The optimist or maybe artist in me loves a new year. The blank pages laid out in front of me is very exciting. The mistakes made in the precious year are gone, while the lessons learned will hopefully stick with us forever. The idea of having a whole year to work on myself and improve relationships and focus on making changes make me very excited.
Are you a resolution maker? Or do you pick one word to focus on for a new year? I choose to pick one word, because it is simply easier for me to focus. If I make 5-10 resolutions, I may be successful with one of them. I tend to make them too broad, which I have learned from Michael Hyatt, is not a good way to set goals. Goals should be specific and measurable and I have a very hard time with that.
It is very easy for me to come up with what I want to do. Coming up with a why is a lot harder for me. I could pick a broad why, but that kind of defeats the purpose. It needs to be specific to my what.
I had made a list of several words that I had been thinking on to choose my word for the year. I wrote them on a bookmark and would read them every single day, sometimes multiple times a day. They were read every time I opened a book to read. I was certain I was going to pick one of these words. They were all good things to focus on for a year.
Then as I started reflecting over 2013 and the things that really stuck with me from counseling, I remembered two different counselors telling me that one of the biggest things they hear from me is self-hatred. I knew I struggled with liking myself, but never realized that I hated myself. The longer I went to counseling, the more I realized I do struggle with hating myself.
There were some things that came to light this year where I realized that I failed to protect two of my children from abuse. I had absolutely no clue. The perpetrator was someone I loved dearly. The guilt and absolute hatred I felt for myself for not seeing the signs and failing to protect my kids is one of the strongest feelings I have ever had.
I am a people pleaser and I struggle with others liking me. I want everyone to like me and when they don't, I feel like a failure and hate myself, again.
So this year, my one word, my one focus is love. I goal is to learn to love myself. I want to love myself and accept myself and see myself as God sees me. I have come to realize that when I hate myself, I am hating one of God's creations. God loves me and made me and if I hate me, that is essentially saying that God did not make me good enough. I know that thought is absolute baloney.
If I do not know what it is like to love myself and see myself how God sees me, how can I love others and see others the way God sees them? My focus is to focus on my good qualities and not ignore my faults, work on my faults, but not focus on them. My good character traits are what makes me me. Not my faults. I will always have faults on this side of heaven, but they should not be my focus.
I long to see the good in everyone. There is good in every single one of God's creations and that is what I want to focus on. I want to love others the say God loves them. I want to love my family the way God loves them. I want to love my friends the way God loves them. I long to be that safe person that they can come to at any time with any joy, any struggles, any sadness. I want to live out this year showing God's love to everyone, every where I go.