New Year’s is fast approaching, and with it my annual tradition of goal setting. I’m a fan of goals, but it seems every year they’re becoming eerily (wearily?) similar.
This year needs to be different….
I want to get it right – so that next December I don’t say “I didn’t make a lot of progress” or “so many missed opportunities.” You know….the gap between “how my year should be if I really live by faith” vs. what really ends up happening.
I suppose this year the sense of urgency is increasing. It pains me to say this, but in just a few weeks I’ll be able to order off that “special menu” many restaurants have. You know, the one with the smaller portions and lower prices. I shudder to think of the word “senior” and me being used in the same sentence. It’s time to get serious and kick things into high gear.
Instead of focusing on the same old goals, what if we each picked at least one item that would be revolutionary in our lives? One that would hit at the undercurrent of dissatisfaction, and turn life back into a great adventure? Would we dare do that? Would I dare do that?
That implies change – with potentially big consequences. It sort of makes me feel like the character Flick in that scene from “A Christmas Story” where Schwartz dares him to stick his tongue onto a frozen pole:
“Well I double-DOG-dare ya!”
“Now it was serious. A double-dog-dare. What else was there but a “triple dare ya”? And then, the coup de grace of all dares, the sinister triple-dog-dare.” “I TRIPLE-dog-dare ya!” “Schwartz created a slight breach of etiquette by skipping the triple dare and going right for the throat!”
– Ralphie, Narrator and Schwartz in A Christmas Story
That’s what I need for 2014 – a “triple-dog-dare ya” goal. Bold and daring. (But hopefully without leaving my tongue stuck to a pole!)
I decided to seek wisdom from the masters. So here, my friends, in a nutshell, is pretty much everything one needs to know about goal-setting:
Diana Translation – I have way too many demands on my life – and I’ve learned it’s impossible to do them all well. It’s time to make some choices based on God’s Word and the gifts, talents and desires He has built into me.
Diana Translation – Just because I CAN do something, doesn’t mean I should. How can I better align myself with God’s plan for my life? If I weren’t afraid of failure, what would I do?
#3 – “Setting a goal is not the main thing. It is deciding how you will go about achieving it and staying with that plan.” Tom Landry
Diana Translation – Intentions without follow-through are cheap. Don’t just build goals, build solid plans to make sure you reach them.
And so for me, this is the year of the “triple-dog-dare-ya” goal……
While I’m not totally done with my goal-planning (after all, it’s not January yet), these themes are emerging for my 2014:
1. First Priority – Free up a significant amount of time to make room for the things God would have me focus on during this period in my life.
2. Adjust my personal and ministry priorities and choices based on what really matters – especially those things that are aligned with the gifts and abilities God has given me. This could mean many things, but for sure it will require more willingness than ever to trust God and “go out on a limb” to obey His leading, and then see what He does!
3. Share my goals and plans with a critical few who can provide wise counsel and hold me accountable.
Well, that’s where I’m at in my 2014 goal-setting. Thoughts or advice? What about you? What bold goal would make a big difference in your 2014? I’d love to hear from you!