It is about that time we start making resolutions for the new year. I am not a big fan of resolutions. Most of us fail to keep them anyway or by March, we forget what promises we made to ourselves. We stop going to the gym, we stop eating healthy, and we fall back into our pre-January 2nd behavior patterns. To be successful, you have to accept both your gifts and, contrary to popular belief, your limitations. All of us at some point may ask ourselves questions like: Who am I? Why was I created? Our minds and our lives are cluttered with ideas, images, and possessions that distract us and constantly divide our attention.
Many of us fail to keep our resolutions because we get distracted by the “life” that hits us once the slow holiday pace ramps back up to our normal pace. This year I want you to try something different. Start making a list. I want you to make two lists. On list number one, list 12 things you love about yourself. You must find 12 things, even if they are silly. On list number two I want you to list 12 things about yourself that you want to improve. Be specific. Don’t just say I want to lose weight or be a better student, put a number to it. Write, “I want to lose 15lbs” or “I want a 2.5 GPA by the end of the semester.” Prioritize both lists from 1 to 12 with one being the highest.
Here are my lists:
List #1: Things I Love About Glen
- My faith
- My sense of humor
- My cooking skills
- My family
- My speaking skills
- My platinum status on Delta
- My ability to solve problems
- Good friends
- I never had a cavity
- My mentors
- Houston, Texas
- My Kitchen Aid stand mixer
List #2: Things I want to improve/accomplish
- Lose 15 lbs
- Book 6 speaking engagements
- Write Book #2
- Reduce debt by $5,000
- Take SCUBA lessons
- Keep cholesterol within healthy limits
- Regular date nights with my wife
- Plant a vegetable garden
- Learn conversational Spanish
- Practice guitar three times a week
- Learn to DJ
- Buy a 60” TV
Starting in 2019, I want you to focus on one item from list number one and celebrate it. Celebrate it, post about it, or do something special related to that thing you love about yourself. For example, using my list, I could cook some special meals in February and share the photos. In September I could send notes of kindness to my mentors or promote their work.
Now look at list number two and circle items 1 and 2, for the first six months of the year focus on items 1 and 2. Don’t even start worrying about items 3-6 until June rolls around. Only move down your list one item at a time after you accomplished the goal above. Does this make you want to reprioritize your list? It probably does. I pray that you will have a long healthy life but understand just like everyone else on the planet you only have 24 hours in each day to accomplish your goals and live your IDEAL life. Cross out items 7-12; you probably won’t get around to them, so relax and realize that it is okay. You can’t do everything. Pick one or two goals that you want to accomplish over the next 12 months and do those things well. At the same time celebrate and appreciate who you already are on our journey.
This holiday season I am sharing 12 short holiday posts to help you and yours get through this season with a little bit of joy and happiness intact. Many find the holiday season warm and inviting, but others get caught up in the hype of the season and even fall into the envy trap of comparing our lives to the lives of others. I would encourage you to create your own traditions and norms this time of the year. Don’t worry if the activities of your family or friends don’t match those of others. Be happy and define what works for you and yours.
Want more? Order a copy of my book on Amazon. It makes a great stocking stuffer, and it may just help someone you love or care for start living their IDEAL life.