|Time flies. I mean it feels as if it literally does. The earth revolves around the sun. Timekeepers tick, and the sand will flow through an hourglass. Whether we believe it, like it or not, it waits on no man. Yesterday, I did as I always do, l looked over my children’s baby books. As usual, I was reminded of the uniqueness of our lives and how sometimes we have no say in how it all turns out. I have six children for those of you who don’t know. Just last week, my oldest daughter got engaged. A happy year ending for my family because 2020 treated us roughly. Of course, if I had a say, she would still be a toddler! 2020 reminded us all that we are not completely in charge. We’re not the boss, but we are definitely operating managers. Here in 2021, be an operating manager. Take a stand.|
This is the year for planning, strategizing, and consistency (PSC).
To plan is to set goals and objectives. Remember that a goal is what you desire to accomplish. An objective is the steps you will take along a guided path to achieve your goal. In essence, your goal is your vehicle, and your objective is the space on which your vehicle travels.
In order to take a stance that matters, make your goals specific to your desires not the desires of others. Yes, we love our families and friends but our goals must relate to us. While setting specific goals, make sure they are achievable.
One way to set achievable goals is to set a specific number of goals. For me, one goal every quarter is a way to go. For you, it may be two goals a year. That’s okay. Quality should always supersede quantity.
Everyone writes their goals differently and that’s totally fine. My formula is just a suggestion.
Begin with the end in my (End Date) +Who (Yourself) + Go From (What you can do now) = Will do (Goal) (EWGW)
By the end of January of 2021, A.H. will go from having ten chapters of book three of The Dawn Series to a completed manuscript.
Objectives are just as important as our goals. They must be concise. Would you drive your car in a tornado? Would you take a helicopter ride in severe wind gust? I’m sure the answers are no. Make sure you’re objectives make sense.
Who +Will do+ How long+ Accountability = Goal Progress (WWHA)
A.H. will write four chapters a week for four weeks and check in with the accountability partner weekly.
The bottom line is we must monitor our progress which means monitoring our objectives. The best way to do so is with an accountability system. For us writers, that’s a person. You need someone who will hold you to your goals. This partner is someone who needs you to and wishes for you to succeed. Without accountability, our goals mean nothing. In fact, most people don’t meet their goals because they fail to monitor progress through accountability.
Following a specific strategy or having a strategy for accomplishing your goals is just as important as your plan (goal). From the moment a light bulb goes off in your mind, you need a strategy. Strategizing allows us to work smarter and not harder. Hard work is important, but hard work without concise moves is just that, hard work.
As a fiction writer, I use story structure phases to plot out my stories. The structure allows me to outline my story from beginning to end. It’s called the scene-setting. Knowing what the major scene will be in each chapter allows me to easily set up conflict and the character’s response to the said conflict as I write each chapter. Without the structure, I’m simply mopping in the dark lurking for ideas.
You have heard this time and time again. Consistency is key. You’ve heard it often because it’s true. Consistency is key. Once you have a plan by setting goals and following a strategy, you must execute through consistency. I believe accountability partners drives us to be consistent.
If your objective requires you to complete a task daily, set a specific time a day to complete the task and try not to veer off schedule unless absolutely necessary.
Following PSC this year will allow me to better manage (stand) my personal and professional life. Will you join me?
Happy New Year!