Tomorrow brings in February. We flip the calendar page to a fresh month. Just as we looked with anticipation to January and the new year, look at February (or any new month) with the same anticipation. What will this short month bring?
We’ve settled into a new year. More than likely you’ve quit dating things 2016. The hype of resolutions is over. Let’s get something done. “They”, whoever “they” are, say that if you do something for 21 days in a row, it becomes a habit. I can say that there are things I do every day that are part of my routine that if I miss, I can tell. So, I would agree with this habit-forming method.
February is short of a typical month by two or three days. There’s a whole history on this that I won’t go into, but you can enjoy on YouTube. Today’s encouragement is for you to use this “runt of the months” to create or build on a habit. A good one preferably. Did you resolve to do something you haven’t started yet? Well here’s your month — or at least three and half weeks to get going.
For me, I will work everyday toward my exercise goals. There, I’ve said it and now it’s published for all to see. You have permission to keep me accountable. Two other things I will be doing daily is writing and reading. I’ve also developed a system for keeping my chores/projects around the house moving forward (Husband, consider yourself warned .) Might be a lot, but keeping these priorities may also eliminate some of the time I waste everyday.
Who’s with me?
Today is January 8th. The first week of the new year is over. It was a rough one for me as I promptly came down with a sinus infection of sorts and spent a few days in a fog. UGH, feel like I lost precious time. But I digress. Today, I had a chance to get my house in order and sit down to write my goals. As always, I pulled out last year’s. I’ve already confessed that not many of last year’s goals were accomplished. Instead of scrapping them, I read them and renewed in my heart that these were the three areas I wanted to accomplish something in — Financial, Mind & Spirit and Healthy Habits. Under each heading there are one or two specific goals.
To strengthen my commitment to each category, I found Bible verses to go with each that would remind me of the goal. Each goal category and verse is written on a note card that I will see often.
Financial (core value: to be a good steward of all God has given) — Colossians 3:17 “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” (the goal has to do with my work)
Mind & Spirit (core value: to be a life-long learner) — Proverbs 1:5, 7 “A wise man will hear and increase learning, and a man of understanding will attain wise counsel…The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
Healthy Habits (core value: to take care of myself so that I can serve others and be the best version of myself) — I Corinthians 6:19-20 “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? You were bought at a price, therefore glorify God in your Body and in your spirit which are God’s.”
Perhaps as a person of faith, adding the scriptures to my goals will remind me each day that while I am human and may not always have the strength or discipline to stay focused, I serve a God who is bigger and is ready to help.
So here we go…
#resolutions, #newyears, #goals
Usually when we hear of a small percentage, top one percent or top ten percent, it’s for good reasons like income level or class placement. Being included in the top percentages usually means you have worked hard, have been committed and didn’t lose your focus. Those are also characteristics of someone who is trying to achieve a goal (or resolution). See where this I going?
The percentage of Americans who keep their New Years Resolution after a month is 64%. Ok, not bad. At six months, only 48% have kept their resolution. Do you see the trend? Only eight percent keep their resolution for the entire year. Those who keep their goal or resolutions are the ones who keep it in their sights. Every day they think, read about or do something toward that end.
Don’t be discouraged by this small number. If eight percent can do it, than 98 percent can. Remember, nobody could run a five minute mile until one person did. Before you commit to your resolution, commit to being counted in the eight percent. Others have, so we know it’s possible.
#resolutions, #NewYears, #goals
I woke this morning thinking about the year we are about to close. As you may expect, my thoughts turned to my goals for 2017. In order to think forward, I had to consider the goals I had in 2016. Honestly, few of them were accomplished. Somewhere along the way, I lost focus. It’s been a challenging 12 months.
Admittedly, with the challenges came something more important than written goals, a deeper faith. For this I’m thankful. I close the year feeling closer to God and a little wiser about what’s important.
