So, here we are, a few days after Christmas 2016. This has been a nice day to reflect on the fun we shared with family and friends. Today I feel extremely blessed. I am grateful for the breath in my lungs, the roof over my head and for God’s love expressed with the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. The bags of crumpled gift wrap await the burn barrel. The crazy speed of preparation has all but stalled. Daily life is resuming normalcy.
I commonly start the plan for the New Year about now. The plans of healthier eating, exercise and simplification of existence enter my mind. Well, you know what they say about the road paved with good intentions? So what will it take this year to bring to fruition all the desires of my heart?
I sure don’t have the answer. But the fact that I find myself standing in front of an insurmountable peak once again prompts me to make a better plan this year. I need to have follow through and perseverance. I need a concrete plan; one that is challenging but not overwhelming.
So, baby steps it is. Here are a few changes I plan to implement. Maybe you can use some of them on your New Year journey, too! (I have attached a PDF for you at the bottom of this post!)
1) Start every morning with prayer and time reading the Bible. It is the most important thing I will do any day of the week. God’s word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.
2) Journal every day. Every. Single. Day. For accountability and just to have a record for future reference. What am I grateful for? What am I struggling with? Hey, if I can update a post on Facebook, I can record my thoughts and activities in a journal. No one really cares about my status anyway. Why not use it to improve myself?
3) Declutter my mind. Beginning the day with prayer and asking God to guide me and give me the wisdom to prioritize my list of things to do, stopping midday to assess my progress, praying for endurance to complete said tasks, then ending the day with prayers of thanksgiving and gratitude. Before bed, look at my list, check off completed ones and add tomorrow’s desired tasks. Sleep and Repeat!
4) Declutter my home. Using the 3 pile process, take a room or area of a room each day and sort…Keep it, Donate it, Pitch it….And move the donate and pitch items ASAP. Don’t overthink, just imagine a clean, clutter free space and rejoice!
5) Start a list of people I miss. I often think of an old friend or family member that I simply never take the time to hang out with. As soon as they cross my mind, I will pray for them and then every week, reach out to one of them via telephone or a short visit. Can’t wait to start this!
6) Remember my younger self. Remember her dreams and goals? They are still attainable! Take deliberate steps to realize as many as I can! I ain’t getting’ any younger, after all!!
7) Read every day. Pick something inspirational; something that will reignite fire in my soul, bring back the sparkle in my eye and jump start the spring in my step.
8) Rest. Take time to relax and get lots of sleep. A renewed mind and spirit are necessary to climb my mountain and reach my full potential.
9) Choose to be grateful. See the silver lining in everything. After all, the master gardener planted me right where I am in just the perfect conditions to draw me closer to himself. He knows what He is doing and His plan is perfect. I am growing!
10) Be humble, remembering daily where I came from and extending the same grace to others that Christ gave to me.
11) Tell people my story; the one about the girl on the path to destruction whom God plucked from the jaws of death. She was lost, but now she’s found. She was blind, but now she sees. She was dead and now she lives. She gained eternal security by surrender, and peace by faith in Jesus Christ. Her story can be yours.
Celebrate life! Celebrate YOU! Happy New Year!
Print the "steps" PDF below to jumpstart your New Year! God Bless you!