Getting toward the New Year is for many of us the time to focus on (new) resolutions. We check what didn’t go well in the past year and look forward to what we can improve in the New Year. New Year resolutions are good… but pledges would be even better if we work on them throughout the year, not just at the end. We will receive the benefits of goal setting when we are committed to them from beginning to end.
Goal setting is important in everything we do, individually and corporately. Goal setting is not just important at the workplace and in organizations. We can also reap the benefits in our personal lives if we commit to goal setting and goal getting. I believe God gave us the capacity to work on goals. If we do so together with God, we will automatically align our lives with God and His goals/purpose for our lives.
Sometimes we question ourselves if it even matters to set goals and create new resolutions. Isn’t that working on our own desires instead of God’s? We can wonder, is goal setting really important?
What is the importance of goals in your life?
Goals give us direction in life; something to look forward to, and something to work toward. While it can be fun to live without direction in the short term, God has wired us in such a way that in the long term we need a purpose and direction. Goals give us that sense of direction and purpose.
Goals serve as the compass of our lives. It is important to have goals, so we have a vision to chase. Without it, we would wander around without direction and without a clue about life. God does not want us to live aimlessly. He wants us to be focused and determined in life.
The Bible has many verses about making plans and goals. We need a vision to look forward to prevent drifting around and wandering off the path of life.
“Where there is no vision, the people perish.”Proverbs 29:18 (KJV)
Goals also help us reach our dreams. It is OK to dream, as long as those dreams are in line with God’s will for our lives. When we express our dreams as goals, it will help us achieve our dreams.
“Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires.”Psalm 20:4 (NLT)
When we align our lives with God’s will for us and work on our goals together with Him, He has promised to give us the desires of our hearts. We will reap the benefits of goal setting when we do that together with God.
What are the 7 reasons goals are important?
Goal setting is important for all of us, whether we are students, teachers, businesswomen, employees, athletes, homeschooling moms, etc. Goals give us a vision to work toward and a reason to do what we do.
You should not undervalue the importance of having goals in your life. They give us the motivation, the stamina, the hope, and the expectation to go on until we receive what we are looking for. This also means we should clearly know what we want. And that is where the benefits of clear goal setting come into the picture.
Knowing our goals in our minds is good, but writing them down is even more beneficial.
Habakkuk 2 verses 2 and 3 (NKJV) states:
“Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, it will not tarry.”
So, what is the importance of goals in your life? Why is goal setting important?
Well, goals are essential to:
- Give direction to our lives,
- Assure we are the ones choosing the direction of our life, not others, not fate, not the media, etc.,
- Motivate us,
- Make sure we get what we want from life,
- Save time,
- Reduce stress,
- Give a sense of accomplishment.
1. Goals give direction to our lives
When setting goals, it is vital to involve God in the process if we want to reap the benefits of goal setting. We can believe what we want is good, but God knows better what’s good for our lives.
Goals work as a path-marker in front of us. They enable us to run the race of life with conviction and to know which path to choose when we reach a crossroads in our lives. We need to ask God in prayer and by reading His Word for His direction in and for our lives. It is then that we will reap the satisfaction of what we do.
“Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.”Proverbs 3:6 (NLT)
2. Personal goals enable us to be determined
It is often easy to let others set our direction for us. We take a job because family or friends point us in that direction and then we follow the dictates of our bosses. We move in other directions because popular culture or the media tells us to do so.
If we do not set our own goals, we will find it too easy to follow a path set by others. This can lead to stress and unhappiness. We have a greater chance of happiness and fulfillment following our own path and pursuing our own goals.
3. Goals keep us motivated
While goals certainly give our lives direction, they also provide the motivation to get us through difficult times and choices. Perhaps going to college at night while working full time or being a homeschooling mom may be stressful and difficult in the short term, but in the long run, being able to pursue the professional goals we desire will make it worthwhile.
4. Goals enable us to get what we need
A benefit of goal setting is that goals serve as the destination for what we really want out of life. Some people measure goals in terms of money or material goods, while others measure goals in terms of time or freedom. As daughters of the most High King, goals benefit us to receive what God wants us to receive out of life.
If we don’t have goals outlined that suit our unique perspective on life, it is easy to become sidetracked by life and others.
5. Goals are time-savers
Another benefit of goals is that they can help us save time. When your ‘To Do’ list becomes too long and your calendar too full, then you can simply compare your goals to the list. What items help you achieve your goal? What items are necessary for your goal? Scratch off the rest as unimportant.
6. Goals as stress-reducers
Just as goals save time, they also reduce stress because using your goals to focus your life and choices makes it easier to make those choices. Should you take that new position at work? How does it match your goals?
7. Goals increase your achievement level
Goals give you a measurable sense of accomplishment. Every goal you achieve, in fact, every step you make toward that goal, can give you a boost of energy and momentum to keep going. Each success powers you toward the next level of success.
Goals increase your achievement level and propel you in a high level of personal growth.
The ultimate benefit of setting goals as a Christian
Goals help us look forward, not backward or even sideward. Goals have the benefit of keeping us on track and our eyes forward to the prize. We can set our own prizes in life for which we run. We also have an overall race to run, the race of our Christian life. When setting our personal goals, it is vital to keep this overall goal in mind.
“Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”Philippians 3:13-14 (NKJV)
Paul viewed his experience as similar to a runner’s. He did not look back. This does not mean he refused to remember things that had happened to him. He meant he did not rest in his heritage or in his past attainments. He had abandoned the unworthy goals he had pursued in the past. Now he had a new goal toward which he was looking and running.
The word goal here literally means goal marker, the object at the end of the course on which the runner fixes his gaze. Paul would receive a prize when he reached that goal. The prize would come at the end of the race, when he had attained the goal, but not before then.
Each believer is on the track of the race of life. Each of us has a special lane in which to run and each of us has a goal to achieve. If we reach the goal the way God has planned, then we receive a reward. If we fail, we lose the reward, but we do not lose our citizenship. We will receive the benefits of goal setting if we keep our goals in line with God’s goals.
Setting strong Christian spiritual goals will keep us on track with God’s plan for our lives.
Now go out and set your (godly) goals!
Christel Owoo is a professional Life Coach, passionate about helping women gain confidence.
Do you want to gain confidence in life and live fully in your God-given potential?