Today, I want to talk about something a little bit different. I want to talk about assessing your current path and getting your priorities back on track. I feel that everyone has a problem with this at one point or another, and it’s a lesson that I have to constantly learn in both my writing journey and my fitness journey.
That’s right. I said fitness.
Now, don’t worry. I’m not posting any selfies, claiming any ‘magic workout!!’, or really even giving any health advice. I’m just letting you know where I’m at and what I’ve learned, same as always. Take what you will.
Last week, I wrote about overcoming procrastination in writing. But, what if you have no idea what exactly you want? That’s when it’s time to reassess and evaluate—kind of like checking a map. But, some person who is totally not me might say, what if you have no idea what the map even is?
Well, here’s some questions that will hopefully help you figure that out.
What Do You Want?
This might seem like a simple question, but it isn’t—especially not if you have a habit of self-sabotage or have things tend to snowball.
For example, when I asked myself at the beginning of the year what I wanted in regards to writing, I said to ‘write more’. Somewhere along the line that turned into, ‘I want a publishable novel’ at year’s end.
Another example, this time with fitness, I said I wanted to look better by the end of the year. Soon, that turned into ‘I want to lose 100 lbs by the end of the year’.
Decide What You’ll Do To Get It
Alrighty, this is the kicker when it comes to goal-setting. This is where you choose where you stand on an issue. Now you (hopefully) know what you want, so what will you put up with to get it?
In the writing example above, I mentioned how my want to ‘write more’ grew into having a ‘publishable novel’. So, I have three options that I can see. I can either a) write a novel and self-publish at the end of the year whether it’s ready or not, b) write a novel but realize that it probably won’t be publishable, or c) write a publishable novel but extend my deadline.
In the fitness example, I went from wanting to look better to wanting to lose 100 lbs. There’s a few ways I can do that as well. I can a) eat healthy and exercise, but realize I probably won’t lose the 100 lbs or b) extreme diet or take weight-loss supplements. There’s also an option c, which would be to get weight-loss surgery of some sort, but that’s not an option I’m entertaining, even though it’s a valid choice.
Are Your Goals Realistic/Achievable?
The problem with most ‘serious’ goals is that they are a massive achievement, much like the 100 lbs by the end of the year or the publishable novel by the end of the year. Those are HUGE, life-altering goals. However, the thing about big goals is that they take up big hunks of your time and attention. Could I achieve either one of those goals? Yes, but I wouldn’t be able to do both and still keep up at work and be an active part of my family.
Eventually, something would have to give.
So, figure out whether your goals are too much all at once. Perhaps instead of two huge goals, set one big goal and one small goal. Or even complementary goals. For example, perhaps I could devote myself to writing 2,000 words a day and stretching for 10-15 minutes every hour or I could keep with my huge goal of having a published novel but tell myself to drink 8 glasses of water a day before I have any tea or soda.
The key element of this question is to brainstorm until you find a reasonable and sustainable way for you to make progress without overwhelming yourself or derailing your life.
What Are You Waiting For?
There’s no time like the present to make a change or set a goal that will lead you into the life you want. It might be hard and it might not always be fun, but I think that everyone has a vision of themselves in the future. I know I do. And maybe I won’t be that person, in the end, but I feel as though reaching that Future Me is a great way for the Current Me to spend their time.
Good luck 🙂