Everyone’s deciding now, more than any other time of the year, to be a better version of themselves. Setting new goals, creating new dreams, having new visions for their lives. And we all plan to really do them. That’s the beauty of a new year. It feels like a new beginning with new found belief in ourselves. However, as the first few weeks turn into the first few months, we tend to lose sight of that. A big reason that in the end we don’t always complete our goals is because we stop believing in ourselves. Over and over again we hear the reoccurring excuses of a busy schedule, financial difficulties, a lack of motivation, etc. The level of discouragement that creates in us escalates from there. But what really happens? We stop believing we can do it, or that we are actually worth it. In fact, we might even start believing that it wasn’t really a new start at all, but just a continuation of the year before. It becomes not as important. And as the things we do with our lives start becoming less important, we start viewing ourselves as less important too.
I think a lot of times at the beginning of the year we feel a sense that the things that happened in the last year are kept in the last year. All the disappointments, the grief, the pain; that can all be left behind, and now we get to choose how our next year looks. In some ways that’s true, but as we look back on the years and say, “that happened in that year (and so on)”, we have to realize it’s still a continuation of our previous days, even if the date of the year changes. I’m not trying to be discouraging, but I want to point out that how you want to live your life can START now, just don’t stop that based on what time of year it is. Live out who you want to be all the time. The great thing about the new year is that it’s a reoccurring mark on the timeline of our lives; a way to keep track of our goals so we can continue pushing for success, and something that starts us creating good habits that we will continue long after the year is gone.
It’s also important to understand that a new year does not mean that you can forget about the pain that you were dealing with in the previous season of your life. It’s not a time to leave your feelings about a situation un-dealt with, but instead it might be just a good time for a break and a re-evaluation of how you are really feeling about the situation. You still need to go through that process; however, it may just be at a different time. There are seasons of your life needed for rest. For many people, the holidays are not a good time. Whether it be loss, heartache, or loneliness; some feelings and emotions may come up in you that you are simply not used to feeling and didn’t realize you still had within you. This can bring a lot of stress, a lot of hurt, and can become a huge burden that sits within you if it isn’t properly handled. The new year sounds like a perfect time to just leave all that behind you doesn’t it?
What if we actually dealt with our emotions, found the root causes, and became free in those areas? Think of how much better we would feel everyday, and how much more we would understand ourselves, love ourselves, and treat ourselves. Don’t you want that?
Something that will help us to pursue our goals all year long is to 1) make goals that are attainable, but still high enough to keep us pushing towards notable success, and 2) have more frequent check-mark dates that keep us accomplishing smaller goals on the path in reaching our overall goal. Continue to look at the vision you have for the end of this year and update your process as you go along. Your new life starts now!