You went back to work today and realized you never made any New Year’s Resolutions. You’ve listened to the coworkers who dropped money on gym memberships they won’t use, you heard big talk about diets when you know they’re going to hit Mighty Taco or Chik-fil-A next Tuesday, but still you’re wondering if you should have made a resolution or two for yourself. Then there is the really stiff guy out there who is against New Year’s Resolutions altogether, citing enough scientific data and theological treatises for you to lose interest in the conversation and start daydreaming about resolutions all over again while he explains how much smarter he is than the rest of the people in the office for not making any resolutions.
Forget all of those people. It isn’t even New Year’s Day anymore. But that doesn’t mean you have to wait until next year to improve your life. With that in mind, here are 8 ways you can live better this year.
Go To Church This Sunday. Or Saturday. Whichever service time makes the most sense to you. Find a church that loves Jesus, serves the surrounding community consistently, and loves people as much as it loves the Bible. A church like this is full of great people to be around, and will give you opportunities to spend your time doing something that matters.
Schedule A Regular Date Night. The best is weekly but it has to be at least monthly. Don’t make this a last minute thing: plan ahead, make reservations, lock down a babysitter and a backup, and make it happen. If your calendar is free, this weekend is a good time to start…
Schedule Some Special Family Time. The older your kids get, the harder this will be. So start now. Don’t just rely on that hour or two to play with the kids after work. They’re going to grow up; they need more of you than just an evening cameo. Find ways to have fun that result in your family members smiling and laughing, even if you find yourselves in the middle of some long, uncomfortable family drama. I’m not suggesting you stop being a parent and try to be one of their “buddies” or anything like that. But a family that can laugh and enjoy being together is the type of family we all grew up wanting to be a part of. You can make this happen.
Schedule Ways to Spend Time With God. Don’t overthink this; just make a simple plan. Get a Bible, subscribe to a reading plan like the ones here, or here, and when possible, grab a notebook and a pen. Read the Bible, write down your thoughts, questions, or anything else, and do it often.
Go Somewhere Else. Plan a vacation, get on a plane, take a road trip, or whatever it takes to go somewhere else. Getting outside of your regular routine will help you grow in many ways. Eat the local cuisine, meet a bunch of new people, but depending where you are, you might not want to drink the water!
Read Some Books. I once worked with a bunch of guys for a boss who required us to always be reading something new. His reason was simple: If we wanted to work for him, we needed to be learning and growing. People who don’t read “are always talking about the same things” when you see them, according to him. At the time, it seemed like a neat idea. Now, I recognize this was a very beneficial lesson in life.Read more, reflect more, and be inspired.
Take Care of Your Body. Eat, exercise, go outside, walk around. If you let your body go, your mind goes with it.
Break A Negative Habit. Negative people are brutal to be around on a consistent basis. Be someone that builds into others, not someone that others need to avoid. To be clear, people avoid gossips, conflict addicts, and emotional wrecks. Life is full of seasons, but bad habits will make those seasons longer. You may not win over your critics, but remember: just because someone else is “in the wrong” you don’t get instant status of being “right” and sadly, people ignore this. Only you can break your bad habit, whatever it is!
It may not be New Year’s Day, but that doesn’t mean you have to wait until next year to improve your life.