Life is full of change. Some change comes easily, some doesn’t. The beauty of change is that it has the power to create a new norm. The bad thing about change is that it has the power to create a new norm. The difference lies in what change has occurred.
Over the past ten years I have fallen into not-the-best eating habits. This, unfortunately, created an undesired new norm for me. I found myself ignoring the clothes hanging on my side of the closet and consistently reaching for my husband’s t-shirts, because they were more comfortable. It was when I hit a full pregnancy weight – and I wasn’t pregnant – that I realized something needed to change … I needed to change. I had been repeating the above quote for at least 4 years and change hadn’t come. Now it was time to truly decide to do something about it!
So, I did something I thought I’d never do…I joined a diet program. Augh! I hate diets. I hate the diet I am on. Really. I do. I miss Friday night pizza and drinking hot chocolate at bed time, but I love the change I am experiencing. It has not come without a price, however. It has taken intentional choices and a plan with accountability. I am recovering not only a better look and feel in my clothes, but a sense of control over what and when I eat rather than feeling subservient to my passion for food.
As the scale in my bathroom continued its upward ascent, I often felt desperate for change. But as change never came I realized I needed to be more than desperate … I needed to decide to change. It is the same for many other areas of life, too, where change is desired – whether for changing a habit, an attitude, or how we interact in a relationship. God gave us an incredible power tool when He gave us the power of decision – which means we have a choice.
5 Keys to Creating a New Norm
- Decide – make an absolute resolve for what you want to see change in your life. Don’t let a habit, attitude or person control you. You decide your destiny! Stop fooling yourself with the idea that change will happen magically, tomorrow, without taking specific action steps to effect change.
- Make a plan – there is an old saying that where we fail to make a plan, we plan to fail. Plans are like a blueprint with a clear goal to help give you the needed structure and pathway to take you from where you are to where you want to be.
- Find a strong accountability partner – this may be a life coach, dietician, support group, or prayer partner, etc. I deeply appreciate camaraderie with my friends and the love of my husband, but I knew for my new norm to be realized I needed someone who would be strong and wise in my desired area of change – one who could help keep me going on the Transformation Trail.
- Imagine – when you are tempted to cheat or stray from your goal, imagine again what your life will look like when you fully achieve it. Keep the vision of the change you desire before you. Habakkuk 2:2 says to write the vision and make it clear so that the one who reads it will run! To “read it” means to recite it out loud! Proclaim it! Declare it! Call out to God regarding it to help you! Let decision move you into unwavering intentionality through imagining how great it will be.
- Don’t quit – don’t stop until you have achieved your goal! And don’t compare yourself to others. Other people on my same diet plan are losing 3 pounds a week or more while I have been battling for every ounce I drop. Understand that some changes come quick, while other changes may be an inch-by-inch battle, but the new norm will be totally worth your effort – the end will speak for itself.
Keep the fire of your decision burning brightly. Remember, you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you (Phil. 4:12-13). He cares deeply about what concerns you! In fact, I love how The Passion Translation puts this verse: “I’m trained in the secret of overcoming all things, whether in fullness or in hunger. And I find that the strength of Christ’s explosive power infuses me to conquer every difficulty.”
Whatever change or new norm you may be desiring in your life, I pray that as you press fully forward into all the good things Father has for you, you will experience the exceeding greatness of His power towards you. He is with you and for you because He loves you, and He desires you to prosper in every way.
I am my Father’s daughter