You have a direction, a plan and a road map to make this your best year yet. Treat yourself to something special for all the work you've done so far.
You are still missing one key thing in the goal setting process and this is my secret weapon.
Don't go it alone!
Find a goal setting buddy, someone who will be a positive influence and help keep you on track.
For years I did the goal setting process alone and although it was still helpful, by the end of the year I found that I'd fallen short more often than not. I would get things done in the career section, but nothing for the body section. I let a year pass without giving a second thought to my health and what is success if you aren't in good shape to enjoy it?
My goal setting buddy is Matt, one of my dearest friends from my publishing days in New York City. Matt was my shinning star at a time in my life when everything felt bleak. When I said I wanted to move to Paris, it was Matt who helped me hang images of my dream city all around my desk. He suggested that we start learning some French words and we would practice our list at lunch. Matt believed in my dream more that I ever did and because he believed in it, I started to believe in it too.
At my work computer I had made it a habit to look at the prices of tickets going to Paris, for months I would come into work, sit at my desk and the first thing I would do, was look up airline prices. Then I would immediately close the window because I thought I would never be able to do. It was a silly dream, and I was growing embarrassed that I had even shared it with Matt.
With Matt's help, that silly dream became more and more real, I started to think that maybe I could move to Paris, and I started looking at tickets and apartments. Things just started to snowball from there and I wanted Paris, more that I wanted anything else. More than my career, more than my boyfriend, more that my apartment and all the things inside it that I owned. My "good on paper" life was becoming more and more like a 1000 pound weight that was drowning me, and Paris seemed to be more and more like my lifesaver.
It's an afternoon that I will never forget; it was a particularly stressful day at work and all I wanted to do was cry from how unhappy I was, so like always I looked up the price for tickets to Paris. That day was different, that day I did something I had never done before and I looked up the price of a one-way ticket. With all the encouragement that Matt had given me in the 2 years we had worked together, I was ready, ready to give it all up and take my chances. My hands shaking, I took out my credit card and and bought my one-way-ticket to salvation.
Within the following week I would break up with my boyfriend, put all of my stuff for sale on Craigslist, give up my apartment and tell my friends and family that I was leaving.
You see, even though I didn't have a job, a plan, a place to live, and didn't know a word of French - I had the one thing that I had needed all along, someone who believed in me, when I didn't even believe in myself.
Even though I now live a good 4,000 miles away and 6 hours ahead we still find time once a week to talk on Skype. We help each other set goals for the next year, suggest possible revisions, suggest action steps we can take and we keep each other accountable. We share stories of success and learn from where we've fallen short.
This has been the single most important factor in my goal setting habit, having that person who wants to see me attain my goals and helps me stay focused thought out the year.
Do whatever you need to to find someone like this in your life. If you don't feel like you have someone like that in your life then put a post up on Craigslist, find or start a Meetup group, a Google Hangout; whatever you can to find that one person who will be your North Star.
This is such an important part, if you've exhausted everything else and still can't find someone, then send me an email and I'll help you with your goals - even though I may not be able to ever repay what Matt did for me, I can surely try to pay it forward.
“I am a success today because I had a friend who believed in me and I didn't have the heart to let him down...” -Abraham Lincoln