- I have come up with a plan to follow through on New Years goals. I used it when I worked in mental health and with my own goals and it seems to work well. It's called REACH.
1st step- Reflect- for many of us that includes prayer. What gifts have we been given? How can we use these gifts? Where does God seem to be leading us at this point in our lives? What do we need to change or develop to follow Jesus more completely? Those are some questions we might ask ourselves.
2nd step- Expectations- What do we expect if we complete the goal? What do we expect as we try and complete it? What do we expect of ourselves and others? If our expectations are unrealistic or we start expecting it to be incredibly hard, then we are setting ourselves up for not being able to complete goal.
3rd Step- Action - Now that we have discerned and looked at our expectations we can make a plan and put it into action. Make sure the time table is realistic and even make the plan fun. For instance if we want to lose weight, do exercises that we enjoy and eat foods we like, but are healthy. This shouldn't be a negative experience. We might even want to put affirmations on the wall in our home to encourage us. During this part of REACH it's very helpful to keep a positive attitude and know we will complete the goal and how great that will be.
4th step - Companions - It always helps to have at least one supportive person know what we are trying to do and someone to talk to when we are encouraged or discouraged. If we have a supportive community that would be even better. There will always be challenges so it's important that we know we're not doing this alone. Of course our greatest companion is Jesus.
5th step- Hurrah! - We need to celebrate our successes! Not only when we reach our goal but all along the way. If for some reason we aren't able to reach our goal, we can still celebrate the fact that we tried and reflect in a positive manner why it didn't work. Maybe God has something else in mind. However it turns out there is reason for celebration!