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Do You Know What the Future Holds? Hopeful Strategies for 2017

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I got a call that Mama was in the hospital in July. She had fallen in the store. Falling is not a good event. Falling at 79 years old was not a good thing for my Mama. I found out that Mama had broken her pelvis. She was in the hospital now. Her doctor did not want to operate due to her age. That meant natural healing and a very slow recovery. Her doctor gave her a choice of rehabilitation at her home or a nursing facility. My Mama wanted the first. We, the children, wanted the latter. We knew it would be easy for her to accept the first because she would be in her comfort zone. Yet, I knew she had in the back of her mind that she would never leave that nursing home if she went there (so many of her friends never left the nursing home). My Mama is an active person. Can you imagine being bedridden and not active? She had worked all her life. Depression sets in because the recovery is slow. I felt Mama may not get over this hurdle of life with all the pain of rehabilitation or little independent to do what she wants, when she wants. But—my Mama had hope and an internal drive that pushed her. Pushed her from laying in the bed. Pushed her to undergo a rigorous and painful rehabilitation. Pushed her to move with a walker. Pushed her to walk with a cane. Pushed right out of that nursing home and back into her home. Now, she is driving her car and working part-time. Some folks would have given up. However, my Mama didn’t. We have reason to worry and be anxious about 2017. The United States citizens have just gone through one of the most bitter presidential elections of modern times. In fact, Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump had the highest unfavorable ratings in history. Most people were not discussing the candidate with the best vision, but ‘choosing the lesser of two evils.’ With Donald Trump taking the office of president as a Republican and both a Republican-controlled Senate and House of Representatives, there is still much uncertainty due to Trump’s fuzzy economic strategy and the will of elected officials to get things accomplished despite partisan politics. The world is filled with risk and danger. Terrorism continues to ‘shock and awe’ at the destruction aimed at human life. Globalization combines countries together against their will. Russian hackers attempt to influence our presidential elections. The dollar hits a 14-year high against 16 major trading partners; a sharp increase in the dollar has long-term consequences globally. For example, China fears that a rising dollar will destabilize their currency. Other countries worry about their own economic feat in 2017.

Do you know what the future holds in 2017 for you? Are you now dreading the upcoming year with more demands on your own personal dreams and ambitions?

Sadly, New Year’s resolutions are made to be broken. Most people lack the mental toughness to overcome the obstacles they face in order to prevent them from successfully achieving their resolution. According to a Statisticbrain.com’s 2016 study, many people may set out to achieve their New Year’s resolution. Most folks start out by maintaining their resolution through the fifth week (75%). Yet, the pressures of life and other factors cause most to quit within six months, except the most dedicated (46%). However, only 45% of Americans achieve their resolutions. Thirty-nine percent of these people in their 20s achieve their resolution, while only 14% of individuals over the age of 50 achieve their resolutions. Something has to change if we want a different outcome.

Despite the doom and gloom of TV pundits, having a clear direction and plan for the year can increase your chances of success this year. Yet, no plan will be truly successful with positivism in your thinking. Believing that 2017 will be better than the previous years gives that individual a sense of hope. Hope is defined as “a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.” When things don’t look good on the surface, hope is still there. Hope is invaluable for making New Year’s resolution come true in spite of obstacles.

Writer Viktor Frankl wrote Man’s Search for Meaning, chronicling his life experience as a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp in World War II. Frankl found hope in his tragic situation: “When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves. Everything can be taken from a man, but one thing: the last of human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” When what you set out to do with your plan doesn’t work, you need to have the mental toughness to continue. Thus, we hope and we expect better things to materialize because we have the right type of thinking also with a written plan for implementation. Thus, individuals should not go into this year without hope. The following personal strategies are provided for the New Year:

1. Build hope and optimism into your strategy. 2. Evaluate your current situation at work and home. Are you moving forward or just standing still? 3. Write down your goals and track them for the year. 4. Consider how to improve your individual condition with self-learning, certificates, and newer job strategy approaches. 5. Seek out mentors who can assist you with your personal goals. 6. Grow your spiritual well-being as part of your holistic health for a living. 7. Get rid of unnecessary stress in your life and negative people. 8. Surround yourself with a positive network of individuals.

The year 2017 and beyond are full of a lot of uncertainty. The upcoming years promise plenty of unforeseen occurrences such as layoffs, terrorist acts, financial crises, or threats of war. This article demonstrated how individuals should consider approaching the New Year and provided considerate strategies. At the center of these strategies is hope. Pastor Richard S. Brown, pastor of the Payne Avenue Baptist Church (Tennessee), stated this reality best: “I do not know what the future hold. However, I know who holds the future.” Individuals who are well prepared for the New Year have a better chance of success. Having the right state of mind is invaluable. Your attitude will greatly impact your success this year. Don’t take it lightly.

© 2017 by Daryl D. Green

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New Year’s Resolution, goal setting, 2017,

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