In the last 2 posts we focused on completing 2009 and bringing the new learning to 2010.  Now it’s time to apply it!

Step Three:  Imagine ahead to December 2010

Write a list of your Wins, Gains, and Breakthroughs for 2010.  This part is very important:  Be specific and write them as if they have already happened.

For example,

I have increased my income by x%.

I developed better relationships with my team and retention is 100%.

I landed the dream job I’ve been wanting and feel like I’m making a difference.

I have at least one award-winning idea.

Now, take it a step further.  Double and spice up each of your goals.  If your goal is to increase your income by 30%, make it 60%.  If your goal is to land your dream job, then land it AND work 10% fewer hours in 2010.  Yes, goals need to be specific and also realistic .

However, when I challenge my clients to increase their goals in this exercise, often at least two things happen:

First, they start connecting to a much bigger picture about what’s important.  It’s not just about the 60% increase in income, but what possibilities that opens up for them.   (In a previous post I talk about the re-occuring themes that we all seem to want more of in our jobs, but tend to push aside for the smaller and shorter term goals. These themes are:  ideation/creativity, relationships, meaning – and will be addressed in future articles).

Second, they suddenly become aware of how plausible these new goals can be.  After all, the whole point of setting goals is to focus on consciously and intentionally creating goals instead of letting it just happen.  Why not make them the most exciting, riveting, intoxicating and dreamy as you can imagine?

Next, create SMART goals. You know the drill.  Specific, measurable etc.  but expand them to fit what’s really in your business context and will work for you.  Should “measurable” really be “meaningful”?  Measurement is important – how else will you know you achieved it?  But find something that works for you.

Ask yourself:  What’s one dream you have in 2010 that seems almost too good to be true?  And what would you do if you achieved it?  Then start creating goals to achieve it.