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Archived Weekly Features
The Big Picture
Rebecca "Becky" Coates Nee, a veteran TV news anchor/reporter, is a professional life/career coach. Check out her website at to take the coachability test, subscribe to her free "Beyond the Box" newsletter and to find out if you're an adrenaline junkie.
What Do You Really, Really Want for the New Year?
By Rebecca Coates Nee
January 7th, 2002

When you read this, I'll be well on my way to achieving one of the biggest goals of my life: motherhood. I will be carefully packing plastic forks and baby wipes for the two-week trip to China my husband are taking this month to adopt a one-year-old girl.

But I must admit there were more than a few times in the last several years when I almost gave up on this desire. Nature did take its course, but it wasn't the road I had in mind. Like so many people, when the goal didn't materialize, I tried to talk myself out of the idea.

Now, as I get so close to being a mom, I don't need Jimmy Stewart to show me what a wonderful life I'd be missing if I had taken the easiest route and let my dream disappear. Parenthood isn't for everyone but I knew in my heart it was for me.

When you get around to planning your goals for 2002, don't just pile a lot of "shoulds" onto your list. Try to get back in touch with what you've always wanted before other people and life is difficulties got in your way.

Choose your goals for this new year with the big picture in mind. Ask
yourself what you really, really want. What do you want your whole life, not
just your career, to look like three years from now and two years after that?
So many of us compartmentalize our career and personal goals without ever
stopping to figure out how the two can or will be combined in one lifetime.

Think about all areas of your life: career, health, relationships, family,
spirit and finances. Write down all your desires for each area. Where do you
want to be living? What kind of car will you be driving? Will you be working
part time or 60 hours a week? If you want a family, how will they fit in with
your current career goals?

Now that you've decided what you really want (and deciding that could be a
goal in itself), think about how your life needs to change in the next year
to get closer to your true goals.

In two weeks, I'll show you how to take your big picture and turn it into
manageable goals for the year ahead.