3 January 2016

Challenges for 2016

There are always a few challenges that I need to set myself for the New Year. You might consider them New Year Resolutions. Some people call it renewing their commitments.  I just like to think it's a good opportunity to start with a clean sheet of paper once again.... of course, we each have that chance every day, however there's something a bit special about the turning of the year, isn't there...

Anyway, here's a link to a blog that gave me a list of twelve things to consider for 2016. Click on the link if you like to read the original list, before reading my spin on this:

Click here for the link!

So, here's my personal thoughts on this dozen tasks -

1. Stop giving up.
Yes, I know that success only comes when you simply refuse to give up - however it doesn't make it any easier to deal with failure after failure, when you know success is clearly possible, and it remains tantalisingly just out of reach.... However, I like the sentiment, and often echo it with the cry, "Never Give Up, Never Surrender!" (Galaxy Quest)

2. Stop letting everyone else make decisions for you.
I particularly like this one. It resonated quite strongly with me. In fact, I got up on Saturday morning and did something bold and quite the opposite from what I usually do - because I could. I did it for me, and not for anyone else. And it felt so good. Not sure how I am going to deal with the consequences, but right now I am OK with this. Think I'm gonna do this again.  

3. Stop thinking you're on your own.
Hmmm, that's a toughie. Particularly when you have asked for help from certain individuals - and I do vet these people, I simply don't trust everyone -  and then they let me down. Am I a bad judge of character?

4. Stop chasing after those who don't want to be caught.
Good advice. How often have I wasted time on people, waiting for them to get ready to help me with some grand scheme, some incredible master plan, and the darn thing simply doesn't materialise. The people scatter. And you need to start again. Given the right people, and the right project, it will work. I wonder if that's why I often think I'm on my own (see point 3)...

5. Stop discrediting yourself for everything you aren't.
It took me a long time to learn to love myself - to understand that I am who God made me - an introvert, and a particularly sensitive one at that. So, this year I have vowed to take care of myself if I want to survive in an extrovert's world. I need to develop more self-respect - and to give myself sufficient space for myself. If I want to be of use to others, I need to look after me.

6. Stop focusing on the negative.
A number of people have said that I need to keep a jar beside my bed, and to write something on a piece of paper every day that's been a positive thing for that day, sticking in into the jar. If I feel negative (and I can do), just look into the jar... OK, like this idea, so the jar's there now. So far, I've two pieces of paper in there (For January 1st and 2nd)... watch this space!!!

7. Stop being hard on yourself.
Sure, everyone makes mistakes, so why do I feel so bad when it's me? Cut myself some slack! You know, I read something the other day that said I ought to consider caring less about my work, not more! And, do you know, when I see other people who don't seem to care that they're not giving 100%, why should I care that I'm not giving 110%?

8. Stop mulling over the past.
Every day is a new day, a clean page in your journal. I get it. (see point 12 below)

9. Stop running from problems.
Understood, the problems won't go away unless you deal with them.

10. Stop expecting life to be easy.
No, it's not. But it's better than the alternative...

11. Stop holding on to things you need to let go.
How can God bless you with something else, if you already have your hands full dealing with everything else in your life. Put something down. When I let go, there may be something better to grab on to...

12. Stop giving up on who you are meant to be.
And there's my absolute challenge for 2016. Now I know who I am now -  I need to discover who God wants me to become in 2016 and beyond. Building on the past, not living in it. And that's exciting....

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