Bifrons is Latin for "two-faced
Janus is the Roman god of beginnings, transitions, time, gates and doorways. His two faces look simultaneously back at the past and towards the future. He was given the dominion of January, the beginning of the new calendar as established by Julius Caesar in 46 B.C. Romans believed that the beginning, the start of anything was an omen for the whole of the endeavor whether it was a new year, a new month, a war, or a time of peace. To ensure a positive outcome for a year, they would spend the first day exchanging words of good fortune, presenting gifts of dates, figs, honey, and coins (strenae). To Janus, they offered salt and cakes made of spelt; no animal sacrifices (according to Ovid.)
There is a superstition that says whatever you are doing at the stroke of midnight will foretell what you will be doing the whole of the year. The tradition of being with friends, kissing someone at
midnight, and toasting in cheer is a common motif because of this belief. The former two is to ensure a friend-filled year without loneliness and the latter is to be filled with cheer. I spent many a New Year's penning a calligraphy project. My traditions have since been modified to include the whole day.
I like the idea of making resolutions but I don't do them often. Making a resolution is making a commitment. It's making a promise. Decades ago, when I first started my training in the Craft, my Lady nurtured the concept of:
If you are a practicing witch or you want to be a practicing witch, this should be your first resolution; the first promise to make to yourself, to the universe, to the Gods. Without this concept lived every day, wholly, and fully realized throughout your life, any magic you try to create is doomed from the start. If you happen to have this one in the bag... here are a few others:
Actually keep a spell journal to better define which spells are working and what you did to make them work best; A SEPARATE book of shadows, a record, data from your spell operations. Here is a PDf of a page you can download and use if you'd like. SPELL JOURNAL WORKSHEET DOWNLOAD or scroll to the bottom of this post.
Learn your North, West, South, and East directions. Step out onto your porch with a compass and find north. Mark out the four quarters in your home. Learn that when you are turning right, that it's North or South, East, or West.
Celebrate the sabbats as best and as often as you can. Schedule the time to do something even if it is just to light a candle or make a toast. If you are a solitary witch and you already do this, try celebrating one of the sabbats this year with an established group or invite your closest friends to join you. If you already do this, try celebrating a sabbat with others of a different tradition. Expand your horizons. Ask a lot of questions. Learn something new.
Organize your herbs / oils / ritual gear. Make labels. Buy jars or vials. Purchase a cabinet from a goodwill store. Get a nice box to house a ritual-go kit for when you want to travel to a friend’s house or to the back yard.
At the Inner Circle Sanctuary group, we ask our first year students to do a spell every moon phase: a waxing moon spell and a waning moon spell. It's not required, but it gets them into the habit of doing magic regularly if they participate. Adopt something similar.
Improvise! Adapt! Overcome!