Well, we all know that this is the time of year for New Year's Resolutions, and we also know that a lot of people's resolutions don't get very far. With that in mind, some friends of mine have come up with some tools to help with this. I'd like to share them with you.
The first tool is from Kevin Eikenberry, and it's a free guide to creating Remarkable Resolutions. This is a a kind of "workshop in a box" approach, guiding you through 26 thought-provoking questions designed to help you achieve greate clarity and depth in your resolutions.
I say it's like a workshop, because the document is actually a workbook designed so that you can print it out and write our your thoughts and answers in the book. You can then use the workbook throughout the year to remind you what you identified as important, which things you want to achieve, etc. It's generally known that writing things down helps make ideas more "real" in your brain, and I found that writing my answers down also felt good - like I was taking concrete steps to plan for 2008.
Kevin's also sharing his answers and thoughts on these questions at his blog. Incidentally, Kevin is the author of "Remarkable Leadership" which I'm reading right now. It is an excellent book - I'll be reviewing it soon.
Aim for the Goal Post
Keith Ferrazzi (author of "Never Eat Alone") is also adding to the toolbox. He suggests getting some skin in the game by making your commitment public, and choosing three friends to serve as your accountability buddies. Knowing they are watching you will help you to stick to and reach your goals - he calls it "peer-to-peer pressure". Your friends can cheer you on and send you inspirational songs and helpful website links.
To help keep you moving toward your goals, Keith and his team have developed a Facebook application called "Goal Post." It is an easy and visual way to set your goals, choose your accountability buddies and keep track of your progress.
To get started, login to Facebook (or register if you aren't Facing already) and then search for the "Goal Post" application.
Some of you may know that I turned off my Facebook account a while back because I found it to be a little needy in terms of how much attention it expected me to pay to it. This Goal Post application is tempting me to reactivate... If you try out Keith's tool, let me know how it goes.
Both of these approaches will be useful in getting you to go beyond thinking about what you want to do, and into writing things down and developing a plan - and I've heard stats that most people don't have written goals. If you're in that club, maybe these tools will help you take that important step toward success.