To put your goalsetting and entrepreneurial efforts on—track and keep them there—begin by giving your year a theme. It could be a single word or a phrase that becomes your motto. Either way, it will help you gain clarity and focus. When planning your time or making a decision, a quick check will reveal if your choice adds or detracts from the theme you’ve declared.

Let’s say you’re starting a new project, one that you know little about. If you think of it as My Project Where I Am Clueless About What I’m Doing, you’ll produce very different results than if you name it My Exciting Apprenticeship in New Territory. Instead of focusing on everything you don’t know, your attention will be drawn to seek out teachers and sources of help and learning. This is a powerful shorthand technique for bringing your focus back to what your true goals are.

You’ve seen this in action plenty of times. You want to throw a party, but can’t quite figure out how to make it special. A party is just a party, after all, until you give it a theme. Then ideas start rolling. Suddenly it engages the imagination of the guests and the host. Or you decide to go to Paris and  bump into an old friend who just got back from Paris; then articles on your destination seem to appear out of nowhere.  Coincidence or selective awareness caused by focus?

 Here are a few theme possibilities to consider:


Travel Light


Explore More

Make Connections

Build Strength

Ease & Joy

Visible Abundance

No Limits

Daily Laughter

More Magic

Wildly Creative

Amaze Myself

Welcome Opportunity

Keep Moving

Back to Basics

Fully Engaged



Dream Bold

Catch the Spirit

New Adventures

Once you’ve got your overall theme, give individual themes to your projects. Post reminders around your home and office. I also do Treasure Maps that remind me of my themes. One of my current ones is Inspiring People in Beautiful Places. Next to my desk is a poster I’ve done with scenes from Venice, Sedona, Tuscany and the Lake District plus a photo of Valerie Young and me along with participants in Making Dreams Happen, an event we held in Boulder several years ago. 

Give 2009 a theme and ideas will follow. 

$100 Hour: Throw a party. If you love social events and tending to details, why not get paid for all that fun? Once a month you could organize a dinner for your busy friends for the price they’d pay in a restaurant. You could specialize in class reunions or wedding receptions. Alice Barry loves entertaining and loves inspired entrepreneurs so she turns those passions into occasional events like the Holiday Office Party for Inspired Entrepreneurs.

Explore More: Alice Barry calls herself an Idea Artisan. Anyone who’s spent time with her, knows how good she is at helping people gain clarity and plan action.You can book a session with Alice by visiting  

Got your theme? Share it in the comment box, if you’d like.

Money follows ideas. Money doesn’t create anything at all, much less ideas. Money goes where ideas are. ~ Paul Hawken