The world No 1, who is chasing a hat-trick of majors and the completion of a career grand slam at the Masters in April, starts his season at the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship on the European Tour.
“Every year I fly here and I write my goals down on the back of my boarding pass, put it in my wallet and memorise them,” said the 25 year old.
“Then I don’t look at them until the end of the year.
“So in my back pocket, in my wallet, is a boarding pass with my goals for this year. I don’t really want to share them as they are just my little goals, and I’ll try and achieve those and take that boarding pass out at the end of the year and see how I’ve done.
“Over the Christmas period I had my first chance to really look back and reflect on the year and I feel 2014 has really set me up for another great year. I feel like I’m coming into this year with a nice little bit of momentum, and my game is feeling good.”
Sheffield’s Danny Willett – who leads the early Race to Dubai standings after his win in South Africa before Christmas – tees off in the group after McIlroy. Fellow Yorkshiremen Simon Dyson, Matt Fitzpatrick and Richard Finch are also in the field.