New Year Resolution or Revolution?
It's upon us, or almost - the New Year! Most people seem to at least make a pretence of setting a goal of some sort for the New Year. The problem is: will it be a half-hearted response, as sometimes happens in Lent, "I'll give up chocolate, but I know my decision won't last beyond the first time I'm offered something luscious." I'm sure that wouldn't ever happen in your house!
It could be a real resolution to take on something new, but perhaps that is too ambitious and I find I can't persevere with it after the first few days. Or will it be a New Year's 'Revolution', where I take on something really new for me, something that I can cope with and that I am determined to carry out?
If we're really going to get there, we need to set ourselves goals that are realistic. I need to ask myself, "If I take this on board, can I truly do it and continue to do it? Will I still be as enthusiastic next December? Is it really what I wish to do, in my heart of hearts?"
In some languages, the word for wish is the same as the word for prayer. That thought brings me up with a jolt. Am I making this decision on my own, or, as I'm a Christian, am I remembering to pray about it before I decide; am I asking for the Holy Spirit's guidance? If my bright, new decision is not within God's will for me, it's not likely to be very effective.
Taking on something new means finding the time to carry it out - especially if it involves writing, which can be very time-consuming. How am I going to achieve that goal?
- Decide how I will allot my time.
- Look up other articles to find useful tips that might help me to reach my goals.
- Make a list of the things I need to do to achieve my goals.
- Construct a timetable on my computer, print it off and stick it up in a prominent place.
- Be strong-minded enough to stick to it.
- Remember to factor in time for relaxation and entertainment; balance is important.
I don't know about you, but I've already received letters at Christmas, inviting me to join a couple of interesting clubs, to join the Sunday School teaching team at Church, to join a group to help newcomers to our country to learn English.
These things are all worthy and could be very fulfilling. I have the knowledge and skills for the latter, the clubs sound like fun. But I'm retired and I like to go away and catch up with relatives and friends sometimes - and - never let it be said! - I am growing older. If I am realistic, I don't have the energy I once had. To decide on only aiming for the right goals for me will mean saying no to some things, and I find this difficult.
Commitment is important
The word, 'commitment' is not a very popular one these days, but I believe that if I take on something I should stick to it. I will have to refuse some of those enticing invitations, make a list of what is feasible and go back to my check-list to see if what is left will not be too much. Hopefully, when it comes to next New Year's Eve I will be able to look back, evaluate my performance and say, "With God's help, I did it!"
Such is life! I hope that you can set yourself good, practical goals and that you are successful in achieving them in this coming year.