Well, we’ve survived yet another year and a new year is upon us again. Will it be better than the 365 days that came before? Don’t you wish you had a crystal ball? But even without one, there are signs that the country is finally starting to move forward.

 High on the list is the prime minister’s announcement that elections will be held in November this year. Although a law against political activity is still in force, there are signs that this may be easing soon. Some pessimists say they aren’t going to believe that we will be going to the polls until it actually happens, but let’s look on the bright side and assume that it will. Economic indicators also appear to promise higher growth than previous years. Some of the major infrastructure projects should materialise soon, which will be good for the country.

 No less significant is the royal cremation ceremony for the late King Rama IX and the transition to King Rama X late last year. Although Thais were sad to say a final farewell to a beloved monarch it is with hope that we look forward to a new era under a new king. No date has been set as yet for the coronation ceremony, but it will very likely happen quite soon in the new year.

With the government doing its part, we should also be looking at what we ourselves can do to make the coming year and beyond better. How about joining the fight to reduce plastic waste? Say no to plastic bags—we really don’t need all those that are handed out by shopkeepers and vendors each day. And if you have to take them, don’t throw them away but reuse where possible. Try to live following the late king’s sufficiency philosophy and consume only what is necessary. Excess is bad as it means more waste of finite resources.

Make it your New Year’s resolution to pay more attention to yourself as well. If you don’t, no one else will do it for you. Take care of your health both physical and mental, widen your horizons by learning something new or travel, and keep in the company of good friends. That’s the way to see in the New Year. 

Tags: Editor's Note, New Years, Happy New Years, New Years Resolutions, Naphalai Areesorn