It’s a brand new year, which means a brand new you, right? Wrong!
Although many of us are setting New Year’s resolutions – goals to make specific improvements in our lives this year – as many people will tell you, attaining those goals is not automatic.
Improvement, of any kind, requires commitment and persistence; pursuing our goals even in the face of daunting challenges.
Did you know that 88 percent of people who set New Year’s Resolutions fail? It’s not because they’re underachievers, but because they don’t have the mental wherewithal to sustain the changes they’re making. They lack the requisite mindset for success!
If you think mindset doesn’t matter, look around you. The people who’re winning are those who believe they can. Better yet, look at your own life. Undoubtedly, there are certain areas in which you are more successful than others because you’ve told yourself that you are good at certain things and bad at others.
For instance, you may have told yourself that you’re ‘great at your job’ but ‘bad at relationships’ and, as a result, while you’re rising steadily through the ranks of your company, you can barely maintain a steady relationship.
Or, you’ve told yourself that you’re great at relationships, but have contented yourself with mediocre success at work because you think you don’t thrive in competitive environments.
Many of us have reached an internal glass ceiling. We’ve told ourselves that we can’t be much more successful than we currently are. So we’ve made a silent, unspoken agreement with ourselves to stay right where we are.
Whatever your beliefs, realise that these are just programmes you’ve got running in your mind. 2013 can be the year you experience a paradigm shift; where you cast aside old, unwanted ways of thinking, replace them with new mental programmes; and achieve your breakthrough!
There’s just one major requirement: you have to want that change!
If you don’t see the need for change, you’ll never truly buy into it. Have you ever observed people who, for instance, are forced to cut back on their drinking? With sufficient guilt, maybe even fear, they may drink lessÔÇô for a while. Yet soon, their desire to drink overrides their guilt and fear, and they’re back to their old, excessive ways.
If you feel like you have made a commitment to improve in the past, but still failed, it’s because you didn’t believe you could succeed. You didn’t have the mental wherewithal to support your physical changes.
This year, approach your goal-setting in a unique way. Don’t simply make take physical actions, engage your mind too. Follow these three simple steps:
One ÔÇô Start with the end in mind. Ask yourself: ‘At the end of 2013, what will I have achieved?’ Imagine the ideal in as much great detail as possible, then write down your goals.
Two ÔÇô Ask yourself: ‘Why Do I want what I want?’ Under this heading, write down all the reasons why you want, for example, more money. What are you are going to do with more money? Once you can picture the ‘reasons,’ or motivation for your goals, it will spur you to greater success.
Three ÔÇô Write down: These are the reasons I believe that I will have what I want.’ Under this final heading, you’re really working to convince yourself that your goals are within your reach. These final points will transform your aspirations from mere wishful thinking, to attainable priorities in your mind. You may include, for instance, the strengths you possess that will help you achieve your goal.
2013 belongs to the woman or man who can “transform [themselves] by the renewing of their mind.” (Romans 12:2). If you want to shine in 2013, who better to learn from than the Father of Nations, Abraham?
Before Abraham became great, God said to him: “Get out of your country, from your family and your father’s house, to a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing.” (Genesis 12 1:3)
For Abraham to make gains in his life, he had made a break with everything he knew, including his family! He had to leave his comfort zone.
You see, Abraham’s father, Terah, worshipped the sun; and had passed down certain beliefs to his son that were not in line with God’s calling on his life. So God had to remove him from his environment.
In 2013, you may not have to make a major geographical location, or adopt a foreign culture, to succeed, but you do have to leave behind past habits that no longer serve you. What do you need to change in order to claim God’s promise for you?
This year, give your goals a fighting chance of success by separating yourself from everything that does not serve you. Replace old, ungodly habits and ways of thinking, with a new mindset.
When Abraham left his old environment, and ways of thinking he was blessed! God said to him: “God and walk through the land in every direction, for I am giving it to you.”
God also said: “Look up into the sky and count the stars if you can. That’s how many descendants you will have…your descendants will be as numerous as the stars in the sky and the grains of sand at the seashore.”
God knew the importance of renewing one’s mind; of replacing negative images with positive ones, so he gave Abraham a positive image to hold in his mind. Without this visual image, Abraham might have given up, believing that he and his wife, Sarah, were too old to have children. But once he counted the stars; once he saw his dream in his mind and held the vision, it came to pass.
In 2013, hold on to the images of your dreams! Count those stars! Remember: “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7).
Make sure you’re thinking positive, uplifting thoughts of success!