The end of June is a month of reckoning. And I’m not satisfied–not even close–with what I’ve accomplished the first half of this year.
I’m great at making goals, writing them down, setting deadlines, posting them on my bulletin board, and getting to work.
Until fairly recently, I was also very good at accomplishing whatever I set my mind to. Throw me an obstacle? I’d climb over it, tunnel under it, or go around it to meet my writing goals.
Hmmm… So what happened?
I’ve been reviewing my 2012 writing goals this past week, and (it’s embarrassing to admit) I only accomplished three of my nine goals. I think at least six of them were do-able too. I truly was puzzled by this. It is so NOT like me. Admittedly, I had added a writing project that lasted six weeks, but that wasn’t enough to make so much difference.
Luckily I journal a lot, so it wasn’t hard to go back over the year and see where my time went. Some of it went to paid critiquing, but not enough to account for my dismal showing. I babysit grandkids weekly, plus extra weekends, but it didn’t account for the failure either. Even the new community volunteer job didn’t explain it.
It explained the fatigue, I suppose. But not one of these activities actually caused my failure to meet many writing goals.
Lightbulb Moment #1
Then I realized that although none of those activities took more than 7-10 hours per week, when I added them up, it came close to 20 hours per week of “extras.” Sometimes it was more, when I did some special event.
I need to remember in the future to add up EVERYTHING I’m doing already before taking on something else, even if the solicitor promises the job will only take one hour per week. I need to add prep time, travel time, and time to answer email from people–and factor it all into the equation.
Lightbulb Moment #2
Several years ago I signed up for Mark Joyner’s free Simple’ology course, so I read through the workbook again. One thing struck me forcefully. “The Law of Clear Vision states that in order to hit a target, you need to see it clearly.”
The author had you do an experiment where you stand in the middle of a room and try to reach a targeted object on the wall. In the first try, you close your eyes, turn around five times, then (still with eyes shut) guess at the target’s location and wander toward it.
The second time you do the same turning around, only you keep your eyes open and head to the target. “It’s obvious that Method #2 will get you to your target 100% of the time. Method #1, on the other hand, will get you there only rarely.”
Bingo! Regain a Clear Vision
As soon as I read that statement, I realized why I hadn’t met too many of my goals. I had written them all down (much like hanging the target on the wall). But instead of keeping my eyes open and on the target, I blindfolded myself and twirled around, hoping that I’d somehow hit the target by accident when I was wandering around doing a lot of other things.
I learned (again) that it does no good to write down your goals or even post them on the wall if you don’t look at them. I lost that “clear vision” of what I wanted to accomplish this year and why. I did accomplish many good things for some very deserving people, but when I lost the clear vision of my own goals, things got way out of balance and off track.
Time to polish the glasses, get clear again, and face the rest of 2012 with better understanding and more resolve to stay focused.
How about you? How are you doing on your 2012 goals at the year’s mid-point?