Thursday, December 27, 2007


New Year’s is a special holiday for me. For as long as I can remember, I have taken the time between Christmas and New Year’s for reflection and self examination. Each year I make a list of goals on which I plan to work. Sometimes I succeed and sometimes I fail miserably. I keep a journal so I can look back to see how I did.

I think setting goals has helped me to be more productive in my life. But in order for goals to be effective, they must be specific and measurable. “I would like to lose some weight,” is not a very good goal. “I want to lose three pounds a month,” is a much better goal.

It’s good to set up reminders either on your calendar, day planner, or on you computer so that you can remember the goals when your head gets full. I’ve also found that if you penalize yourself when you miss your targets, you are more likely to accomplish your goals. For example, if you haven’t lost three pounds by January 31st, you must eat tripe, pig feet, or something else that is disgusting. The next month you’ll skip a meal or two and take the stairs instead of the elevator.

I’ve always focused on self-help. My library at home has hundreds of books that have helped me become a better gardener, musician, writer, husband and friend.

The title of my column, “Life 101” is no accident. I believe that every day is a school day. If you don’t learn from your mistakes, you are destined to repeat them time and again until you do learn.

When I look back at my journal for this past year, I have made a great deal of progress. We have improved our financial position; we have spent more time with our family and friends, and we focused on our health. I have read twenty five books this year and we traveled to a music conference in Los Angeles, California to learn how to get our music played in movies and on TV.

Another goal I set for this year was to find an outlet for my writing. I have written daily in my web log (BLOG) for more than two years and I wanted to write for a weekly column for a newspaper. So I took a vacation day on January 11th, and made an appointment with Brian Kennedy at the Daily Mountain Eagle. I walked into his office and told him I wanted to write for the Eagle. He looked over my work and agreed to get back with me. Within a few days, I was a columnist.

Not all goals are that easy to accomplish but when you write them well, commit them to paper, and maintain a level of commitment, you can do most anything.

Here are a few goals that I have set for myself for the coming year:

  1. To publish a book of my columns
  2. To get music in at least one movie or TV program this year
  3. Lose two pounds per month until I reach my ideal weight of 205 pounds
  4. Go someplace I have never been before
  5. Get my column in at least five additional publications during the coming year

If I don’t weight 205 pounds or less on December 31st 2008, I will eat a can of sardines.

1 comment:

  1. I agree that goals need to be specific. Also it's important to have a few "touchstones" along the way to be able to evaluate how much progress you're making.


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