Weekly Blog

Four Steps to Accomplishing Your New Years’ Resolutions

Happy New Year!!!

If you’re like most, you’d like to make some changes in your life in the new year. Common examples include losing weight, exercising more, eating better, reading more, praying more, and/or indulging in unhealthy behaviors less. Regardless of what your goal is (and there can be many), it will take some work.

Many people have such little success with achieving their goals that they don’t try anymore. Is that you? Or did you set goals going into 2018? If so, did you have a good process for managing your progress? Did you achieve your goals? If not, why not? What happened?

Most people don’t achieve their goals for two primary reasons:

  • The goals aren’t realistic…trying to accomplish too much too soon
  • There’s no process to manage behavior

Assuming that you want to achieve your goals, this year’s resolutions, the following is what I’d suggest, given my past experience and research:

  1. Determine the areas where you want to improve
  2. Establish a plan in writing
  3. Execute regularly
  4. Track your progress

Before detailing each of the steps, I want to state something that won’t surprise anyone who regularly reads my blog. Prayer is critical to this process. God made each of us for GREATNESS and stands ready to help us get there. Engage Him and His Son, Jesus Christ, in this process and you’ll be amazed by the results.

I’d also suggest dedicating a journal to this process, using it regularly.  

Step #1 – Determine Where You Want to Improve

Consider the areas you would like to improve, classifying them as follows:

  • Spiritual (growing in faith and in your relationship with Jesus)
  • Intellectual (specialized knowledge to be gained)
  • Emotional (psychological well-being; healthy relationships)
  • Physical (diet, exercise)
  • Financial (earnings, savings)
  • Professional (position, career choice)

What is in the ( ) is intended to help, not restrict your thought. Be creative. Make it your own and then present it to the Lord in prayer, following these steps:

  1. Detail for God each of your goals
  2. Explain why each is important
  3. Listen (sit in silence) for His Voice and Guidance
  4. Pray to not only God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, but the Holy Spirit Who dwells within each of us…for help and persistence

Caution – please do not bite off too much. Rome was not built in a day. You don’t have to pick something for all six categories above. Choosing just 2-3 is fine. When you accomplish those, you can pick a couple others from your list. Ask the Lord for His help in your discernment.

Step #2 – Establish a Plan in Writing

There are steps required to achieving any goal. For the goals you’ve chosen, spend some time brainstorming, then recording those steps in your journal. Be as specific as possible, including timeframes, i.e. what you’ll do daily or weekly, or monthly (depending on the goal).

Once done, take your plan to prayer, reading through the steps with the Lord, then following steps 3 and 4 from above.

Another good thing to do is to place a list of your goals on your mirror, so that you see them every morning.

Step #3 – Execute (with God by your side)

Referencing your journal every morning (yes, every morning), as part of your prayer time, read through your goals and the pertinent action steps. Ask God for His help and persistence as you execute every day.

Use prayer throughout the day to help you achieve your goals. Simple prayers that have helped me include:

  • Jesus, I trust in You
  • Come Holy Spirit

Ask God for the strength to do what He’s called you to do. God made you for GREATNESS and is there to help you achieve it.

Step #4 – Track Your Progress

In the evening, mark in your journal what you achieved (or didn’t) that day, thanking God for His presence in your life and asking Him for His Grace as you head into tomorrow.  

And if you want to be assured of really accomplishing your goals, get an accountability partner, going through the entire process detailed above together. Touching base periodically, i.e. no less than once a week, report to each other on your results. Encourage one another, helping the other to course correct where needed.

Lastly, pray for one another, both throughout the week and when together. Call on our Lord to help you be your very best. After all, God loves you more than you’ll ever know, no matter what you’ve ever done.

Have a “Successful” 2019 and may God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

Mark Joseph

Weekly Blog

The Gift of Receiving

In last week’s blog, I wrote about the gift of “giving” and how it brings us joy, especially during Christmas. This week, I want to address the gift of “receiving”, again related to Christmas.

We all enjoy receiving gifts, which are most often an “object” of some kind. Although a gift in of itself can bring pleasure, it’s the meaning behind it that has the most impact. Receiving it means that someone thought enough about you to spend the time to get it. If very personal or meaningful, it means that the giver cared enough to make it special for you. Receiving a nice gift feels good. It’s affirming. You feel loved.

Not Feeling Loved

In contrast, why is it that so many of us don’t feel loved? There is evidence to the contrary. Our family, our friends who are closest to us…most do truly love us. Admittedly, they (we) don’t always know how to show it, but they do. They love us and we know it.

Yet many of us really don’t feel loved. We don’t feel worthy of love? As a result, we often don’t love ourselves or even like ourselves. We blame ourselves for things, beating ourselves up on a regular basis. I don’t know about you, but this was surely me for the longest time, until…


He Love All of Us That Much

This Christmas Season, I would invite all of us to soak in the love of God and His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, whose love together has given us the Holy Spirit, God who indwells in each of us always.

1 John 4:19 says, “We love because He first loved us”. That love is exemplified by not only Jesus dying on the Cross for us, but by entering into our humanity as the Christ Child. Jesus lives on this earth with us, then in Body and now in Spirit.

Receive His Love

Jesus is as real as those closest to us. You know what it feels like to be loved by family and friends…to be accepted and affirmed for who you are, your true self. There’s no feeling like it in the world. Accept that love with humility and gratitude from others. And accept it from Jesus.

