Goal Setting for the New Year

When you mark the beginning of something, you want to do it right. For me, I wanted to hone in on how to properly set goals for the year. A goal is an idea of the future or desired result that a person envisions, plans and commits to achieve. But a goal without a plan is only a dream.
Nobody just drifts into the kind of life they’ve always wanted. It’s attained by first having clarity on what propels you, and then being purposeful of your daily activities. However, there are times when we catch ourselves just coasting aimlessly, desensitized with the dreariness of our days. We forget that we’re not mere observers of our lives; instead, we are our own catalyst of change.

Nobody just drifts into the kind of life they’ve always wanted.

In the corporate setting, we have a yearly performance review. It’s when we discuss our accomplishments, identify areas where we’ve exhibited both strengths and even weaknesses, gather relevant feedback to become better at the job. I know what to expect moving forward by aligning with new goals. It’s quite informative to decompress a year’s worth of work and see how I’m doing overall.
Then it hit me. I can adapt this routine of annual examination and progress measurement in other areas of life also. Goal-setting should not be confined only to my job. We often to neglect the fact that life is multi-faceted. Leadership Mentor Michael Hyatt in his course ‘5 Days to Your Best Year Ever’, pointed out that there are ten domains of life and each one matters.
They are:
SPIRITUAL – Your connection to a higher power
INTELLECTUAL – Your engagement with significant ideas
EMOTIONAL – Your psychological health
PHYSICAL – Your bodily health
MARITAL – Your spouse or significant other
PARENTAL – Your children, if you have any
SOCIAL – Your friends and associates
VOCATIONAL – Your profession
AVOCATIONAL – Your hobbies and pastime
FINANCIAL – Your personal or family finances
When was the last time you sat down to write specific goals for every single one of these areas? And did you go back to those goals and compare how you fared with it?
I broadened my scope of goal-setting and made sure my life is not lop-sided. Now conscious of the entire landscape, I felt as though I’d expanded my territory in crafting my goals and it’s been a fascinating process for me. I followed a ‘SMARTER’ framework from the same course, which stands for:
If I may share a few of my goals:
In the Spiritual Domain:
Read the Bible from cover to cover 10 minutes a day as part of my daily personal devotional routine in the morning between 5-6AM.
In the Emotional & Financial Domains:
Set-up a Command Center in the kitchen by January 31, 2019, to create a system for processing our mail and keeping organized with household paperwork to be on top of all bills and correspondence at all times.
In the Parental Domain:
Strive for quality weekly 1-on-1 time to bond with my daughters.
– Create storybooks with my 4-year old and encourage the habit of journaling
– Read storybooks with my 1-year old to promote a life-long love of reading
I encourage you to think through your goals deeply and write them down. Circle back to them and objectively quantify your progress. Come-up with 7-10 annual goals across all domains. Then focus only on 2-3 goals per quarter. Record your weekly wins and set your upcoming weekly goals. Create accountability structures to keep you in line throughout the year.
When you do these, you set yourself up for success. Gone are the days when you’re passively waiting when your life is going to change. You abort neglecting other areas of your life with imbalanced goals. So be intentional and move the needle to your dreams by giving them a deadline. Make plans and make them happen too! Move to have well-rounded goals in various domains so that you enjoy the wholeness life has to offer.


Shiela Bernardo volunteers as the Communications Director of GSBC. She is a budget nerd who is keen to stay on track with her family’s goals. She perpetually seeks to demystify how to keep the house clean. She is a business analyst by profession & a self-taught computer programmer. She blogs about family, faith, and finances in her spare time.


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