We've just spent the last 14 days doing some Life Planning exercises. Over this time we have looked at six steps for leading your own life. Each of these six simple steps can also be applied to your church, your ministry, your organisation or business, your family, as well as your career. You need to know God’s (1) mission and your (2) roles. You need to establish (3) goals and organise your (4) time. You need to put your plan into (5) action and finally you need to take regular time to (6) evaluate your progress.
I have found this type of template incredibly helpful in keeping my own life and ministry in balance and focused. It has helped me to view my life holistically and it also provides a filter that helps me know what to say “Yes” to and what to say “No” to. It also helps me to notice when I have drifted and to make appropriate corrections so I get back on track.
Let’s face it, you cannot do everything but you can do the few things for which God has placed you on the planet.
For those interesting in going a little deeper in the area of Life Planning, I recommend the following resources:
- Successful Christian Ministry by Mark Conner. The six steps we've looked at over the last few weeks are fully outlined in chapter 5 of this book.
- 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. This best-selling book is a classic on principles for living life effectively.
- First Things First by Stephen Covey. This is another best-selling book on principles of time management and establishing priorities.
- Half Time: Changing Your Game Plan from Success to Significance by Bob Buford. This is a very good book for anyone over 40 years of age, who is thinking about the rest of their life.
- Focused Living Resource Kit by Terry Walling. This is an excellent resource for reflecting on your life and planning your future. It includes the concept of creating a personal 'time line'.
- Go Put Your Strengths to Work by best-selling author Marcus Buckingham. This is an excellent book to help you discover and build on your God-given strengths.
I hope you've enjoyed our discussion on Life Planning. If you put the time in to follow the steps and the exercises, I believe that you will benefit greatly from it. In fact, it's worth doing at least once a year. Also, feel free to share this with your friends.
All the best for the future!