With the new year upon us tomorrow, I wanted to share a few more thoughts on goal setting. It’s important that we do not face the new year without a plan. If we do not articulate a plan for ourselves, we allow life to affect us rather than us affecting life. Jesus always had a plan, and He impacted life more than any other being who ever walked on this earth. Okay, He did have the advantage of being God, but even mortals such as us can learn from His perfect example. Let’s not only learn from His example, but as far as humanly possible, let’s conduct our lives in the same manner as Christ did.
Before getting too far ahead of ourselves and setting goals for next year, I believe it is important to reflect on 2009. Reflecting on last year helps us gain some perspective. Think back and write down 5-10 accomplishments from the past year. What was your proudest moment, your greatest achievement? Also take a moment and make a list of lessons you learned in 2009. These are perhaps things you attempted but did not succeed at, or maybe things you were too afraid to try and you missed the opportunity. Thinking back on what you accomplished last year can provide a spring board and some healthy momentum as you plan for 2010. Learning from the actions of last year can help not only determine new goals, but also to avoid pitfalls as you make your action plans.
It’s important to remember that even with the information I have been sharing, there is no one tried and true formula for achieving your goals. Specifically defining what your goals are, writing them down and breaking them into bite size tasks certainly helps and gives you a great advantage over those who do not do these things. But ultimately, successfully accomplishing your goals is somewhat of an art form. How you get from the starting gate to the finish line is up to you. You know yourself better than anyone. Passionately, creatively, discover how you can achieve the goals you set for yourself. Determine to succeed and let nothing get in your way. Review your goals regularly and adjust accordingly.
Finally, anything you wish to accomplish will be meaningless if it does not align with the character of Jesus. One easy question I ask myself is, “Is this something that would make Jesus smile?” My ultimate goal is to serve Him with every ounce of my life. I choose to accomplish this by spending regular time in prayer with Him, studying His life and the heart of God, and using my gifts to further His kingdom. It is a lifelong pursuit, but it is a pursuit of love. I will not stop until I achieve the life He intended me to live. We have one life, and it is short. How will you spend your days? What will you do with your life? What will you do for Him? A new year is upon us; dedicate yourself to Jesus and plan a powerful life of love for next year. This is the year that everything changes. This is the moment to decide. Let’s make 2010 the best year of our life.