In addition to marking the New Year, 2020 also represents the start of a new decade. There is no better time to unleash dreams and benchmark accomplishments. But in order to gauge success, you must ask yourself a few questions. What is success? How will you measure it? And how will you know when you actually achieve it?
Is success the end of something, like crossing the finish line? Or is it the quality of that ending, as in finishing first? So much emphasis is placed on success in our society that the difference between running the race and running the race well is often confused.
My favorite definition of success is the continual achievement of becoming who God created you to be. In this definition we see that the measure of success is unique for each individual. When something burns in your heart and you have a vision to achieve or a limitation to overcome, it becomes a race you run within yourself. Discovering and fulfilling God’s call upon your life is the ultimate success.
Same Steps for Leaders and Followers
It doesn’t matter who else is running that race with you. No one else can define your success. You already know what it means in your heart. But whether it is a small goal like losing a few pounds or a larger goal like paying off your mortgage, what is common is how you prepare to reach that goal. Here are a few tips:
- Define your goal. Expressing a goal is important. If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time. Don’t be afraid to dig deep and get personal. Be as clear and precise as you can. Ambiguity in goal setting is dangerous. But above all, write it down. And then write it again, and again and again. The more you keep a goal in front of you, the more you will focus on making it happen.
- Develop a plan. Make it practical. Don’t set the bar so high that you can’t reach it. But do set the bar high enough that you have to stretch to attain it. Make your plan a manageable list of daily tasks. Ask yourself, “What must I do today to get closer to reaching my goal?” Success is often found in your daily routine.
- Commit to your plan. If your plan is clear and realistic, you need to emotionally lock into it – own it! The biggest battle is in your own mind. Find someone to whom you can be accountable. Articulating your goal out loud makes it feel more real. Sharing with a faithful friend who will give you a reality check is an invaluable asset.
- Understand failure. The role of failure needs to be understood. It could happen. You might fail. But that isn’t always a terrible thing. Nobody wants to fail, but if you do — you can learn from it. The only real failure happens when you give up.
- Run the race. You have to begin. Waiting for what feels like the perfect time will leave you waiting until the next decade. Nothing takes the place of moving forward one step at a time. Recognize that we run to win — to achieve the goal God has etched into our hearts.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” (Hebrews 12:1)
I wish you great success in making your vision a reality…
May 2020 be a year of personal breakthrough for you!