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Why Bother Setting Goals in 2017?

Andy AndrewsIt’s time to think about those New Year Resolutions and goal setting…

I have sat in the same room with some truly inspirational people like Neil Armstrong, Zig Ziglar, Andy Andrews, and Jim Lovell to name a few.  Of course I use the word room rather liberally, since there were a few other thousand people with me!

My husband and I have attended a star-studded annual Mastermind conference for more than 10 years.  Three days of phenomenal speakers, interesting workshops, nonstop motivation and goal setting.  It’s like drinking from a fire hydrant.  Yet some people I know are skeptical about the lasting effects of motivational conferences like this.  They wonder how many times does one really need to hear “think positive,” “never give up,” and “set ambitious goals?”

As my husband loves to say…“We leak.”

I constantly need to be redirected, reenergized, re-inspired and put back on track.  Every time I’ve gone to a seminar with an expectation to hear God’s voice, He speaks ever so clearly.  The Book of Proverbs tells us that “wisdom calls aloud” (Proverbs 1:20).

I’ve been given a treasure at these conferences that I’d like to pass along.  Every year, I sit with 5,000 of like-minded people in a convention center.  Beautiful classical music plays and everyone journals.  I’ve been taught to set goals in five areas of life:

  • Spiritual
  • Family
  • Business
  • Financial
  • Personal

I love these five areas in goal setting because they encourage balance.  If my spiritual life is packed with great Bible studies and service opportunities, but my husband feels ignored, something is wrong.  And if my kids have all the attention in the world but I haven’t prayed in days, my priorities are out of line.

So I write down annual goals, which is really the easy part.  Accomplishing the goals…now that’s a different story.  Maybe that’s why so many of us drag our feet about writing goals because we figure, why waste time writing something down that we’re not going to actually accomplish?

Our culture doesn’t exactly exalt commitment and a disciplined life.  It’s more like “Why make a promise you’re just going to end up breaking?” or “Bail out when the going gets tough.”

This hardly sounds like what the Apostle Paul wrote about in Colossians 3:23, “Whatever you do, do it heartily as to the Lord.”

20160922_130430So with a little healthy fear, I’ll set goals once again with my husband.  In about six months, we’ll go to dinner and review our progress.  Sometimes there’s no progress at all (did I really write that goal?) and other times there are great victories to celebrate.  Either way, we’re growing and that’s exciting.

One of my favorite sayings about dreaming and goal setting is from Brian Buffini, the man who created the Mastermind conference I’ve attended.  He says, “We overestimate what we can accomplish in one year, and underestimate what we can do in ten.”

Read that one more time.

Wow, that inspires me to dream big.  Where do you want to be in 10 years?  In 20?

When your goals don’t come to fruition right away, don’t beat yourself up about it.  Just keep taking baby steps forward.

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