Goals-Biters or Boosters

While paging through the family album recently, I came across a photo of myself circa 1985 and wondered. What did I dream of, what were my goals?

All during my working life, my goals were set by my boss—complete this report now. My personal life was pretty much take what comes.

I left the workforce some time ago—the best bad thing that ever happened to me—and became an aspiring author a romance writer, student of the piano, and occasional artist.

I set goals for my writing after I drafted my first novel, but life bit hard with two family deaths in two consecutive summers. My muse went dormant during those years.

The next summer, I set a goal to write 1,000 words a day—and gave myself a dose of carpal tunnel syndrome. Boy, did that bite! Thanks to speech recognition software, I completed the book and healed my wrists.

In more recent goals, I’ve deliberately included free time when my fingers are not on any keys, laptop or piano. I’ve scheduled two days off per week for fun stuff with my dear husband and my good friends, and a full month after I’ve drafted my third novel.

Why? If I know an off-day is near, I’ll be more focused during my on-days. Hopefully, this will save my sanity and my wrists.

I’ve also re-allotted time for a special project that didn’t quite get off the ground last year. I’ll re-purpose my sewing-room into an office, starting with a thorough clear-out and ending with re-decorating. I view the process as a re-commitment to my writing. Stay tuned for before and after photos.

Instead of goals that wear me down and bite my butt, I’ve created goals to boost my creativity and still let me enjoy my beautiful life.

Do your goals bite you or boost you?

© Joan Leacott 2012

10 Comments on “Goals-Biters or Boosters

  1. Don’t aspire. Be or be not… There is no aspire… or something like that.

    I don’t really get bogged down by my writing goals. More so my networking goals. Networking is far harder and much more time consuming. Sleep suffers.


  2. LATE to the party, Joan! Thanks for stopping by to get a peek at Sherry on my blog. I will get to TO one of these days for a visit with Sherry. Hope to meet you, then.

    Until then, I’ll try to stay current on my emails so I don’t miss another inbound from you.

    BTW, TOTALLY agree with Sherry. It took me a while to say I AM A WRITER with authority. And, I’m not “unpublished.” I’m am not YET a published writer. Stare at the mirror. Say it 50 times. Report back. 😉


    • Better late than never, Gloria. You and Sherry are both right–the word aspiring must go. I AM A ROMANCE WRITER. Wheee!


  3. i have a hard time with scheduling days off. i work full time so the weekend is my time for writing. but some down time would be so nice.


    • Yeah, sometimes it’s hard to choose between down time and writing time. Like when the baby was finally napping, did I want to eat or shower or sleep or read–but I can only choose one.


  4. Hi Joan,

    First off, there is no such thing as an aspiring writer. Unless you are only daydreaming, you either are a writer or you are not. Channelling Yoda here, there is no aspire, there is only write.

    Too many goals bite me, not enough room in a comment, but I’ve found adding specificity to my goals has made a HUGE difference in the outcome. More on that in a series for Gloria Richard. But I digress (and shamelessly self-promote).

    Kudos on claiming your sewing room. I claimed our computer nook as my office years ago when kids started going to college, but settling in, organizing it and making it mine is still a challenge, one I’m tackling in steps. Slowly, my office is beginning to take shape.

    Days off? Always a challenge. That, and managing social media time. Which segues nicely into the end of my comment!

    Oh, forgot to look for you at TRW yesterday. Were you there for Deborah’s workshop?


    • Yep, I was there–awesome with sauce on top! No matter how much I think I know, Deb always teaches me something new. I’ll watch you at Gloria Richard’s place.


  5. This a great topic! I like your idea of scheduled days off. I always leave room in my schedule for some time off but I never know when I’ll take it. I think knowing when it’s coming is a great idea. Like you said, it will keep your muse in line. 😉


    • Between aqua-fit and going to see the taping of a local talk show, I already know Monday is a write-off (as opposed to write-on ;-} ), so I’ll plan the rest of the week around that.