Setting Personal Goals/ChallengesHappy Monday! Actually, I'm thinking of it kinda like a mini Friday, since we're celebrating Veteran's Day tomorrow (thanks and prayers to all our vets!!) with a day off of work and school!
That means I can stay up later than usual writing and not have to worry about being a zombie at work tomorrow! YAHOO!
This month is all about challenges. Many folks are doing the novel in a month challenge, others have their own goals/challenges going on. With me, I'm always busy, always running someone somewhere, or racing to catch up or get somewhere I'm supposed to already be. Did I confuse you? Many days it's my natural state of being.
In order for me to get things done (writing, housework, errands, job obligations), I have to write it down. I have to set mini goals or steps so that I feel productive.
Focusing on writing, here's what I've found works for me:
Setting a page goal for each day I write. I have to be honest, I'm not a 7 days a week writer. My life just doesn't afford me that luxury. Yet. We're two kids away from an empty next, and then, we'll see how much time I can turn into writing time once my everyday mom duties have cut back.
Perhaps I'm trying to finish a manuscript by a certain date. I look at what the expected page count should be, then break that big number down into smaller numbers that I can manage.
If I get more done, it's gravy. But if I don't meet my goal, then it piles onto the next day. Not a good thing.
If my pages are done, then I can have time to play. Or keep writing. Or read a book. Whatever makes me happy. But reaching my personal goal is a must if want to succeed.
Being unpublished, I don't have publisher deadlines, so I have to set my own. And then stick to them. You can try posting your deadline near your computer. Write it on your bathroom mirror. Circle the date in your calendar. Tell your spouse and kids. Your neighbor or your exercise/walking buddy. Someone who will ask you how it's going. Someone you won't kill when you're having a not-so-good writing day and don't want to be asked about it. :-)
Bottom line, some visual that will keep you plugging away.
It's important to have small personal goals. They keep me motivated and feeling good about myself. This can be a lonely business. Just me and my computer. But when I can check off the day on my calendar, mark it as completed, I feel a sense of validation. I'm working towards my goal. Every day is a step closer.
How about you guys? What mini or personal goals work for you? How do you challenge yourself to meet your goals?
I'm always looking for new ideas. If you have some, please share!!