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Six Posts to Help You Navigate Your Goals for 2009

Image by Castielli (via flickr)

Image by Castielli (via flickr)

Was this the year of the “Resolution Blog Post,” or was I just not paying attention in 2007-08? Right at the time we were all reflecting on 2008 and on what we wanted from 2009, we were downright inundated with great advice on how to do it.

Here’s a handful of the resolution-related posts that stuck out for me:

1. Goal-less?

Don’t kid yourself. Goals are important. They give us direction, help us better respond to unexpected events, and actually correlate to success. But don’t take it from me. Seth Godin thinks so, too.

2. The Bucket System

Chris Brogan talks about picking three words that are linked to your goals and filtering your actions through those words. I love this method because it forces you to make a determination about each action you take during the year: does this belong in one of my buckets, or is it a distraction?

3. Share

In true Keith Ferrazzi fashion, he recommends identifying three things you are going to do in 2009 and sharing your list with others. Sharing creates accountability and could help you build stronger relationships with those you choose to share with.

4. Define Your Career Mission

Jeremiah Owyang advises that you run your career like a company and set your mission: what do you want to be doing when you are at the height of your career? Define your mission and focus your activities on achieving it.

5. Challenge Yourself

If you currently walk your dog everyday and you set a goal to walk your dog everyday, you haven’t pushed yourself very hard. You should be asking yourself to step out of your comfort zone. This post isn’t a “resolution post,” but it talks about how to tackle something new. It caught my eye because one of my [completely random] goals is to sing in public. I haven’t attempted it since high school–and I don’t count college karaoke at last call.

6. Let Yourself Fail

I like to say that failure is just an opportunity to try again. Of course, I mostly like to say that when discussing failure, in general. It’s always harder to apply it to my own failure, even if it is just as true. As you head into 2009, don’t feel like you have to be perfect. Perfectionism was so last year.

What were your favorite “resolution posts” this year?

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thirtysomething… and Why I’m Writing Here

“This must be why the show ‘thirtysomething‘ was a hit,” I said to Suzanne over coffee a few weeks back.

I never watched “thirtysomething.” I was nine when it started in 1987, so at the time the subject matter (which I can only guess hovered around the lives of those who were in their thirties) didn’t exactly grab me in the same way that “Degrassi Junior High,” which also started in 1987, did.

And yet, suddenly I feel like I get it. The thirties carry a certain gravity that the twenties never did–at least for me. There is opportunity for greater reward along with opportunity for greater failure. Like falling, it hurts more when you’re older.

I imagine the show to basically be about my life now (though, like with most things, chances are I am completely wrong). There are significant career moves, changing priorities, money problems and competing interests. Only when I run into problems or choices, they don’t all get wrapped up at the end of 60 minutes–or, for the really serious issues, at the end of the season.

But sometimes I can work through them at brunch. Sunday brunch.

Just over two years ago, I started meeting with a couple of women (my co-authors on this blog) on Sunday mornings. These women, like myself, did not have all the answers. Together, we get just a little bit closer. Through these relationships, I have discovered the value of surrounding yourself with trusted advisers–both within the brunch circle and beyond. I may not have a scriptwriter to wrap everything up in an episode, but I have many people I rely on to help me write my own script.

I don’t know what I expect from this blog. I know I plan to share resources and thoughts on professional development, building a circle of advisers and, importantly, being a valuable adviser (still not sure “adviser” is the word I’m looking for, but it will do for now–maybe I’ll work that out online, too).

My own little selfish wish is that we’ll be able to build a community from which I will learn much, much more than I could ever hope to on my own.

Thanks for reading.

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