Having spent over 5 years under Zig Ziglar’s mentorship and even teaching goal setting at Brookhaven Community College in Dallas, I have learned much about goal setting. Also by God’s grace, I have reached every major goal I have set in my life. I think the biggest mistake many people make is by starting with a goal rather than a vision. Let me explain, take one of Steve Covey’s 7 Habits and “begin with the end in mind!”
Ask yourself WIIFM? (What’s in it for me? Clearly understand the benefits for you. Is this your goal and something you can believe in? Does this goal honor God? Will it bring you closer to Christ or take you further away? Spend time in prayer before you start the process, is it in His will? Remember Psalms 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD, and He will give you the desires of your hear. NAS
Next, before you set any goal think about the day you actually reach your goal. How will you feel? What will it look like? Take time to live the future moment in your mind. How will you celebrate, who will celebrate with you? What are the benefits to achieving the goal? Once you have a clear vision of the accomplished goal with all the rewards and benefits you can start the process. The rest of the steps are important but if you start here you are well on your way to reaching your goal, every time!
Now identify all the road blocks or obstacles you will face and how you will overcome them. Think about what you are willing to give up to reach your objective. Who, besides yourself will be affected by your sacrifices? Too often, if you are not prepared, the first roadblock you encounter on your journey can lead to discouragement. Some even give up! Your clear vision of the goal is what will motivate to press forward and persevere!
In goal writing always identify the people that will assist you in reaching your goal. Also list the new skills or talents you will need to develop to reach your goal.
A critical step in the process is now to develop an action plan, break it down daily if you can. Be specific on what actions or step you will take to move toward your goal.
Finally set the date for accomplishing your goal. Now put all of this in writing and get to work!
Always write your goal in the first person, present tense. I am, I have, I will. Also write your goal using SMART: Specific, Measurable, Aligned with your Core values, Realistic & Time bound.
Many plans are in a man’s heart, but the counsel of the Lord will stand! Proverbs 19:21