Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A Word About New Year's Resolutions

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Can you believe we've reached the end of 2009 already? Well, it's time for New Year's resolutions, and I have a suggestion. Instead of creating a huge "to do" list this year, choose ONE WORD that represents something you'd like to focus on for 2010. Write it down and stick on your fridge (or computer home page, or wherever you will see it every day.) In our family, each New Year's Eve our daughters create a small poster for each member of our family with our word printed in large letters and decorated with appropriate symbols. We then post those four words on the wall of our stairway for the year, where everyone can be reminded of their resolutions daily as we trek up and down the stairs.
For example, my word for 2009 was HEALTH- big surprise, right? But it meant not simply medical health, but spiritual, mental AND physical health. Some days that word pushed me to exercise when I didn't feel like it, and other days it challenged me to prayer. In previous years, my words have been "patience", "peace", "simplicity", "family", "finish" and... did I mention "patience"? (I have to focus on "patience" every few years, so it bears repeating. My kids think it's funny because I have "patients" at work and need more "patience" at home!)
I have found that having this one word resolution is far more effective more me than the shopping list of resolutions that I used to espouse each year. The word becomes my theme for the year, almost a mantra for me. I love that with one word, it is a positive statement (rather than quit this or that, or lose weight, etc.)
Thanks to the Austin reporter who many years ago challenged our city leaders to try this single word resolution and shared their experiences in a New Year's column. I confess I've long since forgotten the reporter's name, but the tradition lives on.
BOTTOM LINE: Choose a ONE WORD RESOLUTION for 2010- perhaps HEALTH!!

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