What have you actually accomplished in this year of 2009? Can you look yourself squarely in the mirror and honestly declare that it was a successful year?

Statistically... 98.2% of you can not make such an affirmation of “success” to yourself. While this statistic is true, it is also genuinely sad. The basis for this fact comes from a recent study that reported that 98.2% of all people do not achieve their goals or resolutions.

The holidays are at hand and soon too will be the New Year. Do you know exactly where you are headed in 2010? Given the current economic and job markets, people are universally quite uncertain of what the New Year will bring. Your thoughts and expectations for 2010 are probably a bit clouded, or as I like to refer to them... “fuzzy”.

Finding clarity and achieving the right focus for work and life are among the most frequent requests of the clients to whom I have the privilege of serving. Right now you might be saying to yourself, why would anyone hire a professional to help them in this regard. The fact is that the key to taking the right course of action, first begins with having clarity of purpose and direction. And I would agree with you that this is totally fundamental -- but it is also absolutely “essential”.

If you’re going to travel home for the holidays, you are going to have to make some "travel plans". Right? Even though you’ve made the annual trek to grandma’s house before... you will still need to have a plan! When will you leave for your trip? What do you have to take with you? What will the weather be like in Hometown USA, Sydney, London or Toronto? When will you be returning home? Will you fly, drive or take a train? Aside from the annual traditions, what else will you do while you are there?

Face the truth... you’re going to need a viable “plan” for your holidays to be a success. Let us not forget the direction component. Even if you’ve taken the trip home 20 times in the last 20 years, the trip is never the same. After all, you spent hard earned money to subscribe to satellite radio and install a GPS system in your car just to get to work on time in local traff... what about over the river and through the woods to grandma’s house?

In reality, you will make a plan for your holiday travels. Which is exactly the point that I was leading up to. The true reality is that you will statistically spend more time planning two weeks of vacation and your holidays -- than you will the remaining 50 weeks of the year. So, why can’t you be as committed to creating a viable plan for your life, career or business?

Instinctively, deep down inside of yourself you know it’s the right thing to do. If you are able to plan for your holidays and vacations -- then how is it that you can’t come up with a plan for your life that works? The other keys to being successful in life are knowing:

• What is of the greatest importance and why.
• What it is that you want.
• Knowing how to get it.
• Having the grit and fortitude to not give up until you do.

These four points are among the most critical factors and obstacles in your personal quest to successfully achieve your goals in life. Yet, less than two percent of all people figure out how to get it “right” and then succeed. I feel certain at this special time of the year that you are watching the dreams and expectations that your children or grandchildren have for their holidays. As well, I am also most certain that you don’t want to disappoint them. I would imagine that you would do almost anything to make their holiday wish come true, while cherishing your ability to witness their moments of joy. So... how is it that you can expect anything less for yourself?

Regardless of age, your inner child is holding on to hopes and dreams too. Whether it’s your dream job, dream home or the lifestyle that you dream of living one day... you want more from your life. This is a natural part of the process of personal growth and self development. What is not natural is the fact that statistically the odds of fulfilling those dreams are stacked 98.2% against you. You already know that life is not fair. What you also need to know, is that you are capable of beating those odds… “guaranteed”!

The action that you must take is to commit to the 2010 pledge of “No More Resolutions”.

Are you fully committed to taking the 2010 Pledge of “No More Resolutions”? As I cited at the beginning of this article... 98.2% of all people do not achieve their goals or resolutions. So then, why make such resolutions in the first place, if you are not going to keep them anyway or be properly equipped to achieve them?

What I’m recommending is that you forgo the annual ritual of placing yourself in a position of having to again come up short in the resolution department. However, by no means should you ever give up on fulfilling your aspirations or living out your dreams. While the odds of being successful might seem a bit overwhelming... they can be overcome! If you are honest with yourself about your resolutions in years past, you will have to admit that they were approached all too casually. Your approach lacked true commitment, conviction and a real plan for success.

Year after year you profess that you are going to get fit, lose weight or break a bad habit. I would absolutely agree that physical fitness, dropping 20 pounds and quitting smoking are admiral undertakings. The reality is, that it is going to take more than mind over matter. Regardless of how strong you believe that your “will-power” is... it isn’t sufficient enough to sustain your efforts and then achieve the result that you profess that you want. Your chances of achieving success would increase dramatically if you chose to work with a personal trainer, nutritionist or hypnosis-therapist.

While the aforementioned traditional challenges are in principle good things to potentially accomplish -- what is the one thing in your life or work that is truly worthy of investing your time, energy, sweat, blood, tears and resources for, over the next 365 days without wavering? One year from now on December 31st when 2010 is about to go into the record books -- what is the single most important thing that you want to have accomplished or changed in your life?

Hear these words from Annika Sorenstam, “There is no shortcut to success.” Stop waiting for your ship to come in... it’s not coming. Neither is there a magic pill that will fix everything in your life... it doesn’t exist. If you want something to happen or change in your life during 2010... then it is up to you to MAKE it happen. Following are four time tested actions that will help you in your quest to be more successful in the New Year ahead:

TAKE THE 2010 PLEDGE: Raise your hand and state out loud (so that you can hear your own voice say) “No More Resolutions!”

MAKE A STAND FOR WHAT YOU WANT: For once in your life commit to “something”. Quit waffling and stop avoiding the issue of WHAT it is that you want. Deep down inside, you already know what it is. Acknowledge what your inner self is telling you and commit to it for the next 365 days. Decide what you want and then go all out for it. No holding back.

AFFIRM WHAT'S POSSIBLE: Start believing in yourself and what is realistically possible. Look beyond the obvious and explore all of your options. Inventory your storehouse of talents, abilities, education, training and experience. You already have what it takes. Make a plan that will allow you to better utilize your personal attributes and resources.

DON'T GIVE UP: Develop the right mindset... that what you want is worth the hard work that lies ahead in 2010. Allow the work to stretch your capabilities. Get the help that you need to succeed. If your car broke down along the road, you would call a tow truck wouldn’t you? Then you would get your car repaired and continue on with your journey. Right? So, if your plan breaks down, has a flaw in it or you encounter a roadblock... get some help, fix the problem and then press on with your mission for 2010.

With regard to the mindset thing, if you set your mind to each of these four straight forward actions -- you just might be amazed to see all that you have achieved by this time next year. And if you are serious enough about this process, it might even be life changing.

Don’t let the statistical odds dictate your fate. Take control of your future now, by setting yourself up for success in 2010! Take control... Take the Pledge... NO MORE RESOLUTIONS!

Copyright © 2009 Developing Forward | A Priority Life | Thomas H. Swank, CBC | All Rights Reserved.

Author's Bio: 

Is your business running your life? Has everything else in life... taken control of yours? Tom Swank is a Trusted Business Advisor and top ranked Personal Development Coach who can quickly help you take back control of your life, career and the plans that you hold for your future. Tom is the CEO of Developing Forward Business Coaching and the Founder of the “A Priority Life” series of development programs. He has over 25 years of professional experience as a coach and consultant. To learn how to create the life... that you want to live... register to receive Tom’s free "Special Reports" and self improvement articles at www.APriorityLife.com or www.DevelopingForward.com

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR NEWSLETTER, EZINE OR WEBSITE? You are welcome to reprint this article, provided that you include the following credit: “Trusted Business Advisor and Personal Development Coach Tom Swank publishes the ‘Results By Design’ Ezine which is enjoyed by a rapidly growing global readership audience. If you are ready to take back control of your life, career and the plans that you hold for your future... register to receive Tom’s free “Special Report” and self improvement articles at www.APriorityLife.com