2019 / January

(Just Like) Starting Over

John Lennon

Photo by Pablo Heimplatz on Unsplash

As January is traditionally the time to consider fresh starts, this week’s blog will continue the theme with a look at John Lennon’s 1980 hit (Just Like) Starting Over.

The context for the song was a period of personal and professional challenge for John and Yoko. There was mistrust in the relationship on both sides and from both parties. Yet the song contains a sense of optimism, renewal and some great thoughts for refreshing our relationships in 2019.

Similar to John and Yoko, whether in a personal or professional context, we too may feel some of our relationships have become, well a little stale, in 2018. To listen to this song in that context is to encourage us to reflect with hope on the possibility of a new start. A renewal of the important relationships in our lives. A rekindling that is grounded in a desire to grow in love.

So, what does Lennon suggest as the practicalities for a fresh relational start? Verse one highlights the value of recognising the precious nature of your relationship. For us to want a relationship of any kind to be successful, our starting point is recognising it is worth working at and taking a chance on. Relationships naturally have a fluctuating nature and require effort and commitment on our behalf. And for us to resolve to doing this at times will require determination.

This is quickly followed by a recognition that this means making time for one another. Reigniting the special nature of your relationship with the person. In the case of John and Yoko there is the suggestion of a romantic and exotic break. Perhaps out of the reach of most of us in our personal lives and, well, not really appropriate in our professional lives! But what about simply making time to re-engage what is special in your relationship. Go for a walk. Set aside some time for a coffee. Just prioritising really being with the person.

None of what the song speaks of is really that complicated. It’s simply an exploration of the nature of commitment and relevant to any type of relationship which is important to us. But then perhaps the brackets in the tile of the song gave that away. Starting over needn’t be something new, it might be just like making a fresh start.


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