It’s hard to believe a new year is beginning! Researchers estimate that about a quarter of adults in the United States make New Year’s resolutions, yet about 80% of those resolutions end in failure.
This year, I want us to carefully reflect on the resolutions we make. Carefully consider how you can make resolutions that will help you improve both your life and your relationship with God. The following are four tips to help you make God-centered resolutions this year.
1. Pray about your goals.
This tip seems a little obvious, but many of us fail to pray about the resolutions we’re setting at the beginning of each year. Take some time to pray and reflect as the year begins. Prayerfully consider what goals are pleasing to God… and which ones may need to wait.
2. Consider setting goals related to your spiritual life.
There are lots of great goals you can set to help you make your relationship with God a priority. Possible spiritual life goals include:
- Breaking that sinful habit or giving up that addiction
- Reading your Bible every day
- Picking up a book about spiritual growth
- Installing an app to help you develop spiritual disciplines
- Extending forgiveness to someone who’s hurt you
- Getting more involved in church activities
There are lots of goals you can set that will help you improve your relationship with God. As you pray about goals this upcoming year, consider setting goals that focus on your relationship with God.
3. Ask a mentor, pastor, or spiritual advisor.
There’s nothing wrong with getting advice, even when you’re setting goals! Talk to someone you trust about the goals you’re setting for the new year. Your mentor, pastor, or spiritual advisor can give you great insight into the type of goals you should set.
Best of all, sharing your goals with someone you trust is a great way to be held accountable. You won’t be one of the 80% of people who fail at keeping their resolutions when you have someone checking in on your progress.
4. Remember to balance both commitment and flexibility.
The goals you set are important. When you regularly set goals that you don’t complete, you get into the habit of leaving things undone. And trust me, I know how that is! However, following through on your resolutions is a great way to make follow-through a part of your regular practice. That is why commitment to your goals is so important.
That said, it’s important to remember to remain flexible. Some goals aren’t necessarily sustainable, especially when you face major changes in your life. While reading two books a week might be a great goal for the first few months of the year, it may not be sustainable if you move across the country or start a new job.
Try to find a healthy balance between commitment and flexibility. You shouldn’t set goals you don’t intend to keep, but you shouldn’t hold yourself to goals that no longer fit into your life or priorities.
As you sit down and plan your resolutions for the year, carefully consider how to make God-centered goals. Take time to pray about your goals. If possible, talk to your mentor or spiritual advisor to get their insight.
So what are your goals this year? Feel free to share them in the comment section below! I’d love to cheer you on!