Ah, New Years. It’s that lovely time of year where well intentioned resolutions, die a slow (or truthfully, fast) death as life rolls on. Can you relate?
I wish I could tell you that as I look back over the many years, I see nothing but completed objectives and fulfilled dreams. I wish I could say that every time I set my mind to it, I was able to change this habit or that behavior. Unfortunately, I know all too well the regret of leaving something incomplete.
What starts as a truly motivating desire to see improvement in a relationship, a project, a personal goal…ends in a “oh well, maybe next year” or worse “I wish I had stuck with it“.
Have I depressed you? I think I just depressed myself!
So, what are we going to do about it? Are we going to let 2017 be another year of the same old thing? Or, are we going to take this annual “reset” and be greater than our 2016 self?
If you’re reading this post and thinking, “I never keep the resolutions I set“, then let me throwout some ideas so you can tell your subconscious “it wasn’t my idea“…”I’m just doing what someone else suggested“. (Note: if that sounds ridiculous, then you haven’t ever had the internal dialogues that plague so many of us when it comes to motivating ourselves. I can motivate others, but sometimes motivating me to exercise or read a book or whatever, is like coaxing a donkey to climb up the Himalayas)
Alright, here are some suggestions that may help you on your way to becoming a better you in this new year:
- Exercise 3-5 times per week. Everything stems from your health. If you are in better shape, you will think better, relate with people better, sleep better, etc etc.
- Read 1 book every month. Might be easy for some, but for many it’s a daunting thought. Reading is a fantastic way to increase your mental capabilities, vocabulary, stimulate creativity, etc. (extra credit: read the bible weekly, if not daily. no other book can encourage you and challenge you all at the same time. the time spent in this activity is invaluable.)
- Spend more time with good people. I mean the people that “give” life, not suck it out of you. Don’t surround yourself with gossips, negative thinkers, etc. Place yourself in an environment that lifts you up and gets the most out of you.
- Speak life. In every situation, you have the opportunity to change the atmosphere. Speaking life into other people’s lives will encourage them (and you).
- Give away money. Yeah, that’s what I said. Tithe at your church, give to missions organizations, donate to folks trying to adopt, etc. Giving away a portion of what you worked hard to earn is a transforming exercise in seeing the world beyond your small part of it.
- Be a better leader. Whether you are a boss or an employee, you have the opportunity to be a leader. Start this year by being intentional with what you say, how you act, etc in the workplace.
- Remember to breathe. Working hard is great, it’s awesome to accomplish a ton of stuff. However, that is not all that life is about. Take time (on a very regular basis) to chill out. Go for a walk, take a nap, go to the movies, roll around on the floor with your kids, take your spouse on a date…breathe.
Certainly not an exhaustive list, but hopefully one or a few of them have sparked something in you. (I know they have in me)
I wish you luck as you begin this year, desiring to live intentional. May the grace and peace of God be with you everyday.
Written by Andrew Pino
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