There are different kinds of goals you can set, and there are different areas of one’s life where you may need to set goals. We can classify the type of goals simply as follows:
1. Financial goals: This kind of goal is very vital to your daily survival. This refers to how you plan to manage your income and expenditure, and particularly how you plan for your finances to pan out. Your financial goals might range from saving to buy a house, to send your children to University, to buy a new car, an increased income or just to do something great for God. Financial goals help you work towards achieving financial independence. Without financial goals and specific plans to meet them, you are likely to live in debt or never have any kind of savings and you may never be financially independent, living a life of regret while watching others achieve their financial goals.
2. Business goals: This refers to the goals you have as a business owner. Whether you are the proprietor of a small business venture or the Chief Executive of a large conglomerate, you must set goals for your company. In life there is no chance for stagnancy, you are either growing or dying. Your business growth however must be planned. You must have short term and long term business goals. Your goals are the lifeline of your business. They determine what direction the business goes, without goals, your business is likely not to grow beyond a pedestrian level. It may never fulfil its potential, because it means you have not determined where you want the business to go in the next few years. Your vision and mission statements must be clearly stated and understood by you and your employees, this is important for you to accomplish your goals. In fact, no business can successfully determine their strategy without having first set clear and concise goals.
3. Personal Goals: The great economist; Adam Smith once said that human wants are infinite and insatiable. The needs of men have been identified by various scholars to be unending, however across cultures and races they are constant, but what has differed over the years has been the strategies men have employed to satisfy their needs or rather achieve their goals. Scott Reed says “choosing a goal and sticking to it changes everything”. Personal goals can range from health goals; “I want to shed weight”, intellectual goals; “I want to obtain an MBA”, Parental goals “We want to have just two children” or “we want our son to attend the best school in the land “and so on and so forth. Personal goals are often related to self-improvement. It may even be just planning to be happier, to be nicer, to be more pretty, the accommodate people better, to be loved by others etc. Sometimes, personal goals are intertwined with spiritual goals as some spiritual goals can also be recognised as personal goals.
4. Spiritual Goals: Paul said in the book of Coritnthians Chapter 9; Verses 24-27 “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway” This verses articulated Paul’s spiritual goals for us.
He made it clear that being a Christian is like running a race with an aim to win a prize. It is not a sprint but a marathon. Therefore we must strive to improve all the time, overcome the flesh, master sin, and be heaven conscious in setting our spiritual goals.
Without spiritual goals, heaven may not be a reality, as one may not grow as one should and become susceptible to the pressures of life with likelihood to lose your salvation. However, for someone who is yet to be saved, your spiritual goal must be to obtain salvation and then other goals may be identified. Paul advocated a purposeful and goal oriented lifestyle, with discipline, determination and focus. Paul called on us to imitate him, and despite the fact that most of us have goals in other areas of our lives, many Christians (even when born again) do not have any clear spiritual goal, they live a happy go lucky life without any plan for the spiritual future.
All Christians must have clear spiritual goals and they really must be the most important goals in our lives. Apart from the fact that the Bible made it clear to us that the spiritual controls the temporal, without clear spiritual goals, other goals that we set may suffer.
There are perhaps more aspects of our lives where we either consciously or subconsciously set goals. The above however are some of the most important types of goals that we set during our lifetime. They are reflective of what our focus must be when thinking of setting goals for our life.