Jan 3, 2015

"Making It Happen 2014": Reviewing Goals

  At the end of last year, I began documenting my goal-setting as I went through Lara Casey's series. I made goals in different spheres of my life (spiritual, physical, emotional, financial, intellectual) and tried to make them attainable while still challenging. But above the goals I set, I wanted there to be a higher goal. I wanted this year to be a year where I was open to whatever God wanted to bring into my life. Although I am a natural planner and organizer, I desired to hold my goals and plans for 2014 with an open hand, ready for God to switch anything He deemed good for me (or even remove or add something else, if needed). 
I didn't want to make goals and then give up a few months into it, so I figured that my blog would be a great way to stay accountable. If I posted my goals every month, then I would be somewhat held accountable to continue pursuing them. I also discussed them with close friends and my boyfriend. I created a label (Making It Happen 2014) on each blog post pertaining to my goals so that I (and any readers interested) could follow the journey this year. I chose a song for the new year that I wanted to be my heart's song to desire Jesus all year long. I wrote a vision for 2014 and felt that the word DELIGHT was my word of 2014. I was trying to set myself up for a goal-driven year.

And then, 2014 happened. And boy, did it happen quick!

It was a great year, but it was a hard year. I had no idea last January what 2014 would look like. Yes, it was a goal-driven year overall. It was filled with lots of joyful gifts that I have enjoyed remembering recently as I finished my 1000 gifts journal. But it was also a year that included anxious thoughts that threatened to steal my joy, peace, and hope. There were days when I was driven and pumped, but there were also days when I wanted to ignore goals and just roll into a ball and cry. And throughout the spectrum these two extremes, God was so faithful in 2014. By His grace, I was able to walk through hill-top experiences of joy and sweet new experiences but also feel His presence in the dark valley moments when I was lonely, confused, and felt unlovable. 
His hand held me all the way. 

So as I look at my goals, it is obvious that I did not meet all of them. But I do not see failure. I see a year that was a beautiful mess. It didn't fit perfectly in the goals I set out, but then again, I had a feeling that this would happen. It was a year of taking one day at a time.  And it was a year, yes, as I had hoped at the outset, of delight.

Elle's 2014 Goals

GOAL: Go deeper in prayer and studying the Bible
WHY: Bring God glory by learning more about His character and delighting in Him; learning more about Him will help me learn to trust Him in all circumstances
HOW: 1. Memorizing more Bible [Ann Voscamp's #MemoryProject, 24 verses in 6 mo.] 
    •  UPDATE: I memorized 7 out of the 24 during the first 6 month of the year, then switched to memorizing verses corresponding to #SheReadsTruth studies I was doing (such as Ruth 1:16, Titus 3:5, Nehemiah 9:17; 8:10). I also picked a few verses to meditate and memorize with my boyfriend (Proverbs 3:5-6 and Isaiah 26:3).
            2. Bible plans to keep me focused 
            3. Reviewing sermon notes the week after I hear it at church
    • I have been doing this on and off as I review what I learned in sermon over FaceTime or phone with my boyfriend.
GOAL: Maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating well, sleeping more, and exercise 
WHY: If I am physically fit, I have more energy for all the things I need to do daily. I will also be able to be more emotionally and mentally prepared to deal with different difficulties if I am well-rested and taking care of my health.
HOW: 1. Run a 5K and a 10K
    • I was able to run a 5K (finally got back up to 3 miles!) this summer, but was so busy, that I never got around to signing up for a run! Then I stopped running altogether after summer ended. Sad! 
           2. Turn off electronics at 11pm and do devotions before sleeping
    • I have been trying to work on this throughout the year. Some days are better than others. On work nights, I have been shutting off electronics most nights between 11:00-11:30.
           3. Cook more [more crock-pot and fresh recipes]

GOAL: Limit anxious thoughts and daily be more thankful of all I am blessed with
WHY: Hope in God's goodness; if I have a grateful heart, I am less likely to be anxious
HOW: 1. Daily write 3 "gifts" in my 1000 Gifts journal at the end of each day.
    • Yes! This has been helping me focus on positive things rather than only the negative about each day. I recently finished the journal. Check out my favorite gifts from the past year.
            2. Memorizing scripture 
    • Yes! It has been so helpful in times of stress. I love the screensavers from She Reads Truth (like this one!)

GOAL: Reflect Jesus' love through compassionate relationships and serving others
WHY: Build deeper, more intentional friendships, point others to Jesus, dealing with hard things together/sharing the burdens.
HOW: 1. Snail mail 
    • Yes! I sent letters and postcards to friends and my boyfriend, but it was not as consistent as I had hoped.
           2. Call/skype with a friend each month
    • Yes and no. I have been trying to keep in contact with close friends, but it was harder this year since it was such a busy year. 
           3. Prayer team at work: Each of us have a day to keep the clinic and families who enter in our prayers that they would be encouraged and full of hope.
    • This never really took off. So I pray on my commute to work for the clinic and for compassion to serve the community well.
          4. Big Sister Mentor: Meet monthly with my "little sis"; text her; pray for her
    • We hung out a few times in the last year, but I have not been as consistent in 2014 as I had been in 2013.
          5. Hang out with my younger brothers more routinely and have deeper conversations/get to know them and encourage them to be men of valor
    • Have not done this as much as I'd like, although I do feel we have had deeper conversations this year than before. 

GOAL: Grow in knowledge in different areas such as work and theology
WHY: To learn more for work/gain useful info to benefit my patients; to learn more about Jesus from Bible-focused resources
HOW: 1. Read 12 books in 1 year
           2. Review old powerpoints from my PNP coursework
    • Haven't done this more than a few times.

GOAL: Become more responsible & intentional about budgeting and saving
WHY: Learn how to be a good steward of the money I have so I can use it effectively & responsibly no matter the season.
HOW: 1. Continue to use Mint to budget and manage spending
    • Yes! Using it almost monthly!
           2. Read and study Dave Ramsey's financial planning materials
    • Have not read this yet, but its on my list for 2015!
GOAL: Try new things I've always wanted to do and improve things I always hoped to get better at.
WHY: I have more free time now than I will in another season
HOW: 1. Learn to use the sewing machine that has been collecting dust in my closet
    • I had a fun morning in April catching up with a friend while figuring out how to thread and use my sewing machine. I then tailored a few bathing suits that were too large for me. I have not done anything since then
           2. Plant a tiny garden on my balcony this spring
    • Yes and no. I planted a hanging basket in March and it died one month later when I got really busy the one week it was really sunny all month.
           3. Learn to swing dance again
    • Not yet.
           4. Travel:  I am SO excited to explore and have new adventures!

GOAL: Use my blog to encourage, inspire, and uplift others while pointing to Jesus.
WHY: To use the time that people choose to spend visiting { Beautiful Hope } intentionally and purposefully, pointing to Jesus with any post that is written. 
HOW: 1. Pray before posting
    •  I have not done this more than a few times. 
            2. Plan series 
            3. Meet some of my blogger friends in person or Skype [I've already met a few and have been so blessed, so I am hoping to chat via Skype with more]

So there you have it! My 2014 goals! I am now taking time to review the aforementioned goal-setting series from last January and prayerfully set new goals for 2015, which I will share within the next few weeks. 

Lake Wenatchee in Eastern Washington during our family trip last month. 

1 comment:

  1. So fun to see how much progress you have made! I hope there's more Skype chats in our future as well!


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Elle Alice