Goals 2013 – a year of Goals, Commitment and Accountability


Happy New Year! After a big night out we wake-up and write down our new year’s resolution(s). It’s the usual wish list lose weight, get fitter, earn more money, give-up drinking, smoking etc.

On Tuesday 1st January I listened to an excellent webinar by Shaa Wasmund  “Why you should Forget New Year’s Resolutions”.  @shaawasmund is the best selling author of “Stop Talking, Start Doing”, the UK’s best selling business book of 2012!

She told us that by the 19th January, less than 3 weeks in, 85% of these New Year’s resolutions fail, leaving us feeling like a failure. Part of the challenge is that New Year’s resolutions are more like a wish list with no focus or commitment to achieve them, and/or they are too large a goal to be realistically achieved.

Please read Shaa’s blog – 5 Ways To Make Your Resolutions Stick

In 2013 I wanted to share a different way of achieving your goals. Shaa suggests first we make a #Commitment – one clear goal with a focus on how to achieve it i.e. a plan of action to make it happen.  Second we need to be #Accountable – share your commitment with a friend or colleague this accountability makes sure you stay on track and achieve your goals.

I learned this lesson in October 2012 when I did the 10,000 push-up challenge.

  • Goal – 10,000 push-ups in one-month (325/day)
  • Commitment (and discipline) to do a minimum of 250 every day and to aim for 325/day
  • Accountability – I challenged my super fit colleague and ALM black-belt Dan Mikulskis @danmikulskis to the challenge and made myself accountable to my colleagues and clients.

Suffice to say we both achieved success and bigger pectoral muscles!

In 2013 think about one achievable goal, make a commitment and share it with a friend or colleague. Depending on the goal it takes about 66 days for something to become a habit e.g. 50-sits ups a day vs drink one glass of water a day.

And remember “we must all suffer from 1 of 2 pains: The pain of discipline or the pain of regret” – Jim Rohn.

My commitment for 2013 is to become an author to write my book “Take Control” and the 7 Step Framework for pension funds to achieve full funding.

Respect the training! Honour the commitment! Cherish the Results!

Whats your commitment to be better and smatter in 2013?

Good luck!


Dear Santa, a Wish List for 2013

Dearsanta 600x200Dear Santa,

Despite the omens of approaching a year with the number ‘13’ in it, I am hopeful for the coming year and the opportunities for pension funds. Last year I asked for Eurozone Resolution, Lower Volatility and strength for pension funds to Act on Opportunities in my letter to you. I even dropped my tennis lessons with Rafael Nadal off the list, in the hopes of those wishes coming true.

I guess you thought I wasn’t a good boy last year, though, because I didn’t really get any of the items on my list. I suppose it was a bit greedy of me to ask for all three. You did give some of the third item, though, and allowed some key pension funds to take advantage of opportunities presented to them. For that, I’m grateful.

This year, I’ve learned my lesson and my wish list is much smaller. I’ve also been very good this year so I’m hopeful that you’ll bring me what I ask. I request only a few small things:

Pension Funds Achieving their Goals with Less Risk

Pension funds have been hit so hard for the last few years. There has seemed to be no respite from quaking markets and dearth of political bad news. Thankfully, there’s a silver lining and new opportunities that give pension funds the protection they need from liability-matching as well as the upside from growth assets, have appeared! This year, I hope for more opportunities like this for pension funds, so they can achieve their goals with less risk.

The Overhaul of GenY’s Saving Ethos (or lack thereof)

The pensions industry’s problems worsen as time marches on and the next generation fails to pay attention to the real problems. Even if we solve the problems of pensions today, we still face the abyss of the next generation’s lack of preparation and long lives. Gen Y doesn’t save, nor does it know how to invest. Why? When we are in the situation we are in now, despite auto-enrolment, why isn’t Gen Y, who will live longer and require more financial assistance, being urged and educated in the art of planning, saving and investing for retirement? This year, I wish for members of Gen Y proper financial education, and an investment solution that works for their savings. I would be happy to help with this one, you don’t have to do it all on your own.

An iPad Mini

They really are, so cool.

I really think I’ve been much better this year, please don’t penalise me for jumping off the Shard, it was in the name of charity I wasn’t just being mischievous.

Yours expectantly,

Rob Gardner, Age 34