Setting Goals for 2016, Part I

When it comes to setting goals and making plans, my enthusiasm is boundless. I love this time of year. Christmas is past. The current year is reviewed and we are looking ahead at the things we want to accomplish in the coming year. New Year’s always feels so fresh and exciting to me. A new year with endless possibilities.

When it comes to setting goals, I can come up with an impressive list in 10 minutes. But setting  realistic goals? Not so much.  How many years have I created a list of goals that were vague or (if specific) not realistic? I am wonderful at setting lofty goals. I am a classic upholder, so I do follow through with many of the goals I set…I just stress myself (and everyone around me) in the process.

Several months ago I listened to a podcast where the speaker insisted that you shouldn’t set yearly goals. You should set goals for the next 2-3 months. Apparently we are more likely to accomplish something in a short timeframe than in a year. While I see her point, I still like the idea of setting yearly goals and breaking them down into monthly goals.

I’m beginning the process of planning my goals for 2016 with a brain dump. I have a note on my iphone devoted to any ideas that pop into my head. Everything I can imagine wanting to do next year. At this point I don’t know if 10 people could actually accomplish everything I’ve listed. The paring down will be brutal.

This year I’ve been inspired to not only have a list of goals, but to find a word for the year. My friend Julie recently posted that her word is “care” and what the word symbolizes for her.  It made me stop and think – what is my word? I’m still deliberating. But I love the idea of simplifying my big list down to one word that captures what I’m truly trying to accomplish.

So this week I want to find a word for the year and set goals that are specific, measurable and realistic…the key word being realistic.  Even though life feels slightly less chaotic now that Lynleigh is past the true baby stage, I still feel like I’m somewhat in survival mode.

As I’ve been thinking about the upcoming year I’m reminded of the statement, “We make our plans but God directs our steps.” I want to make my plans as I trust that God will direct me in the coming year. This stage of life is so filled with the very immediate needs of 3 adorable little people, but I still want to grow as an individual. Even though I have certain limitations, I don’t want to be stagnate.

How do you set goals? Do you have a process you follow every year?



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