To achieve your writing goals in the New Year you need to spend time actually setting them. Sounds silly, right? Maybe, but many writers never bother to think seriously about their goals, write them down and create a timeline for when they want to accomplish them. If you don’t bother to go through this exercise, your writing results likely won’t be stellar in 2013.
As mentioned in my last post, begin the process of setting writing goals for the New Year with a review of the last year. Once you have a clear picture of what you accomplished in the past—and still need and want to accomplish in the future—you are ready to move on to goal setting for to upcoming year.
You will probably discover you have two types of writing goals:
- Goals you feel passionate about or that you feel support your purpose
- Goals you know you must or should achieve to reach your other goals
It’s important to realize that the first type of writing goal is dependent upon the second type of goal. Yet, it’s easier to accomplish the first type of goal. Why? A goal about which you feel passionate will feel easy for you to pursue. It likely also fits into your inner sense of purpose—why you write—and that makes you want to take action towards achieving it. When you combine your passion and your purpose you feel inspired and tend to take action easily. You feel energized and excited; you want to do what it takes to accomplish your goal.
When you simply know you must or should do something, you may not have that same energy or excitement about the tasks at hand. That’s why around New Year’s Eve it’s common to “resolve” to do something differently. You don’t really want to change or take on that activity; you just know you should. And it isn’t long before you stop doing whatever you said you would and, therefore, fail to meet your goal.
So, find a way to feel as passionate about the second type of writing goal as the first. Do this by realizing they support the first type of goal.
Here’s how to set writing goals for 2013 and actually achieve them:
- Make a list of your writing goals for 2013 by priority.
- For each writing goal, create a time table for exactly when you want to achieve it.
- Describe what the achievement of each writing goal will look and feel like in great detail.
- Make a mark by the writing goals you feel less passionate about. (I’ll explain why in my next post.)
- Get a 2013 calendar and mark on it the dates you plan to achieve your writing goals.
Vague goals produce vague results. Be very specific.
On Monday, the last day of 2012, I’ll write about the last step in goal setting—and goal achievement: creating an action plan.
Photo courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti|freedigitalphotos.net