Your Goals Matter: How to Set Intentional Goals That Help You Live the Life You Desire

The things we do daily set us up for what will happen in the future. We don’t know what the future holds, but we know there are principles and objectives in life that usually lead to natural consequences and/or success.

For example, if you consistently exercise and think twice before you eat, chances are you are more healthy than the people who don’t (natural evidence and result of success). If you spend more money than you make, opt in for credit cards beyond your self-control, and don’t have a savings account, chances are you will owe money and live paycheck to paycheck (natural evidence of bad choices that lead to consequences).

The same goes for our relationships. How we invest in our relationships and treat the people in our lives will cause powerful relationships or broken ones. Finally, it is the same for goal-setting and the life we aspire to live.

Your goals matter. The ideas, desires, and interests God put inside of you are vital for the Kingdom of God. The only thing that’s stopping you is you. 

Sometimes we feel overwhelmed with all the ideas and goals we want to accomplish. Other times, we’re not motivated at all. We all run into walls and blocks that seem bigger than us, but instead of getting discouraged, it’s important to have a system in place, a set of commitments and priorities, that will keep us going. 

Here’s a question that might help convince you: if you removed emotions from the picture, how much would you accomplish? How many goals and ideas would you actualize in your life and live the life you desire simply by removing the emotional part?

We often get caught up in our emotions, and that’s why it’s important to take care of our thoughts, words, and attitudes (like I talked about in my last three posts/episodes). Your mind needs to be the thermostat for your emotions (this is a quote by my cousin Paul Natekin – check out his work here). When we let our emotions lead us, we lose the ability to stay committed to our goals. Not only that, but we get caught up with all that we could’ve, should’ve, and would’ve done, and become discouraged and weighed down by our “past” ideas. 

I love what pastor and motivational speaker, Christian Mael, said to me, If God gave you a good idea today, don’t you think He’ll give you another good idea tomorrow? This made me think of the line in the Lord’s Prayer: give us this day our daily bread, has a whole new meaning now. The bread we have today (the new life in Christ, the Word, the ideas, goals, dreams, and desires) is for today and we must act on it however we can. Otherwise, we end up throwing it in the bag and carrying it around until it gets moldy and gross and we don’t want it anymore. 

God has NEW things in store for us every single day. If His mercy is new, that means the day is new and full of opportunity for you to reach your goals and live the life you desire (in Christ!). Set goals, get a system in place, and get after the things God put inside of you.

This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link.

How to Set Intentional Goals

I recently came across a new method (or system) to set intentional goals, but before I share that, I want to briefly emphasize the importance of having a system in place. We all have a system in our daily lives. We have our sets of commitments that we prioritize daily because it’s visible in our routines. Our routines bear the fruit of our true commitments. 

For example, one of my goals used to be to write one blog post every week. Once I developed the habit, it became part of my weekly and monthly system to have blog posts available once a week. Because it’s already part of my system, starting a podcast came a more easily. I moved from only writing to also speaking about the topics I write about. 

These goals (writing one blog post per week and starting a podcast) turned into tasks that are now part of my system. My next goal is publishing my first book and getting my first speaking engagement. These seemed big and audacious at the start of my writing and podcasting journey, but because it’s part of my life now, I can confidently make bigger strides and knock on doors for opportunities more intentionally. Writing and podcasting are part of my routine that bear fruit for my commitments.

The goal or idea you have in your mind right now seems big, but on the other side, it’s really not. It’s a mere stepping stone to what you’re supposed to do next. To set intentional goals, think about the big picture and ask yourself why you want to accomplish those things. I believe asking why helps put our life and daily actions into perspective. Asking why helps us understand if it’s from God or if it’s just a regular idea that we wanted momentarily. It is also an ongoing question which we need to frequently ask ourselves as we learn, grow, and mature through life.

If you have more than one goal that will help you live the life you desire, keep reading.

I’m going to introduce you to the Brain Splatter method. I must first credit my husband for the name and for the practice, because he shared it with me and started it first. If you’re like me and have all kinds of ideas floating around in your head, goals you want to achieve, and miscellaneous tasks you don’t want to forget, this is for you. 

  1. Grab a pen and blank paper (or journal)
  2. Splatter everything that’s in your brain all over the blank paper
  3. (Time yourself if you don’t have much time)

(SIDE NOTE: Before I did this, I wrestled with the fact that it will not look pretty or perfect. I enjoy writing neatly and keeping things organized and in categories, so it took me a while to get to a comfortable place to “brain splatter.” But once I got over myself, I realized how truly helpful this was. Just trust the process.)

Next, (I came up with this part – so credit to me), clean up the splatter. On a separate new piece of paper or separate sticky notes, write the following:

  1. What do I want to do today? (Or what can I do today?)
  2. What do I want to do consistently? (if applicable)
  3. What do I want to do tomorrow?
  4. What do I want to do this weekend/next week?
  5. What’s left over? 

Take three or five ideas you wrote (this will depend on how many things you had. I had over thirty, so five worked for me) and write them on the first sticky note or a new piece of paper. Then, take the next three or five and add them to the next sticky note (if applicable). Then, take the next set, and so on. 

This method will help you get everything off your chest and out of your mind and visible in one spot so that you can strategically take the next step towards your goal. If your goals are seemingly too big and you can’t figure out which category they go under, consider breaking the goal into steps and tasks by asking, what’s the next thing I can do to get closer to this goal?

Then, take the first sticky note and focus on accomplishing and working on those tasks. You can do this every day, week, or at random times. Whatever is most helpful to you. And if you need to tweak it, go for it, because you need to get after the things God has put inside your heart. 

Live the Life You Desire

While you’re setting intentional goals and really pursuing the life you desire to live, it’s essential to surround yourself with people who will help push you forward and those you can help as well. When God puts something on our hearts, it rarely, even never, has to do with only ourselves. God always involves other people. So, whatever He’s put inside of you will bring value to others, even if it’s just being kind and loving the way Jesus loved. 

Look for people you admire, look up to, and want to be around. Surround yourself with a strong support system (there’s that word again), where you and they can encourage, challenge, and build each other up for God’s glory and the spreading of His kingdom. And don’t forget to trust the process of life and enjoy life NOW (a topic for another time).

Your goals matter because you do. Do with them what you can and what you want.

Trust the Lord and ask Him for help and guidance every single day.

Live transformed in Christ by believing this truth and doing what He’s called you to do! 

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