IF NOT NOW, WHEN?

Holy smokes, 2015 is coming to an end. It was just July but it's cool. No really, it's fine. 

Another year has come and gone and we find ourselves in one of two situations. We're either wrapping up what I like to call a "meh year" or a "symbolic year."

At the end of a meh year, everything seems to blend together. You know what I mean? The days, weeks, and months melt into one big trip around the sun making it difficult to remember one significant day from another. Nothing really sticks out. Very meh-like. Believe me, I've had my share of them.

But then, when you're really lucky and the heavens open up, you find yourself in a symbolic year. These are the years that are more pronounced in your memory. The years that shape who you are, and more importantly, who you'll become. For example, the year you fell in love, moved across the country, decided to follow Jesus or bought your first house. See, very symbolic.

2015 was a symbolic year for me. This was the year I transformed SWS from "just a blog" (PS: don't ever tell a blogger it's "just a blog") to an actual business. I always strive to be honest in my writing, so please believe me when I say that I have never been more stressed, sleep-deprived, focused, and energized (all at the same time) in my entire life. And you know what? It was awesome. 

As I sit here thinking about all the things I hope 2016 will cultivate in my life, both personally and professionally, I can't help but ask, what's the thing you've always wanted to do? What do you daydream about in rush hour on Monday mornings? What's keeping you from making 2016 a symbolic year? 

I've always had big plans for SWS but things like fear, uncertainty and Netflix marathons always seemed to get in the way. It wasn't until I asked myself, "if not now, when?" did I actually start to put my plans in motion. Don't let the fear or time it would take stop you from putting in the hard work-- the time will pass anyway.

What I'm getting at is this: You know that thing you've always wanted to do? You should do it. Make resolutions this year that will help turn your dream into a reality. Make resolutions that will take you far away from the meh. Life is too short to feel meh all the time. 

Below you'll find five ways to maintain your New Year's resolutions courtesy of my girl Abbie. We hope they help you put your best foot forward. May your 2016 be symbolic in the best possible way! 

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Focus on One Resolution
The biggest mistake people make is making too many resolutions. Instead of scrambling to remember each and every one, focus on one resolution this year. Your brain will be more focused and motivated, which will increase your chances of success. YAY!

Ask a Friend to Hold You Accountable
Having a "buddy system” is an old, yet tried and true tip for sticking to your resolutions. Rather than divulging your resolutions to every person you meet, tell them to someone who will keep you on the right track. Insider Secret: One year my resolution was to walk more. Naturally, I made my “accountability buddy” my dog… No doubt he wanted to go on a walk every day.

Set Ultra-Specific Resolutions
It's so easy to make a general resolution. Instead, aim for making a specific goal like “pray for my sister every morning” or “buy a stranger’s coffee twice a month.” Setting a detailed goal will make it more attainable long-term.

Visualize the End Result
Look, nobody is perfect. There will be days, maybe even weeks, where you’ll want to give up on your resolution. During these times of complete “blah-ness,” focus on what you’ll accomplish come December if you stick to it. Maybe it’s a healthier body, a stronger self-awareness, or a softened heart. Staying positive seems like common sense, but when you're in the middle of a plateau, it seems unbeatable. You can do it.

Start Right NOW!
Why wait until New Year’s Day? Whether you’re reading this on New Year's Day or soaking up sunshine in the middle of July, start right now. You don’t need to change your vision overnight, start with small changes and you’ll be one step closer. There is no reason your resolutions need to start at midnight on New Year’s.

So call up those accountability buddies, jot down your milestones, and get started with that resolution! What are you waiting for!? Let’s raise a glass and cheers to being out with the old and in with the new! 

We would love to hear all about your 2015 and/or your resolutions for 2016 in the comments section below! 


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