So how are your New Year’s Resolutions going? Often they do not last longer than the middle of the month. The reason being, I think, is that we set unrealistic goals for ourselves. For example, we rarely exercised last year. Suddenly, because it is January, we are going to exercise 30 minutes a day, five days a week. Admirable – yes! Realistic – No!
When we cannot meet our expectations, we are so disappointed that we don’t exercise at all. We wouldn’t think to start with a goal of 15 minutes two or three times a week. Instead, we set high goals, fail, and then tell ourselves. “There is no use in trying.”
It is the same with changing our eating habits. Once we have blown the goals we set for ourselves, we feel so badly that we quit. Rarely do we say, “Well, I blew it this week, but I will get back on track.”
We are so hard on ourselves that we would rather give up the desire for change and reinforce how “no good” we are than acknowledge we simply lacked some discipline.
But here is a thought to consider. I started something several years ago that worked so well for me that I wrote about it in Home with a Heart at the beginning of Time for Mom.
The idea is to make a goal of changing only ONE thing about your CHARACTER – not your diet, exercise program or spending habits each year. I thought this might be more attainable and beneficial, so I tried it. And I really liked it because I had the year to reach ONE goal. If I didn’t think I had improved as much as I wanted in that area in the year, I simply set the same goal the following year.
To be honest, once I set the same character goal for seven years in a row because it was so important to me. I kept asking God to help me. I determined to see it take place. By the end of the seventh year, I said: “Ok, Elaine, time to move on!” But I still look back at the end of every year to see how I did with that important goal, plus whatever else I am working on.
How about you? Would you like to try what many women are doing in Home with a Heart? Choose just one trait in your character you want to change. Then ask God to help you grow in that one area.
I think growing in character helps me improve negative habits in my life more easily than focusing on the habits. Therefore, I kissed New Year’s Resolution’s goodbye.