2009 Resolutions

The old year is almost done and the New Year brings promise and optimism. Then there is the dreaded resolution. If you are like a friend of mine he resolve to wake up each day – so far he has kept his resolutions. We still make goals for ourselves and this is a great thing. Regardless of what your goal may be there are software tools that can nag and help track your progress.

Joe’s Goals
I actually learned about this one from a co-worker coincidentally named Joe. This clever little tool will let you create goals and each day indicate if you were successful or not at achieving your goal. If you are so inclined it also has options to share this on keep it private. Try this at http://www.joesgoals.com

Benjamin Franklin Virtue Chart
Developing a way to track virtuous goals Benjamin Franklin developed a number of virtues that he decided he would make a part of his life. To record his progress he developed a simple chart that gave him the ability to monitor his progress. If you want a simple paper and pencil approach you can give this one a try.
Franklin Virtue Chart (link)
Background History (link)

S.M.A.R.T. Goals
Peter Drucker first spoke of the process to make goals when he recommended the S.M.A.R.T. acronym as a guideline for setting objectives, and it works for personal goals, too.

  • Specific. Don’t just say “Exercise.” Decide to “Run 15 minutes each weekday.”
  • Measurable. Instead of “Be better about corresponding with old friends,” decide to “Send out birthday and holiday cards to my high school friends.”
  • Achievable. “Be the perfect student” is an admirable goal, but nobody’s perfect, no matter how resolved they are. Make your resolution something that’s possible—like, “Improve your grade point average by .5”
  • Realistic. You’ve only got so many hours in the day, so make your goals realistic based on what resources and tools you’ve got on hand. Unless you are in the military travelling to the moon may be difficult to achieve.
  • Timely. Since these are New Year’s resolutions, set goals you can reach at most within the next 12 months. Giving yourself a “deadline” of sorts will help you figure out where you should be when while tracking your progress.

To read more about Drucker’s S.M.A.R.T. objective system, see this helpful TechRepublic article, Use S.M.A.R.T. goals to launch management by objectives plan.

Reference also LifeHacker

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