Jesus gives us the example of not only loving others, but being loved. This Christmas Season, pray about God’s unconditional love for you, really absorbing it. In reading Scripture, recall Jesus’ love for His Mother and Father, His Disciples and by extension each one of us. Think about how He received their love. Bask in it. Pray about it.

Not an object (as referenced above), I’d suggest concentrating on receiving the gift of Jesus’ love this Christmas. You don’t have to do anything for it. Just “be”. Receive it! Feel it! Own it! Be with Him in relationship. And understand that God not only loves you unconditionally, but made you for GREATNESS out of that love.  

Please comment to me at

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

Wishing you and your family a very Merry and Blessed Christmas!!!

Mark Joseph

Weekly Blog

The Best Feeling in the World

Have you ever felt deflated, exhausted, and frustrated…overwhelmed? If you’re like most, the answer is “yes”. Add to those things the challenges of our relationships, including past conflicts, in addition to our hurts and wounds, some self-inflicted with others caused by family and “friends”. For many, all of this intensifies during the Christmas season.

In contrast to the above, we all want to live joy-filled lives. We want a sense of peace. And we all desire a feeling of purpose, to make an impact, to be fulfilled. Although my book speaks to all of this (shameless plug), it’s not the subject of this blog, but nonetheless relevant.

The Best Feeling in the World

There is one sure fired way to experience joy during the Christmas season (and other parts of the year), a way to have the best feeling in the world…that is in GIVING.

A Christmas Story

Our youngest, Robert, is now 24, but I remember like yesterday the Christmas of his 6th grade year. I brought his two older sisters, now 27 (Tricia) and 30 (Danielle), in on the plan, all three of us agreeing how much he would enjoy this particular gift.

For context, everyone in the family had a cell phone (whether 6th grade is too early is not the intent of this blog) except Robert. Although their (cell phones) prominence in our lives wasn’t near what they are today, he still felt like he was missing out. I don’t recall him ever asking for one (I could be wrong) because he knew he hadn’t reached the “magic” age, the time his sisters got theirs’.  

Pure Joy

Because of some occurrences in our lives, we were all struggling at that particular time, including Robert. As such, his sisters and I really wanted to do something special. Having a feel for how excited he’d be, we got him a flip phone, the irony of which is that given some deals being offered by the carrier, we got it for free. His Christmas present cost nothing.

When he opened the phone, I remember like yesterday him absolutely bouncing off the walls. I had never seen him (nor anyone) so excited in my life, never. He was beaming, ever so grateful, grateful, grateful. To this day, more than a decade later, I’ve never seen anyone express as much excitement over anything. He was filled with joy and so was I in seeing him respond the way he did.  

The Gift of Giving

I think all of us learn over time that giving is much more rewarding than receiving. That experience galvanized it in me. There is no greater gift than GIVING to another. None.

Not that you don’t know this (I’m not preaching here), but I invite you to really think of the “giving” aspect of Christmas this year. Concentrate on the joy it will create in others’ lives and as such, the joy you’ll experience in yours’. Jesus gave His love and His life for us. He calls us to do the same for others, experiencing the same joy He did in doing so for each of us.

Christmas Gifts…Books at Reduced Prices

In the spirit of Christmas (and GIVING), we are offering discounts on my book, Overwhelming Pursuit: Stop Chasing Your Life and Live:

  • Order ONE for $13 instead of $15.95
  • Order TEN for $10 each instead of $13

Prices includes shipping. All books purchased through my website are autographed by me. The sale will end January 1, 2019.

May you experience the abundant Peace and Joy of Christ during this Christmas Season!!!

Merry Christmas and God Bless you and your family!!!

Mark Joseph

Weekly Blog

I’m Exhausted

Have you ever wondered where the weekend went? Sunday night you’re exhausted after what is typically supposed to be a restful couple of days. You knew the “to do” list was long, but figured you’d still be able to get some downtime. But no, you spend all weekend moving from one task to the next, with no time to relax. You’re not rested and here comes Monday.

That was this past weekend for my wife and me.

Typical weekends for us are where we run the errands and do the chores on Saturday, leaving Sunday for rest. If Sunday requires us to still do some work, there’s at least considerable time left to take it easy. 5PM Mass, where my wife and I serve as part of the greeter ministry, is always a great finish to the weekend.

The Way it Used to Be

Interestingly, my weeks and weekends used to always look like the one I had this past Saturday and Sunday. The pace always outdid the peace. Although I think I was energized by it at the time, it’s exhausting to think about now…if you know what I mean. 

God Has the Solution….Who Knew?

Then several years ago, in reading Rhythm of Life by Matthew Kelly, we learned that Sunday being a day of rest makes all the difference in the world. As it turns out, God really knew what He was doing….go figure. That’s when we started putting all the busywork into Saturdays. Sundays were reserved for fun, family, some fitness, and relaxation, in addition to Mass.

Trying to keep to the above, we sometimes were challenged with Sunday getting loaded with things. We experimented with exchanging Sunday for Saturday, attempting to make the latter the day of rest. Guess what…it didn’t work. Both my wife and I agree that there’s nothing like Sunday. Without it being the day of rest, we just aren’t rested.

Just Try It

I know that we’re all incredibly busy. The pace can be absolutely frenetic, which sometimes is unavoidable, even on Saturdays AND Sundays. That said, try to get everything done Monday through Saturday. On Sunday…just rest. Enjoy your family. Spend time on things that you enjoy, that relax you. Take it easy. Rest…the way God intended it.

See if it works for you and your family the way it does for my wife and me.

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

Mark Joseph