After Santa has come and gone, what do you REALLY want for 2010? What are your goals? And I do mean goals, not resolutions. I haven’t made a New Years resolution since Salt N’ Pepa’s “Push It” topped the charts in1987. For two reasons: First, because following through on a “resolution” feels like punishment to me. And second, because making resolutions just never really delivered the results I wanted.

But goals, I love goals. And every year about this time I dream a bit about what I really want to have or experience in the next 12 months. I’ll tell you how I do it, so you can reapply what works for you.

Get closure on 2009: Take some time to wrap up the year you’ve just finished. What did you accomplish? What didn’t you accomplish? And be generous with yourself. Depending on your circumstances, “did not smack my boss” might fit right at the top of your accomplishment list. I include all sorts of things, large and small: In 2009, I got a book deal, videotaped my Dad talking about his life and installed a spice rack. You can include whatever you want, so you get closure on the year.

Think holistically about 2010: Most people I know have a lot going on in life. Yet, often the financial industry focuses on a really narrow set of goals, like retirement and debt. What I have seen really motivates people to get a handle on their money is having a broad set of goals that cover a bunch of different areas, like family, career, contribution, health, home, and experiences. Many of the goals that you’ll create in these areas have a financial component, hence the link to your Moolala.

What are some goals that you have in the areas of life that are important to you? Again, they can be large or small. In 2010, I want to make an appearance on Oprah, take improv lessons and raise $10,000 for charity. I had one recent participant who said her biggest goal for the coming year was a full night’s sleep once a week. Fantastic.

What do you want?

Write them down: It is way easier to stay motivated and focused on your goals if they are written down somewhere.

Do a gut check: You are more likely to achieve a goal that you’re passionate about. Review what you’ve written down and ask yourself if you’re inspired by them. Are there a few outrageous ones in there? Are there a few that you know you’ll be able to accomplish readily? If you focused on these things in 2010, would it be a great year for you?

Talk about your goals: I am a big fan of sharing goals with people in your life. Engaging your community will provide support when you need it, ideas on how to get what you want, and a level of accountability that will increase the likelihood of you following through. It is also a huge contribution to your friends and family because now they’ll have someone they can talk about their goals with.

Remind yourself to review goals: Put a note in your Outlook or printed calendar to remind you to find the piece of paper and read every three months. You might not actively work on most of your goals, but you’ll be surprised how much gets accomplished just because you wrote them down and reviewed them once a quarter. And when it comes time to review your goals, remember that you made it all up in the first place. You can take goals off the list or add new ones as the year progresses.