It seems like the end of the year brings about a desire to evaluate and plan. Maybe it\u2019s the New Year\u2019s resolution syndrome. The problem I\u2019ve found with this is that while many people make promises and expect a successful result, they don\u2019t put actions behind the promises. Acording to Mina Watkin\u2019s blog post,\u00a0 \u201cNew Year\u2019s Resolutions: How Will YOU Finish the New Year?\u201d John C. Norcross conducted a study which showed that only 46 percent of people are successful with their New Year\u2019s resolutions after six months. That\u2019s less than half! I\u2019m confident the people who were unsuccessful were well-intentioned and really believed they could accomplish their goals. They just didn\u2019t take the time to set up action steps for achieving those goals. This happens all the time. We set a goal and then go off and do stuff. We don\u2019t take the time to plan the steps for achieving the goal. No wonder only 46 percent of us make it past six months with our New Year\u2019s resolutions! Look at it this way \u2013 you set a goal. That goal is big. It\u2019s so big that you can\u2019t get your arms around it. It\u2019s like standing right next to an elephant and looking at it. All you see is gray. However, when you step back and look at the elephant, you can see that it has separate parts. Now you can pick a part and determine how to eat it. Yes, this is how you eat an elephant! So how do we take this information and create a system for keeping our resolutions that works? We go through a process I call roadmapping. Roadmapping helps you put the action steps between your promise and your desired result. Here\u2019s how it works. Close your eyes and picture your business 12 months from now. What does it look like? What kind of revenue are you realizing? What functions are you performing? Do you have staff? What do your clients look like? How many do you have? Continue to answer all the questions you can think of about your business. Once you have a clear picture write down up to three top promises on a piece of paper. You could have fewer than three, but please don\u2019t pick more. You\u2019ll see why in a minute. Now work backwards from there. What steps need to be taken in order to get to each of the three results? This helps you identify the next thing you can do to move the ball down the field. Example: In December 2010 I set a goal of acquiring 10 paid speaking engagements in 2011. That was the promise. Getting the engagements meant that I needed to be talking to the event planners. In order to talk with event planners I needed to know what events were planned for 2011. Then I needed to determine how I would reach out to their planners. And I needed a speaker\u2019s one-sheet. By working backwards I came to the understanding of my first steps--and these steps had due dates on them. The first was research. The second was one-sheet creation. The third was outreach. Once I had gotten that far, it was time to create the next set of action steps. Do you know what happened? I had five paid speaking gigs scheduled within the first quarter of 2011. Half of my goal had been achieved! It is because of the action steps that I was able to achieve my goals. I continued to gain paid speaking gig and hit my promise of 10. You can do this too. All it takes is setting up the first action steps and starting the process. You\u2019ll be able to see your accomplishments, adapt if necessary, and see how you are moving toward the promises you\u2019ve made to your business.