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  • Patricia Hollett

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Setting Goals


I’ve always been good with setting goals. Need to get things done…make a list and do it. No excuses. No ifs, ands or buts, just do it.

With NaNoWriMo coming up next month, it reminds me of last years goal… 50k in 30 days. Yes, it’s a goal, and yes I met it. Because I wrote it down somewhere so I could be reminded I had to meet that goal.

Now we come to the hard part…setting goals for writing all the time. 10k per week doesn’t seem unreasonable. But the problem is, I haven’t been writing it down. I just think about it, so I never achieve that weekly goal.

Our subconscious knows and picks up the slack when we write a goal down. It remembers what we’ve done and keeps reminding us to meet that goal. So on a 3×5 index card, I’m writing 10k per week and posting it on my cork board to remind me of my weekly goal. That way there are no excuses and no deviations from the plan.

Setting goals is a key step to getting your work done, whether it be writing, a job, family responsibilities, whatever it is. Goal setting forces you to achieve what you write down. Well, it does for me. So, today I’m turning over a new leaf. Weekly and monthly goal setting. And Writing It Down!

So, I’ve taken a step in the right direction. I’ve been reading a book aptly titled ‘Book in a Month’ or as they abbreviate it in the book: BIAM, and since we’re coming up to NaNoWriMo it seems appropriate that goal setting and ‘Book in a Month’ are topics worth discussing before NaNo.

Yes, anyone can do NaNo, but to achieve the goal of 50k in a month, you need to set that goal. And don’t lose focus! Keep your eye on the brass ring and you’ll get your book done in a month.

Yeah, yeah, I know…it sounds easier than it is. But, without goals, would we achieve everything we need or want to do?

Not me!

Good luck with NaNo…whoever is doing it…and remember to ‘Set Your Goals!’

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13 Responses

  1. You’re so right -setting goals is like outlining a project: keeps you focused and let’s you know where you’re heading.

    Another great post, Patsy:)

  2. Great topic, Pat. Setting goals is the key to getting things done. If it’s a big project, it can help to break it down into smaller, less intimidating goals. See you on the other side of Nano!

  3. Goals and targets (quotas) work really well for me. Good luck during Nano!

  4. Goals are good…sticking to them is even better. Pat, thanks for the important reminder to approach our projects as a series of targets.

  5. I’m currently spending time outlining a few of my children book idea’s so that when we hit Nano I can get a few written. Whilst Im a Nano Rebel (with other OWGers.) I have one or two that are a little out there but I have a test subject to try them on and a sister willing to read them to him. LOL

  6. You’ve found a way to gently kick your own butt… this is a very good thing. Mine remains relatively un-pummelled, as I use notes as reminders rather than motivators. I harness my stress, and utilise food additives for nervous energy. Both are highly effective.

    Small question: if you find yourself losing motivation to use notes, do you have to write more notes to write notes to motivate yourself? 😉

  7. Lists, goals and keeping your eye on the prize. All things that move us forward.

    I’ll be hopping on the crazy train they call NaNoWriMo right along with you Pat. We’ll rebel our way to the end of November encouraging each other to finish our novels. Then we can scratch another item off our list!!

  8. I can make goals, the hard part is getting them done. Looks like you found a fairly easy method to help keep yourself on track.

    Good luck to everyone with NaNo!

  9. Great topic as always Pat. 🙂 One thing nano teaches you is that you can do whatever you set your mind and plan for. I totally agree, for november my white board on the fridge is going to have my daily word target posted on it. Goal setting seems silly sometimes, but there is power in writing it down. 🙂

  10. Yep, totally agree! I slip up with this too much though, really. I should really start writing things down, I lose bits of paper though so maybe on my wall calendar, or on Google Calendar, to have the date of the goal immortalised 🙂

  11. Hi! Just what I needed as I’m taking part in NaNoWriMo this year. I’m tracking my progress on my blog. Wish me luck :-).

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