Did you achieve your goals for 2012…or did you have any? Were you disappointed or satisfied with the results of your goal setting effort. I have found success in a process that has been helpful to hundreds of my clients and to me personally.
Establishing and clarifying your vision or possibilities is the first step leading to your accomplishing goals set early in 2013. Personally, I have identified a habit I want to eliminate, a ministry to focus on, rebuild a relationship with one person and chartered vacation plans with the family. I look back to successfully attaining most of the goals that were part of the vision setting process early in 2012 (yes, not all were achieved).
Visions/possibilities start with a thought or idea. Begin to think through and start defining potential desired outcomes in one or more of the seven areas of life: Career, Relationships with Others, Relationship with God, Finances, Time Management, Health and Service to Others.
What comes to mind? Is it a new job, a restored relationship, writing a budget, desire for more prayer time, a mission trip, better time management? Your orginial idea needs to be watered by your commitment, and nurtured through research, prayer and others who support you in your journey.
Step 1. Vision/Possibilities
- Recognize importance of a vision (Psalm 37:4) “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desire of your heart.” Ask God for possibilities; write down the desires of your heart (vision, possibilities).
- Pray – Ask God to clarify your vision –Look for input through scripture, people in your life, and circumstances. Write down those things that come to mind
- Define and write down what brings passion and significance to you (“fire in the belly.”) Does the emerging vision /possibility make you come alive?
- Is the vision consistent with honoring God ? will it glorify God?
- Are the possibilities clearly from God? Will you know God’s will? (Prayer, God’s word, input from others, circumstances)
These visions/possibilities become goals for the year 2013.
- Note: Some goals can be under your control…Losing 20 lbs; getting rid of a bad habit (a personal goal; initiating a contact to ask forgiveness; Other goals require a third person (a new job requires the hiring manager to ok it; a restored relationship with a son or daughter requires their agreement (a desired goal).
“We are in constant danger of being not actors in the drama of our lives but reactors, ‘to go where the world takes us, to drift with whatever current happens to be running the strongest.” Frederick Buechner
Step 2 Commitments
To fulfill our vision and life possibilities, which are becoming our 2013 goals, we must apply ourselves with efforts that are consistent and persistent. Those efforts are called Commitments — thoughts and actions we can initiate and control.
- Commitments are statements of intention on our part to initiate transition in response to some area of change in our life and lead to fulfilling our vision.
- Commitments can become a covenant between you and God. A covenant is a complete and total exchange of resources and resolve between two parties..you & God. Having a friend or prayer partner will help you to keep those commitments..
- Keeping commitments will cause an adjustment in your life. Transition will occur but will require sacrifice, faith and risk. You are asking God to help you stay the course.
An Exercise: List
- 3 possibilities or visions you would like to have happen in 2013 (from the 7 items above)
- 3 habits, sins, roadblocks in your life that you would like God to help you remove in 2013 and help you achieve your goals
- 3 commitments you want to make in 2013 that will assist in attaining goals
Remember…a commitment to a personal goal means you control actions leading to a desired outcome, like asking for forgiveness, making a resume, interview practice, praying, reading the word, regular gym attendance, scheduling your time.
A desired goal is the vision or possibility you want to happen but requires input from another to be achieved: being hired; a restored relationship; for a child to quit drinking; to win a big contract as a sales person.….these you must pray over and let God be in charge.
Those who do not know the difference between a commitment and a desire can become depressed, angry and in their mind, a victim.
Enjoy the journey in 2013 and change your part of the world for His glory.