Can I just say that I feel very "legit" and "organizational" writing up posts like this one and How to Write a Personal Mission Statement? I'm a bit scared, not because it's totally out of the ordinary, but how much I love this sort of thing and my nerdy side is coming out. You might also be thinking, "how does writing a personal mission statement have anything to do with Evangitality?" I would wage to say it has everything to do with it. Whether, you are a free-spirit individual embracing spontaneity & labeled with a "P" on Myers-Briggs; or, you like a bit more structure, and direction of where you are headed with a "J" on Myers-Briggs...all of us need to have some element of intentionality in life. We need to know what it is we value and who we are if we are going to show genuine love & hospitality to the many people we encounter.
So, maybe you finished your personal mission statement and are wondering what you do with it? Or you haven't started and you don't know if you ever will, because let's face it, there is still that box of old stories on tape that you promised your husband you would go through to declutter and bring order to your life (oops, maybe that's just me?). Either way, I believe having a mission statement is good for destination & keeping one on track. However, a mission statement alone doesn't help us navigate through the journey to get to the final destination, which is what question 2 of the Big 3 Questions addresses...
1. What is your rally cry? What is your Top Priority?
It doesn't take much to figure out your rally cry--really, it doesn't. Make a list of a couple things that you see right here and now as a hindrance to get to your destination. It's not a science. Overthinkers need not apply. Choose something that you can achieve within 2-6 months--that's it. It your rally cry can be fixed in a week, don't choose it. If it's something that takes longer than 6 months...leave it alone. Pick one thing to rally around. Here was my list:
- Being gentle in my responses.
- Having an activity everyday for my girls.
- Do gross motor exercises with V everyday.
- Provide nutritious meals for my family.
- Provide spiritual growth opportunities for the girls.
- Develop storytelling curriculum.
As you can see, all of these happen to align with my personal mission statement. And any of them would be good to pick. I can stress (probably like others) about picking the best one, or wondering if I don't pick the gross motor exercises for V then I'll be throwing her further behind in her development. Or if I don't pick spiritual growth, then my girls might become spiritually destitute (a little dramatic flare thrown in for good measure). But, when I boiled it down, I knew I wanted & needed a gentle spirit that listens above all else. My rally cry is:
"Creating a gentle spirit that listens."
2. Create Defining Objectives
Once you have picked your rally cry that can be accomplished in 2-6 months, write up five defining objectives on how you will get there. These should be clear & concrete (and tangible). Granted, my rally cry of creating a gentle spirit that listens isn't as tangible (or even as measurable) as #2: Providing activities for my girls everyday; however, I think my rally cry is more essential to the person I desire to become. Here are my Five Defining Objectives:
- Spend time in solitude every week (have scheduled internet times).
- Pray earnestly for the Spirit's empowerment daily, begin with this each morning.
- Journal 3xs a week.
- Spend quality listening time with each family member everyday (start with five minutes).
Cultivate a heart that allows interruptions, mess...play with the girls, embracing this daily.
- Update: Go to bed by 10:00, in order to have a well rested body & spirit.
Not easy, but doable. Notice that I didn't say I would journal everyday, or spend an hour (or even 1/2 hour) with each family member, it's about scaling it to what I can do and building upon it.
3. Create Standard Objectives
Standard Objectives are those areas in your life that always need to get done while you focus on your rally cry. Again, yours will look different from mine.
- Exercise & maintain health
- Home administration
- Girls & family fun (means our family of four)
- My Spiritual Life
Maybe after reading all of this you are feeling a bit overwhelmed? I hope you give yourself grace as you walk through these steps. Allow yourself the freedom to become intentional without legalism. Look at your present, forgive yourself from your past failures and walk in freedom with your future. When in doubt, watch What About Bob and begin chanting, "babysteps!"