(2023 Update: Since launching this blog post, we have launched a ROOTED Goals Workbook and recorded an entire season on setting ROOTED Goals!)
In typical goal setting culture, the mantra often goes something like this… "Girl, it's time to change your LIFE. Close your eyes, imagine what you want your life to be like in five years—the sky's the limit!—and write down your biggest dreams. Now reverse-engineer those dreams into a million baby steps, and do not stop hustling until you make those goals a REALITY. If you really want something, you're going to have to get up crazy early, change your habits, and become a different person. You're going to have to set the people in your life straight, too. They're either going to have to get on board, or get out of the way. Aren't your goals worth it? And if you start feeling discouraged—because those days will come (it is lonely at the top)—you're just going to have to make sure you have a solid "why" to pull you through. So give yourself a kick in the pants, and get to work."
It's.... a lot.
The problem with this? Well, for starters, you can’t fully foresee the future. You cannot comprehend the very real tradeoffs for the goals you create on paper. Oftentimes, you'll get into the thick of it and start to wonder how you can know if your goal is truly worth it. You feel a rising tension between living intuitively and following through on the goals you set.
Here at Evergreen, we believe that this tension is a real problem for women who seek to live intentionally. And we don't think that laziness, lack of motivation, or even poor time-management is really at the root of the problem. We believe the problem is that people are setting goals that don’t line up with their real life.
A bad goal setting system—one that doesn’t take into account the context of your actual lived life—will lead to guilt and frustration because those goals can't be sustained by your daily life.
But creating goals and dreaming about a different future is good. Goal-setting helps us level-up from the realm of wishful thinking and reactionary living, and begin to make the changes (big and small) that empower us and our families to truly thrive. But the key is this: your daily life has to be able to sustain your goals, so your goals can in turn breath life into your daily life.
We believe there is a better way to set goals; goals that are sustainable, produce change, and are life-giving. We call this process setting R.O.O.T.E.D. goals.
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ROOTED Goals are:
- Rooted in your core calling - Grasping the unique calling of God for your individual life is a process. But leaning into your core calling is an essential part of creating goals that fully resonates over the long-haul, compel you to follow-through in the execution of them, and produce a lot of satisfying fruit along the way. The soil of your core calling forms a rich environment for setting sustainable, healthy goals that actually energize you.
- Organically growing out of your context - You need goals that take your real life context seriously and embrace it. You need goals that connect with where you are right now, and that respect that you’re here for a reason. Recognizing the season you’re in and identifying the contours of your priorities can empower you to identify the next right step—the one that can realistically begin to build the lasting change you want to see.
- Outlined for clarity - Clarity is QUEEN when it comes to giving your brain an objective that it can actually process, prioritize, and tackle in the day-to-day. When you break down a goal into tangible action-steps, you are equipped to move past your vague theories about what it will take to make your goal happen. You’re able to see the gaps in your knowledge about the process, which compels you to research until you have concrete and actionable understanding.
- Tailored to your lifestyle - If you want to craft compelling goals that are grounded in your unique calling, then you’ll have to give yourself permission to develop creative solutions that make sense for your particular circumstances. On the flip-side, you’ll also need to make some strategic adjustments to your lifestyle so that it actually supports and fuels your goals. (Having a strong sense of clarity will massively help with this.)
- Etched into your memory - For a goal to be sustained in the long-run, it has to stay top of mind. Writing your goal out daily and keeping it in sight will begin to train your subconscious to recognize the opportunities you have to make progress on it.
- Developed by Providence - The R.O.O.T.E.D. Goal-Setting System reminds us that the Kingdom of God does not rise and fall by our efforts—but that we do have the responsibility to do our part, exercise our influence, and steward our resources. When we give our goals back to God, we know we can trust Him to develop them in the best of ways.
Setting a R.O.O.T.E.D. Goal is all about creating a symbiotic relationship between your daily life and your goals. It’s about creating space for personal growth, and channeling your productivity in a way that cultivated peace. With this system, you can start to craft a lifestyle that not only sustains but actually fuels the vision that God is growing in your heart.
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