For last week I had a post on Christmas and how I miss the days of giving macaroni necklaces as gifts (so much cheaper and arguably more full of love than a Gucci purse). But, because of a little ice storm I was without power for 3 days and unable to publish it. