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Goals Set, Achieved, and Reset

Thanksgiving is past. Christmas is just around the corner. And the new year is following close behind.

That means it's time to start thinking seriously about the goals for 2023. (Can it really be that we are fast approaching the end of the first quarter of the twenty-first century?!)

But before we can set goals for the new year, we must begin with an assessment of how we did with our 2022 goals.

I recently glanced back at my goals for this year (2022) that I had established at the end of 2021. I've accomplished many of them, but a lot of others remain untouched. Nonetheless, I accomplished far more than if I hadn't set any goals at all. Better some than none! And I still have one-twelfth of a year to accomplish a few more of them.

I always categorize my goals: Personal Goals, Domestic Goals, and Professional Goals. Surprisingly, even to me, I have accomplished all but one of my personal goals this year. I still have that one goal that I keep telling myself I should tackle "some day," when I "get around to it."

I had about a dozen domestic goals and accomplished about half of them. There's still that lingering need to fix the HVAC pad to prevent erosion under it. One of these days. When I get around to it.

On my professional goals, I was more successful. Of about 16 goals, I've achieved (or am very close to achieving) about a dozen or more of them. The "biggies" were seeing the publication of Evangelism and Expulsion, the acceptance for publication of Dillon's War, and completion of the manuscript of Bagosy's War. (There. The cat's out of the bag--next book submission for 2023!) And finally, after that the COVID restrictions were lifted, my speaking opportunities blossomed, resulting in several engagements and on-site book sales.

As you set goals for yourself, aim for the moon, but realize that sometimes things beyond your control (e.g., sickness, a pandemic, or domestic emergencies) can prevent the accomplishment of some goals. But having many goals is good. Even if you don't achieve all of them, you'll accomplish much more than if you had no goals at all and just drifted along with the tide of events.

I've been helped in my own goal setting by the following quotations. Maybe they'll be an encouragement that will spark your own goal-setting plans as the new year approaches.

"The man without a purpose is like a ship without a rudder--a waif, a nothing, a no man. Have a purpose in life, and, having it, throw such strength of mind and muscle into your work as God has given you." (Carlyle)

"Goals should be set just out of your current reach, but not out of sight." (Denis Waitley)

"It is your privilege--nay, your DUTY--to aim high in life." (Napoleon Hill)

"Ideals are like the stars. We never reach them but, like the mariners on the sea, we chart our course by them." (Carl Schurz)

"You must have long-range goals to keep you from being frustrated by short-term failures." (Charles Nobel)

"Eighty percent of your really important results will come from twenty percent of your goals." (Blanchard and Johnson)

"Give me a stock clerk with a goal, and I will give you a man who will make history. Give me a man without a goal, and I will give you a stock clerk." (J.C. Penney)

"God is looking for those with whom He can do the impossible--what a pity that we plan only the things that we can do by ourselves." (A.W. Tozer)
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