It’s hard to believe that another year is in the books; 2018 flew by, and it will go down as one of the most intense years in history.

Despite what it may seem, there are more good things happening on this planet than bad. There are many people doing beautiful things with the goal of helping humankind achieve its highest potential. Many are choosing to evolve, refusing to succumb to the fear and anger that tear others down and that separate us. Every day, you have the choice to evolve or devolve as well.

While I am glad that 2018 is almost over, I feel hopeful about what 2019 can bring, but to make 2019 better than this year, we must do something different. That’s why rather than set a New Year’s resolution, my goal in 2019 is to evolve in all aspects of my life. I am committing each day to do my best to evolve into a kinder, more helpful and creative human being, and embrace the small part I play in advancing humanity; I hope you will, too.

For so many reasons, now is the time to take Gandhi’s words to heart and “be the change you wish to see in the world.” The world needs leaders who can bring people together — thoughtful leaders who truly listen to what people have to say, even if it’s not what they want to hear. The world needs leaders who are honest and transparent, act and ask for feedback; explain the “why” behind all decisions; and are willing to change their minds. These are leaders who are worth following. Be this kind of leader.

The world needs more businesses that give back to their employees, believe in spreading the wealth by paying people decent wages, and provide good benefits. The world needs businesses that allow employees to partake in the success of the company through employee ownership and profit sharing. Businesses should treat their employees with respect and dignity and actively help their employees improve their own and their families’ lives. Be this kind of business.

The world needs managers who know how to hold people accountable and be compassionate with their employees’ emotions, experiences and situations at the same time. The world needs managers who care about their people and want them to succeed. They are willing to put their team first and can admit when they make mistakes. Be this kind of manager.

The world needs smart people who are lifelong learners, who challenge their belief systems and who are dedicated to continuously growing. The world needs those who are committed to reading more books, becoming better writers, considering opinions that differ from their own, traveling outside their comfort zones, and letting go of fears that hold them back and separate them from others. Be this kind of person.

The world needs good parents — those who teach their children to be resilient, accountable and kind, and who help their children learn the valuable lessons that failure teaches. The world needs good parents who model the value of hard work, honest communication and perseverance; who are involved in their children’s lives; and who love unconditionally and discipline effectively. Be this kind of parent.

The world needs more communities that are filled with people who are kind and helpful to each other; who give back and get involved; who support strong education, health care and infrastructure systems; and who shop locally. Be this kind of community member.

There are many ways to be the change you wish to see in the world. Rather than sitting on the sidelines and complaining about the way things are, do something. Embark upon 2019 with action, kindness, compassion, inclusiveness and open-mindedness. Choose something different. Choose to evolve, not devolve. Choose to change yourself for the better, and you’ll change the world for the better in turn.

For more information, contact Kerry Siggins at kerry.siggins@stone To read her blog, visit