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:~: Wednesday, December 27, 2006 :~:

Reflections & Futures

With the holidays behind me, I'm starting to look forward again. It's that time of year to reflect on how the past year went, what you did right, wrong, what you could have done better, which often leads into plans for doing whatever didn't go quite right better in the year ahead.

And so come the goals or resolutions.

I, myself, have never been big on either. Resolutions--or what I consider a commitment to make a change and stick with it--seem silly. I mean, what's the difference between January 1st and July 1st? Or October 1st? Changes should be made when you're ready to make them, not because the 1st of January came around again.

And goals--or what I consider a concrete end product/end result of something you're already doing or want to do--at least the solid goals you write down, tape to your computer screen and track by the day, are way too regimented for my personality.

I have lots of goals, and they're pretty solid and even realistic. But they usually stay in my head.

Making and keeping goals is a pretty intuitive process to most people. 1) Have a big idea--the real "what I want" concept. 2) Create smaller goals--steps on a path toward that big idea. 3) Follow through with the steps and follow the path until you reach your big idea. 4) Alter your plans and revise your steps as you go, always keeping your big idea in view.

I read a few different articles on the subject today, hoping to offer a few tips to creating and achieving your goals. (Lord knows I'm no expert on the subject.) And I did find one that was simple, straightforward and helpful.

For now, I'm keeping my goals for the upcoming year in general terms. I like to stay flexible in the big picture and more specific in the small picture, and make goals related to things I can control (or at least think I can control). So, while I would love to make my first sale this year, I can't set a definitive goal to do that, since I don't have control over whether an editor chooses to purchase my work or not. But I do have control over my writing, my professionalism, my attitude and my perseverance.

Unfortunately, I haven't worked out my goals for the upcoming year, so I can't share them with you today. But I'm going to work them out this week and post them next Wednesday, the 3rd.

I'd love to hear what your goals and/or resolutions are for the coming year--personal and/or professional. Tell us how you create goals and, even more importantly, how you make them happen.


Blogger Joan Swan said...

Hmmm, so nobody out there is thinking about resolutions or goals, huh?

I've been musing a bit since I posted. I'm thinking most about continuing or building on successes that I've had in 2006--writing craft, research, reading, weight loss, being more social--but there there are a few resolutions, changes I'd like to make in the new year--cooking, living in the moment, finding the positive side of things.

Still putting it together, but thought that migh spur some of you all to add some things you're thinking about.

4:05 PM  
Blogger Elisabeth Naughton said...

I'm like you, J. I'm not big on goals and resolutions. If you're going to make changes in your life/work, there's no reason to wait until Jan. 1 to do it. I also have general goals in my head, but I don't usually list them out. They're with me all the time, and because I'm a driven individual, I don't need that list to remind me what I want to do.

But as far as what I want to accomplish this year? I want to finish two manuscripts this year. I'd love to make that first sale, but like you said, it's out of my control so I can't really call it a goal. I want to continue to "put myself out there" and network, network, network, and continue improving on my craft.

Great blog! (BTW...apologies for not posting on Tuesday. I'd planned to, but the vacation rental we stayed in had no internet access.)

11:20 AM  

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