Thursday, January 7, 2016

2016 | Thoughts on goals & growth

I confessed to my journal this morning that I hate making New Year's resolutions.

Yes, it's true.

I am not a fan of inconsistency, and that seems to be all I am with New Year's resolutions. Seriously, I can not think of one of the tons of resolutions I've made that I have actually followed through with. Every year I drag my feet to set some goals for myself because I know they will all be out the window by March mid-January. It's frustrating.

So last year, I didn't set any. Purposefully. Instead I picked a word for the year, which seemed great. I think my exact words were "less guilt, more intentionality."

But that didn't really work out either. Dream was my word and dreaming was my goal. But that didn't really happen.

Honestly, 2015 felt kind of stagnant. I don't feel like I moved forward or made much progress in many areas of my life. And I am simply NOT okay with that.

So, this year I am setting a growth plan. This was introduced to me by our church staff. It starts with "statements of purpose," or big picture ideas then breaks them down into what I call the "daily details," or measurable goals to accomplish the big picture. This method kind of brings together resolutions and the word of the year to create a comprehensive life growth plan. You can see mine below.

A word of the year is great, if it works for you. It didn't work for me. I'm a detail person and I really have to break my goals down into the daily, bite-sized pieces if I want to see progress.

However, in the midst of this I realize that these goals of mine aren't meant for just checking off a list. If the only reason I strive to accomplish them is so that I can put that red check mark in the box next to it, I'm missing it and these goals become chores. And I think that's where the breakdown happens for me each year. I stop striving for life change and only see daily expectations.

I don't want to pray every day just to say I did it, I want to pray so that I can continue to learn to be led by the Spirit. I don't want to read Scripture just to feel like a good Christian, I want to be in my Bible to see and cultivate the huge dreams God has and how they can become my own. I don't want to open my home so people can think I'm a great hostess, I want to open my home to create opportunities to share God's love and hope with my community. I don't want a check-list, I want life growth.

While I'm still nervous that I'll totally blow it on these (and believe me, some will fall through the cracks at various times throughout the year), I'm setting them anyway.

"Where there is no vision, the people perish." - Proverbs 29:18

I don't want to be visionless. What about you?

 I have them pinned up in my office to see every day so that they stay right there in front of me, before my eyes. A daily reminder of where I want to see growth in my life. Hopefully, if I keep them where I  can see them everyday (and with a great, mighty dose of prayer & Holy Spirit power), I won't loose steam. So yeah, feel free to ask me how it's going come April.

And by the way, I'm sticking with dreaming this year. I still want to cultivate this discipline in my life. I desperately want to call myself a God-dreamer - to capture His heart and make it a reality, not through my capabilities but through His. So here's to dreaming in 2016!

What will 2016 look like for you?

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