First off, it feels foreign to type that year—as you surely know from every transition on school papers, documents, and other stuff we do annually. Second of all, I realize there’s a good amount of evidence and simple sentiment against writing “New Year’s Resolutions.” Usually, these arguments come in these forms:
- “We never keep New Year’s resolutions. Just look at the gym numbers that drop every February.”
- “You should start improving your life now, not when the calendar changes over.”
- “Resolutions are just ploys to make people feel better about themselves for “trying.””
Well, here are my reasons for writing this post about my goals for 2017, in the face of those fairly valid statements:
- Sure, I may not keep every single resolution I make. But this year, I did keep one. I’ll get into that in a minute!
- Yes, life improvement should be a constant process; and new seasons should aid us in that process: they’re creation’s way of illustrating the truth that, as Solomon says, there’s a season for everything. Why not utilize a new year to our advantage?
- Sure, some of this involves straight-up trying. What’s so wrong with that? Isn’t trying how all change happens? All the Yoda fans who are about to bombard me with the, “No! There’s only do, there’s no try!” Hold on. All I’m saying is that good intentions aren’t valueless. Achieving goals requires the hard work; however, without that initial spark of motivation, the doing wouldn’t commence.
So hey. Don’t be hard on yourself for past resolutions that are lying around undone. 2017 is a new year! You’re a different person every day. And Jesus gives us the power to overcome. So… write some fun resolutions!
All right. Let me get into my three for this year. I picked three because, last year, I wanted to improve like seven things in my life, and only one ended up carrying throughout all of 2016.
What was the one?
My thankfulness jar!
Every day, I wrote down one thing I was thankful for that happened. Now, near the end of the year, it’s almost finished! Those scraps of paper are a visual illustration of how overwhelmingly blessed I am. There’s always something in each day to be thankful for; and when it gets difficult to maintain that perspective, something like a gratefulness jar helps.
What were my resolutions that didn’t carry throughout this year?
- Reading through the entire Bible on one of those yearly plans. I think I got to like one of the Samuels. Haha!
- To consistently work out. Let’s just all sigh together in unified empathy…except for you faithful people. Teach me your ways.
- I wanted to write and read something every day, and document it. I’m sure the amount I did this in 2016 was significant; however, as for recording that daily? Forget it.
- To pray for people every day. Definitely wasn’t as consistent with the people or the daily aspects of this one.
The amount of goals I set for myself was overwhelming. So this year, I’m sticking with three.
My 2017 Goals:
- Eat more well-roundedly. Still enjoy sweets and junk food moderately; but balance those things with more fruits and veggies every day.
- Work out 2 times per week…yes, this one made it back in a more concrete, reasonable manner.
- Make time for writing every single day, no matter how long.
Does that mean they’ll be perfect? No, but hey. That’s okay. If they intimidate you, they’re probably good. I read that somewhere…
Here are some other ideas I have about things I want to STOP doing this year, just as thought fodder:
- Binging on junk media. It’s extremely easy to go on Youtube or other socials and drink in the negative drama. It makes us feel good about ourselves; it’s entertaining; there’s always an (un)healthy supply of it…but spiritually, this does nothing for me. I want to dwell, as Philippians says, on things that are honoring and edifying to God and to myself.
- Comparing myself negatively to others. Admiring people’s unique attributes is great. But when that turns into feeding my own insecurities by trying to compare things that weren’t meant to be compared, it’s not fun. I want to work on making myself better, and judging other precious people less. We’re all works in progress, loved by God.
- Being lenient about quiet time. I haven’t made it as much of a priority; and while I was tempted to put it up there in the main three, I don’t want my time with Jesus to be pressured. I don’t want to stress about how I’m doing. I just want to commune with Him on a more regular, intentional basis. So it’s down here in the ideas section, because that’s on my heart.
All right, guys. Now it’s time to tell me what your thoughts and ideas are for this upcoming year. What are your goals? What are new things you want to try, or get back into? Are you planning a big move? Are you getting married? Are you starting a new workout or eating plan? Are you working on a creative project? Are you going on a sweet vacation?
Let me know in the comments! And have a festive, restful Christmas with Jesus. 🙂