What are your resolutions for next year?  Are you going to be more responsible?  Get back in shape?  Save more money?  Read more books?

You’ve been told that you won’t end up happy and fulfilled twelve months from now unless you put some resolutions down on paper.

But that’s only part of the story.

Making the resolution doesn’t earn you much besides a great “elevator pitch”.  You don’t make more money or have fewer problems simply because you decide in your head that that’s the way it should be.

Your resolution is just wishful thinking.  Good ideas and hopeful fantasies.

And there is nothing wrong with big dreams and wild goals.  But wanting more for yourself doesn’t mean your life will ever change.

You need to have a plan.

And you need to get serious about the details:

  1. Your plan needs to include deadlines and milestones.
  2. You need to take into account “backup options”.
  3. You should include a reward for completing progress.
  4. You might need to involve other people in helping you with your plan.

Think of it like how a world-class chef builds, a recipe.

You need raw ingredients. You need a process for combining the ingredients. You need to apply heat. You need to sample the finished product for quality and texture. And finally, you need to make sure the plating looks perfect. Presentation matters.

Think of all the things that turn a recipe sideways. The wrong cooking time, consistency, or handling process can dramatically alter the success of the final product.

And why is it that you can follow the exact recipe that the chef created and end up with a product that tastes horribly inferior to what the chef intended?

Maybe it’s because the plan means more to the professional.

He doesn’t make resolutions.

Just plans.