Whatever you can do,
or dream you can, Begin it.
It seems like this time every year, a mountain resolutions have fallen off the good intentions wagon. I moved beyond resolutions because really, you can make a positive change any time of the year. It’s all about goals. Moving forward instead of stalling or sliding back.
The trick is specificity. Knowing what you want is only part of it. Knowing how to measure your progress towards your goal is the piece that’s often missing.
Make your goal measurable – then track it. Mark off your progress every single day. This link has a printable sheet from Seinfeld’s don’t break the chain. Start with Day One and marking a bright, red X each day you move forward. A line of those X’s can be very motivating!
How do you move forward?
When I said I’d “take some time off” in early 2010 (!!!), I didn’t plan on being offline for 14+ months. And actually, it felt weird not to do all of my usual online activities like the Blueboards and Livejournal and the newly minted Twitter account. It felt very…disconnected. Sometimes that disconnect would pop up in the strangest places, like Borders (spotting an online friend’s book on the shelf) or the local writing group meeting (hearing someone sold months ago).
Disconnect and all, it had to be done. All the life stuff got in the way of me making real progress on the latest WIP. I was spinning my wheels and didn’t realize it, until I looked through my writing log and noticed no forward movement on my story. It was time to make some drastic changes because, let’s be honest, the life-life stuff of work and family don’t magically go away. Plus, I was also dealing with a bit of why-me-ism which every writer goes through. I’d gotten to the point of possibly not getting out of it.
So now I’m in a good place on several front. The day job has rebalanced. The family is doing well. The writing is fun again, it’s a daily activity and the quality of the words on some days makes me want to dance. I think this revision pass will be the cleanest, most enjoyable one ever. For those wondering, the book “B” I did the marathon 12 revisions on has been placed far, far away from the desk and mind. Perhaps much later down the road I’ll have a handle and lasso on that story and those characters, But for now, there’s another set of characters which have captivated me and that’s progress. Which was the whole point of my online sabbatical.
It’s great to be back and catch up on what everyone is up to