Mapping out your goals… How important is it, really? If you can’t see your goals, you can’t seize them. Sure, a million dollars would be nice, but until you can visualize the process and the reality of having a million dollars, you can never obtain it. I want to help you map out your life goals!
Mapping out and visualizing your goals is CRITICAL if you want to stop wishing and start turning your vision into real, tangible goals…
That’s why I want to give you 5 steps to get you started!
1. Take time to think, and think BIG!
The first step to mapping out your goals is one of my favorites… It’s think BIG! Set aside time to be creative and think as big as you can. Don’t limit yourself with statements like: “That would be cool, but it’s impossible” or “How could I do that?” Leave the “how” out of it at this point.
Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV) says, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.”
This is one of the most important parts of the process. Taking the time to envision the future you want to move toward will help clarify your vision and prioritize your goals.
What goal do you spend the most time thinking about? That might be a good indication of what’s most important to you!
2. Write your goals down.
Once you have your big picture goals in mind, take the time to write them down. Now, at this point, there’s no plan attached to these goals, but that’s okay! We just need to get the overall picture in writing first.
Habakkuk 2:2 (ESV) says, “And the Lord answered me: ‘Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it.’”
You may have one big goal to write down or you may have 50… Don’t worry! Write down as many as you can.
3. Be specific.
If you have vague goals written down, try to make them as specific as possible.If you want to start exercising more, what does “more” mean to you? If you want to travel more, again, what does “more” mean to you?
Without specific goals, you can’t measure your success. That means your goals are unattainable!
4. Break them down into small, manageable action steps with deadlines.
All right, now that you have your goals written down, it’s time to pick out the ones you want to accomplish first and to make a game plan.
This is where we turn a goal into a GOAL!
Once you know where you want to start, take your big goal and break it down into five smaller steps. Here’s an example:
Goal: Write a book.
- Write all chapters.
- Read and edit manuscript.
- Have manuscript professionally edited.
- Sell to publisher or self-publish.
You want these steps to be the five biggest steps that you need to take to accomplish your goal. After you have your five, then break those five into small action steps with deadlines. In other words, create a plan to make them happen!
Here’s an example:
Goal: Write all chapters.
- I’m going to set aside 7:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Monday through Friday to write.
- I’ll write 1,000 words a day and be done with my 50,000 word manuscript by October 10.
A goal has an ACTION STEP attached to a DEADLINE.
Your action steps need deadlines! Make the deadlines as specific as possible. It’s not enough to say, “I’ll do this by fall.” You need to set the month and the day.
5. Keep the vision before you and ACT!
Once you’ve finished mapping out your goals, don’t hide them in a drawer somewhere. Keep the vision in front of you!
The more you remind yourself of what you’re working toward, the more likely you’ll be to keep taking the steps toward your goals. And, of course, don’t forget to ACT!
Your goals won’t come to pass by accident. Successful people aren’t surprised by their success. They put hours of dedication, time, and intentional planning into making their goals a reality.
Be encouraged! Jesus said in Matthew 19:26 (NIV), “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Now that you have your goals mapped out, keep the vision before you, and take the necessary steps to bring it to pass every day!
To learn more, read my blog, How to Live a Purposeful Life HERE.