you are grieving for a lost relationship or open for your next one, rich or broke, lonely or loved, on track or directionless, in shape or overweight, clinging to the past or excited about your future–know that you are the writer, producer and director and star of your own movie. Your life is your story. And this current reality is just one scene which too shall pass. And if you want your story to be more inspired, think about changing your script and writing this next scene into your plot.

It’s Oscar night. And you have been nominated for best performer in the movie of your life. You are backstage in a huge auditorium and your name has been called to go on stage. You know that many in the audience are your friends and family–even those who have caused you grief in the past. Amongst the spectators are those who have passed on but who are here in spirit to honor you. The applause is very loud and reverberates throughout the house.

Before you step out from the wings onto the stage, you check your reflection in a full-length mirror. You love what you see. You are amazed and proud at how radiant you look in your stunning new outfit. You are your ideal weight. You feel strong and fit and exude a healthy glow. Your eyes sparkle back at you with joy and excitement, knowing that you are about to be celebrated by all these people who know you.

As you walk out on stage, the applause for you rises to a roaring crescendo. The noise is almost deafening. You can feel the love like a wave washing over you. The ten most significant people in your life, your enemies as well as your friends, are on stage to greet you. They offer you a large throne-like chair to sit in while you listen to their acknowledgments.

They praise you for, not just the resources you had, but what you had to overcome. They pay tribute to not merely your talents but how hard you had to work to become the best you could be. They honor you for your courage, your determination after each fall to get up and keep going, to do whatever it took to live your life on your terms. The people who were your worst enemies tell you how proud they are of you for having turned adversity into opportunity, how forgiving and compassionate you were when their fears of powerlessness caused them to be jealous of your successes. They tell you and the audience that you are an inspiration to them, having empowered them by example, to overcome their own fears and live their lives to the fullest.

As you are presented with the Oscar, the last of your ten presenters applauds you for having motivated so much generosity in others, not just by sharing your wealth but also offering your support to those who needed it. “The more you have, the more you give and that is an inspiration for all of us to be successful. You symbolize the true meaning of power and,” the presenter says, “ you exemplify how, if we believe in ourselves, if we walk through our fears, and we live life to the fullest, we too can achieve what appears to be the impossible.”

The applause is still ringing in your ears as you accept your Oscar for being the greatest performer in the movie of your life.

There. How does that feel?

If you want to get on the red carpet and be on stage at your version of “Oscar Night,” visualize this scene on a daily basis. What we focus on becomes our reality.

The following are ten New Resolutions, new ways of thinking, that will help you create your new reality and a new beginning in your life. You might want to post them on your fridge.

Commit and the Universe commits with you. Decide right now that this is a new beginning. Setting your intention on having what you really want in your life this year is the first step.

Clarify. Get clear about what you want, not what you don’t want. What we observe and focus on expands in our experience.

Act as if. Get into the feelings of success, love, great health, abundance and peace. Choose to be at peace with success. Go about your day visualizing that what you desire already exists.

Be grateful. Gratitude is the foundation of abundance. Say Thank you, thank you, thank you for what has already manifested and the good that is to come.

Clean out your garbage. Forgive, release, let go of any persons, things or thoughts that are not positive, do not feed you or support your happiness. You are flying upwards and forwards. Don’t allow any drag to bring you down.

Feel the fear and do it anyway. Embrace the adventure of life. Take a risk. Do things that scare you. Do things “in spite of.” Do things that you always put off. Then reward yourself for finally having done it.

Select a mentor/supporter. Enroll someone who truly wants you to be successful and who will not let you give up on yourself or your dream when you want to.

Ask your angels. We all have support from spirit guides, departed loved ones and angels. Ask them to bring you what you need, want, desire. Put in your order with the Universe. Do what is within your power and surrender the rest to those higher beings. Then just wait for divinely guided outcomes.

Change your beliefs. You can tell what your beliefs are by the results in your life. If you are not getting the results you want, choose a belief that does support you, your perception and then your reality. It’s your script and your movie. Your choice.

Remind yourself of your successes. Stand in front of your mirror every morning and tell your reflection just how wonderful, intelligent, good-looking and abundant you are. (The Oscar night rehearsal!) Verbally list all the things of which you are proud. As a spark of a higher power–whichever name you have for that–and star in your own movie, you are an Oscar winner!

Happy New Life!