072. Resolutions (Part 3): What Makes a Successful Resolution?

16 Jan, 2013

New Year’s Resolutions really are goals. But not all goals are created equal. Goals need certain elements to be successful. For example there’s a big difference between the financial goals: “I want to eliminate my credit card debt this year” versus “I want to be as rich as a drug dealer.

There are a few things that make some resolutions more successful than others. The first element is…

1. Good goals have to be specific and measurable. Your goal can’t just be, ‘I will do devotions more,’ or ‘I will exercise more,’ or ‘I will eat less spam.’ That’s like a football team saying “I will play hard,” but not saying “I will score touchdowns.” So a good goal would be: I will do devotions 5 times a week, I will limit my carbs to 60 grams/day, I will reduce my credit card debt by 50%, I will eat a pound of bacon every day. But if you notice there’s something more than measuring the number of times or number of calories…

2. Good goals have time limits. It’s not just “I will do devotions 5 times”, it’s “5 times a week”. It’s “I will run 4 times a week”, Or I will lose 30 pounds within 6 months. Another thing that goals need to be successful are…

3. Good goals have accountability. Who cares if you have a goal?  A goal is only as good as it’s enforced.  And sometimes we need help enforcing our own goals. First off, put your goals down in writing. That way it’s permanent in some way. It’s a reminder to the commitments you have made yourself. If you can, take it a step further, and tell others that will help keep you accountable like family or friends.

And of course, you are accountable to God… because your goals really should be the same as God’s goals for your life. (See Part 2 of this series)

When we put all these things together we’re like in a football game where we know our goal is to score touchdowns, where we know we need to score before the game is over, and where we know we are trying to win the game, not for ourselves, but for God.


1 Corinthians 9:24-25 24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

Take time to pray: Ask God for wisdom to come up with the goals that he would have for you and for wisdom to set up these goals in a way that will optimize success.

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