Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Throw all those excuses out the window - set a goal

Goals. Okay now that I wrote that don’t go running and screaming from the screen. I am the first to admit that setting a goal does two things for me. One, it makes me slightly panicky and secondly it gives me a clear idea of what I’m striving for. Now, for those that don’t know me (many of you) I am a serious writer. What???? Yup, you heard me. I write every day. Now, I write most of my stuff on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday’s because that’s when my three-year old is in daycare. Did I mention I have four children – three of whom are in school? So, I’ve learned to organize and juggle but only two years ago did I learn that I had to set goals for ME!!!

I’m going to capitalize ME because as a MOM I always put my wants, needs and goals on the back burner. Why? Don’t know. But two years ago I realized that wasn’t fair to ME and my family. I am happier when I write. I am also happier when I make my goals.

So as a writer you might wonder how many pages do I write? Well, it can vary but on average I set a goal of 10,000 words a week. If you break that down it’s only 2,000 words, five days a week. For me I have to usually double that number because I only get three full days to write. And for me my full day ends at 2pm when I have to pick up my other children from school. The other trick that works for me is that I try not to watch a lot of TV. Now, lately that hasn’t been a problem because of the writers strike but if I watch TV all night I usually hate myself in the morning for being unproductive. So I try to write at least 1,000 words at night or edit what I wrote during the day.

My other goal for ME this year was to become more physically active. Now that I confess I’m having a harder time with. I’d rather be writing then running, which is the only exercise I like to do, but I decided this week that I’m going to sign up for an exercise course I haven’t tried before in the evening once a week to accomplish this goal. I did join LA Weightless and that has been great for me. Nothing like being accountable for what you eat and I’ve lost 12lbs all ready....very happy about that. I’m not going to worry that it’s taking me a long time to lose the 12lbs because I set a yearly goal of losing 20lbs and I will make it.

I do post my writing goals on my local romance chapter goals loop and I do write my goals down in my computer and print off all the books I plan to write this year. For me having a visual (book title and concept) works for me.

Now, what works for you? Are you able to set goals for YOU this year? Share the tricks of what you’ve found helpful and what hasn’t worked for you. We can all use an inspirational story.

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