New Year’s Resolution? I’ve Got Something Better

no-new-years-resolutions

New Year’s Resolutions are not my forte.

I believe that the dawn of a new three-hundred-sixty-five is definitely a great time for reflection. I think it behooves anyone to take this time to ponder where they’ve been, where they are and where they want to go – not to mention how they want to get there.

But I believe that the ability to make change, and if you’re a Christian, God’s ability to help affect change in your life, is not a time-sensitive commodity.

There is no expiration date.

There is no statue of limitation.

Your ability to have a healthy shift in circumstances has little to do with the day on the calendar than it does the condition of your mind.

You have to think change, feel change, conceptualize and visualize change before you can walk change out.

And if your mentality is not set and your resolve is not solid, you can expect an encore performance of all the worst of your 2012.

And your 2011…2010…2009….

You get the picture.

So you say you want change? Forget about the New Year and concentrate on your New Life. It doesn’t begin tomorrow. It doesn’t begin at 12:01. It begins as soon as you embrace it.

Here are three words I want you to take, not just into another calendar month, but into each new second, each new minute and each new hour of your present life.

Mandate.

Motive.

Method.

Any place of change begins with your own personal mandate to an audience of one: Yourself.  Extend that audience only to a small circle of people who you trust enough to get in your business and hold you accountable.

A mandate gives someone authority to act in a certain way.

Guess who that someone is?

You must convince yourself – and not with mere lip service – that you’re sick and tired of being sick and tired. You must charge yourself to change. You must grant yourself permission to be great.

Great doesn’t always mean “popular.” It doesn’t always give way to fame and fortune. So get that out of your head now. If it happens, let it happen naturally…as a by-product of you becoming the best you possible.

Which leads us to the next word.

Motive. I mentioned greatness earlier because I assume that if you want to change it must mean that you desire to ascend to a height higher than where you are.

That’s noble. But what makes your mandate even nobler is its motive.

Why do you want this change? Why do you want to be better? Why do you want change your relationship status from single to married, or married to single? Why do you want to make more money? Why do you want to get out of debt? Why do you want to go to church, pray more, get closer to God? Why do you want to do what you desire?

My mother often says to me that there’s always a wrong way and wrong reason to do a right thing.

If you want marriage to cure you of loneliness, I’ve got news for you:

It won’t.

If you want to be successful so you can stick it to everybody who said that you couldn’t get it, wrong reason. If that’s all that’s motivating you, you’ll lose your desire for follow-through quickly.

Atlanta area pastor and philanthropist, Dr. Crawford Lortiss recently asked this question of his Twitter followers:

“What are you willing to do for what you see?” He then followed it up with this admonition: “Your vision must be durable enough to resist discouragement.”

Usually, you’ll know if the motive of your mandate for change is solid if, at the end of your vision for a better you, you end up bettering somebody else.

If the only person who benefits from your benefits is you, then…..

Okay. So we’ve got the mandate – served ourselves notice of what the change is. We’ve seen the end of our personal vision and it’s more crowded than it began. Check.

All of the talk and thought of change in the world will never amount to anything until you have developed and employed a method of change.

You do that by answering the question: How?

How will I do what I’m mandated and motivated to do?

I’ll give you one word three times: Plan. Plan. Plan.

So you’ve heard that before, right? Okay. Let me give you a twist.

Set your goals, plan how you will meet them, and then plan for failure.

Yes, you read that right. Plan for failure. Plan for obstacles. Plan for distractions and disruptions. Make your plan not just with your strengths in mind, but also your weaknesses. Don’t plan for a seamless ride toward change. It won’t happen. If it does, be suspicious.

Often it is apparent failure that actually redirects us into success. But when we don’t plan for such obstacles, you will quickly fold from discouragement when obstacles hit.

Don’t just plan what you want to do, but how you are going to accomplish it. And how you’re going to respond to every possible snafu you can imagine.

Of course you can’t prepare for it all. But even the mindset of preparedness will keep you a step ahead when things happen that weren’t on your vision board.

Happy New Year, everybody! And remember, this doesn’t magically kick into gear for you when the ball drops (or the peach, if you’re from Atlanta).

Ready or not, our new year begins tomorrow.

But your new life starts on YOUR ready.

B+ (Be Positive) in 2013.

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~ by gabrielcstovall on December 31, 2012.

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