In recent years many people have set aside the tradition of setting a New Year’s resolution. You know, commitments like lose weight, volunteer, quit smoking, go back to school, pay off debt – those well-intentioned ideas that are often abandoned by Valentine’s Day, if not earlier? A Forbes article last year stated that “just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s Resolutions”. Those odds aren’t great.
It’s not that we can’t change. It’s that true transformation doesn’t come from changing a certain behavior.
True and lasting change requires a change INSIDE – a refocusing, and change of heart from the inside out.
One way to refocus is to choose one word or phrase for the year, and allow that to be your focus, or life theme for the next 12 months. Here are some questions that can help you choose your focus:
What kind of person do I want to become?
In which area of my life do I want to grow?
What are some negative themes of the past year that I would like to change?
What are my dreams and goals for the upcoming year?
How are my personal relationships? Do I have deep friendships? How can I grow in this area?
After some self-evaluation, see if there is a common theme. The word or phrase you choose could be for yourself personally, or it could be a theme for your whole family. Think about how you can apply this theme to every area of your life – relationships, work, goals, family, priorities. It will take some self-reflection, but after a while you will find a word that feels right.
Let this one word or phrase be your focus for the coming year, a filter for making decisions, planning for growth and change, and building relationships.
Some examples Life Themes and how it might apply to different areas:
- Giving: a theme of giving might inspire a purging of extra ‘stuff’ to give to those in need; giving of more time to friends and family; being consistent in giving to charities
- Healing: this theme might include mending broken relationships; improved self-care and healthy habits; taking a class or seeing a counselor to heal past hurts; providing a safe home environment for broken people to heal
- Dream: this might start by simply allowing yourself to dream; perhaps setting some ‘bucket list’ goals; writing that book that has always been inside you; pursuing your dream job
Of course, these are just a few examples. The possibilities are endless.
What is your word, and how do you see that shaping this coming year? Please SHARE your word and your thoughts here -you might inpire someone else!
Here are a couple of sites to help you get started: