There are only 5 days left in 2020...whew! Can we all breathe a sigh of relief?! LOL
But with the end of the year, comes new ideas...new plans...new goals.
Do you have a plan for your Children's Ministry for 2021?
and maybe even (Lord forbid!)...
a Plan C?!?!
Let's talk planning...
First a little disclaimer...I am NOT an expert on planning! And I definitely have failed at holding to and completing things I plan. Hopefully, I'm not the only one! :D
But I have learned a lot through the years about leading our children's ministry department, our staff, and accomplishing goals we have set out to complete.
You need to determine what your goal is for next year overall. Do you need to write a mission statement? Do you want to choose yearly, quarterly, or monthly themes? Are you the sole person in charge, or do you need to meet with some other staff to brainstorm?
Determine this part first, otherwise, the rest of your planning will be confusing.
Once you have this figured out....proceed to #2.
A good personal planner is NOT required to be organized, but it is a great help! In these following sections, I am going to share pictures of what I am using to help me stay on track.
Of course, my specific goals will be different than yours...I am focusing on my KidMin Trainings, etc. But you will get the idea, and hopefully be able to apply it to your specific situation.
To the right, you
will see the Planner I am currently using. I love this one! :D I found it on Amazon for only $15! However, it is currently unavailable. Check back for their new planners soon...I hope! As you can see, it is called the Wordsworth Planner.
I chose the Undated design, even though it does say 2020 inside. That is only for the full year spread, so it doesn't affect any other areas used. The first picture is the box it comes in. It is packaged very nicely, and comes with a little booklet of instruction on how to use the planner.
Very professional looking! I was pleasantly surprised, with the low price point.
Next, you will see the front cover. There were a few color choices, with the black one for $5 cheaper. (But I LOVE lots of color! LOL)
Again....I know I'm spending a lot of time on planners, but it's not completely necessary to your success. I just know that it really helps you stay focused.
So, whether you choose to use a planner, or just a notebook...decide what works for you and your ministry to stay on track...and JUST DO IT!
Once have chosen your planner or notebook, now it's time to figure your goals for the year. I decided to use a Mind Mapping page to just do what they call a "brain dump". If you aren't using a planner with this page, just start writing down everything you can think of that you would like to do. You can make this part as simple or as in depth as you would like...pictures, colors, or simply text.
Don't stress over how many or how long it would take to accomplish. You will narrow this down at a later time.
Here are some ideas:
> Quarterly Themes
> Age-specific Goals
> Weekly Accomplishments
> Staff Goals
> Budget Goals
> VBS Ideas
> Christmas Musical Plans
...Write down EVERYTHING!
You can also include personal goals for yourself as the leader, or simply things that you feel the Lord is directing you to work on within yourself. Let the Lord help you with this area and give you direction. Here is where you need to take time to focus, listen with your heart, AND think outside the box. Even things that you don't feel you can accomplish this year...if it's something you want to do in the future, JUST WRITE IT!
Now it's time to focus on more specific goals. What are the top 3-4 things from your Brain Dump page that you want to accomplish this year? In the Wordsworth Planner there are pages for Personal, Relationship, and Professional goals. You can do all of these, or simply focus on your ministry. It will completely depend on what you are wanting to do this year.
So, break down your list and choose your top goals. In this section, you will want to include the following:
> TARGET DATE
> 3-5 ACTION STEPS
It's sometimes hard to choose your top 3-4 goals for the year. Don't stress! You can always change it up if the Lord leads you to do so. Just get something on paper to give you a starting point, and learn to be flexible later on in the year, if needed.
Here's where your potential Plan B and Plan C could be needed down the road. (Especially if we have a year like 2020! LOL)
This is the part of the process that you will break things down even further...and TAKE ACTION!
Since you now have Target Dates for your goals, take a look at your months and decide what you need to do each month, in order to accomplish your goals on time.
The Wordsworth Planner has a monthly spread with Goals 1-3 at the bottom, along with Action Steps for each of them. You can determine a few months in advance, or just one at a time. But in the days we live in, it may be beneficial to have an idea for upcoming months, but not set in stone just yet....if you know what I mean!
NOTE: As Children's Ministers, we MUST learn to be flexible! Don't let local changes, mandates, or rules get you down. Have an alternative plan to keep things moving forward at all times.
The last part to accomplishing your goals, is to go one step further, and break it down into weekly projects/to-do lists.
Again, the Wordsworth Planner has a weekly spread that allows you to do this easily. The top has a "This Week's Top Focus" section, and then each day has "priority" and "secondary" sections.
At the bottom of the Left page is a key to use like Bullet Journals use.
On the Weekly spread, I will put in major things for each day ahead of time; but otherwise, I will fill them in the night before, depending on what I accomplish that day. Again, my focus is on my KidMin Leadership Trainings, Curriculums and Courses. So this could very well be different for you. Maybe you'll find you need to fill out the entire week at one time.
However you choose to use your Planner or Notebook, just stick to what you are writing, and MAKE IT HAPPEN!
I know I talked all about the Wordsworth Planner that is not available currently, so here are a few other ideas for a substitute:
You could also head over to my Shop to take a look at a little Action Plan document I have created to help you, as you set yourself up for success in 2021!
Check it out here: https://www.joelsvision.com/product-page/2021-action-plan
I hope this post has been encouraging and helpful to you. I'd love to hear your feedback! Feel free to leave me a comment....what planner or notebook you have decided to use in 2021, or any other feedback you'd like to leave.
As always, feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
God Bless and Happy New Year!