There is something intimidating about New Year’s Day. While it is a blessing to have a new beginning… A clean slate… A blank canvas… It is also overwhelming. The possibilities are endless but also limited by our individual set of circumstances.
Example: it is possible to book a one way ticket to Paris, open a ting bookstore/café and spend the days with fellow like-minded bookworms munching on buttery croissants. My circumstances kindly remind me of my responsibilities and point me towards alternatives (Montreal has quaint bookstores, delicious cafes and its fair share of bookworms).
What is it about the Parisian scenario that makes me wax nostalgic with a dreamy look in my eyes? Could it be possibility of indulging in my favorite pastime on a continual basis? If it were possible, I would spend the days (every single one) reading and it still would not be enough!
Is there a solution? Yes, a simple one actually. In 2019, I will allow myself the luxury of spending more time reading, unhurried, without an ounce of guilt creeping up to ruin my experience.
A Set Of Solutions:
A few years ago, I committed to not having any New Year resolutions. That decision was liberating. I started the New Year without a “to do” list and it was the best gift I could give myself. Resolutions, for “A type” personalities, are more stressful than anything. They are constant reminders that we committed to improve some aspects (or all aspects) of our lives. As the weeks turn into months, we realize that we did not accomplish most (or even one) of our resolutions. Then a feeling of defeat and failure sets in.
I am proposing a different strategy this year.
After A Careful Examination of our Lives, Let us Commit to a Set of Solutions to our Irritants.
Example: Losing weight
Old strategy (Resolution): Starting a diet as of January 2nd, eliminating all carbs and sweets, and getting a gym membership
New Strategy (Solution): Eliminating one unhealthy eating habit per month.
Questionnaire to Help You Formulate Your New Year’s List of Solutions:
Faith:What is the one (or principal) obstacle that you can eliminate in order to grow in your spiritual life this year?
Possible solution: reading one chapter of the Bible daily.
Family:Any conflicts that are weighing you down that can be resolved? Are you spending meaningful time with your children? What can be reduced from your schedule to make time for one fun outing/activity per week with your loved ones?
Possible solution: Finishing work 30 minutes early on Fridays – enjoy a family “fun” night (as simple as pizza for dinner followed by a movie to be watched together (don’t forget the popcorn).
Friendships:Miss hanging out with a certain friend? Lost touch with others?
Possible solution: Pick up the phone and schedule a “coffee date”, which is a lot simpler to organize and action than a “girls/boys night out” or “going out for dinner”.
Other Categories That You Might Want to Examine:
- Personal Growth (still dreaming about writing that book, starting a blog, taking a photography class – determine the steps you need to take to make it happen this year).
When you start the New Year with a list of solutions, you are already half way towards accomplishing your goals.
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
Happy and Blessed New Year!