As we are approaching the end of the year, some of us may have begun jotting down a list for our new year’s resolutions.
For the last few years, I no longer make a long list of New Year’s Resolutions. I still do write several priorities or important assignments I have to accomplish by the end of the year. Usually, they are under one ‘big’ assignment or ‘theme’ such as ‘moving to this country, New Zealand’.
I and my husband arrived in this country in March 2018 and moving here itself involved so many things, from preparing all the papers, enrolling a master programme, finding accommodation, etc., etc. It had forced us to accomplish a series of goals without even having to write them down. They are part of the requirements we had to fulfil in order to achieve this one big goal, and of course, this is not a sudden goal we just created by the end of 2017. We had been giving it a thought since a couple of years before.
For me personally, I had been wanting to move abroad since around 2007. I had even buried this dream several years later for some reasons. I don’t want this to be such a lengthy post, but I hope all of us can get this idea that sometimes life is beyond our short-sighted minds as we create our New Year’s resolutions. There are things that are beyond our control and too often, things won’t turn out as we expected. Not just the bad ones, but also life’s sweetest surprises that are higher than our expectations.
Accelerate: My Theme for 2019
Based on my past experience, rather than writing long pages of goals and resolutions, I would prefer keeping in mind something like a ‘theme’, or an ‘adjective’ as the title of the year. Usually, it’s a positive word that will strengthen me and evoke a sense of direction within me, especially in tough times when I’m out of perspective. For example: ‘year of restoration’ or ‘rebirth’.
For 2019, ‘accelerate’ is what resonates with me the most. By this, I don’t mean to run as fast as I can so that I can achieve so many goals. I’ve been contemplating what does ‘accelerate’ involve or require in terms of planning our future. These are my thoughts on what we need to prepare to be able to accelerate:
1. Know your destination
We’re all created for a significant purpose. What’s your purpose? When I was still single, I had several dreams. They were achievable and if I give my best to achieve them, they will come true. However, in the middle of this process, God has arranged for me and my husband to meet and we finally got married.
After I got married, things were different. I have a different role now. I am my husband’s helpmeet. I had to change direction. I had to move to another city where my husband used to live and work. In that city, I couldn’t work in the same occupation as the one I’d had before.
When God opened doors for us to move to New Zealand, I had to choose a field of study that will allow us to settle down in this country. I no longer see myself as an individual with her own desires and aspirations. I am part of a team and my ultimate goal will be to support my husband to reach his best.
To be honest, I’m not there yet. I’m still far behind as we are still young in our marriage (3 years). I still have a lot to learn, but at least I know where I am going. Now, I can force my own agendas and dedicate all my time to achieve what I WANT to achieve as an individual, but all those achievements will be useless if I fail to support my husband with what he needs to accomplish his goals. It will betray my life’s purpose as a helpmeet.
So, make sure you know what’s most important for you or your family before you decide to speed up. We only have 24 hours a day. We can’t have everything. There may be several aspects of our lives and they are all important, but we have managed to survive up to this point, so if we have to improve something, we would better pick only one or two important aspects. What are the most things that need to be changed? Assume that the others can wait, unless at one point you believe you have tackled this one (or two) aspect, then you can start working on the other. Otherwise, we may end up feeling burnt out and drop this journey altogether.
2. Narrow down and focus
Even when we know our destination, there will be many distractions along the way. They may seem important as we encounter or find them, but distractions are distractions. They will bring you away from and not closer to your destination. Grow your capacity and accomplish a few meaningful assignments that really matters to you. Focus more on our character’s growth and think in 3-5 years period to test and strengthen what we have improved. It’s time to narrow down, focus, and not spreading out by multitasking and get distracted.
3. Change gear
To accelerate, we will need to change gear. We need to learn the art of harnessing the energy we have to speed up without spinning the wheels for too many times. Another illustration is to run faster with long, stable steps rather than walking as fast as we can with so many short steps. This will exhaust us. What does this mean? Change your system (habits or routines) and eliminate things that have been slowing you down.
If you are a perfectionist, find a balance where you can get things done quickly with reasonably good results. Don’t spend too much time on unnecessary details or worrying obsessively about not doing it in the right order as you have always done it. If you are somewhat spontaneous and tend to be clumsy, learn to become more organised where you can repeat similar steps to avoid mistakes. Clear up your table and put things in the same place so you don’t have to waste your time looking for items everytime you want to use them. Take time to evaluate yourself and make a strategy to get things done in less time. Focus on your destination. Keep moving forward and if you fall, get up, move on and keep going.
There you go. Three things we have to bear in mind if we want to speed up in 2019.
Are you ready to accelerate in 2019? What do you have in mind? Please share your thoughts in the comments 😀
I will share with you a few practical tips to help manage or organise your day in a simple way next week. Stay tuned!
Photo by Zhang Kaiyv from Pexels