December is the last month we have to put together our wish list for 2013. Most of us will wait until the last day to scribble down some sort of resolutions or plans we hope to accomplish for the New Year. But, how do you get started?

Last time we shared a tool that we have used for years to organize our goals and keep track of the progress we make – the Goal Book. It is a road map, a reminder, and a scoreboard. The regular postings and history of milestones encourage us to stay focused even when we seem to be making no progress. It helps us keep our eyes and ears open for opportunities, ideas and contacts that will move us forward.

So it becomes a fun game and we look forward to reviewing the Goal Book every Sunday. And when we do, we go through each goal category, read the goal and the last few posts, and spend a few minutes recalling what progress has occurred this week. Then we make entries.

The posts are dated, brief, and historical facts – no opinions, speculations, or wishful dreaming. You can post contacts and resources that may help you; with the understanding they are steps in the right direction, not achievements. Sometimes weeks go by with nothing to post in one particular area, but that’s OK. We post achievements in other categories and that gives us a feeling of expectation that there will be a breakthrough, achievement or insight because we have seen it before.

We suggest you start your own Goal Book. Pick up a small 3-ring binder and create a section for each category where you state your goals, resolutions or plans for the coming year.

So what are the Goal Categories? You can make up your own, but just to get you started, here are the general categories that have worked well for us:

Health. For us, this includes achieving and maintaining our ideal weight, improving our diet, and getting regular exercise. It also includes mental health, vacations, and self-improvement goals, such as a new skill.

Wealth. Here we put not only our financial goals, but also income-related projects. Equity, investments, savings and expense reductions also fit here.

Home. We all have plans to improve our environment whether its purchases, improvements, energy savings or even closets that need organizing. This category can also be a catch all for things such as upgrading our wardrobe, transportation, and technology.

Spirit. Acknowledging the apparently random and coincidental interconnectivity of favorable events that move us toward our goals seems to us to result in more of them. This is may be considered religious or “woo woo”, but whatever you call it, it makes it more fun and encouraging.

Social. Family, friends, and associates we want to cultivate relationships with go here. We have a calendar under this category where we post upcoming events that we look forward to and prepare for, as well as new people we meet.

Feel free to use categories that seem more appropriate for you. We review and reorganize our categories every year. It’s amazing how simple this system is and how well it works for us. Next time we will discuss the mindset, partnerships and strategies that can make your Goal Book an even more effective tool to achieve your goals and stick to your resolutions.

Who We Are

Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey Barefoot Wine Founders

Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey co-authored the New York Times bestselling business book, The Barefoot Spirit: How Hardship, Hustle, and Heart Built America’s #1 Wine Brand. The book has been selected as recommended reading in the CEO Library for CEO Forum, the C-Suite Book Club, and numerous university classes on business and entrepreneurship. It chronicles their humble beginnings from the laundry room of a rented Sonoma County farmhouse to the board room of E&J Gallo, who ultimately acquired their brand and engaged them as brand consultants. Barefoot is now the world’s largest wine brand.

Beginning with virtually no money and no wine industry experience, they employed innovative ideas to overcome obstacles, create new markets and forge strategic alliances. They pioneered Worthy Cause Marketing and performance-based compensation. They built an internationally bestselling brand and received their industry’s “Hot Brand” award for several consecutive years.

They offer their Guiding Principles for Success (GPS) to help entrepreneurs become successful. Their book, The Entrepreneurial Culture: 23 Ways To Engage and Empower Your People, helps corporations maximize the value of their human resources.

Currently they travel the world leading workshops, trainings, & keynoting at business schools, corporations, conferences. They are regular media guests and contributors to international publications and professional journals. They are C-Suite Network Advisors & Contributing Editors. Visit their popular brand building site at

To make inquiries for keynote speaking, trainings or consulting, please contact