Setting goals from a new perspective and how I learned to follow God’s plan, not my own

Goal setting can be intimidating and make you feel like you’ve got 100 tons of pressure on you to meet all your goals and then some. Once we set a goal and put it on paper or into words, we think we are then required to follow through with it, no turning back or changing routes along the way.

Don’t get me wrong, the motivation of setting goals is powerful and when harnessed the right way. Setting goals gives you clarity, focus, intention, and purpose to move forward through the year. It helps you to see what really matters to you and (best of all) what doesn’t.

But it can also blind us from seeing what we really need to see when we look at them the wrong way. This year, I am approaching my goals with a different perspective and striving to see God above all of it.

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What’s this new perspective you ask?

I’m so glad you asked because I am dying to tell you! It wasn’t too long ago that I gave up on my goals completely. Something just didn’t feel right and I felt like I was forcing my own plan instead of waiting to see what God had planned for me. Above all else, my goal is to follow God and his plan for my life, and I was letting my goals and my plans get in the way of that too often.

Instead of trying to figure it all out, get all the answers, and plan my entire year on January 1st, I am taking it one day at a time, praying for God to show me the way, and leaping forward with faith that He won’t let me fall. I am still setting goals and making plans, but with a looser grip.

Why I am shifting my view

Earlier this year, I found my vision clouded by my to-do list and spent too much time trying to just get things done rather than looking up to see what God put in front of me that day. I was working hard to get us all back into a routine after the newborn fog wore off from having a baby last Fall and it was easy to go through the day just going down the list from one thing to the next.

But then I realized that my days felt empty even though they were always full of things to do. After reading a few powerful entries in my devotional, I knew what it was. I needed more of God and less of me. So I stopped worrying about meeting all the goals and checking all the boxes and all of the sudden the days weren’t so empty anymore.

How I do this with my goals and my everyday life

When setting my goals this year, I have put more emphasis on keeping it simple. I am trying to set fewer, more meaningful and broader goals so that I can leave room for God to do His thing throughout the year. I am praying for each goal I set to know that I am headed in the right direction, but I am lifting the pressure of actually completing the goals if God leads me a different direction. And most importantly, I am starting each day with the same prayer that I want to pray for you too:

Father, help me to see what you want me to see today. Help me to loosen the grip of my schedule and to do list and make more room for you to do your work through me. I pray that I can go through today with an open heart and open arms ready to do what you want me to do.

My hope is that we can enter 2018 with a fresh perspective and set our goals with an openness that allows us to get more from them than we could have ever “planned” ourselves.