How To Keep Your New Years Resolutions

If you clicked on this with an excited hopefulness that I’ll be offering an easy, doable, 3 Step “How-to” on new years resolutions, sorry to disappoint. I’m actually really bad at resolutions. My personality is all or nothing and I also tend to go big or go home, which is basically a set-up for mental and emotional disaster when it comes to these sorts of things. I want to get my entire life together all at once, which, believe it or not, is actually impossible.

It’s okay, I’ve come to terms with that now.

What I’ve learned about new years resolutions besides the fact that I really can’t stand them, is that it’s not about one sudden moment of seeing what a wreck you actually are and making a list of things you need to fix. It’s about deciding that you want your life to be different and taking the daily steps it takes to get there. The trick to new years resolutions? Ease your way in. Don’t quit cold turkey and don’t jump in full force. Stop looking at it as something you have to do to be a better person and make it become something you want to do in order to become the person you want to be. Not that it’s easy or enjoyable, but that the outcome is so worth it to you it doesn’t matter.

This past year was an extraordinary year of growth for me. It was hard, ya’ll. And it hurt. I discovered parts of myself that I never knew were there because I walked through experiences that I’ve never walked through. The irony in it all, though, is that even though I walked through deep pain that greatly challenged my faith, I was also given extraordinary opportunities. That’s how God works, ya know. Growing you in experience before giving you responsibility. Allowing things to die so that new things can be born.

In the midst of all of that, I’ve done a lot of self-reflecting. And because I’ve learned that quitting cold turkey and jumping in head first only makes change that much more difficult, I’ve already started working on a lot of these things that I’m going to be focusing on. I almost said “over the next year”, but I didn’t. Because I’m not just focusing on them for the next year. I’m going to start focusing on them now and continue to until they become a part of my daily life. Not for 2018, for as long as they need to be.

Well, here’s my list. Here’s to a new year of growth and opportunity.

  • Read on Sunday afternoons. I used to read Christian “self-help” (for lack of a better term) books all the time. I grew so much and it made my writing much more dynamic. What I love about reading is that it allows me to gain from what others have walked through without having to walk those paths myself. Or, if I am walking them, learning how to better navigate it from someone who’s been there.
  • Meal Prep! Oh dear goodness. Not only do you have to find the recipe, you have to write out what you need. Then you have to go to the store and find it, buy it, load in the car, unload it from the car, put it away, prepare it. On top of that, I prefer to eat healthy which only adds to the ingredients needed because it’s not boxed or pre-cooked. Why is adulting this hard?! Just kidding. (Kind of.)
  • Cut sugar and gluten. I actually haven’t had gluten all week until tonight when I had a multi grain roll with my salad. Life is balance. However, I really want to cut sugar in every way I can. It’s straight up poison, ya’ll. So, with the exception of occasional sweet tea (I can’t help it…I’m from the south.) and a few peppermints, I think I’ve basically avoided sugar this week as well. (Side note: I feel great.)
  • Workout 3-4 times a week. Even going on a walk makes a difference. So, that’s my goal. To not be sitting on the couch every night before working out. Would this be a list of goals set right before new years if this wasn’t on here? Probably not.
  • Save more, spend less. Ya’ll, I can’t even begin to tell you how heavy my heart is over this. Anyone who knows me knows that I have always wanted to adopt. Always. I feel very strongly about it. But if that’s the case, then why am I not giving $30 a month to sponsor a kid in an orphanage to help give them hope right now? (Yes, I want a Compassion kid.) I want to be open and available to give whenever I can but that’s not going to happen until I prioritize my finances. Just keepin’ it real.
  • Be more intentional in mentoring and being mentored. This one is tricky because not only is it hard for me to find time in my schedule to do a lot of these things, but now I’m dealing with someone else’s schedule and potentially their parents schedule. Honestly, it doesn’t even matter. Because gluten and meal prep and reading are secondary compared to the teenage girl who just wants someone to listen. And I can not pour into her the way I need to without someone pouring into me and holding me accountable. So, I’m praying for both.
  • Get a massage once a month. No but really, google the health benefits.
  • Leave my phone in another room. I want to be all in where I am, even if the whole world doesn’t know where that is because it’s not on my story or my feed. (PSA: No one really cares that much.)
  • Don’t take life to seriously! I think this ones pretty much self explanatory.

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