In 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey wrote, “begin with the end in mind.”
I keep that advice close to my heart, especially at the beginning of a year when I am prayerfully strategizing my year. Here are a few things you can do to strategize your success this year and start off strong.
- Pray for the Vision. You will need to carve out time to seek the Lord about what you will focus on this year. Our church, like many others, observes a first-of-the-year fast or consecration. It’s not so that we can say we’ve participated in a religious ritual. No, it’s to encourage ourselves and members to draw near and hear what’s on God’s heart for this season.
- Write the Vision. The prophet Habakkuk was discouraged by the current state of affairs in his community and cried out to God. God told him to get in position to see what God was going to do and told Habakkuk, when he got a glimpse, to “write the vision and make it plain.” For me, this will be the year that a vision I received in 2017 will come to fruition–the publishing of my latest book. This year may be the year you receive a vision for something that may take years to come to light. But you’ll need to write out plans and strategies to operationalize that vision and set targets and goals for each phase of the vision.
- Focus on the Vision. You can’t be everything to everybody. And you can’t do everything. To successfully bring your vision to pass, you must focus on it and the activities aligned with it. I had to focus on the nitty-gritty details of publishing a book–putting the proposal together, developing the outline, taking a writing class, securing a literary agent and publisher, researching, writing, and editing. Focus on the plans for your vision, and keep track of your activities and outcomes. Tweak the plans if need be. But align your activities with this vision.
- Celebrate the Vision. I will be celebrating my vision coming to fruition this year, which I’ll tell you more about soon. You, too, must celebrate every aspect of your vision. When you get your first sale, celebrate. When you complete phase 1 of your strategic plan–celebrate. Give thanks as you see this thing coming to life.
- Be Patient with the Visionary. That’s you! Be patient and stay in a posture of seeking God and the resources and support people God sends your way to bring your vision to life. In most cases, the vision will only be realized after some time. now that when you’ve started with the end in mind and remained prayerful at each juncture, the Lord will guide your next steps. As you form your team and gather resources, continue to believe while you wait. When the vision has been solidified in your spirit, setbacks or time delays won’t kill the dream.
So this year, let’s plan to finish strong by starting strong. This is our year!
Continue to follow my leadership series at https://www.drjeanneporterking.com/blog/