It may seem like an odd comparison, but over the past week I've found myself thinking that entering 2017 feels a bit like slipping between freshly laundered sheets: comforting after a long year of trials and tribulations and refreshing all in one.
The temptation, I've found, is to lie in that metaphorical bed and drift off into a pleasant dream of a brighter future, wilfully erasing the past.
This coming year, I'll be fighting that temptation at every turn.
Backward gazing is for losers, we're told.
Platitudes such as "never look back" are offered as some kind of fortifying elixir in a society that views reflection, especially self-reflection, as some kind of weakness.
It strikes me as strange that we are only encouraged to reflect once a year, on December 31, when we're likely to be both exhausted and inebriated.
Alcohol apparently gives staunch society permission to engage in a spot of soul-searching.
I'm hardly immune.
The extent of my reflection has so far been to spend 15 minutes on Boxing Day pondering the impending ritual of New Year's resolutions.
In previous years I've favoured the utterly mundane, yet achievable.
In 2015 I resolved to take better care of my teeth, finally ticking it off the list a few weeks ago when my dentist pronounced my pearly whites "great". Who knew regular flossing could bring such satisfaction?
Before you die of boredom, I've decided to up the ante this time round.
After the many horrors of 2016, I felt compelled to come up with something fittingly dramatic in response for 2017's resolution.
I mulled over a shopping list of wild possibilities.
I briefly considered that running a marathon could be a worthy goal as I ate my umpteenth slab of gingerbread, thankfully coming to my senses when a jog the next morning threatened to send me into cardiac arrest.
I could try to stop swearing, I thought, but in a year that will include more Donald Trump than is advisable under any circumstances, I fear that my arsenal of colourful profanities will be more necessary than ever.
I am relieved to have finally settled on a resolution that would be entirely anticlimactic if it weren't rather uncommon.
Starting tomorrow, I'm going to make a concerted effort to spend more time reflecting. Or, to use a modern buzzword, to be more mindful.
I tend to be more of a human doing than a human being at the best of times.
In 2017, instead of charging forward relentlessly, I'm going to try to learn from my past mistakes, successes and realisations.
Given the challenges we'll face as a planet over the next 12 months, I hope I won't be alone in taking some time out to look backwards.
As much as it pains me to disagree with Neil Finn, it is becoming increasingly apparent that history does repeat.
It is too early to know whether we'll look back on 2016 as an eerie rerun of 1932, but there have been times during this year when I could almost swear I could hear the warning cries of generations past echoing down the decades.
If some nasty apocalyptic clash of the autocrats does await us, fuelled by misdirected rage and ignited by propaganda and a cult of personality, we can hardly say we were not warned.
Which is where reflection becomes unstuck.
In order for us to learn from our collective mistakes, we have to first be willing to admit we were wrong.
The seductiveness of "making [insert location here] great again" seems to suggest that when we do look back, it is with rose-tinted glasses.
Just as I'm sure Nazi Germany was a great place to live if you were of the so-called Aryan race, I'm sure pre-civil rights, pre-feminist movement America was generally swell for middle class white men.
Pre-Waitangi Tribunal New Zealand is probably viewed in a similar light by a certain stratum of our population.
Fanciful one-sided reflection is the fizzy drink of the contemplation game - sweet and addictive, but dangerously unhealthy when consumed regularly.
Looking back at an event from a variety of different angles and viewpoints is much more difficult.
As Confucius said, "Learning without reflection is a waste. Reflection without learning is dangerous."
Aspects of history may profoundly unsettle us - as they well should - but that doesn't mean that we should avoid them.
"Lest we forget" has been woven into the fabric of our society for a reason.
The atrocities of the recent past, whether the Holocaust, the New Zealand wars, slavery and segregation or the deaths of thousands of women in back alley abortions, hold many important lessons.
As I'm slowly beginning to understand, at the advanced age of 27, whether we're faced with a personal challenge or some kind of societal upheaval, history is a box of sharp tools, unwieldy perhaps, but readily available to help to shape the future.
Whether we use them is up to us.
So farewell, 2016. Thank you for the lessons, the victories and the disasters, and good riddance.
I'll be visiting you in my reflections, of course, but with the benefit of hindsight, I'll know to bring a stiff drink.