Tips for Setting Meaningful Resolutions

by Claire Chinn, Minister of Children and Missions

It is that time of year when we all start talking about New Year ‘s resolutions—we talk about getting in shape, eating better, spending less money on things, and spending more time with family. We speak in grandiose terms of how this next year is going to be the best year we have ever had.

Don’t get me wrong. All those things are great—but after spending plenty of time with children, I have learned something different about New Year’s resolutions. I have learned that maybe we should be making a New Day resolution. Perhaps instead of making these big sweeping statements that you are going to eat a kale salad every day for the next year, we should try to wake up each and every day with the idea today- this day is going to be the best ever.

Next time you have the attention of a young elementary student, ask them what they did over the weekend. Ask them about their summer vacation. Then ask them what they plan on doing next month. My guess is that they will tell you these grand stories of playing with friends or how much fun they had playing with their cousins at their grandparents' house. Then I would expect you would be met with a blank stare when you ask them about something months in the future.

That is what I love about how a child sees the world. They are so captivated with their stories, their experiences, that it propels them to joy during the day. They carry with them the joys of yesterday, and they let that drive them. They take the wonder of the world with them into every day. What an amazing world that would be if we could do that.

My challenge for myself and what I want to share with you is this: Instead of looking ahead to 365 days by setting a New Year’s resolution, why don’t we spend each and every day finding the wonder in the stories we hear, finding the joy in seeing an old friend?  Why don’t we stop long enough when we are outside to pay attention to the birds chirping and the wind rustling the leaves? Why don’t we carry the wonder of the world with us wherever we go? Let us find the wonder of the world with each breath we take.