Map in My Lap

I got a GREAT gift for Christmas this year.

It was something that I had hinted at for many years, and my husband finally took me seriously.

When I tell people what it is, I get different responses. Younger people shake their heads and smirk – my daughter in law held up her phone and pointed to it, while people my age have commented and said, “I’d like one too!”

Enough suspense – my gift was a U.S. Road Atlas! Spiral bound, with a plastic cover, so coffee spills won’t wreck it, and – large enough to really see and use.

My own Map for My Lap!

I know – this may strike you as “old school”, but I am thrilled.

The reason I have wanted the atlas is that when we take a road trip, long or short, I am the co-pilot, and I like to know where we are going. And not just follow the GPS. We still use GPS to get from Point A to Point B, but I like to know what towns are to the east and west of me, how our location relates to the whole of the state or region. It is a little unplanned geography lesson in real time. I remember my brother liked to take the dotted lined routes on the atlas – because they denoted a “scenic route.” Visually, I like to have a sense of where we are and where we are going, and maybe even ideas of where we should go the next time we go that way. I want more than what the GPS is giving me. A journey is not just the beginning point and the endpoint, but it is important to note what is in between!

And that is not just a throw-away concept. It is important for life.

The beginning of a new year is a great time to take some time and assess where you are, and where you want to go. We’ve all heard prompts to set New Year’s resolutions for ourselves, and many of us do! A study cited in Inc. magazine stated that 41% of Americans set resolutions. BUT! That same article stated that only 9% actually follow through and achieve their goals. That means that 91 % of that 41% of goal setters don’t “get there.”

It’s obvious that we need more than just a good idea to get to the goal line. I don’t think I have ever heard of a BAD New Year’s resolution. They have always been goals that would better someone’s life, in the area of fitness, or money management, of career advancement, spiritual development or relational health. They are aspirations that, if met, would greatly enhance the goal-setter’s life, and the lives of those around them.

So, why do they tend to fizzle out with time?

I have a theory, and it has to do with my map.

My question is: Do you really HAVE a life map? Do you have an overarching personal – or family vision statement that gives you a road map that helps you navigate your life direction without having to make unnecessary detours? Or do you just live a life that reacts to circumstances? Is your focus just on the GPS screen that only gives you a snapshot of your whole journey?

I lived that reactionary life and I consistently came up unsatisfied. I was part of the 91% that was not hitting their New Year’s resolutions targets. It doesn’t feel great, does it? It’s just this kind of desperation that can move us to make changes that actually make sense and move us onto the superhighway to get us to our destinations without time wasting detours.

I will share my ideas with you in my next series of blog posts. They are doable. They are tested. And they can make a great difference in your life of attaining goals, one day at a time.

While we’re at it, just for fun, share a New Year’s resolution that you have made and hope to keep working toward this year!

Check out Ann's Audio version of this post



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Ann Lahm

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I love the opportunities to support parents and Moms in particular, that All Done Day has provided me.

Ann Lahm

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