Making New Years resolutions is a great idea. That said, most New Years resolutions never come to pass, for one simple reason: They’re built on the fluff of wishful thinking instead of the rock of thoughtful evaluation.

New Years resolutions are baked into our North American psyche. They’re one of the things you’re supposed to do this time of year. But before you make a list of “ought to’s” for 2013, stop and reflect on 2012. Here are ten questions to get you started. Write down the answers. Don’t roll your eyes at me, just do it.

New Years Resolutions: Prep Questions

  1. What were your favorite songs this past year? It’s okay to list several.
  2. What were your favorite movies this year (watched in the theatre or rented)?
  3. What were your favorite books this past year?
  4. What were your favorite Bible verses from this past year?
  5. Were there any sermons that stuck? What was your takeaway?
  6. What were your favorite experiences/moments from the past year?
  7. What were the most difficult / painful experiences from the past year?
  8. How have you grown/changed in the last twelve months (be realistic, this isn’t about wishful thinking, remember?)
  9. If you could only get one wish granted or prayer answered this entire year, and it was guaranteed to happen… it would be… what?
  10. Fill in the blank: 2012 was the year I…
  11. (Freebie, #11:) My greatest weakness / mistake / regret this past year was…

Okay. You’ve probably learned a few things about yourself, or at least about the year you’ve just lived. Which means you’re almost ready for an awesome set of New Years Resolutions. But not quite.

Next, ask yourself… why? Why was that your favorite song, moment, experience? Why, for each of the questions.

Next, lay it all out before God and ask him what he thinks about what you’ve written. Write down what comes to mind.

Now it’s time for New Years resolutions.

Have fun!