What will the new year bring? I’m not exactly sure. Yes, I will have written goals by this time next week. They will fall in the categories of mind and spirit, financial, and healthy habits. But the way they will be written will be different. It occurred to me that many times to accomplish a goal, we need to change a behavior. To change a behavior, we need to change our thinking.
As you open that fresh new calendar, reset the clock to hour one on day one of 365, examine your core values, your behaviors and your thinking. How will these translate into your goals for 2017?
Let me know.
#newyears, #goals, #resolutions
Over the last week or so the lottery has been quite the thing to buzz about. I am not a regular player, and don’t understand the fun of consistently paying two dollars for a little slip of paper that more than likely will deliver nothing in return. That being said, I admit to purchasing maybe a total of five lottery tickets in the life of the lottery.
Once, I was reminded of recently by a college friend, was when the lottery first started and I bought a scratch off and actually won. That winning didn’t give me the fever though. The other times have been when the lottery potential winnings hit historical highs, like hundreds of millions or like last week over a billion dollars. Why not? I spent two dollars and bought myself and my family a few days of fun conversation surrounded by the “what if” question.
We talked of being debt free and blessing our church and missionaries we support. What I admired was that we didn’t talk of world trips or huge houses. We talked about life being a little easier because of not having to worry about our future financial state.
I enjoyed dreaming of a lifestyle that I wouldn’t have otherwise thought about. It was a fun escape. Needless to say (as you can see from the photo), they chose the wrong numbers and I didn’t win. My participation last week reminded me that dreaming is good. No, I’ll never be a billionaire at the rate I’m going, but my family will always have what we need most. There will be successful goal-achieving moments ahead. Money certainly helps in this world, but it’s not everything. It’s a resource that gives us the opportunity to make this place a little better for ourselves and those we care about.
There still may be moments of escape when I do a little dreaming of “what if”, but I don’t need a lottery ticket to do that.
All the best,
About this time each year I attempt to inspire you to make goals for the New Year. Written goals are 10 times more likely to be accomplished than goals that are not written. Typically, I encourage goals for spiritual growth, financial soundness, and physical betterment. I still believe each of these areas is important, but this year, I’m re-thinking my goal-setting and accomplishing strategy.
What if I keep my three main categories, but only have one maybe two goals in each. Quality not quantity of goals. Each day, week, month, live intentionally to end up with a higher accomplishment rate. I’m not going to lose 15 pounds the first week of the year. But I can over a few months. It’s going to take being intentional each day to lower my sugar intake. It’s going to take being intentional each week to make time to exercise.
In December, I gave up talk radio in order to clear the clutter from my brain and allow my heart to experience the Christmas season. It worked. Not in the way I expected it to, but I found my spirit calm and my heart excited to celebrate the birth of Christ. The other thing I gained from this was control. Instead of absentmindedly turning the channel to talk radio or news, I chose to listen to uplifting and inspirational music. I controlled the messaging going into my brain. It’s important to keep up with news and the affairs of the world, but do it on YOUR terms.
Our days can get busy and life can get messy, take control where you can, be intentional in your living and focus each day on what is most important.
P.S. — Want to help me with one of my goals? Share one of my posts that you most enjoy on your social media sites. Invite your friends and colleagues to follow.
I love that the first day of a new year is a holiday. Many wake up ready to throw away the old bad habits and jump into healthier living and better financial decisions. Gung ho! Not me. Yes, there are things I’d like to do and change in 2016, but today is a day of relaxing and family. It’s our last day or two of this holiday season. New Year’s day and (because of how it falls this year) the weekend that follows is a great way to ease into a new year. Take these few days to wrap up your holiday mindset. Make decisions about goals for 2016 and steps you will take to accomplish them. Look at your calendar and plan time to work on your goals. Is it exercise? Is it eating right? How will your meals change this first week/month of the year? Are you going to take a class? When will you be in class and when will you do homework?
Here’s to a well-paced goal-accomplishing 2016.