Is Your Goal Setting Process Backwards?
In our last article we talked about 6 of the 7 Strategies for Effective Goal Setting. In this article we’re going to finish the discussion with strategy #7 as well as a 30-day challenge to jump start your goal setting.
I used this strategy after I retired to give my live new direction. I felt a bit lost because I wasn’t living with purpose. I had this gnawing feeling that I wasn’t doing what God wanted. I’ve always been good with the process of goal setting, so I didn’t really examine the method I was using as I tried to figure out what my new goals should be.
One day I woke up and realized that I was trying to set my goals backwards. I had been starting with what I wanted to do when I should have been starting with the gifts and talents God had given me and how I should use those to serve God and others. Within a day of this change of thinking, I was able to write down a new personal mission statement and long-term goals. Writing my book Attitude Determines Destiny was a step toward these new goals.
Goals can be energizing…
I’m an energetic person, and after this change, I simply took off. My life was full every day. When I had been thinking about what I wanted to do, I was limiting myself. When I thought about my gifts and talents, my goals became obvious. God made me a teacher; there is no question about that, so I thought being a professor was what I was supposed to do. That’s why I felt lost after I retired.
But when I thought about what God wanted me to do, I was energized all over: I realized that the years of teaching at the university were not the end goal God wanted for me. It was only part of my training to become the teacher of life skills, God’s true intention for me. We will never know true inspiration and passion until we do what we know we were designed for. What could be greater?
Please set some five-year, ten-year, and twenty-year goals for yourself. Remember that goals are not set in concrete. We should review them at least once a year and see if they need tweaking or a major overhaul.
No matter your age, setting these goals is an important exercise that will energize your life!
30-Day Goal Challenge
What keeps you from accomplishing your goals?
- I don’t want to write them down
- I’ll do it later
- I kind of know what I want anyway
- I don’t have enough time
Whatever your reason, it is an excuse. Next to belief in God, goal setting is probably one of the most important ways to succeed in life.
Try this 30-Day Challenge and you will make great progress towards your goals. Follow it for 30 days and I guarantee that it will change your life.
- Write down ten goals you would like to accomplish in the next one to five years.
- Pick the goal that you believe would make the greatest impact on your life if you were able to achieve it.
- On a separate piece of paper, write that goal at the top of the page. Below it, write ten things you can do to accomplish that goal.
- For the next month, spend at least one hour every day working toward this goal. Ignore the other goals for the next 30 days and work on this one exclusively.
- At the end of the month, look at where you are and compare that to where you were at the beginning. I guarantee that if you follow these instructions, your life will change significantly.
This exercise is very powerful because it demonstrates:
- The power of goals
- Our commitment to goals
- Our self-discipline
- What we can accomplish in just one hour a day
Earl Nightingale, one of the greatest motivational speakers and authors, stated that if we spend one hour a day at something we will be experts at it in less than three years. If we want to learn a foreign language or to play a musical instrument, this is how to do it.
Success is doing what God designed us to do. Unless we’re incredibly lucky and stumble into success, setting goals and working toward them is really the only way to a successful life. People may succeed without goals, but just imagine how much more successful they could be with strong goals.
This is an excerpt from my book Attitude Determines Destiny. In it you will learn how to get the most out of life by changing your attitude and making personal changes…changes that can lead you down a life-long path of personal growth.
As a motivational speaker, I conduct seminars and workshops based upon the ideas in my book. I will entertain and inspire your audiences, and I can customize my topics to fit your needs and desires.