Sunday, April 21, 2013

Write It Down (And Then Do It)

Is there anything you want to accomplish with your life? With this year? With this week? Today? This minute?

Then stop what you're doing. Go on. Take your eyes off the computer screen and get a notebook out.

Done that? Now write down what you want to do with your time. Write down, in detail, a specific goal you want to accomplish. Finished yet? Then give yourself a time limit to accomplish that goal.

Having a day and time that you have to achieve that goal makes it suddenly much scarier, doesn't it? I've found both in my writing and in real life planning, everything becomes more real if you write it down and plan it out. And real is a heck of a lot more terrifying than fantasy.

But real is what you live. Real is possible. Fantasy is just a hazy wish you dream about before you go to sleep at night. If you ever want your life to become that dream, you're going to have to make it real.

Is that enough, however? Can you just give yourself a general goal and a deadline and voila, you're a success? Of course not!

You're going to have to plan. A lot.

Take that general goal and break it down into many, smaller goals. Once you've finished that, give yourself a mini-deadline for each of your small goals. Be conservative; it's better to have too much time allotted than not enough in this exercise.

Now look at your coming schedule. What time do you have available for this activity? How can you fit your goal pursuits into your daily life? Obviously you're going to have to give up something to make your goal happen. Because if you didn't have your time wasted on something else, you'd already have accomplished the goal by now.

So do an honest evaluation of your life. Is there something you could cut back on, just a bit, to fit your new activities in? Is there anything you can cut completely?

Write down any decisions you make about your decisions here, too. The human brain is a funny thing. Writing your goals and decisions down on paper has shown to make people more susceptible to implementing those changes.

Having said that, I don't want any of you to mistake my meaning. Once you write it down, you're still going to have to do it. You have to get up and walk away from the pen and paper and actually accomplish something if you want to succeed at your goals. But writing them down is an excellent strategy at changing the way you think about those changes. It takes something that seems like a fantasy and brings it into reality.

And no one knows how incredibly hard that is to do better than a writer.

Daily Stats:


  1. Exercised, stretched, meditated, and worked on my writing twice today.
  2. Wrote in my journal, stayed on budget, and wrote a poem today.
  3. Posted on my blog.
  4. Made my bed.
  5. Stayed on diet (improved my vegetable and fruit eating!).
  6. Cooked breakfast, fixed my lunch, and fixed myself dinner.

1 comment:

  1. When I was in therapy we would work on weekly plans together and I do admit, and always will, that just writing something down made me want to do it more. Just seeing it there in my schedule made me want to make it happen. Just making plans is an excellent little thing to do, even if it's just a plan for a day.