Research. Educate yourself. Read all you can and learn the ins and outs of your new endeavor. There is much to be explored about every opportunity - chances are, others have chosen a similar path, so do your homework. Ask questions and learn from the experience of others all you can about that which you plan to invest your time, finances and energy.
The most important, most helpful research tool out there is the Bible. The Living Word of God, with its divine instruction, is your number one essential research item. Refer to it daily for God’s constant direction and inspiration.
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17) ESV
Other sources for research:
· Public Library
· Experiences of friends and relatives
· Book and magazine articles
· Personal visit
At this point, it doesn’t matter who is or who isn’t onboard with you. You’ve prayed about following your heart toward your dream and you and the Lord are in agreement. Don’t let discouraging words of others weigh you down. You’re moving forward now!
Don’t let pessimism speak louder than the whispers of God’s encouragement!
· Set Realistic Goals
· Make realistic, attainable goals each day –goals to motivate you, but not so far out of reach that you get discouraged
· Keep a journal documenting your progress – even the baby steps!
Design a plan of attack, and execute that plan! Don’t stuff your plan away in a drawer or on a psychological shelf for another day. When designing a realistic approach to accomplishing the necessary steps, keep in mind the time and effort required for each item. Incorporate working toward those goals into your daily routine – don’t get in the habit of saying, “I’ll do that if I have time…” Make it a priority to move forward each day. Even though taking time for doing so may require an overall change in daily routine, embrace that change and recognize it as a visible step toward realizing the end result. Don’t expect to wake up tomorrow with your “dream” placed squarely in your lap. Take the necessary time to work out all the details, but be excited as this is part of the process.
For example: invest the necessary time and effort in creating a web site and/or blog to journal your adventure.
· Build a group of “followers” who will support your progress and rejoice with you in your accomplishments.
· Share your challenges or hurdles in the process so others can pray for you. Now that you and God are in agreement about your dreams and goals, make it known to your circle of friends.
· Set up a social networking account and invite support and input from your circle of contacts.
· Give yourself a realistic weekly “To-Do” list. Make a master list (Excel is a great program for this) of necessary tasks, appointments, etc., then divide up that list in bite-sized pieces. If you overload yourself in the beginning, you’ll lose momentum and interest leaving the door wide open for discouragement. Begin at a speed that’s comfortable for you, but do begin!
· Remember that I’m praying for you, sweet Sister in Christ!