Glance Back, Focus Forward (Year End/Beginning Thoughts)

2013 began with a challenge from a 99 year old (now 100) preacher, Linvel Arington, to not do what I've always done: make resolutions, then break them or forget them.  Linvel challenged me, and our entire church congregation, to "not make a resolution, but make a decision!"  And that's what I did.

I made the decision that 2013 would be a totally different year for me.  I set out to make specific decisions, set specific and measurable goals, and begin a game-plan for success.  For reflection's sake, here's a quick look at what happened in my life due to a little focus and a whole lot of strength from God:
--I decided to read the Bible completely through in 2013.  Using the Youversion Bible app, on the "Eat This Book Plan," I finished it up last week.
--I decided to spend 2 hours in prayer, 3 days a week, during the Summer months. This carried over into longer prayer sessions during the Fall & Winter.
--I decided to work at eating healthy (not dieting) and trying to lose as much of the 34 pounds that I wanted to lose.  As of the pre-Christmas "feasting" I had actually lost 37 pounds.  Without dieting.
--I decided to get into size 34 pants, while size 36 were fitting really tight.  I am now having to wear a belt to hold up those size 34 pants.
--I decided to get in better shape by going to the gym 5 days a week as often as I could.  I am now consistently in the gym 6 days a week... and have earned AAFA certification as a Group Fitness Instructor, and I'm on staff at the gym!

As I glance back, see where I am now, and begin to focus forward on the coming year, I am filled with excitement and anticipation of what 2014 holds!  Over the next few days, I will be devising my 2014 total health plan.  Every plan requires a plan, right?  Here's mine:

1) Decide what you want!  Make that decision.  Don't be afraid to think big and out of the box.
2) Decide how you will get there!  Set specific & measurable goals and devise a plan.  This is where most resolutions die - we tend to think in generalities and aspirations, i.e. "I want to lose weight..."  That doesn't work!  Get specific!
3) Work with a team!  A spouse, a prayer partner, a small group, a class at the gym, a personal trainer or life coach - share your decisions & goals, and do work together!  Inspiration from others will be built in for when you need it!
4) Don't ever... EVER... quit trying!  Seriously, a missed day at the gym, blowing your "diet" for one meal, forgetting to read your Bible... none of this is the end of the world, nor should they be the end of your commitment.  It may take you 6 months to climb the rope you want to climb today, and if you stick with it, you WILL get up it!  Be tenacious!

There you have it.  What are your goals & plans for 2014, and how will you accomplish them?


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