“I’m going to set my alarm clock earlier to spend time with God.”
“I’m going to reorganize my schedule.”
“I’m going to spend more quality time with my kids.”
“I’m going to eat healthier foods (for real this time).”
Every single one of these has been a New Year’s resolution of mine. But despite my good intentions, they’ve often dropped down the priority list far too soon.
Do you want to know what’s most embarrassing about my healthy eating goals? I’m a certified exercise instructor and used to work as a wellness and nutrition coach. I know everything I should do, including the benefits, but putting it into practice on a daily basis is much easier said than done.
One piece of advice I’ve repeated to my clients over and over—and found necessary for myself—is reconnecting with my “why.”
This isn’t just about jotting down a list of motivators; it’s about connecting with God’s heart for me and asking Him what He wants me to do. Is this goal driven by my own desires, or is it prompted by the Holy Spirit?
Whether you’re on track with your New Year’s resolutions or you’ve completely derailed, consider the following questions:
Why do I want to change? Why is this particular habit important to me?
Dive deep with this and get as close to your core reason as possible. Think of the child who asks “Why?” to every answer you give five million times in a row. Be that persistent with this process until you’ve hit the root of your motivation.
For example, let’s say you want to reorganize your schedule. You feel stretched thin and stressed all the time. As you dive deeper into the “why,” you may discover that your overloaded schedule is taking you away from quality time with your family and with God. You feel like you aren’t bringing your best to your most important relationships and want to change that.
How does my goal line up with Scripture? Are there any warning signs that my goal is in opposition to God’s will for me?
This might require extra Bible study and time in prayer. Depending on the size of the goal, you may want to talk with a trusted mentor to make sure you’re not devoting large amounts of time to something that will harm your relationship with God.
This can be a tricky tightrope, depending on the goal. For healthy habits, I constantly have to weigh my personal motivation. Do I want to be healthy so I can look a certain way? Or am I choosing healthy foods and exercise so I can be filled with energy to serve God and my family?
What will I gain on the other side?
Look ahead to this time next year. If you stay on track with your goal, how will your life be different? Will you be closer to God or more distant? Will you have stronger relationships with your spouse and kids, or will your goal create unhealthy patterns in your family life? Will you be living life to your fullest God-given potential, or will you feel stuck?
Certain goals may create unrest for a season, but any God-planted goal will bear fruit in due time. Stay connected with your “why,” and stay the course.
Let us not grow weary or become discouraged in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap, if we do not give in (Galatians 6:9 amp).
Journeying with you,
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Let’s talk! Have you set any goals for this year? What can you do today to reconnect with your “why”?