Here’s the secret to realizing your New Year resolutions

I recently read an article that offered tips to help people keep their New Year’s resolutions. The article claimed that about 70% of all resolutions are broken by the third week in January. I guess that means that, while we all want to make changes and improve ourselves, we simply can’t find the time to invest in making those changes happen.

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I couldn’t help but think of the old saying that goes something like, “You always have time for your priorities.” That contains a lot of truth, but I’ve always found it a bit irritating because it points out the contradictions between who I say I am, who I want to be, and who I actually am.

I believe God and family come first in my life, but my time commitment doesn’t always validate that. Of course, we all must make a living, and our careers have certain demands that must be met. However, it seems like I often find myself giving short shrift to what should be the most important things in my life.

Actions speak louder than words. While we may want to get in shape, treat our spouse more lovingly, prepare our kids to enter the world, or even something as mundane as cleaning feed bunks, how we invest our most precious asset – time – says a lot about who we really are.

The truth is that I don’t think I can be a great husband without having a strong faith; nor can I be a good father without being a good husband. And I can’t achieve what I want to achieve with our ranch if I’m not in good physical shape or don’t get proper sleep. Do you see how these priorities build upon each other?

Time will always be our most limiting resource. However, by establishing my top priority and making time to address it, I’ll find time for the next priority and then on down the line. I think that while time is always short, using it wisely actually multiplies it.

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Far more than work ethic and commitment, the key to keeping your resolutions for 2015 is to make sure those resolutions align with your priorities. Then ensure that you take care of the most important first. You can’t love someone or know what is on your children’s hearts without spending time with them. If you don’t make time for God, family and friends, you’ll find yourself behind in chasing your other priorities as well. Passion without a strong foundation is dangerous. Balance and priorities are the keys to seeing our resolutions become reality.

Keep a daily log of how you spend your time and you’ll understand where your priorities truly are. You may be quite surprised.

The opinions of Troy Marshall are not necessarily those of beefmagazine.com and the Penton Agriculture Group.

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