I set several goals for the New Year- one was to get a hobby. Since moving to Tampa, I have tried a few things but nothing really clicked. So I decided I would check out tennis again. I played a little tennis on my High School team but have not really picked up a racket much in 20 years (since I was 6!). When I played before I did not have great ground stokes but I could get to a lot of balls and slice and dice them back over. I also charged the net a lot to use my height as an advantage. I knew I was no longer very fast- I should say that different- I am slow! So last night I went to a hit around/clinic at a local club. We did several drills, played one on one and ran sprints (okay 2 out of 3 of those things). I discovered quickly that I was not as good as I thought. I knew my ground strokes needed improvement yet somehow I thought I would be better. They split us in 2 groups to start and it didn’t take a rocket scientist to discover I was not in the top group. I decided when I got there that I would join a tennis ladder. This format allows you to challenge people ahead of you and play as often as you care to engage. I signed up before the clinic and I knew I would not be an A player. They actually have 3 groupings A, B and C. After reading the description for the C group I decided I would join the B ladder. At the end of the clinic I asked for some feedback from the pro. I asked him should I sign up for C and he said, “yeah- those B players can really play”. OUCH! I am sore today physically but the ego bruise is large. I must go now, take a few Advil, apply the Ben Gay and start telling myself I am a getting better every day!
I love fresh starts. When I was in college it was a new semester- when I blew it in a game it was the next game- when I miss it in a teaching message it’s the next message. So I love the New Year and the sense of a fresh start. I try to set goals each year to help me move forward. Goals are like the small hand grips on a rock wall- they help me move forward and mark where I have been. For me, goals are bigger than resolutions. I list my yearly goals on the front page of my journal and look at them often. Setting goals has helped me lose weight, read through the Bible and establish and maintain a date night with my wife. I love the way The Apostle Paul says it in Philippians 3
which is God’s call through Christ Jesus to the life above.
Or another translation
heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.
Paul focused his life on God’s call and becoming exactly what God has designed him to be.
The goals I set are not in areas that I am already succeeding or practicing with consistency. For instance I won’t set a goal to be in the gym 3 mornings a week- I am already lifting 3 days a week with a partner. But, I will set a goal on the results I want to see. So I have been thinking and praying about my goals for 2008 and I have listed a few below:
- I will weigh 240 by May 31st
- I will read 6 biographies in 2008
- I will journal at least weekly in 2008
- I will find a hobby I enjoy in 2008
You probably notice I set my goals in the positive rather than the negative (I learned that from a mentor of mine, Bill Billingsley). I have a few more goals but these are the ones I will let you in on. How about you:
Do you set goals?
Can you give us one you have set for 2008?
What goal have you set that really helped you?