A new year has come, an old year has gone. We welcome 2012 with as much enthusiasm as we do when presented with a beautifully wrapped gift. We tear into it, expressions of joy and excitement on our faces, and hope that it’s just what we’d wished for. Then the box is opened and we see…..nothing.
The problem here is that the box isn’t really empty, that’s only the way we perceive it. So what’s in it? Well, I can get all cliché about goals and hopes and dreams, expectations and new year’s resolutions. But truth is…that is what’s in the box. How you define it, though, is up to you. And what I mean by that is simply this: nothing comes easy and nothing comes for free (meaning at no cost. I’m not talking actual money here.)
Resolutions, for example, are wonderful ideas in theory, but most people who wait for the new year to put a resolution into place have already waited too long to make an effective change. That does not mean to suggest that you still can’t make those changes, I’m only saying don’t wait for the motivation, or for a date on the calendar. You’ve all heard that saying “setting yourself up to fail”, right? I use this a lot because it’s true. Goals should be attainable, or else they are not really goals. Likewise, goals should be something you truly want and are willing to work for. Nothing happens just because you wish it to.
I know I reference Facebook often, but I find it to be the most naked form of human expression, and consequently very entertaining and enlightening. People post all kinds of stuff, without any real concept of who can see it; or rather without the concept that everyone can see it because it was most likely intended for a select few of like minds. In the past few days I’ve seen many posts wishing everyone a happy new year, but also these weird plea’s to 2012 as if it were a live entity that had any real control over humankind. We cannot wish or plea with the powers of the universe to give us a better year than the last. We cannot wish for better luck. We cannot blame the new year for anything bad that’s happened already. Is this superstition, or what? It’s hard for me to wrap my mind around it, I admit.
So back to the box….what’s really inside is our desire to see effective change take place. What we do with that is totally up to us. Each of us is in control of what we do, how we think, and how we execute those thoughts. We can remember that God is the only living entity that has any power over our lives, and that we as people must act. God will not fill that box based on our wishes alone, but He will fill it with opportunities so that we can work to make our wishes come true.
If you are unhappy or unsatisfied with an aspect of your life (or several), you must make yourself do things that are, excuse the pun, out of the box. If you’ve never heard that saying before all it means is stepping outside of your comfort zone. That’s where small, attainable goals come into play. Example: you wish to lose weight and maintain it. This is the number one resolution made nationally every year. Americans have the highest rate of obesity in the world, and our number one killer is heart disease. This alone would be a separate blog (or 100), because there is so much that needs to take place even before you begin to “diet”. Those who decide they will go on a diet as a new years resolution usually do not make their goals because they didn’t make them reachable.
I am unsatisfied about something in my life. I want more. I know I can achieve more, and I want it so that I can help others achieve their goals as well. I know it will be some time before I can make this change happen because of the dynamics of my present life, but I also know that I will make these changes, that I will step out of my box, and thank God, so will my family because this change will ask that much of them. What I wish for is to go back to school and get a degree as a nutritionist. What changes do you want to make for 2012?
Maybe it’s not realistic. I mean, there are some things we should be hoping for, through prayer, like a better economy, and governmental clarity. Less unemployment. More American jobs being created and less dependence on imports. I’d like to see the American people united instead of torn into racial and political groups. I’d like to see the American dollar gain in value and for this country to prosper with its heart and eye set on the Lord. These things we should wish and hope for, these things that we cannot as one person alone accomplish.
So what can you, alone, accomplish? Whatever that New Year’s Resolution is. Just take it easy on yourself. Truly want it, truly believe in yourself, and get educated before you begin. If you wanted to fly an airplane you wouldn’t just run right out and rent one and take off, would you? No, you would take classes for certification, get educated first, before you could fly. It’s no difference with weight loss plans, or any other goal. You must know what you are doing first.
So, the best of 2012 to you, may it be your best year yet. Decide what is in your box and then start at the beginning. Make an outline. Step 1: Define the goal. Step 2: Research the goal. Step 3: Gain the necessary tools. Step 4: Make goals achievable. Step 5: Begin. You can do it.
Look for post #2 today: Zucchini Noodles!