This year I conducted a social experiment on myself. I decided to not consume alcohol or coffee* to see what impact it had on my life. Would I achieve the things I had failed to achieve? Would any 'problems' be solved?

The answer is no. All I can say is that I am happier and healthier, which is manifestly a good thing.

So what's the difference between those who achieve their goals and those who don't? Focus. Nothing more, nothing less.

The trick then is learning to focus on our work without abandoning the things that are important in our lives. Our families, loved ones, cultural experiences, whatever checks the boxes for you.

Focus is a coin with two sides: one creative, the other destructive. Learning to focus is my goal for 2012, starting today.

And as for the exercise challenge I set mid-year. Epic fail.

* I did allow myself the odd Pepsi but I have realized that consumption of the caffeine, and no doubt gigantic volumes of sugar, in carbonated cola drinks isn’t such a super idea either.