Imagine God’s greatest creation (human) without a manual (the Bible)? Imagine you spending over $850 on an Iphone 7 without a detailed user guide? Imagine a blue chip company like Dangote Industries or a financial institution without a goal or strategy document? Now imagine your life or you living without goals or aspirations? Who are you?
Our sole existence and fulfillment on planet earth is driven majorly by what we are commissioned to do. Many people feel unfulfilled because they can’t seem to measure their success or get anywhere worthwhile in life after some years of dissatisfied living conditions. The main reason people feel this way is that they haven’t given enough time to thinking and seriously deliberating about what they want from life, when they even do, they have no measurable mechanism to track their performance and appraise it. After all, no one will set out on a journey without an idea of its final destination? Nothing worth having comes easy.
Mindtools defined Goal setting as an important method of: Deciding what you want to achieve in your life. Separating what’s important from what’s irrelevant, or a distraction. Motivating yourself. Building your self-confidence, based on successful achievement of goals. The Bible likens goal setting to “writing down the vision through revelation inspired by the Holy Spirit”. Wikipedia defines goal setting as process which “involves the development of an action plan designed to motivate and guide a person or group toward a goal”. In all of the definition provided, one critical element common to all is an “Action plan” or “Strategy“. My definition of a goal is an articulated action plan of a person.
Goals are achieved through carefully mapped strategies. Sounds militarized, “innit”. Organization have 5, 10, 20-50 years strategy document that detects their pathway as an institution. Its no news that we have companies that have lasted 20, 30 even 100 years stills around to say the least. Every human on the face of this earth needs a strategy document that guides his or her pathway through life. That’s the power of choice God has given to mankind if you want to last beyond your life time on earth.
Goal setting is a cerebral process. It’s a process of in-depth thinking about your ideal future, and for motivating yourself to turn your vision of this future into reality. The process of setting goals helps you choose where you want to go in life. By knowing precisely what you want to achieve, you know where you have to concentrate your efforts. You’ll also quickly spot the distractions that can, so easily, lead you astray. It’s very important to note, when we are setting goals or strategizing for the year 2017, we should set them prayerfully. Why I said prayerfully is this, the devil knows that if you are able to achieve 50% not even 100% of these goals, you will be resourceful in changing lives and destinies around you. What the devil does is to set distractions in our way. Distractions are a major killer of goals and aspirations. We need to deal with them.
My birthday is on the 27th of December, I always look forward to this day. Its gives me an opportunity to review my activities and draw a comparison over the course of the year. It’s not a party time for me really. I reflect on my goals – my achievements, short comings and challenges. It’s a day of self- appraisal, though I do this daily to address issues head-on.
Goals setting is an integral part of personal and organizational development. The act of doing so will keep you focused, motivated, organized and will shape your decision-making. The process of practice and articulating your goals will boost your confidence in attaining them.
The following steps can help you plan your goals to guide them to reality
Create some time to focus on you with no distractions. Make this a priority and follow through to a logical conclusion. Switch off your phone, attend to no visitor, no hang-out and prayerfully commit to giving goal-setting your undivided attention. You can go on a retreat in a cozy and calm environment.
Decide how you want to write down your goals. Do you want to write them on a notebook, electronic notebook, your computer or laptop? Choose a style that is the best fit.
- Adopt a Header for Each of the Goals.
Header such as Finance, Spiritual, Family, Career, Business, Investment etc. After doing this, take a break before articulating those goals.
- State your goals Clearly.
Make each goal truthful, specific and realistic. State what you are going to do, how you are going to do it and timelines to achieving them. Make your goal S.M.A.R.T:
S – Specific.
M – Measurable.
A – Achievable.
R – Results-focused.
T – Time-bound.
Now that you have articulated your goals, paste them somewhere you will see often. I have my goals pasted on the door of my wardrobe. I also have key ones flagging me every month on my reminder through my Calendar. Its important stay and be true to oneself and goals. If possible, have an accountability partner.
- Surround yourself with the best.
Surround yourself with friends and colleagues that share similar interests. You’ll develop a positive, supportive community that aligns with your own goals and ideals. Get insight from established industry players. Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble. Proverbs 13:20 NLT
Take time to break bad habits and decongest your life. Don’t be afraid of change, because change can propel you toward achieving your goals. Activities that does not have direct impact on your life and progress, STOP IT. Stay away from gossips, unsolicited courtesy visit etc.
- Be Positive and Expectant.
Nothing worth having comes easily, so remember to rejoice in the little victories along the way that bring you closer to your ultimate goals. There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off. Proverbs 23:18 NIV
I will like to close with this interesting experience. In 2013, I moved to Sales from Operations in a financial institution were I am. Some portfolios were handed over to me to manage and drive profitably. I had only 3months to end of the year to make a difference, hence, I need to Strategise how i am going to double or triple the numbers. This was a daunting task for me, being a “green horn” in Sales. I closed 2013 with low performance rating, that was the turning point. Here comes 2014, i need to rave up my numbers and make my portfolios profitable.
You will agreed with me that in Sales unlike Operations in most Banks, its all about what you bring to the table that matters. Its not activity but result driven. I had to look at the books(customers base) again and come up with strategy. The Strategy was to concentrate on the customers that will give the required numbers in Q1 and Q2, while working on others. This was drawn up prayerfully with the support of my boss and it was a success. The portfolio that was ranked the least in 2013, is the 1st in 2014 and still blazing the trail.
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