Whilst we have good intentions at the beginning of a new year in setting goals, it’s a bit like planting something in your garden. We love what we’ve planted and so we begin to water it and look after it.

There’s a growth spurt so we water it some more.

Then some distractions enter our life. We forget to water it. Suddenly weeds encroach on what we’ve planted and it dies. It’s a bit like goals.

Harvard Medical School conducted a study and the results were quite amazing. 70% of people who set goals don’t achieve them. However, 98% of people who call them Promises achieved their goal. That’s a startling difference, don’t you agree?

Would you prefer to be in the 98% or the 30% who achieve their goals?

America’s billionaire, Bill Bartmann (named as “One of the Top 100 Entrepreneurs of the Last 100 Years”), has a fantastic 10-step process for setting and keeping your Promises:

1) Ensure it’s YOUR goal, your vision, your quest; not someone else’s. “Our life is the most precious asset we have” Bill Bartmann. Don’t give up your dreams to make someone else happy.

2) Call your goals a ‘PROMISE’. Our brain is an amazing instrument. It is usually inherent within us to keep our promises… when we promise to do X by X date, our brain and our heart kicks in and we want to fulfil that promise. On the other hand, our brain can associate goals with failure. Think about that for a minute. How many times have you promised something either to yourself or someone else, and you fulfilled that promise? Then think about how many times you have set goals and the amount of times you achieved those goals. Promises will outweigh goals.

3) Clearly identify your Promise. Don’t be vague. Instead of saying I would like to lose weight, be specific… how much weight would you like to lose and by when?

4) Use the tools around you as motivators to keep you going. Positive motivators may be the people you love – negative motivators may be those who say you can’t do it; prove them wrong and use it as a driving influence.

5) Create a Promise Plan. Promises aren’t promises until you’ve written them down. Define what your Promise is; when you will achieve your Promise; where you will be when it happens; why you want it; who you need help from to fulfil your Promise; and an ongoing list of how you will fulfil your Promise. It is not necessary to know ALL of the how… have faith that you will find the answers as your travel through the journey. Bill Bartmann provided a great story as it relates to the how: You have set off on a 200 mile trip in the dark. Your headlights are on which shines a 200ft path for you, which you follow. You don’t need the headlights to shine up the whole 200 miles… you only need to know each 200ft to get there. Your ‘how’ is like the 200ft path. You don’t need to know the whole 200 miles.

6) Review your plan and Promise on a regular basis: 20 MINUTES EVERY DAY. By doing so, the how will materialise and the pieces come together. You are melding your conscious and subconscious which will give you the answers you need. Create a Tangible Vision of your Promise and stick it in a prominent place where you can see it every day.

7) Remove any negative thoughts from your mind and tell yourself you WILL succeed. Feed your mind with positive affirmations. You could do this by sticking them near your computer, on your mirror or wherever else you see fit. Another great method is recording your affirmations and then playing them as you drift off to sleep. This is my personal favourite and a technique that has assisted me many times throughout my life.

8) Inform others of your Promise… don’t hide them in the cupboard! Commit to your Promise and share your vision.

9) Envision the results. Play your own mind movie and picture yourself already there. Mark Victor Hansen and Robert Allen cite a great exercise in their book ‘Cash In A Flash’. Write an article (from a journalist’s perspective) that appears about YOU and your Promise… imagine a journalist writing about your accomplishments – it’s made front page news!

10) START! Do something now, today, to begin your Promise Journey.

What tools and resources do you use to accomplish your Promises? Share with me your thoughts 🙂