In order to be successful, everyone should navigate their life according to a set of goals. Goals define for us what constitutes success in our lives. The great motivational speaker Zig Ziglar once said, “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time.” If we don’t set any goals, we will never be able to distinguish whether or not we have achieved success. Goals are always tied to choices. In order to attain goals that we set for ourselves, there are always choices that must be made in order to attain them. If I set a goal of losing weight, I have to make choices regarding my diet and what I am going to eat. If I make the wrong choices, it will definitely have an impact on the level of success I am able to have in reaching my goal of losing weight. If I set a goal of reducing my debt, I have to make choices of how I am going to spend and budget my money. Any goal we will ever make in life will have to be accompanied by a set of choices.
One thing that we must take into consideration is that if we do not set goals, it is like casting seed to the wind. The seed will fall wherever the wind takes it, and it is not being deliberately placed where we want it to go. So often people do this in life. Some people never set any goals for themselves, so the choices that are always tied to goals are not there. Because they are not making choices tied to goals, they are allowing others to make choices for them. People without goals end up being torn between many choices that are presented to them by others, and end up not making choices for themselves. I love what the Bible says in James Chapter 1. In this chapter of the Bible, the writer James tells us “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that gives to all men liberally, and upbraides not; and it shall be given him.But let him ask in faith not wavering. For he that wavers is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive anything of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all ways.” Wow! How profound is that? If we don’t have goals, we don’t make our own choices, and we allow ourselves to drift about on the sea of life based on decisions that are made for us by others, we are double minded. James says that a double minded man is unstable in all his ways!
So how do you set goals? First you need to decide what you want out of life. What is the one thing that you feel would define success for you? Maybe for some the goal would be a better marriage. Remember, goals are ALWAYS tied to choices. So if you want a better marriage, there are choices you will have to make in order to achieve your goal. You may have to CHOOSE to be more patient, listen more, compromise, and admit mistakes. For others, the goal may be to lose weight. Again, in order to achieve the goal, choices will have to be made. If losing weight is your goal, you will have to CHOOSE to eat the right foods that are nutritious and low in calorie. You will have to CHOOSE to exercise. Get this in your head…. goals are ALWAYS tied to choices. The key is that you have to decide what it is that you want. Make a goal for yourself and stick to it. Paulo Coelho once said, “Whenever you want to achieve something, keep your eyes open, concentrate and make sure you know exactly what it is you want. No one can hit their target with their eyes closed.”
I have a few recommendations about setting goals that I think you may find helpful along your journey to success. My recommendations are as follows:
Set goals that are reasonable– Now don’t get me wrong here. I am not suggesting to not dream big. I am simply suggesting to not set yourself up for failure. I could set a goal of getting a master’s degree in the three years, but that would be a foolish goal to set. It simply is not a reasonable or practical goal, especially since I have no college background. Know your strengths and weaknesses and set goals that require you to stretch yourself and require discipline, but that are realistic.
Be careful and selective who you share your goals with– Not everyone that you share your dreams and goals with will be supportive of you. Some may criticize you and try to convince you that you will never be able to reach your goal. The only people that will discourage you from pursuing your goals and dreams are those people who either have no goals and dreams of their own, or they have them and don’t have the guts to pursue them.
Find an accountability partner– Find a friend in whom you can trust and depend upon that you can share your dream and goal with. This person may be a spouse, a minister, or Pastor at your church. Whoever you choose, choose wisely. Having an accountably partner will help you because it will give you someone who knows your goal and has your best interest at heart. This person can be there for you when you get discouraged, and it doesn’t seem to you that you will ever reach your goal.
Put God first in all that you do– This is perhaps the most important key of it all. God is very aware of what we desire and the troubles that we face. If we place our faith and trust in him, He can do things in us and through us that we would have never imagined were possible. In the book of Psalms in the Bible it says, “ Trust in the Lord and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shall be fed. Delight thyself also in the Lord, and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust in Him also; and He will bring it to pass.”
I hope some of the thoughts that I have shared about goals have inspired you and motivated you to get busy and start making some goals. The great C.S. Lewis was quoted as saying, “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” So I encourage you…set a goal, have faith in God, and watch your life evolve into the wonderful story that you hoped it would be!
Thanks for reading!
Until next time,