I wonder whether you plan to make any New Year’s resolutions for 2014. Here’s some that I’ve made in the past: play more games with Hannah; use my legs more often than my car; finish writing my book; speak to distant friends more regularly; get up earlier to pray and read my Bible. Having a strong tendency towards perfectionism, it suited me well to set goals. I thought I’d be a better person for achieving them. But guess what? I don’t think I’ve ever kept a single resolution longer than a week!
Oh I had a good go at some of them: we played Uno a few times; we walked to school (the first three days of term); I wrote another chapter (into the early hours of one morning); I telephoned one of my friends in January (and again in about September); I got up early (once) and read (through my heavy eyelids) and prayed (when my mind wasn’t wandering elsewhere or dozing off!) So for 2014 I have set just one resolution: No more unachievable New Year’s Resolutions! Thanks to an article by Claire De Boer I realised that,
“all of these goals are rooted in feeling like I’m not enough—not writing enough, not spiritual enough, not fit enough, not a good enough friend or mum…My underlying message seemed to be, “you have to do better, because who you are right now isn’t making the cut.” But a new year doesn’t change those thought patterns—at least not long-term.”
OneWord365.com encourages us to choose one word to focus on for the year that sums up who we want to be or how we want to live. So this year I’ve ditched the to-do list and I’m going for just one word.
The word I’ve chosen is EMBRACE. Seeing it in front of me every day helps me to remember to embrace the present moment; to embrace those around me; to embrace interruptions; to embrace possibilities; and to allow myself to be embraced by the love of God and the people he sends to show me that love. What a relief! No more pressure to be more and much less emphasis on duty than ever before.
So why not join me and pick a word for 2014. Your word doesn’t have to be meaningful to anyone else. It could be something as simple as “no,” or “yes.” It could be an action, a thought or an emotion. Think of some of the challenges you faced last year, or that may be facing you this year. Is there a word that could be relevant for you? If you’re stuck there are plenty of ideas at OneWord365.com:
So go ahead and think about it, pray, or ask for help. Then, if you’re comfortable sharing, let us know your word in the comments box so we can encourage each other through the year.