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I once heard a story that I believed to be true.  It had a great impact on my life that caused me to take action.  I can’t remember most of the details, but it was about an invading army that sailed wooden ships to the shores of their enemy.  Upon landing, the commanding officer ordered that all the ships be burned.  Most of the men were confused and somewhat in a state of horror as they watched the flames consume their vessels.  The great leader then turned to this army and said, “Now you know that retreat is not an option!”

I love this story!

It changed the way that I go about accomplishing goals.  For example, one year I resolved to read 2 books each month.  Rather than acquiring the books as I needed them, I started the goal by selecting and purchasing all 24 books.  I then put them on a shelf where they could stare at me and remind me of my goal.

Another example of this concept is the plethora of health goals that I have not accomplished.  Most start with good intentions and even thorough planning, yet they seem to fade quickly.  The key element lacking is that of an environment where I feel like I must succeed.  Contrast that to the last two diet contests that I have entered.  Because my scores would be visible to everyone in the contest, and because there was an investment made, it “forced” me to have perfect scores.

I recently did this with a goal to ride my bike to work 3 times each week.  I liked the idea, but it was definitely a kick.  To ensure that it would develop into a lifestyle, I went out and spent a few hundred dollars on a wardrobe (cabinet) that is now in my office, at work.  It is filled with all my professional attire that I transferred from my home.  I also made it well known to my colleagues my plan of biking each day.  This visibility and investment created the environment necessary to motivate me to bike to work even when it is not convenient, when I am tired, and when it is snowing outside.

And so it is with this website.  I plan on waking every Friday at 5:00 am and doing something with one of my children.  I will leave the selection of the activity 100% in the hands of my children (within reason).  I will probably not start it with my youngest children until they are about 3 years-old.  My real goal is to ensure that I make and spend quality time with my kids on an individual, and regular, basis.  Now that I have created this blog and made some close friends and family aware of it, I feel like many people now have this same expectation of me.  This site just provides the visibility necessary to ensure that this goal sticks.

Wish me luck!