First of all – May God bless you this 2013!
To me the time between Christmas and New Year is slowing down time, reflection time, planning time, and reconnecting with family time. I just love it. Well, it is over and some made New Year’s resolutions. Somebody said: “May all your troubles last as long as your New Year’s resolutions.” That said what do we do with those resolutions?
The stroke of the New Year’s hour yesterday simply has marked the dawning of another day. Whether the year really will be new lies within each person. No, years become new only if we make them so. Resolutions for new days, new beginnings, opportunities, and dreams are not to be made only in the excitement of the moment; but long after the glamour is gone these resolutions are to become the order of each day.
Any resolutions would benefit the person that keeps them, but would do very little for the person that merely makes them. Most of us know the pain of not being able to keep our resolutions in the past. If you have a track record of making resolutions but not keeping them, perhaps you would be wise to determine what went wrong. Certainly, two key components are necessary for the Christian making a resolution. One is to make sure our plans are Godly ones; the second is to rely upon Him for the strength to carry them out. Proverbs 16:9
The decision to act doesn’t ensure success. Think of it like this, if there is more to doing right than knowing the right thing to do, then there is also more to it than deciding to do the right thing. But if you never determine to make a change, you never will. The starting point is to make the resolution in the first place.
To have the energy to make resolutions today, we have to avoid surrendering to a defeatist attitude. Past failures don’t have to translate into an apathy instead we can learn from our past mistakes and develop a plan for future successes. Philippians 4:13 – In Christ, all things are possible, if our goals are in the center of God’s will for our lives.
A few steps for those New Year’s Resolutions:
- Make the plan or resolution. So, knowing that the first step in any permanent change is to set the goal or make the resolution, we begin the New Year ready to make our resolutions.
- Choose the Right New Year Resolution(s) for you. Instead of picking a “one size fits all goal” we should make a resolution that is tailor-made for us-or to put it another way, one that is God’s will for our lives. And after we discover God’s will, then we can create the plan, stay on track and keep going, but we will never be able to do that until we discover God’s will for our lives. James 4:13–15
- Keep them few in number. Productivity studies show that you really can’t focus on more than 5-7 items at any one time. And don’t try to cheat by including sections with several resolutions under each section. This is a recipe for losing focus and accomplishing very little. Instead, focus on a handful of resolutions that you can almost repeat from memory.
- Create a Plan. Resolutions are really just annual goals. But like all goals, they should be s-m-a-r-t:
- Specific – your goals just identify exactly what you want to accomplish in as much specificity as you can muster.
- Measurable – as the old adage says, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure.”
- Actionable – every resolution should start with a verb.
- Realistic – you have to be careful here. A good resolution should stretch you, but you have to add a dose of common sense.
- Time-bound – every resolution needs a date associated with it. When do you plan to deliver on that resolution?
- Write them down. There is a huge power in writing your resolutions on paper even if you never develop an action plan or do anything else.
- Go public. Tell your family and friends what you are committed to achieving. Going public creates accountability and leverage.
- Stay on Track
- Remain Flexible and Keep on Going