I admire the people who make New Year's Resolutions every year and complete them. They make a resolution by reflecting on their lives and acknowledging how they want to improve themselves. Their goal could be improving a physical, emotional, spiritual, or a professional habit, and they take it seriously for a year. But some people fall short of their goals because they never make a plan...or they make a plan, but they never stick to it.
Do not worry. This article is not meant to shame anyone who hasn't followed through on their promises. Life is hard, and I understand how relaxation is more comfortable than transformation. You didn't even need to make a New Year's Resolution... But people usually make a New Year's Resolution to help better themselves.
You don’t need a beautiful crystal ball dropping at midnight in New York City to start changing your life. You can change your life whenever you want to.
Personally, my new year begins every February. Last year, I realized my hatred for singleness was a mistake because singleness is not a curse – it's a gift. Therefore, I decided to spend a year diving deeper into my passions, taking time to treat myself to fun adventures, and reflecting on how blessed I am. I am so glad I stuck to my goal amidst the tear-filled and “time to dance because today rocked” moments. I want you to experience the same sense of accomplishment I did, because completing my goal has colored me in iridescent joy.
Below are some practical tips to help you accomplish your New You resolution:
Take A Break
Enter into silence with an open mind and open heart. Silence is the place where we cannot run from ourselves, and that's a good thing. If you don't understand who you already are, then how will you know where you want to grow as a person? Without honest reflection in silence, I don't think you'll figure it out. Therefore, I challenge you to get some Quiet Time for at least 30 minutes.
Make Some Lists
After you take your break, I suggest making some lists. First, write down what you thought about in Quiet Time. You might want this physical reminder in the future when your goal becomes a little fuzzy in your memory.
Second, write down practical ways to accomplish your goal. Do not procrastinate on making a good plan because structure is amazing.
Please make the plan realistic. If you set too high of a bar for yourself, you might end up ditching your transformation dream.
Below are examples of goals and practical ways to accomplish them:
1. Reading the Bible More: Every morning while eating breakfast, I will read a small devotional from the Bible app I've had for years but never used consistently (insert winky face here).
2. Going to Bed On Time: I will set an alarm for 10:00PM titled "You better be in bed in 30 minutes OR ELSE" (or something similar)... and then I will actually be in bed in 30 minutes.
3. Having Good Dental Hygiene Habits (because it's important): I will floss every other day starting Monday, and I will always brush my teeth after breakfast and before bed.
The above are just examples of making a practical plan to accomplish your goal. Keep it simple, friend.
Get an Accountability Partner
We all need accountability. This Accountability Partner will be there to encourage and give you those honest "you know better than to do that" looks when we fall short of our full potential. Get a person who is kind and honest.
This trustworthy buddy of yours can also help keep the process fun. If you are learning to draw and are taking studio lessons downtown, invite your friend to participate. Make it a date.
Good golly, CELEBRATE YOURSELF. You are making a huge lifestyle change, and if you don't celebrate every once in a while, your New You might start to feel like a new job. Insert some life and joy into the system.
At least celebrate the 40-day anniversary of your start date. I don't know how long you want your goal to be (because it doesn't have to be a year), but doing it for at least 40 days is a wonderful idea. It's about a month. You can do it.
Honestly, we can do anything, but we let ourselves get lazy. It’s time to commit to something and stick with it. Let’s make our word mean something, because that is a really attractive quality to have. If you fail, get back up again with renewed vigor. Make sure that when the temptation to quit comes again, you will NOT succumb. Good luck, friend.
Below are fun videos if you want to giggle:
Why silence is key https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XL47Q6aQRF0
Procrastination is bad https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=arj7oStGLkU