As I was sitting in church a couple weekends ago (I swear it does happen), our priest presented an idea that was not only thought provoking but in so many ways, just realistic. With the Lent season happening around us, now is the time that we “giving up something” in order to show sacrifice and reflect. Most of the time we say we are going to give up a bad habit (swearing, laziness, being late) or some sort of indulgent (chocolate, alcohol, candy). But do we really ever follow through?
Our priest said that we make this decision because we are told to, that it is just something we have to do, but most of the time we don’t actually follow through with it because we aren’t motivated enough to. We can’t really see what the outcome is going to be. We can’t really see what the purpose is for. We can’t really see what is a good enough reason to do what needs to be done, so we avoid it. We push it aside. We make it our last priority. Or we simply just keep making excuses, until we make the choice to give up on it once and for all.
Life is a series of choices. We have to continuously make decisions to get by every day, but sometimes we make the choice to just not follow through with it. You can have your mind set on something that you want to do, but if you aren’t motivating yourself to do it, it is not going to get done.
An example: You can wake up in the morning and make the decision that today you are going to start being healthier, but if you have to follow through with the steps to change yourself. It is not going to magically happen and it is definitely not going to happen overnight. If you don’t follow through with it by pushing yourself to working out and eat healthier, it is just another choice that you have wasted.
It is easy to come to a conclusion about something that you want to change in your life, but not to follow through with it. It is simple to say, “Yes, I am going to do this”, but then to find an excuse not to. It is always going to be easier to quit and say that you have had enough, rather than focusing in on that challenge and working through it. It is always going to be a smoother ride by just skating by, rather than trudging up that hill. Life is easy when you don’t have to put any effort towards it, but you also aren’t getting any closer to your goals by staying on the same path.
If you are really looking to change something in your life, you have to be willing to look at things differently. First and foremost, you have to believe in yourself. You will not be able to get anything done if you do not believe that you are not capable of doing it. Second, you have to find a way to stay motivated. Create ways to keep yourself interested in what you are doing. Set goals for yourself in order to keep on track. And finally, remind yourself of the bigger picture. That end result is what should keep you going. You made the choice to do this and now you have to follow through to get there.
Every day that you wake up, you have a choice. You have the choice to skate by or you have the choice to follow through. Life is always going to find a way to trip you up and try to veer you off your path, but you must find your way back and stay motivated. The moment you hit your goal, you will not regret a single second of the time, sweat, and energy it took to get you there. Remember, you can continue to make decisions about what you want to do with your life, but it’s all about the follow-through that is going to get you there.