Promise #1 For The New Year

“Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare.” – Japanese Proverb

 A year ago — during the first two weeks of January — we made 10 New Year’s resolutions, one each day. The idea was that by spreading out our promises over 10 days — instead of making them all on New Year’s Day — we would be able to make better promises and give ourselves a much better chance of accomplishing them.Based on my own experience in making myself promises and on the experience I’ve had helping others fulfill theirs, I provided some suggested resolutions. It was up to you, of course, to modify them to fit your own personal objectives.

I also made a big claim: I swore that if you stuck with the ETR New Year’s resolution program, you would be happier, healthier, more productive, and more successful at the end of the year.

Well, the end of the year is here — and it’s time to take an honest look at how we’ve done.

Starting today, and continuing through the first two weeks of 2002, we’re going to revisit each one of the resolutions I suggested for 2001. I’m going to ask you to evaluate your progress and rate yourself — and I’m going to tell you how I did.

I hope you have last January’s 10 resolutions with you. If not, I probably don’t have to ask what kind of year you had. Let me guess: very busy but nothing great accomplished.

If you did take your resolutions seriously, you’ve accomplished some of them completely, partially achieved some, and perhaps failed with one or two. Now’s a good chance to start fresh.

In case you’ve forgotten, here’s how your New Year’s resolutions fit into the ETR goal-setting system:

* At the beginning of each year, you contemplate your future by dreaming your best dreams, thinking about your responsibilities, and imagining what you hope people will say about you at your own funeral.

* You identify four Life Goals.

* You break down your four Life Goals into five-year objectives.

* You break down your five-year objectives into New Year’s resolutions.

Now, here’s the trick: You absolutely, positively, without question, must use the unique and brilliant ETR daily task program to make this work. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve worked with this year who couldn’t accomplish what they wanted because they were using some modified, watered-down version of it.

A simple “to-do” list will NOT work. You have to use my system of incorporating Important but Not Urgent Life Goals into your daily tasks. Life Goals into your daily tasks.

[Ed. Note.  Mark Morgan Ford was the creator of Early To Rise. In 2011, Mark retired from ETR and now writes the Palm Beach Letter. His advice, in our opinion, continues to get better and better with every essay, particularly in the controversial ones we have shared today. We encourage you to read everything you can that has been written by Mark.]