Sunday, March 29, 2009

Goals Are More Important Than You May Think

The following is from the book 48 Days to the Work You Love by Dan Miller. (To find out more about Dan Miller and his 48 Days products, click here:


   Any stage in life can be an exciting time with many opportunities or a dreary time of confusion and entrapment. You may not be able to change your circumstances, buy you can decide that the circumstances won’t dominate you. You do have choices...

   So spend some time determining specific, worthwhile expectations that will make your life more meaningful. If you don’t have a written plan for your life, it may feel like you’re driving a car without having your hands on the wheel.

   On May 6, 1954, Roger Bannister ran the first under-4-minute mile in recorded history. Doctors said it could not be done—that the human heart would explode with such exertion. Six weeks later an Australian runner duplicated that feat. Approximately 1 year later, 8 college runners at 1 track meet all broke the 4-minute mile. What changed? Did humans suddenly evolve to be faster than ever before in history? Not likely. What did happen is that the level of expectation changed. What was believed to be impossible was proven to be possible. Most of us operate under clear beliefs about what we are able to accomplish. If those beliefs are changed, the results change as well…

   Are you a goal setter? Do you typically set goals at the first of the year? If not, why not? Goals give you a starting point and a destination. It is the easiest way to give meaningful direction to your life, which releases you to effectively use your talents.

   Identify 5-year goals then work backward to what you need to do today to make deposits in where you want to be 5 years from now. Be specific, creating quantifiable benchmarks to track your deposits of success. Saying you want to be a better mommy, have a better job, or learn a new language is admirable, but without listing steps of measurable, specific goals, you will not move toward any specific action. Then another year will pass without any real change.

I, Clarissa, can personally attest to this. For years I would write such goals as “grow spiritually”, “learn a new language”, “read two books a month”, and so on. Yet, it wasn’t until recently that I began to write down how I planned to achieve these goals. It was then that I started taking genuine steps to attain them.

For example, instead of saying my goal was to “grow spiritually”, my goal now says “pray for at least 30 minutes a day as well as read and study God’s Word for 30 minutes a day”. Instead of the goal “read two books a month”, now my goal says “read at least 1 chapter from a book per day”.

I don’t understand why, but physically writing down your goals seems to do something to the psyche. Maybe seeing them on paper makes them more of a reality than just contemplating on them? The Bible says, “And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it (Habakkuk 2:2 KJV).” I decided to make my vision plain by taking a few pictures and pasting them to a piece of paper followed by a scripture from the Bible. It was a simple act, but as big and wild as my vision may be, what I once thought was unattainable now feels quite the opposite.

What are your goals? What is your vision? Will you make it plain, and if so, how?

Write down clearly on tablets what I reveal to you, so that it can be read at a glance (Habakkuk 2:2 GNB).

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