I hate it when I use scented lotion and accidentally scratch my nose. I feel like someone sprayed perfume in my face.
I thought it wouldn’t be right to publish that elaborate post about New Month Resolutions vs. New Year’s Resolutions and not give some sort feedback on how I’m doing (check out The Productive Artist: Breaking Out of Your Resolution Rut if you haven’t seen it).
As January comes to an end, I have to look back and see how I’ve done. Since my resolution wasn’t very specific, and there’s a reason they should be, I don’t have a black and white picture of my success. But I can look back on all my little efforts and see that I, indeed, succeeded. There are a few weekly focuses I had and I really surprised myself:
- Kept a decent work schedule and balanced my part time job with my art.
- Began planning and came up with some awesome ideas for my upcoming art show (March 13th and 14th! Mark your calendar! More info soon.)
- Bought a Fit Bit, signed up for a 15K, and have pushed myself to reach personal bests. I’ve NEVER gone as far or as fast in my entire life!
- Practiced positive self-talk. Like they say, you are your worst critic. I’ve decided to go a little easier on myself and give myself more credit. Unfortunately, if I’m honest, this is an area I’ve been struggling with. I’m happy to report that small self affirmations and acknowledgement of my abilities and accomplishments have worked wonders in this area. Maybe I’ll write a post about how deteriorating perfectionism is. Or have I already?
Then there are the daily items: from reading books to cleaning the bathroom to doing my nails to cooking dinner. I’ve given myself small tasks every day, even numerous a day, to challenge and build my willpower muscle. Each passing day makes me feel more accomplished, especially when I give myself a pat on the back!
And finally… prayer. I prayed a very important prayer earlier this month and I thought now would be as good a time as any to share with everyone. I always used to pray, “Lord, please just take over my life and make me do what’s right. I don’t care what I do, just do it through me and let it be Your will and whatever You feel is best for me.”
Except… this prayer was never answered.
Wanna know why?
It might sound weird to refer to a prayer as “sucky”, but it’s true. Typed out, it sounds ok. But first of all, God doesn’t take over your life. He even promises He won’t. That’s where free will comes in. Second, I never seriously meant what I said. I’d pray it and then I would continue on living the way I always did. I never changed anything. I didn’t actually open myself to Him and His direction and will.
I finally decided to try something different. I prayed a different prayer. First, I asked God to forgive me for praying that other meaningless prayer. A silly prayer I prayed for years. A prayer I cared so little about that I continued to pray even though it went on “unanswered”–as if to blame God for my lack of obedience. Then, I prayed…
“Lord, remind me of You.”
I prayed that God would just keep Himself at the forefront of my mind. That I would easily remember that He’s there and I have Him to call on. I prayed that I would just plain think of Him more, and that He would give me the strength and motivation to do the things that would just simply remind me of Him.
I meant it, it made sense, and it was answered. And you know what? He’s really working on me because I’m gradually inviting Him into other areas of my life. I’m finding more strength in areas I usually struggle.
He’s pretty awesome. I highly recommend.