New Year’s resolutions–we make them and break them, feeling the pressure of all the goals we may or may not ever achieve. I’m terrible at New Year’s resolutions. Most of mine are the same each year–get good grades, write a book, and get closer to God. These are all good goals, but it never seems to be enough (and that book is always a work in progress).
I remember last year I made a resolution to start running. I have no clue as to why. All I know is that two minutes into jogging around the basement and I was dizzy and exhausted (POTS problems). I decided that yoga was my happy place.
What’s the point of me telling you about my New Year’s resolutions? Because lovely reader, I’m asking you to join me in ditching traditional resolutions altogether. Having goals and plans isn’t a bad thing, but they seem kind of unrealistic in the grand scheme of a whole new year.
So what do we do instead? Eat cookies and celebrate! Just kidding (but not really). Here’s what we should be doing this New Year: We need to trade our resolutions for reflection.
We need to trade our resolutions for reflection.
We don’t know what this year will bring, but we already know what we have experienced last year…or do we? Perhaps life hit us head on like a truck, and we may not even recognize who we’ve become or where we’ve ended up. This is why reflecting over the past year is so important. You don’t have to dwell on the past for days, but consider devoting an hour to reflect on the changes and experiences of this year.
Not sure where to begin your reflections? Here’s a free checklist you can download or print to help you ponder (and even journal about) your year.
New Year’s Reflection Checklist (With Free Printable!)
- How was I feeling or what were my thoughts last New Year’s?
- What were some great joys/successes over this past year?
- What were some painful times/hardships over this past year?
- How have I grown from these hardships? Have I become a more positive or negative person?
- Over the last year, have I grown closer to God, or has my faith lost priority?
This may seem like a daunting checklist, but don’t feel pressured to come up with a certain number of ideas for each bullet point. Start off slow and be prayerful about it–reviewing a whole year takes time.
Now that you’ve reflected on this last year, it’s time to set the only New Year’s resolution you need this year–in the form of a question.
How does God want me to grow this year, and how can I deepen my walk with Him?
This is where you should really start praying and perhaps fasting. When you devote your year–and your life–to Jesus, it doesn’t matter what you accomplish or fail at, where you go, or what goals you manage to check off. When you give Jesus your future, He will help you live the most incredible life you could ever dream of.
I hardly doubt the twelve disciples had a clue about all of the incredible events that would happen upon following Jesus. They probably couldn’t even imagine half of the miracles they would witness with God.
The same is still true for us. When we give God control, He shows up in miraculous ways. This year, lovely reader, let Jesus be your guiding light into the future.
Let Jesus be your resolution.
A man’s heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps (Proverbs 16:9 NKJV).
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