My New Year’s Resolution Challenge to You!

I am a huge fan of short and long term goal setting and the use of to-do lists.  We can be much more productive if we organize our objectives and our time.  I wouldn’t set out on a major vacation without an itinerary nor would I try to cook a complicated dish without a recipe.  Without goals or to-do lists we are too easily distracted.  We waste a lot of time and end up going down the wrong path.

I encourage everyone to start with a list of about 20-30 long term goals.  From this list identify about 10 things you would like to achieve this year.  Then develop a to-do list of things you need to accomplish this week or month.  You are way ahead of the game just by writing down some goals and priorities.  This forces you to think about your values, desires and objectives for the year.  This will serve as your personal strategic plan to make sure you are on the right track.

I know everyone comes up with a list of New Year’s resolutions and we seldom stick to them.  So why bother?  I think the process itself is good because you have given some thought to what you want to accomplish.  You may not reach all of your goals but some of your effort will come to fruition.

I have a special challenge for you in 2010.  Think about all the things you would like to accomplish or change in 2010.  Select just ONE thing that you must accomplish or change this year and write it down.  Make a vow to yourself to do whatever it takes to accomplish this one goal.  Create an action plan to reach your objective.  Share your goal with at least one other person who will hold you accountable.  Be sure to monitor and reward your progress.

If you want to share, I would love to hear about your “One Goal” for 2010 and how you are progressing.

About the author

Jane M. Young, CFP®, EA, MBA, CDFA

Jane M. Young is a Certified Financial Planner and co-owner of Pinnacle Financial Concepts, Inc. and Divorce Solutions, Inc. She has been a financial planner since 1996. She is also enrolled to practice before the Internal Revenue Service. Prior to becoming a financial planner Jane held several management positions at Digital Equipment Corporation and Quantum Corporation, where she worked for 14 years. Jane holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of Colorado and an MBA from the University of Colorado. She has also completed the two year Certified Financial Planner Professional Education Program with the College for Financial Planning.

Jane is very active in the community. She is the immediate past president of the Rotary Club of Colorado Springs and a past president of Leadership Pikes Peak. She is a graduate of the Leadership Pikes Peak class of 2004. She is a past president of the Financial Planning Association of Southern Colorado and a past president of the Pikes Peak Chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners. Jane is also a member of the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, College of Business, Alumni Leadership Team. Jane is a graduate of the Leadership Program of the Rockies class of 2009 and a graduate the Colorado Springs Leadership Institute class of 2011. She is also a member of the Estate Planning Council and Artemis. Jane was selected as a 2010 Woman of Influence by the Colorado Spring Business Journal.

As a fee-only financial planner Jane is a member of the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, the Financial Planning Association, the National Association of Tax Professionals and the Alliance of Cambridge Advisors. She has been quoted in several local and national publications including The Wall Street Journal, US News and World Report, Consumer Reports, Investment News, MSN Money, Kiplinger Magazine, Financial Advisor Magazine, Bankrate.com and the Colorado Springs Business Journal. She also works as a volunteer instructor to new advisors with the Alliance of Cambridge Advisors and has worked as an adjunct instructor at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

Jane is from St. Louis, but grew up in Colorado Springs. She enjoys skiing, golfing, traveling, hiking, painting and learning to speak French.

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