A while back a friend gave me a list of personal improvement items labeled “Common New Year Resolutions.” Now, you know that self-improvement is not just something to write down to start off the new year right, but is something to work on each day of our lives. This list contained 33 different actions that, when put into action, would certainly improve any of our lives. While viewing this list you will find that some are much more important than others, but each one can be used to improve our lives in some way.
At this point I would ask you to slow down a bit and think about each one. If you will relate each one to your own lifestyle, you will find that many will make a real difference in the way you do things. Here they are: “Eat healthier and less – Exercise more – Save or spend less – Learn something new – Read more – Spend more time with family and friends – Get organized – Stop procrastinating (ouch!) – Improve concentration and mental skills – Meet new people – Become more active – Reduce stress – Learn to be happier with your life – Get more quality sleep – Be more polite – Watch less TV – Volunteer and give more to charity.
“Let grudges go – Stop being late – Control your emotions – Less time on social media – Remember important dates – Start writing a book or journal – Stop gossiping – Give one compliment a day – Go a whole day without checking e-mail – Do random acts of kindness – Clear out the clutter – Write down one thing you are grateful for every night – Drink more water – Call a friend instead of texting – Send handwritten letters – Clean out your car.”
At this point I would like to ask you to consider each item on this list and see if there are not some of them that will make a wonderful difference in your life. I would like to close by sharing something related that a friend sent me a while back. It is titled:
Four Pairs of Shoes
First Pair: A pair of track shoes worn by a youngster who was badly burned and they said he would never walk again. But because of courage and determination, Glen Cunningham became the world champion indoor miler.
Second Pair: A pair of tennis shoes in the Olympic games before the World War II tennis championship was about to be decided. In the match point, the ball was driven down the right course out of bounds. The crowd roared, but Ivan Von Braum went to the judges and told them the ball had tipped his racket. He went on to lose the match, but his stand for honesty will never be forgotten.
Third Pair: These were the tattered shoes of a little news boy when he passed a blind man on the street. He did not say, “Let the United Way take care of him.” He dropped a few coins in the tin cup from his hard-earned money. This is what charity really means.
Fourth Pair: These are a pair of shoes worn by the Galilean, and they remind me of the great love He had for me. Just the thought of this makes me want to work harder to be what He wants me to be.
Jim Davidson is an author, public speaker, syndicated columnist and Founder of the Bookcase for Every Child project. Since its inception in the Log Cabin Democrat in 1995, Jim’s column has been self-syndicated to over 375 newspapers in 35 states.