5 Steps to Goal Setting Success
Are you a goal-getter? I am and I believe you are too because you are reading this post on goal setting success!
Goal setting is motivating and essential to our success in almost every area of life. But to achieve our goals we need to spend time in preparation and planning. Fortunately, the Bible has numerous examples of individuals successfully reaching their goals due to their prayer, planning, and commitment.
Paul shares the importance of pressing on in pursuit of his spiritual goal in Philippians 3:13-14 ESV — “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
Think about Joseph of Egypt, a man esteemed for his ability to interpret dreams who served as an advisor to Pharaoh. Joseph foresaw that Pharaoh’s dream meant a famine would come to the land. Joseph could have simply done the job of an interpreter; however, he went beyond his role and helped Pharaoh prepare for this catastrophe through prayer and planning. Joseph’s contribution was instrumental in providing seven years of plenty for the people as opposed to seven years of famine. Doing God’s work is rewarding!
Although goal setting may seem a simple task to some, actually achieving the goal may be harder than you think.
Why is that?
Because you will have difficulty achieving your goals unless you: (1) know what it is that you want, (2) are passionate about your goal, and (3) have a realistic plan of action. Your answers to these three questions are what makes the difference between wishes and achievable goals.
Last week, I shared the importance of including God in your planning as you seek to achieve your God-given goals. This week, I’d like to share 5 proven steps to help you succeed with goal attainment.
1. Know your why.
Proverbs 24:27 ESV states: “Prepare your work outside; get everything ready for yourself in the field, and after that build your house.“
To “build your house,” you need a plan. You cannot just show up one day and start building. You need a plan, and this plan includes the items or steps you will need to build your home, including the why you are building a home. This is true for a home, business, or ministry.
Ask yourself what achieving the goal really looks like? Be as specific as possible about your desired end result. What are your intentions and motivations for building the home? Achievable goals cannot be attained without clarity, so reflect on why you want to accomplish the goal.
If your goal is to create a ministry, what will that look like? Who will you serve? Will your ministry be an online platform or a local venture for your community? And know why you desire to build a ministry. Knowing your why is the first step.
Begin by writing out your goal for clarity, the more detail the better. This step can take time, so it’s important to begin in prayer seeking God’s direction. Without clear direction, you may lose the focus required to achieve your goal.
2. Be willing to pay the price.
“For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?” Luke 14:28 ESV,
Success takes dedicated planning and effort. In the beginning, you have your idea, a rough concept. Then you develop a set of plans or blueprints – a guide map to assist you in reaching your goal.
But there is a price to be paid for achieving your goals, and it is up to you to determine if the end result is worth the price. Knowing your why will assist you in determining whether or not you are willing to pay the price.
As you begin, be realistic in your planning and consider the following: Do you have the resources to accomplish the goal? What type of commitment will be required of you and your family? Is your current season the right time to start on your goal?
I like to ask my coaching clients to map out what this actually looks like for them and their families. Would achieving this goal mean less time with family? If writing a book is your dream, how much time will be required of you? Are you in a position where you have children or parents depending on you? How will you adjust your schedule to meet your current obligations? Perhaps you are in a position to hire someone to assist you with your responsibilities. If not, how will you balance your responsibilities as you pursue your goal?
Spend time in prayer and be honest with yourself when you answer these questions. Your answers will reveal if you are willing and able to pay the price to accomplish your goal.
3. Be Consistent.
“The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5 NIV
Consistency is key. I know you’ve heard this phrase before, but it is so very true, and many times consistency is the most overlooked and the most challenging step in your journey of achieving your goal.
I share with my coaching clients who are working towards a goal to spend 30 consecutive days taking one small step (completing one action) each day. It is a fact, your daily routine and habits are critical to your success.
Goals are achieved by taking one small action step after another. As you complete each step, you take the next step creating momentum and making measurable progress.
Each day, choose one item from your goal action plan and make it a priority. It can be as simple as spending 30 minutes a day writing for those who desire to finish that book. Or walking daily for 30 minutes for a wellness goal.
There’s power in taking daily action steps and you will find the consistency helps you take bigger steps as you move forward. Stay focused on your daily actions. Do not allow your thoughts to put off for tomorrow what you can do today!
Commit to taking one small action each day, your actions will make a difference.
4. Be Open to Adjustments.
“Always let him lead you, and he will clear the road for you to follow.” Proverbs 3:6 CEV
As you pursue your goal, take time to reflect on your progress. It’s easy to get off track or be uncertain about the path you are taking to achieve your goal.
Evaluating your progress allows you the opportunity to determine what is working and what is not working. Although you began your journey with a well mapped out plan, detours are inevitable. And, as we know with our Google Maps, rerouting is sometimes necessary to reach our destination. It’s okay to change directions. I refer to this as a pivot, and great leaders understand that pivots are essential to their success.
Have you ever observed a situation where the leader received some information, and instead of assessing the validity of the information, ignored the feedback and continued to move forward? Successful leaders recognize the significance of scanning the horizon for possible issues or concerns, and they take steps to modify the plan if necessary.
Small or large adjustments can have a significant impact on our success. Ignoring the warning flags may have enormous repercussions down the road if we are not careful with our decisions.
Evaluate your progress as you move forward and assess any potential issues that may require a pivot or reroute for you to reach your goal.
5. Find a Mentor!
“Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.” Proverbs 11:14 ESV
Don’t go it alone. Find a mentor, an advisor, or a confidant to support you and provide accountability.
Mentors provide insight and knowledge from their first-hand experience. I can attest to the value a mentor offers to a mentee in pursuit of a goal.
Early in my career, I was blessed to receive guidance from a master mentor in the field of private school admissions. This individual helped me navigate the often changing admissions landscape by sharing their knowledge gleaned from years of experience in the field of admissions. I contribute my career advancement and success to this individual’s support, encouragement, and accountability.
I also encourage women to have a few mentors as opposed to one mentoring relationship. Mentors take different roles based on our needs. I was also blessed with a group of mentors that attributed to my success with faith, family, work, and studies. These women mentors continue to serve as spiritual mothers, career advisors, and peer mentors, illustrating the significance of the need for women mentoring.
Throughout my years of studying the impact of mentoring, I found success is often tied to mentoring relationships. A bonus to this relationship is that mentors effectively communicate expectations and unspoken norms, which are not always clear. This knowledge helps alleviate confusion and increases the confidence of the mentee.
It is important to give a voice to the many spiritual mentors who commit to the success of others for “where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.” Proverbs 11:14 ESV.
I encourage you to seek out a mentor to assist you in your journey. This relationship will offer you the support, encouragement, and guidance needed for your success.
Then, Just Do It!
I hope you put into practice these 5 steps that will lead you to successfully achieve your goals. Be certain of your why it’s essential to your goal attainment. Determine what you want and then commit to it with all your heart and remember — you can’t just dream about it, you must take action.
Accomplishing your goal begins with prayer and the decision to go after your God-given dream. It’s not for the faint of heart. God does not promise an easy crossing, but He does promise that if we rely on Him, He will give us the desires of our hearts.
“Make God the utmost delight and pleasure of your life, and he will provide for you what you desire the most.” Psalm 37:4 TPT