A new year brings contemplation, resolution and goals.

According to Pew Research, 44 percent of Americans make New Year’s resolutions. I was one of them.

Before Christmas, I attended a retirement party for a beloved woman, Patti. She had been my dad’s office manager for 12 years and watched my family grow up. She loved us dearly and showed us just how much by being a grandmother, mentor, friend and confidant.

At that retirement party, nearly 70 people crammed into a small Hawaiian restaurant. Some were patients she had served at my dad’s office; some were friends and co-workers; others were people she had met along the way. They came from all over to support one amazing woman.

As I walked around the restaurant looking at each of the filled-up booths and tables, I realized how much love Patti gave to others.

I heard snippets of conversation, people sharing how they knew Patti and how she had served them. Wonderful stories of the love and compassion filled the room.

Later that week, I listened to Hamilton: An American Musical, which focuses on the life and legacy of the Founding Father Alexander Hamilton.

I heard the phrase “What is a legacy? It’s planting seeds in a garden you never get to see,” and immediately thought of Patti.

Patti is, and has been, planting seeds in each person she touches. The people around her may not realize it, but she is affecting the way they live their lives. She is leaving a legacy of love behind her.

Each of us is changing the people around us, planting seeds and leaving our own legacy.

My goal for 2017 is to create a legacy.

Creating a new legacy means making goals or resolutions. Whether you sit down and write those out or just keep them in the forefront of your mind, consider the seeds you will be planting with those actions.

While many say, “New year, new me,” I challenge you to look at it a different way. New year, new legacy.

No matter what has gone on in your past, the start of the new year is a time to create a new legacy for yourself. Whether you decide to go to the gym, serve others more or stop talking negatively, you are changing the way you live your life. You are becoming a new person and creating a new legacy for others to know you by.

What stories will be told of you one day when you have completed your journey in the workforce or in life?

If you fall short of your goals, don’t get discouraged. Each day is an opportunity to create a new legacy. You don’t need to wait for a new year to roll around; you can begin again at any time.

With your focus on the story you’re leaving behind, you can truly focus on yourself and your legacy.

As George Washington said in Hamilton, “Who lives, who dies, who tells your story?”