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I don’t know about you, but I have been considering some goals for 2014.  This comes from turning off the radio and thinking during my long commute each day.  I have been evaluating this last year and boiling down what I want to see happen in 2014.  What will move the ball down the field? 

I separated my goals into categories because it all gets jumbled together and I am unable to focus on the end result.  My categories are; personal, kid’s ministry and Mr. Mark’s Classroom.  Do yourself a favor and decide about your categories before you start.Picture1

Evaluate your last year without dwelling on it and getting depressed.  I recommend writing down a strength and a weakness in each category.  You can ponder everything in between but if you have a tendency to get stuck in the pondering, set a timer and move on.  The past is the past.  We live and we learn.  Now set your eyes down the road and buckle your seat belt.  It’s time to go!

I recommend you Write it Down, Break it Down & Take it down. 

1. Write down the goals.  I suggest only one or two specific goals.  Too many goals will divide your attention and take too much energy.  Some of goals might actually be action points to achieve the ultimate goal anyway.  I wrote down my goal and stuck it on a yellow post-it where I would see it every time I sat down at my computer.  I want to stay focused.

2. Break down the goal into action steps.  When you pursue a meaningful goal, it is exhilarating. Accomplishing it, even more so. What do you need to put in place to begin moving the needle?  This is why we need to write down a set of motivations for each goal identifying why it is important and what is at stake. What needs to happen in my daily routine?  Be specific and write how you will begin practicing these daily disciplines to help you get your goals.

3. Take it down.  As you push yourself through the mundane and lesser exciting moments of goal achievement, you need to see yourself moving forward and not getting stuck.  When driving in traffic, I always say, “Doesn’t matter how slow the traffic is moving as long as we are still rolling.”  No one wants to sit and wait.  If you find yourself waiting on someone or something, set that aside and begin work on another facet of the goal.  It might turn out to be more productive anyway.   I encourage you to stretch out of your comfort zone. Safe goals are boring goals. Unless we set our goals outside our comfort zone, we won’t find them compelling enough to actually follow through and achieve them. Avoid unrealistic goals, but remember they should be challenging.

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