Definitely not another pep talk on goal-setting…

Happy New Year!

I’ve spent a few January evenings over the years writing articles to say, one way or another, “Stop making resolutions…set goals instead.”

I’ve written about how resolutions are just wishes, while goals are solid affirmations that you announce the world and build plans around.

Scrap that message this year! I want to start 2010 with a different one:

Decide what you want and just begin doing something that will help you get it.

It’s not that I’ve given up on goals. They’re important. But I’ve watched too many clients and friends spend all of their time analyzing and planning, suffering through analysis paralysis, leaving no time to get started.

I had the good fortune to be coached by Steve Chandler last year and have since joined his invaluable international mastermind group,
Club Fearless. I’ve also taken advantage of his books and audios, some of which he generously provides to Club members at no cost.

Among the many ideas Steve has shared are these two:

1. Stop fretting about how you’re going to get the whole thing done and just begin it. Take one of your resolutions or goals and do something you think will lead you toward it. Do it today. Then, tomorrow, do something else with the same intention, or more of the same, and adjust as you go.

A plan may come to you—or not! But you’ll get much further along focusing on just the
small piece in front of you that requires your attention right now, than you will if you keep looking at the big goal you’ve set.

2. Don’t wait for inspiration. If you need to make phone calls, don’t wait to be inspired to make them. Pick up the phone and make one call. Just one! Then, you can decide about the next. If you are waiting to be inspired to write, sit down and start writing instead. Write badly. Write nonsense. But write. Somewhere in there you might become inspired. By then, you’ll have a lot of writing done.

If this is the year you’ll be increasing your income by 20 percent, do something right now that might get you there. As business author Jeffrey Gitomer says, “Imperfect action beats perfect inaction every time.”

If this is the year you’ll finally lose those twenty extra pounds, start doing something that will get you on your way. Don’t go on another painful diet that you won’t stay on. Instead, cut out the cookies today and walk for twenty minutes. Tomorrow will be another day. Maybe you’ll do the same thing—or something different. Make it a game and have fun with it, but get into action.

We make resolutions and set goals with the best of intentions, but if we’re constantly trying to figure out how we’re going to get the whole thing accomplished, we become overwhelmed and depressed, and eventually allow ourselves to fail. If you have a goal in mind, do like they used to say in one of those television infomercials: “Set It…and Forget It.”

Figure out what you need to do right now and get started with that. The “BHAG” (Big Hairy Audacious Goal) that Verne Harnish talks about in his book, Mastering the Rockefeller Habits, will still be out there, but you’ll be focusing on the thing you need to be doing right now!

In my book, The High Diving Board, I talk about the two things you can be doing when there’s something you want in your life: Taking Action or Making Excuses. Don’t use resolution making, goal setting and planning as excuses for inaction. Do something that might get you where you want to go today.

I can help you and your team accomplish your goals this year. Why not make your first step a call or e-mail to me to see how?

In the meantime, keep REACHING…

Sandy