Tuesday, 19 January 2010

No more New Years Resolutions!

In spare seconds during the weeks leading up to New Year I decided that I could finally rid myself of the concept of New Years Resolutions. I have a set of goals that I'm happy to work towards and a plan for achieving those I feel are most important.

Still, I have always felt that dates and anniversaries are important and a chance to reflect and consider the future. I've been trying to categorise my current list of 100 life goals. As many of them really fit into several categories, it doesn't work that well but it does allow me to see some patterns that are interesting.

Sixteen of my goals are 'just for fun'! Many of them there simply because they came to mind while putting the list together and yet they are goals that I have found myself thinking, "If I had the time, I would like to..."

Fourteen of my goals are related or are important in some way to my family.

I have twelve ambitions which are slightly more achieveable than my five childhood dreams...

I have slightly more goals to educate myself, eight, than goals to financially better myself but have listed the same number of health goals, seven, as financial though suspect that I spend far more time working towards financial goals than health ones...

I listed eleven goals related to writing, four work related goals of which I've achieved two, three practical goals and 'only' three spiritual goals.

I've probably struggled the most in thinking about the spiritual goals. When I first started telling people about my 100 goals, a few people pointed out the difference between aspirations and achievable goals. Spirituality is an aspiration and yet deep down there is a part of me that cries out it must be more.

Jesus is my model of a true spiritual man. Yet almost everything he said was practical. When I have tried to apply in my own life what Jesus has said, it has usually benefitted me in ways that I have been able to quantify. Not in every case though. Jesus was quite clear that anyone who sought to do as he instructed was taking on increased levels of danger, risk and adventure. In my experience this is true but has also been worth the risk.

A friend challenged me to place goal 31 as a higher priority to see how it would change my list of goals.

Goal 31 was to be and do all that God wants of me. I believe in God, I believe that his son Jesus gave several very clear goals to work towards, for all who believe in him, and literally dozens of minor goals that can also have positive influences in our lives.

But, I do not believe that God wants us all to be mindless copies, or expects us to only do what He wants. I do believe that God has given us amazing skills and abilities that we can use and honour him with.

My aim is that in all the goals I have set, I will work to be and do all that God wants of me.

Still, I am curious about going further and expanding this aspiration into sub goals that can be measured. I am considering setting some sub goals and ways to measure them. Specifically: fasting and praying regularly.

I have had some interesting and exciting experiences with both these activities in the past but have not documented them until now. I still haven't decided if this is the right time to explore this but if I do and exciting things start to happen, I'll let you know.

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