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New Year's Resolutions?

It's early morning New Years Eve as I write this. This is the time of year that many people consider, possibly for the first time all year, the idea of setting goals. They may call them New Year's Resolutions (ie. I will lose weight, I'll stop smoking, I'll spend more time with my family, I'll increase my income in 2010), but they're heading the right direction as being goals.

Anything you want can be a goal, but not everything should be a goal! The mere act of setting a goal is as close to real MAGIC as I have ever experienced. To be clear, I am NOT saying that simply putting something out there to the collective consciousness of the world will magically make your dreams come true. I don't roll that way. Anything WORTH having is going to take some work and effort on your part. Setting goals will simply give you a game plan to make those big dreams you have a reality.

The difference between goals and dreams is that dreams can be anything. Goals, for the most part, should fit a certain pattern.

A popular way of teaching goals for the past 10 years or so is as SMART Goals. Each letter of S-M-A-R-T is the first letter of what a goal should be.

S - SPECIFIC - when writing your goals be as specific as possible. "Financially secure" is too vague. "Having 6 months of living expenses in the bank by January 31, 2011" is specific. Answer the 5 "W's" when writing a specific goal (Who, What, When, Where, Why) whenever possible.

M - Measurable - Is there a concrete way to measure you progress towards goal attainment? Measuring your progress helps you stay on track and gives you motivation as you get closer to accomplishing your goals. How much? How many? How will I know when I can cross this goal off of my list as accomplished? If you cannot answer these questions then go back to "SPECIFIC" and make the goal more specific so you can answer these questions.

A - Attainable - In order for a goal to be a goal it MUST be attainable. Otherwise it's a dream. Let's face it, not everyone can grow up to be President of the United States. In fact, only 44 people in the history of the US have been elected President, so honestly, very few can grow up to become President... but anyone (who meets the Constitutional requirements) can RUN for President. However, these days anyone (who is physically qualified) can be an astronaut if he has enough money to pay for the trip. In fact, a friend of mine recently was! So if you goal is to be an astronaut, it could be that the way to get there is to become a multi-millionaire so you can go.

R - Relevant or Realistic - You goals needs to be one that you are BOTH WILLING and ABLE to work towards. High goals are frequently EASIER to attain than smaller goals as lower goals exert less motivational power than the higher ones. Your goal is probably realistic if you TRULY believe that it can be accomplished. This is very similar to attainable, but it's very important.

T - Timely - If there's not a timetable on a goal then it's just a dream. It's one thing to say you want to lose 10 lbs. It's another thing completely to lose 10 lbs by February 28th. Setting a timeline sets your unconscious mind on a path to attainment.

So... get out the pad and paper or open a new Word document on your computer and get busy writing your goals.

For my entertainer friends, who are probably the only ones reading this blog anyway, if your goal is to make $150,000 this year, do the math and figure out how many shows you'll have to do to make that money.

# of shows performed





















86 (approx.)






67 (approx.)




















Take a look at the table above. Where do you fall in? If you are doing $125 birthday party shows (first of all raise your prices) then you'll have to do 1200 shows to make $150K. This is probably not physically possible, so this goal may not be reasonable.

If you are doing $15,000 speeches to the corporate market, and you ONLY want to make $150K then you'll only have to do one show a month, with two months off to make the same money. Though you'll probably have a higher goal that $150K, unless that's your goal for just ONE MARKET!

If you perform in several markets, then figure out what the potential is for each market and write your goals accordingly by making a map of how many shows, at what fee, you want to do in the coming year. Add those totals together for a final goal, then go about figuring out how you are going to attain those goals, in each market.

I hope you'll take an hour or two hours and map out where you're going in 2010, and I hope you'll do it this week. I know I already have.

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