Forget New Year resolutions, do this instead
One minute we are screaming “Happy new year” , shooting ‘banger’ (those of us that refused to grow up… lol), setting New Year’s resolutions and getting ready to take on the New Year. Fast forward to eleven months later, the New Year’s resolutions are a distant memory for a majority of us. Yes, we make an attempt at keeping them but little by little, the New Year’s resolutions soon fell to the side. A new year comes, and we set the same resolutions all over again! REALLY? 2016 Is Gone… 2017 is for Doing But listen. 2017 is not the year to set resolutions we never really stick to. It’s the year that we put on our big girl/guy pants and focus on achieving the dreams we’ve been putting off for far too long and have fun doing it. This is the reason I wrote this piece, just for you.
Why We Do What We Do Before I go further, let me point out why a lot of us fail at sticking to our New Year resolution.
1. We do not have a ‘why” for those resolutions. My income goal for 2016 was 240 million naira. Thinking about it now, I guess I must have been high on something when I wrote that down. I did not have a concrete reason for wanting 240 million naira, neither did I have an action plan. I just wanted to blow my own mind for no particular reason. Please don’t embarrass me by asking if I achieved that goal… lol. Why We Do What We Do
2. Bad Habits In simple terms, a habit is something you do without thinking. And even when you try to stop it, it seems like you just cannot. It is a useful servant but dangerous master. We all have something we know we should do, but never really do – lose weight, read books, save money, and generally get life together – we fail at these things because we are trying to change a behavior without dealing with the root. If it has taken you over twenty years to form a habit of spending lavishly, do you really think that writing a resolution that says – ‘I will start saving’ will suddenly make you change? Now, that is a great place to start from. However, it takes a lot more.
3. Why We Do What We Do: It is easy to take a decision. But when real life intervenes, when the pressure of life kicks in, we respond with habits. Not with intelligence, not with reason, not with intention, but with habit. Remember Samson? It was clear that Delilah was after his life. But he kept crawling into her arms. Why? Habit. If you really want to get ahead in 2017, you need to become aware of the habits holding you back and deal with them. If we do not deal with these habits, they will deal with us.
4. Deal with The HABITS: Self Examination because life is not Nollywood, you have some work to do here now :).
We will be examining 5 majors’ areas to unearth habits that can hold us back in 2017. I will give a warning though. This exercise is not for everyone. If you are just looking to read material but not implement it, please carry your bicycle and go away. “A life unexamined is not worth living”
EXAMINE THESE AREAS: MONEY, HEALTH, SPIRITUALITY, RELATIONSHIPS, OTHERS
This is one area that cuts across everyone. So let’s get to it. Please take some time to answer the questions below:
1. What is your money goal for 2017?
2. Why do you have that goal?
3. Do you have the right habits to achieve that goal?
Money – Example
1. What is your money goal for 2017? I want to acquire an asset by December 2017 What kind of asset: Piece of land at Lekki How much does it cost = 500,000naira
2. Why do you have that goal? I want to have an asset that can generate money so i can become financially independent by age 40.
3. Do you have the right habit to achieve that goal? I will set aside 50,000 naira from my income every month from January to October. This fund will be deducted from my account via direct debit and deposited in a fixed deposit account. I can only draw on the fixed deposit by November to purchase the land. Voila! You have a solid plan.
Eating right and exercising is a no-brainer if you need your body to function on a long term. While there are many things we get in life without asking for them e.g stretch marks, I believe some things are totally avoidable. Don’t get to that point where you MUST NOT eat some things in order to live. Form the habit of taking care of your body in 2017. Please take the time to write your health goal, why you have that goal, and the habit to put in place.
TAKE CARE OF YOUR BODY
Take Care of your Spirituality: If the only time you pray is when you are in trouble, then you are in trouble. Form a habit of consistent fellowship with God. Throw that ‘Sunday Sunday’ medicine out of the window. Please take the time to put down your spiritual goal, why you have that goal, and the right habit to put in place.
Relationships As we get older, our relationships matter even more than our skills or expertise. Knowing this, we cannot afford to put our relational skills on the back burner. It has to be intentional. This goes beyond being extroverted or knowing how to strike a conversation.
It is about investing your resources in relationships. It is about being there for people when it matters most. It is about not trying to be a lone super star, but making other people feel great when they are in your presence. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou.
It is about letting people know that you care about them – This was particularly difficult for me. I tell myself, ‘ I am not a mushy-mushy person, ‘ until a dear big sister stopped me in my tracks when she asked, ‘if you don’t tell the people in your life how much they mean to you, how will they know?’ She made me use words like ‘I love you, you mean a lot to me, and it is a blessing to have you in my life’ with people I’m not joking o. It sure felt creepy at first. But goodness, my relationship with people was enriched.
This is not to imply that you have to tell every Jack ‘I love you’. What I’m saying is, invest in your relationships, genuinely care for people, and let them know that you do. Please take the time to write your relationship goal, why you have that goal, and the habit to put in place.
Others /Punctuality: This might seem trivial, but the way you handle your time and other people’s time tells a lot about you. Reading You must form a habit of reading if you want to get a chance to shape the future, if you want to remain relevant. Not just some random reading here and there. Not through your Facebook feed. It takes consistent reading to build up capacity to become great.
Integrity it is doing the right thing even when no one is watching. Anyways, someone is always watching, Guess who? …. God!
1. Acknowledge the facts you need to become aware of the habit, acknowledge it, and put a name to it. E.g. I am struggling with pornography.
2. Stop underestimating the issue you need to come to terms with the magnitude of the habit. It is not just a little issue, and you know it.
3. Bring the habit under the subjection of the name of Jesus and command the habit to get out of your life.
4. Replace the old habit with a desired one don’t just say, ‘I will not do this’. In addition say, ‘I am now doing this’. Fill up the space
5. Get a trusted person or a group of people to be accountable to P:S: This is a general advice. In some cases, you need to seek professional help. Get Rid of Bad Habits Don’t expect that getting rid of habits will be easy. It will be war. As a matter of fact, once you commit to it.
Caution HELL BREAK LOOSE!!! Expect to For instance, a sleep addict might start craving for sleep even more than before. Don’t get discouraged. Every time you feel like quitting, go back to your ‘why’ – The reason for wanting to break free from the habit.
How to Develop a New Habit
1. Choose a specific habit you desire to have
2. Just one at a time, not more than one: let’s say the habit you want to cultivate is eating healthy
3. Write down why you want to develop this new habit. This is very important. You will be referring to this by the time life pressure kicks in The ‘Why’ could be – I want to eat healthy because I want to look sexy and live long
4. Determine what you need to do EVERYDAY to cultivate this habit and stick to it for the next 21 days I will add a plate of vegetable to my lunch every day for the next 21 days
5. Set reminders around you e.g. you could change your password to ‘Sexy mama’
6. If you can, get someone to be accountable to
7. Have Fun
I’ld love to hear from you! Did you catch an ‘aha’ moment, found the piece helpful, want to ask a question or just want to say hello?
Then drop a message Facebook: Oyebamiji Jokepearl IG: jokepearrll
Jokepearl is a guest writer on mrsceonaija! this is her first post here. Show her some love! 🙂