The coming of the New Year brings all kinds of hope with it.
Hopes to get healthier, read more, eat less, make new relationships, be nicer– become better. I don’t know about you, but my New Year’s resolutions hardly pan out. Rather, I am successful for about 2 months, and by March I’m on the couch gorging down a bag of Milky Ways watching the TV which I vowed to spend less time watching. **sigh**
This year, I had another idea. Instead of picking five things I want to accomplish, I want to focus on implementing five words into my everyday life. Maybe you will too! I believe these five words hold a lot of potential if they are actually sought after. Plus they’re easier to remember. I like that.
Ok! Here we go.
Every year brings its own experiences- some good, some bad, and some that seem rather pointless. Either way, there is always something to be learned in every circumstance. If our intentions in life are merely to get through things, we likely won’t retain all we could if we had a teachable spirit. In your workplace, friendships, at home, or even around your community– be a sponge. Absorb all you can. Soak up knowledge from random facts, wisdom you receive, lessons God might be teaching you, and qualities you admire in others. Let’s face it– there’s always room to learn more and improve. This year, I want to absorb it all and merely be a learner of life.
What is life if we don’t take risks? What are dreams if we’re not willing to go for them? All good things in life will likely ask us to take risks and dare to do something. I, for one, am not one to take risks. But I want to be. Webster’s defines this word dare as having enough courage or confidence to do something. What is that one thing you would love to try? That dream you want to pursue? The calling that lays dormant in your heart–awaiting to come out and explode with passion? Dare to go for it. Wayne Gretzky says: “You miss one hundred percent of the shots you don’t take.” So–Let’s be brave, ya’ll.
If we’re going to dare to be risky, we also must be ready to fail. There’s always going to be the chance of failure in any RISK we take. For most of us, we view failure as a sign of defeat and discouragement. Honestly, failure scares the crap out of me. But what if we viewed failure in a different light? If we aren’t failing in some way, we are probably not trying new things. Daring things. Risky things. Failure is not always a sign of weakness, but a sign of bravery. When I fail, I can admit I did something ineffective and celebrate that I actually went for it. Robert F. Kennedy once said, “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” We can’t be afraid to fail.
Ask any boss, leader, teacher, or pastor what the most annoying quality is in someone under their authority. I guarantee a common response is, “They have an unteachable spirit- they seem to already know it all.” Pride is stinkin’ ugly and it gets the best of us all. We want to be smart, educated and have the appearance of maturity. Yet in reality, it is more desirable to have a humble demeanor and a teachable spirit. So– let’s ask questions. When someone succeeds, ask them how. If someone possesses an admirable quality, ask them how they’ve learned to be like that. Let your curiosity go crazy and don’t be afraid to ask questions. Asking unlocks potential in our own lives. It makes us lifelong learners. After all, the minute you stop learning is the minute you stop growing.
In a world that is madly rushing, ever yapping, and beckoning us to change– let us just BE this year. Be present. Be still. Be observant. Be ourselves. Let us have this steadiness about us that is not constantly chasing perfection, false realities and expectations. There is beauty in the moment that we can so easily miss when we’re after what’s next. Let’s vow to just be.
Here’s to a new year, with new opportunities, and new lessons learned. May we absorb what is around us, dare to dream, fail with confidence, ask more questions, and become better at being who we were designed to be.
Bring it on 2017!