The devil is not in the details, but fulfillment of dreams is. Highly successful people have written goals for every key area of their life. A great place to start is your mental “I should” list. What are you neglecting that would be easy to do? Some areas to consider would be:
- Relationship with God: Peter, asked Jesus, “what about him, Lord?” Jesus replied, “If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? As for you, follow me” (John 21:21 – 22). We tend to judge ourselves on our intentions and others on their actions, but Jesus was saying, “it’s your responsibility to keep Me first in your life,” and our goals should reflect that. Billions are spent on time management as time is often referred to as your greatest asset. Recently I read a compelling case that health was our greatest asset. No doubt both are extremely valuable, however if I had to label the “greatest asset,” nothing remotely comes close to knowing Jesus Christ as Lord. I would not trade time or health for that. Your goals and priorities should be valued as such. Stephen Covey says, “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities”.
- Relationships: Good questions to keep in mind are, “Am I contributing or always taking from relationships? Am I an asset or liability? Do I encourage others consistently? Do I love others?”
- Health and Fitness: If we are priceless, am I respecting that value with exercise and eating habits? What does being healthy look like for me?
- Finances: In my opinion, there are six major things to consider when looking at financial goals.
- 75% of Forbes 400 said being debt-free was the single greatest way to build wealth.
- A recent study of worldwide savings habits discovered that people who devised a financial plan had nest eggs that were 245% larger than non-planners. These planners also managed to save three times more than non-planners in assets.
- Be willing to face the numbers. Worrying is often not fact-based, but ignorance-based. “Know the state of your flocks, and put your heart into caring for your herds” (Proverbs 27:23).
- The dollar earned and invested by the ditch digger grows the same amount as the dollar earned and invested by the Wall Street banker. Compounding investments do not discriminate.
- Don’t be afraid to adopt proven systems that work. An example would be Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University.
- Tithe to God’s house. “If you do, says the Lord of heavens armies, I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test!” (Malachi 3:10). Giving is the action for love, it destroys greed, and God will magnify your efforts.
- Environment: I once knew an executive who would make a point to walk by the car of the person he was about to interview. His theory was if the car was dirty and missing a hubcap, it told a bigger story of what he might expect from the interviewee’s work ethic. Sometimes on a city block, something as minor as an unrepaired window can cause people to conclude no one cares or is in charge and a sense of anarchy will spread. Crimes decreased dramatically on the New York subway simply by the initiative to keep the subway cars clean. The passengers were the same, but the environment changed them. A study for hand washing found that people were less likely to wash their hands when faced with a dirty sink, whereas a clean sink increased the length of time spent hand washing. Your environment speaks volumes – not only to others, but to ourselves as well.
- Time Management: You should never start the day until it is finished on paper, molding your day around activities to achieve your goals. Operate your day on a schedule. As you begin to respect your time, others will follow suit and you will have less distractions and become more efficient. When making your schedule, always ask yourself, “What is the most valuable use of my time right now?” Look for ways to systemize reoccurring work tasks and you will reap freedom and big returns.
- Career: Only 3% of the workforce has written goals, and that 3% earns more than the remaining 97% combined. Begin to look at where you want to go in your career. Set goals to develop practices such as using “to do lists”. What materials should you start studying? How you dress matters. Most interviews and first impressions are determined within the first 30 seconds. “People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). So we should try and make the outside a reflection of what’s happening on the inside. William Shakespeare said “the apparel oft proclaims the man”. Caring for your appearance tells others you will most likely care for their interests as well. As Donald Trump says, “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have”.
- Leisure: A goal fulfilled life can be exciting, yet tiring. It’s important to have downtime scheduled in order to look forward to a reward. Set a goal to always have your next vacation planned. It will keep you going when times get tough.
- Personal Development: How many books are you going to read next month or year? What conferences will you attend? Who will you reach out to that you can glean wisdom from? You will develop personally greater and faster than you ever thought possible, but it will require a plan and goals.
This is the part where I’m suppose to ask you a profound question about what was said. Not this time. Let’s just talk if you want, any comments or questions?