Monday, 6 January 2014

Do You Want To Win?

It's a new year, and this means it is time to make new year resolutions. To be honest I love new year resolutions, because I like goals and fresh starts, just as I like mornings and to do lists.

I have noted a trend: people do not make new years resolutions. I have asked a number of people a the response is often "Nah, I don't keep them anyways, so why bother?" This troubles me! Because what I hear them saying is "Nah why bother trying to make good life goals because I can't change anyways?" This is crap! You can change! 

I think it is of utmost importance to take sometime every year (even better if it's more then once a year) to reflect on our lives, examining ourselves, our behaviors and habits, evaluating our goals and what might be getting in the way, and then making choices to move towards health physically, spiritually, mentally, and emotionally. And if you find that you don't keep them, we need to be figuring out if its because they are unrealistic or if we have a problem with self-control, and we need to be keep trying till we win! I don't know about you but I want to win at life! I don't want to live this life as someone who doesn't live the fullest best life she can just because I keep giving up because it's hard! 

For example many people make goals to do with their physical health, eating right and getting exercise, but get discouraged because the only last about a month. Rather then throwing in the towel, I suggest asking yourself "do I need to eat healthier, do I need to exercise more? Will this improve my health and life? Will it be the best thing for me?" If the answer is yes, then I would ask "Are my goals realistic?" You can't go from 0 to 100, if you never go to the gym and only eat McDonald's don't think you can start going to the gym 6 days a week, and go on a strict low fat, low sugar, low everything diet and last very long! Start with small, baby steps. 

But do start, because do you want to live the best life you can live or do you want to live an OK life, never really feeling satisfied or content? I would imagine you want to live a fulfilled life, but have been discouraged by past failures, hey I get that, we all have been there (are there) but that is not a reason to give up. Pick yourself up, or ask a friend to help pick you up! And try again! 

I had not intended to make this about resolutions, but it's the words that spilled out. If this has struck a cord in you I encourage you to take sometime to reflect further on it and then do something about it! 

Maybe make a list of things you are displeased/unsatisfied with (your weight, your lack of free time, your grades, your nonexistent prayer life) and then beside them write how you can better/change them (go to the gym, scheduled a free night, get a tutor, set up prayer dates with a friend). For many of us there are some even deeper issues, we are depressed or angry all the time, this will take some more self work, but it is possible to deal with it, go to a counselor, talk to someone you trust, read some books. I don't want to diminish some of the real deep dark stuff we have, there are many things that will not have a quick or simple resolution, but this doesn't mean they are unchangeable.  

Something I did was make a list of the components of my life (school, prayer, working out...), and then made out a rough schedule for myself. There are certain things I know I need in my life to be healthy, for example prayer and working out, so I had to figure out how to plan those into my life. I asked myself what gives me life? What kills me? What needs to stay? What needs to go? What is the best? Rather then focusing to much on the what not to dos, I filled my week with life giving to dos, like payer, working out, Bible study, and rest time. I am a full time student, so that is a non negotiable. And God has me living in DTES, so I need to make time to be down here, being with the community here. Those are two central components to my life. Another one is Sabbath rest, God has spoken very clearly to me of the importance of taking a whole day of rest from work, so I take Sunday as my Sabbath rest, not doing any school work on that day. I love going to the gym, and it's important for my health, I would go 6 days a week if I had the time, but that is not necessary or for me best, so I have planned to go 3 days a week, and a fourth day on less busy weeks. OK enough about me, your turn!

Remember make realistic resolutions, be ready to fail, it happens to us all, but instead of using the failures as an excuse to give up, use them to reevaluate and start fresh... 

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