We are almost half way through another year and I have been wondering lately how most of us are doing on are New Year’s resolutions. Most people make one of three declarations on New Year’s: I am going to lose weight, I am going to quit smoking or I am going to get out of debt. Then why is it three weeks later I see those same people eating a Twinkie, smoking a cigarette and living off credit cards?
It is because they are not seeing any results. When you do not see any results that is when most people quit. I believe a lot of people quit because they believed a myth that motivation leads to action. Financially speaking, people say things like: “When I get my big tax refund, then I will take control of my money.” Or “When my children are off the payroll, then I will take control of my money.” Or “When I get the big end of the year bonus, then I will take control of my money.”
As Zig Ziglar says, if you wait until all of the lights are on green before heading into town, you will never leave. The truth is action leads to motivation.
I will never forget coming home from work one day. It had been one of those long days. I was completely exhausted. As a family, we always make a purposeful effort to have supper together every night. This night was no different. Imagine having five kids ranging in age from 18 months to 14 years old and all of them are eating supper. It does not take very long to turn a clean kitchen into a disaster. After supper Jessica and I played with the kids and then did our normal bedtime routine. When that task was all said and done, I was heading for bed. Not only was that day a long day, the next day was shaping up to be the same. On my way to bed, Jessica had this great idea that we should clean the kitchen and she wanted my help (my jaw about hit the floor). I attempted to explain how tired I was and she responded by telling me it would only take ten to fifteen minutes. Well, I have learned if you want a successful marriage it is happy wife, happy life. I then grudgingly (and with a lot of extra drama) went over to the table and took the dishes to the dishwasher. Even though the dishwasher was only a few steps away, I felt like I was carrying an anvil through a pilgrimage. Then I proceeded to clean off the table and sweep the floor, while my wife was cleaning up the counter and so forth. When it was all said and done it did only take ten to fifteen minutes to clear our kitchen. I then responded by asking my wife, “Well, what is the next thing to clean?”
Think about that. Ten minutes earlier I did not know if I had enough energy to climb into bed. However, after ten minutes of putting action towards a goal, I had more energy and was ready to accomplish a new goal. Action does lead to motivation. The good news is it does not stop there. Action leads to motivation and motivation leads to hope.
Proverbs 13:12 says, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but desired fulfilled is the tree of life.” When you have hope that is when you truly believe that your dream or desire is possible.
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