How To Be Strong In 2016
One of my strategies every year is to come up with a 1-word goal that embodies what I want to become yet encompasses every aspect of my life.
It’s a strategy that I encourage everyone I talk with to adopt. By taking a single behavioral concept and weaving it through each area of your life and work, one becomes focused and more effective in their goals and growth.
For 2016, my personal theme is “Strength” and I’d like to share with you how you also can grow stronger in 2016.
Strong Core Values. Your personal values are the core foundation of all you do – what you think, what you gravitate towards, what you stand for in difficult times. From Benjamin Franklin to Golda Meir to Ken Blanchard, great leaders have a solid value base on which they grow and gain strength in their convictions. Spend time getting your values solidified as the platform for your growth.
Strength of Character. Character is described as the ability to stick with a decision long after the emotion surrounding the decision has gone away. Whether in integrity, relationships, or business matters, maintaining your character is like a tea bag – you truly know what’s in it when it’s in hot water. By defining who you are, you establish this to yourself as well as those around you as to what you will, and won’t, do or become.
Strong in Spirit and Truth. Taking time out daily to seek God’s truth and refreshing your spirit will do wonders for growing your relationships in life. While reading, praying, and serving you grow in knowledge and wisdom and put your feet to your faith. Your spiritual growth is more important than your necessary food; neglecting this vital aspect of your life will weaken you in all other areas. We may defer to the body when talking strength, but a frail elderly woman who is a spiritual giant will make more impact in the lives of others than the strongest man who has no truth in God.
Physical Strength. Speaking of food, a balanced and moderated diet is always essential for strength. But so is exercise, including manual labor, in building flexibility and muscles. My uncle at 96 stays active and this is the reason his health is still strong at that age. In addition, proper breathing techniques (such as what Tony Robbins describes in “Absolute Power”) are great ways to enable your body to take and process oxygen to your muscles and brain. Feeling strong – healthy – in body enables growth and enjoyment in all other areas of life.
Strong Mental and Emotional Quotient. While IQ and EQ are separate, the same basis for growing in these areas starts from right thinking. IQ grows by sharpening your mind in discipline of thought and meditation; EQ gains in strength by discipline in your heart as to how you handle every situation around you. Consciously track every thought and feeling through truth and project how they will impact your influence.
Interdependently Strong. While we all strive to be strong in and of ourselves, admittedly none of us can be anything without the support of others. Without being strong in others, families, churches, companies, and communities become dysfunctional. Thinking you can be strong enough independently is like being a lone tree in a wide open field versus the forest grove of trees that ties their roots together to weather the fiercest storms. Humility is not being a doormat; rather it is knowing we all have limitations and understanding what yours are. Having strength in this arena means being strong and meek (“controlled strength”) enough to know where your greatest weaknesses and needs lie and how others can fill in those gaps in your life.
Solid Stewardship. All we have is never truly ours, whether our possessions, roles, or talents, and how we handle it shows our strength in integrity and serving others. When we grow in the realization that our homes are to benefit family, friends, and the neighborhood; that our companies give livelihood to those you employ and service to your clients’ and customers’ benefit while being a good corporate citizen; and that our money can be spent all on our own desires or managed in a way that we are able to bless others because we have the means; when we grow in our commitment to be strong in our discipline of every relationship and temporal means to make the world around us better, we not only strengthen ourselves but the lives of everyone else around us.
I hope the framework for my growth this coming year will inspire you to grow stronger and achieve a more purposeful life for yourself. Together, we can make our world stronger and build a better opportunity for personal freedom and fulfillment.
Be strong in 2016!!!