Fun with Websites

We spent the long weekend visiting family, and as a result I am completely uninterested in work today. Today feels like a perfect day to take a nap under the tree in the back yard. It’s sunny, breezy and about 80 degrees here. Perfect.

But I’m also a new devotee of stickk.com, a website where you can set goals, find “referees” to hold you accountable, and set “stakes” to encourage you to stick to your goals. I set a goal for weight loss; my pants are getting a bit tight and I’m completely opposed to buying new pants. My bellwether for weight is a pair of jeans I bought in Vegas 2 years ago. They cost $80, an insane, hideous amount of money (I usually buy jeans at the Goodwill for $5) but my butt looked SO good in these jeans, I had to have them. Outgrowing them is not an option. I tried Weight Watchers, but when my husband decided he needed to lose weight, too, and began counting calories in a simple Excel spreadsheet, I ditched WW and went to stickk.com.

My goal’s pretty simple – to lose 6 lbs in 8 weeks. My referee is my husband, and the stakes are modest, yet meaningful. If I lose 3/4s of a pound each week, my husband gives me $10 towards the Kindle fund. If I don’t lose 3/4s of a pound…I give my husband $10 out of money earned from writing, which is a small enough amount that I’m not going to waste $10 of it on hamburgers when my favorite pair of jeans is getting snug in the first place.

I’m pleased to report progress! I lost 1 lb last week, and the Excel spreadsheet now includes +10 in the Kindle fund column. If you really want to up the stakes, you can authorize stickk.com to charge your credit card for whatever amount you determine if you don’t meet your goal. The friend who told me about stickk.com is trying to lose 50 lbs. If he doesn’t meet his weekly goal, that week stickk.com charges his credit card for a donation of $50 to a charity he finds completely repugnant. Talk about motivating!

For you writers out there, stickk.com is a great way to monitor and hold yourself accountable for goals. 1 page a day. 10 pages a week. Finish revisions by 10/31/09. Rough out storyboard. Send 3 query letters by 12/31/09. Select conference and register by the end of the week. All of these are specific, measurable goals within your control, perfect for monitoring via stickk.com.You don’t have to include financial repercussions if you miss your target, but they certainly motivate you to stay on track.

What’s your goal? Try stickk.com to help you achieve it!

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