Adjectives and Goals

Is there a goal you have set in conjunction with your one word?

Setting goals is good practice. Goals help keep us moving forward – trying to walk out what we believe we’re meant to do.

Let me ask, when you set goals, what types of words do you use?

Nouns and verbs, if you are like most people.

  • I want to lose weight.
  • I am going to start my own business.
  • I want to climb a mountain.
  • I am going to write a novel.


Nouns and verbs focus on what we want to do or obtain. Makes sense, right?

But what few people readily realize is there’s always something behind what we want to do or obtain. Something driving us.

It may be a calling from God. Or a mandate from our boss.

Or it may be something we think reaching the goal will bring us.

Often that is linked to a feeling – there is a way we are longing to feel.

And that’s often what is driving our chosen goals.


For instance, we might want to feel:

  • Attractive, energetic or healthy. (lose weight)
  • Independent, in charge of our situation, or successful. (own a business)
  • Brave, adventurous or strong. (climb mountains)
  • Creative, inspired or heard. (write a book)


This desired feeling is an emotional driver. You’ll want to examine it carefully. Hold it up to the light – to the light of your one word and to the light of God’s Word.


Sometimes attaining the goal supplies the feelings we longed for. And sometimes it fails to meet expectations.

That’s because we’re not always good at discerning what will bring us what we truly want.

In fact, we’re not always good at discerning what it is we actually want or need.





When you think about how you want to feel, adjectives arise. So adjectives are great words to consider when goal-setting {or when choosing your one word}. They can help us set goals that move us towards what we really want.


Pull out a sheet of paper and ask yourself:

How do I long to feel? What are my emotional drivers?

What adjectives do I want people to use to describe me?

What kind of person am I created to be?


Write down your answers. Articulation is a powerful exercise. It brings clarity.

Then set goals {and define “success”} based around those answers.


The answers will vary for each of us.


This adjective exercise might strengthen your resolve to go after that big goal you’ve set for this year. Great!

Or it might serve to open your eyes to a disconnect between your goals and your calling. It could save you great effort in going after a goal that you really don’t need to achieve in order to feel the way you long to feel – or to be the person you are made to be.

Then you can choose different goals, or go after them for different reasons.

So set goals and work toward them. But pause to examine the motives, expectations and adjectives behind them.