Rev Jacqueline Peart provides some helpful tips for people planning to make major changes in the forthcoming year, so that 2015 will be their best year ever.
2014 has been a year of repositioning for myself and Ministry, and with that came many changes, challenges and successes. That’s why, as we prepare to enter a New Year, I want to encourage you to take the opportunity to reflect on the successes and challenges of 2014, and make plans for change in the year ahead. CHANGE means to modify, adjust, make over and alter – so let’s look at Five Tips to help you make positive changes in 2015.
Tip No. 1: MAKE A DECISION
The Bible says a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways (James 1:8). If you are going to make any lasting change in your life, you need to make a decision to change. In life I have met so many people that are one day going to leave their job, start a business, lose weight, go into ministry… only to see them in the same place year after year. If you want to change, it starts with a made up mind!
Tip No. 2: HAVE A PLAN
There is a famous management quote that says, “Fail to plan and you plan to fail!”
This is so true: if you don’t plan to start your business/ministry/project by putting in milestones and benchmarks for success, simply put, you won’t!
Tip No.3: BE SMART
SMART is an acronym used for setting goals and targets.
S = Specific
M = Measurable
A = Achievable
R = Realistic and
T = Timed
So be Specific about what you’re going to change, give up or start. Planning to “start a business” is not specific; planning to “start a counselling service for women who have been through trauma” is.
Measurable – How can you measure your success? Is it by deciding to start the counselling service in a particular area, and being able to take on ten clients a month? This makes it easier to measure your achievement/success. For example, if you have only taken on two clients instead of ten, you will be able to see clearly what work you need to do to make your change/vision/goal/dream become a reality!
Achievable – Can you achieve the goal, or are you setting yourself up for failure? DON’T SABOTAGE YOURSELF! If you decide that, in your first month, you are going to take on fifty clients and you currently don’t have any, the goal is neither achievable nor realistic, unless you are planning to take on other counsellors to help. One of the quickest ways to fail is to set yourself goals that not even Superman or -woman could achieve!
Realistic – Is it a realistic goal that you can achieve? It needs to be realistic on two counts:
- Can you realistically maintain it on a daily, weekly, monthly, yearly basis?
- Be realistic about how you approach it, eg. if you’re giving up a secure job to begin a business, you may need to think about first starting the business part-time to build up your client list, and give yourself a time when you will leave your job.
Timed – Set your goals within a time frame. When will you start your counselling service? When will you take on your first ten clients (set yourself a date)? When will you review your success: after one month, six months or annually?
Tip No. 4: COMMIT YOUR PLANS TO GOD
Proverbs 16:1-3 (TLB) says: ‘We can make our plans, but the final outcome is in God’s hands. We can always “prove” that we are right, but is the Lord convinced? Commit your work to the Lord, then it will succeed.’
Tip No.5: ENJOY THE JOURNEY
As you make changes in 2015, don’t forget to enjoy the journey and be intentional about giving thanks!
Change is a necessary part of our continued growth and development and, whilst it can feel overwhelming at times, it is worth the temporary discomfort when you see the fruit of some well-planned adjustments.
Rev. Jacqueline Peart is an ordained minister and founder of www.jpiministries.org. You can follow her on Facebook at Jacqueline Peart or follow her on Twitter @jacquelinepeart