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New Year, New Writing Goals – Part 3

Buried in the Slushpile

So far in our goal setting we’ve figured out what we want and how we’ll do it, but there’s one final question.

Question 3: When will I do it?

The truth is all the plans in the world won’t get you to your goal if you can’t find a time to implement them.

You need to honestly evaluate your schedule and see if your goal is reasonable after all. These days writing can feel like a luxury or something we do after all the bills and household tasks are done. If that’s the case, then maybe drafting 2 books this year is going to end up being one too many. Take an assessment of what your life is going to allow right now, and if it isn’t as much as you would like, that’s ok too. I’m not going to tell you to get up an hour early or write through your lunch. Those are all great things, but they may not be what you are up for right now. And again, that’s fine. Sometimes we need our sleep and to stare at memes during lunch. Not every second of your day has to be in pursuit of productivity. However, your goals need to reflect that reality.

But once you do know what kind of writing your schedule will allow, schedule it in.

Personally I like to color block my days so I can visually see when I can write. I’ve also been known to set a timer for a certain amount of time like 30 or 50 minutes and then spending that time dedicated to writing. You do what works for you.

This year, I also blocked out what days I want to work on what project. I am not one of those people that can work on multiple projects at the same time on the same day. So, when I have multiples going on (like right now), I need to figure out when I can work on them.

I’m also not someone that usually writes everyday, so I’ve already blocked out in black the ones I know I won’t be writing.

Again, my preferred method is very visual and very bullet journal inspired. You might just want a list of dates or a block of time on Tuesdays that you want to set aside. That absolutely works too.

And finally, have a time frame for your goal. Goals shouldn’t go on indefinitely.  All of my goals are set for this calendar year. If I haven’t reached them by New Year’s Eve, then I didn’t hit that one, and I’ll either need to do it again next year or re-set it or choose a different goal altogether. You don’t want a goal to kind of drift along indefinitely. That’s soul sucking and also means it probably either isn’t realistic or actionable.

So start looking at your schedule and figure out when you can work on your goals. Also, set a time limit for completion. Again, these are not indefinite. It may take time, years even, but your goals should expire at some point. Dreams may have no expiration date, but goals certainly do. Make yours one that leaves you full of hope, like a dream.

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