Alrighty, I’ve found accountability helps me stay on track, so this post is an update about how well I’ve done thus far on my plan for 2010. Overall, I’m not disappointed, but, upon closer examination, there’s definitely room for improvement.
The one thing I am most proud of is the fact that I haven’t procrastinated one time in 13 days.
“Hello, my name is Leah, and I’m a recovering procrastinator.”
If something popped into my head – something important – and I heard that little voice whisper, you can do it tomorrow, then I completed the task straight away. And let me tell you, it felt freaking awesome!
For example, I woke up early today, around 5:30 AM EST, with a nudge from my muse to write this post. Really I think she was just desperate for me to write anything other than CSS . But I continued laying there, all snuggie under my fluffy comforter, contemplating whether to get up to write before work or wait until after work.
Then it hit me — if I wait until after work, my eyes will be ready to pop out of their sockets and my enthusiasm about publicly humiliating myself will surely fade. So I hopped outta bed and started writing this post.
Okay, the self-congratulation is over.
Next up, the public humiliation and self-flagellation.
Goal #1 – Write at least 1,000 words a day for Buzzards.
Results – I wrote a little over 3,000 words between January 2 – January 12, 2010. Therefore, I’m about 70% behind.
Yikes! I figured this would be the toughest goal for me but damn! 70% behind? Not good. I don’t want to make excuses because writers write, so no matter if I’ve had double the tasks at work or my daughter’s lessons or household chores, I should’ve achieved this goal. However, after I publish this post, I won’t chastise myself over this failure again.
Going forward, I will do better.
In an effort to readjust and get back on track with my plan for 2010, I’ve created a thorough yet flexible daily schedule, in which I’ve allocated at least two hours each day for my manuscript.
Goal #2a – Write at least one book review per week then post it on my blog.
Results – The last book review I wrote was on December 29, 2009.
Uh, yeah, there’s another goal I failed to reach. To be honest, I just haven’t allocated enough time each day to read and, when I do read, I’m not doing so at my usual breakneck pace, which means it’s taking me longer to finish the books than I originally planned.
Going forward, I will do better.
Thanks to the new daily schedule, there’s a minimum of two hours per weekday allotted for reading and the weekends have a minimum of fours hours per day.
Goal #2b – Write at least one movie review per week then post it on my blog.
Results – I wrote three movie reviews between January 2 – January 12, 2010.
Have I mentioned what a huge movie geek I am? Yep, it’s pretty obvious since this is one of only two goals I met and exceeded. Of course, I do have a “Review” notebook full of notes on movies I’ve watched since June 2009 but not yet reviewed. And the reviews I did post thus far weren’t all that new, so I’d like to get back on track with watching one new movie per day, which will also help keep the well o’ movie reviews from running dry.
Per the new daily schedule, I’ve allotted two hours each day for watching movies. Yes, the new schedule uses every one of my 16 waking hours a day.
Goal #3 – Write an update on my manuscript at least once a week then post it on my blog.
Results -I wrote two updates between January 2 – January 12, 2010.
Yay! This was the second of two goals I actually accomplished, but I’m not 100% happy with only two posts in 10 days, which directly correlates to the fact that I didn’t meet Goal #1. I believe as long as I stay on target for Goal #1, I will remain on target for Goal #3.
Goal # 4 – Start a short story by January 8, 2010.
Results – No words as of January 13, 2010.
Yeah, I’m bummed about this one more than Goal #1. I’m super excited to write two particular short stories, but, again, I won’t go into the excuses. I will simply do my best to make the time available to start the story by January 15, 2010. Going forward, I will do better.
Goals #5 through #10 will be addressed on or before March 31, 2010, depending on how well I keep myself on track and moving forward on Goals #1 through #4.
Whew! I did it. Now everyone knows what I’ve accomplished and where I’ve failed. I hope reading about my progress helps you realize success and failure aren’t black or white.
You cannot set goals then never look back and expect to be successful. I’ve learned goals are best treated like children — set the rules; let them live without your constant supervision for a while; then sit down with them to examine whether they’re actually playing by those rules or running wild like Thing One and Thing Two.
If you discover the rules are being obeyed, sweet! You’re on the fast track to success. If you uncover candy wrappers stuffed in books or dirty laundry hidden under a pile of stuffed animals, then simply pinpoint those trouble spots and come up with an improved rule to get you back on the fast track.
The most important point to remember is: Do not – I repeat – do not continue mentally beating yourself down for the goals you don’t quite reach. That sort of behavior, or negative self-talk, is totally counterproductive and it will only impede further progress.
Look at what you’ve done, and what you haven’t done, assess how you can improve the results, then move forward!
How are your 2010 goals coming along?