There is something about starting a New Year. Even if we don’t care about setting goals or resolutions, we feel it’s a fresh start to something new and different. An opportunity to improve something, change something, or remove something in our life. If the previous year was a challenging one that you prefer not to redo, the new year can feel like a hopeful new beginning for good things and better things. Unless stress dominates our life.
I believe we each have our own levels of stress due to many factors: money, family, time, work, health, and relationships. Each of these affect us differently and can complicate our life. Some stress is necessary and healthy. It will motivate us to accomplish mundane tasks and conquer difficult responsibilities. Then there is the unhealthy stress that never goes away and negatively impacts us and everyone around us. It starts to bring out a different person in us. We find ourselves saying things we don’t mean and doing things we don’t normally do. The BIG question is……How do we simplify the areas in our life that bring us the most stress?
As you think about the stress in your life and and what you want your 2017 to look like, ask yourself these questions and write down your answers: What is important to you in this season of life? Are you living like those things are important to you? If not, what is getting in the way? What steps can you take to live according to your values and avoid guilt & regrets? Who can help you with accountability?
Our family sits down together every January and discusses these questions. I also like to have a friend to discuss this with so we can both can encourage each other throughout the year and respectfully confront each other when we find yourselves getting distracted or pulled away from our original intentions.
I challenge you to make some time to start your New Year doing this and simplify your life.
In this journey with you,