*Today is the day.  The day you begin. This is it.  This day.  Right now.

This is the day you stop deciding and do.  The day you stop evaluating and processing and Getting in the Position to Get Ready to Get It and simply get on with it.  This is the day you confirm, instead of speculate.  This is the day you begin to do whatever it is you have to do to do this thing you need to do.

This is the day you finally rock with the roll.

And it is on this day you admit that you’ve said this before. You said other days were the day: you said it back in January. You said it on your birthday three years ago. Last week. You swore yesterday was the day.

On those days, you’d start strong, but then flame out in a matter of days or hours. The reality is that none of those days were The Day. Had they been, you’d feel different right now. That you are reading this right now is no coincidence.  This is the day.

Today you can stop listening to the self-defeating loop playing in your mind long enough to hear the wonderful melody playing in your heart. This is the day you pull yourself away from the useless, paralyzing fear you wear like a second skin long enough to know the glorious, dynamic feeling of starting.

This is the day you cease feeling guilty about things for which you are not responsible, for things that happened years ago; for things you cannot change.  This is the day you release yourself from the crippling grip of caring about what people think.  Listen to sermon of your spirit. This is the day to make the overdue transition from Yes I Can to Yes I do.

Starting today, you’re running this.

Today you put into motion the sage advice of your clergyman, your guru, your shrink, your grandy and all that you’ve been reading in those books.  This is the day you  pull the plane up.

A young, healthy Muhammad Ali could not beat you up worse than you’ve beaten yourself.  Today is the day you say, “No Mas.”  This is the day you start having faith in all that faith you say you have.

This–today–is the day you realize you are precious.

Use the things you’ve gone through in the past as  inspiration for what you do in the future.  Today is the day you stop giving up on yourself and start giving yourself credit.  This is the day you take a fresh new approach to a tired, old problem.  Today is the day you truly grasp that you are running out of days.   It took today for you to realize that the first word in “Triumph” is “Try.”

Today, the idea of leaving the house in a cape doesn’t seem silly.

Right now you see just how intelligent, powerful and gifted you are.  At last, you’ve come to know your own strength.  This is the day you begin to accept it all, without question or doubt.

Today, you comprehend the fact that your demons have long been outnumbered; everything good in the world is on your side. Finally, you get it:  just over that barbed wired wall you put around yourself is the Universe, at your service.

Today, you allow yourself to know the sheer freeing force of forgiveness. You forgive what they’ve done to you, what you’ve done to others and what you’ve continued doing to yourself.  Until today.

Steven Ivory, journalist and author of the essay collection Fool In Love  (Simon & Schuster),  has covered popular culture for magazines, newspapers, radio and TV for more than 30 years. Respond to him via [email protected].