From the beginning of last year, I have embraced the tortoise and the hare story.
"Slow and steady wins the race!" has become my battle cry.
Although as a family we only had one major goal last year, I personally had several: to fit better in my clothes, read the whole Bible, and clean out the house clutter.
I spent the first month or so of 2013 slowly moving through the house cleaning out clutter. Instead of my usual shock & awe approach which then leads to my crash-and-burn-out, I used the slow & steady approach and it got done.
Since living in the States, I had gained enough weight where my clothes didn't fit as nicely. So I've tweaked a few lifestyle choices and lo and behold there was progress.
Was it fun to pass up Oreos? No ma'am, it wasn't.
Did I always pass up the Oreos? No ma'am, I did not.
Did I beat myself up over the consumption of Oreos? No ma'am.
I had started the "Read the Bible in 90 Days" program before and didn't stick with it.
This time I made it a priority...a get up with Engineer at 5am and read the Bible priority.
It would have been so easy to lose focus. Western culture is designed to overwhelm with possibility to scatter thoughts.
Possibility does not equal opportunity.
The possibility of having all matching hangers and cute labeled baskets in your closet does not equal the opportunity of having a closet where stuff doesn't fall out as you open the door.
The possibility of diet aids does not equal the opportunity of making healthier lifestyle choices.
The possibility of skimming over The Bible does not equal the opportunity of digesting the information.
Stay focused on your goals.
What are the turned down invitations, the hard work, the self denial all for if you don't have a goal, a purpose? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.
We kept our goals simple and focused. We took baby steps to make progress.
No one knows more than me how frustrating it is to see a cleaned out closet only to turn around and see a destroyed bedroom full of stuff with which to be dealt from said closet. Or a needle on a scale not moving. Or the bookmark in the Bible barely moving even though an hour was spent reading 3 chapters of Leviticus.
Here we are in the middle of February when most people's New Year's goals/resolutions start falling by the wayside.
Be encouraged: even small steps forward mean that you aren't going backward.
Progress is progress. The End. Shaping old or forming new habits takes time.
My three little goals from last year have actually carried over into this year, not as goals, but as part of my lifestyle. I have continued to get up at 5am to read devotionals every morning. We have joined a gym as a family to continue exercising. We have tried to stay on top of the clutter so that matters don't get out of hand.
I'm not a Bible scholar, an Olympian, or minimalist by any means, but I am heading in the right direction.
Although, I'm not sure I will ever be a minimalist...
If you stumble on your goals' path, pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and carry on. Look toward the goals you have set for yourself and just keep moving forward.
This is part of WFMW.