Monday, April 3, 2017
Setting Goals, and Keeping Them.
I created this blog to bring you into my life as a writer. I also began it to show you how I live with chronic illness, and mental issues. The past few posts, I have presented you with a series on the colors of emotion in relationship with mental illness. I hoped these posts helped you in not only seeing some of my life; but if you share some of the same diagnosis’, or think you might that they gave you some guidance.
Today my post is going to focus on my life as a writer. Goals are important in every one’s life, but for a writer it is essential. When I get the idea for a new story, I spend a couple days just writing down the ideas frolicking around in my brain, but then when I think I have enough to start. I write down goals as they pertain to this project. I make a goal for when I want it to be completed. When I want it to be ready for editing? The time I will allow myself to do revisions, and the phase of putting together a marketable book. Then begins the task of really setting up goals for the day to day work.
At the beginning of each month, I make a list of goals I want to accomplish in the month, and working toward those goals I have made for the completion of my book. For example, my goals for the month of April includes my goal for word count, completion of an outline, the goal of finding a graphic artist to create not only the cover for my book; but to create character depictions of my major characters. I also made goals to make posts on more social media platforms to increase my readership. And the last goals pertain to my personal life; this month I set a goal to start eating better, and exercising more.
I’ve found if I don’t set monthly goals, my life outside of writing tries to take over. If I don’t set a daily word count goal, there may be days that I don’t get any writing done. As someone who suffers a chronic illness, specifically Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. There are days just the process of sitting at my desk, and trying to write wears me out. If it a day after I have been out in the world either taking care of my mother, or doing things as simple as grocery shopping, I may spend the next couple of days too exhausted to climb out of bed. Yet as I lay there my brain focuses on the fact that I made a writing goal of at least five hundred words for the day, with that pushing me, I rise and at least finish that goal.
One thing that lets me meet my writing goals is the fact that I have dedicated myself to posting once a week on both of my blogs. You might be surprised at how fast you can meet a word goal by just creating a blog.
My monthly word count goal is fifteen thousand words. I added up my word count for March and was happy with what I found. I had finished the month with thirteen thousand five hundred sixty-five words. Did I meet the goal? No, but when I saw that the amount missing equaled just one blog post, I felt challenged to meet it for this month. I spent many days of March, doing things for others, and thinking I wasn’t getting any writing done. By setting a goal, I showed myself that I indeed did get my work done.
My point of this post is simple. In this life, we need to set goals. In setting goals for yourself, you challenge yourself to make them, and then better them. I for one know that when I consistently meet my goals, that it is time to improve those goals. To make stronger goals. This is in part how we grow and increase not only our stamina, but our education. We learn how to improve ourselves, and become a better person.
So here is my challenge for you. Set yourself some goals. Even if you’re not a writer, you can do this. Set yourself personal and/or professional goals. See how much you can accomplish in one short month. If you want, you can share in the comments below some of your goals for the month. Then come back at the end of the month and let me know how you did on finishing them.
Think of it as making me an accountability partner. You may ask what that is. An accountability partner sets goals at the same time as you. They may be from your personal life, your professional, and if you are a student; your educational life. You are there to help your partner reach their goals. To praise them for their accomplishment. To give support when you think you won’t make it. To boost your spirit when you fail to reach a goal. To be a friend.
We all have accountability partners, you just never thought of them as such. I have found in writing that if you are looking for one, it is as easy as asking someone in a group, in a post, through any of your social media accounts. Just put the query out there, and you will be amazed at the number of people looking for exactly what you are. So, do yourself a favor; set some goals, and see how much you accomplish. You will be surprised at what you discover. Until next time keep living, loving, and laughing.