New Year’s resolutions can be very discouraging. They can also be filled with vision and hope for a new and better way of doing life. It can be tempting to flirt with a resolution to make a HUGE life changing decision. You know, dropping 50-100 pounds, stop drinking caffeine, or beginning or ending a relationship. And we just hope we can stick to our new resolution at least until… March!

That’s why at times we can easily laugh off (yet awkwardly do so) the idea of making a New Year’s resolution. I actually have been refreshed in my thinking about resolutions this year. The end of one year and the birth of another is a natural moment to consider a change to improve your life.

In 2016 I did just that. I decided to go strong after a lifelong goal of reading 52 books in one year. And by God’s grace and some good planning (and a few short books) I did it! (I’ll share the list this week, in case you’re interested.

I learned a ton from these great writers (and I’ll share some of that with you in the future). But beyond that here’s what I learned about accomplishing goals this year (beyond the normal measurable and attainable). Let me share 3 insights that might help you take your next step in 2017!

  1. Plan – If you’re going to make a big goal, like reading a book a week for a year when you’re not necessarily a big time reader, you have to plan. One of the greatest problems in reaching goals in my life has been lack of planning or lack of a good plan.
  1. Adjust – This might be a word for the perfectionists out there. If you’re going to make a goal that takes time to accomplish, you’re going to have to be willing to adjust your plan along the way. It might not look like you imagined back at the beginning. In some ways it might be better! But too many times we quit on our goals because we fail to adjust.
  1. Learn – This wasn’t the first time I had attempted this goal. I tried it numerous times before and failed. I used what I learned from these failures to accomplish the goal this time. One time I wanted to read the Bible in 1 year and it took me 14 months (Was that a failure? Not really). So be willing to learn and grow as you accomplish your goal.

Why not try something to better your life. Get to the gym, cut something out of your diet, add something to it, read, or whatever adds value to your life. Break it into measurable and attainable steps and then go for it! 2017 can be a year that you take your next step! I’d love to hear what your goal in 2017 is and your plan to accomplish it!

Taking our next steps together!

Pastor Nick