Reasonable Goals

I’ve always struggled with keeping balance in my life. It comes naturally to some people, but it’s a challenge for me. Sometimes, it’s a BIG challenge.

I’m a visionary. It’s the way that God wired me. I can see a world of possibilities, and set out to make them all happen—TODAY. Then, when I get overwhelmed and overloaded, I get discouraged and depressed, and usually quit. To prove that point, I have a most impressive collection of great ideas that never made it more than 10 feet past the starting block.

Since I’ve come to better understand the way that God wired my brain, and how to use that power for good, and not for evil, I’ve been learning some new skills that are making it a lot easier to be a visionary. Two of the most important skills are:

  • Breaking those overwhelming projects into little, bite-sized pieces that I can manage without feeling overwhelmed ( the old “eating the elephant one bite at a time” thing).
  • Setting reasonable and realistic goals for myself, so I don’t get so terribly overwhelmed by the magnitude of the vision.

WAIT! If you’ve just thought “yeah, I know where he’s going”, and you’re about to move on, don’t do it! You might be surprised!

To some people, “realistic goals” means “don’t try to stretch yourself.” They think that “realistic” goals are the stuff that breeds laziness and lethargy. For the most part, they probably need to take their medication and stop evaluating their own value based on output. There are some things that just aren’t realistic. For example, I love to sing, but if I were to set a goal of singing professionally, that would be pretty unrealistic. On the other hand, I also love to act, I’m good at it, and a goal of acting professionally is NOT unrealistic—although there are aspects to that goal that might make it less desirable than you’d think.

If I set a goal of writing a few books (a goal that I HAVE set, by the way), it’s a realistic goal. It’s a goal that will take a LOT of hard work, and considerable heartache inflicted by cold-hearted, linear thinking editors. If I set a goal of writing a series of murder mysteries, that’s unrealistic. I can’t stand to read ’em, much less write ’em.

I’ve learned that it’s important to understand who you are, how you’re gifted, and how you’re not gifted, if you’re going to set realistic goals. But, there’s another aspect that we often forget, and that’s the most important point in this whole thought:

What are GOD’s GOALS for you?

After all, He wired your brain. Granted, we might have scrambled some of that wiring from time to time, but since He did the design, He had a particular set of goals for that design—unique gifts, strengths, and talents that he built into you at the moment of conception. Too often, we’re so busy juggling our priorities and setting our goals that we never even consider what goals God has for us. I know from my own experience that you’ll never know true satisfaction until your priorities and God’s priorities are in sync. You’ll never know true fulfillment until your goals for you are the same as God’s goals for you.

God’s got some great plans for you—possibly beyond your wildest dreams. Why not ask Him what HIS idea of “reasonable goals” are in your life? Just make sure that you hang around long enough to get the complete list, including the priority list!

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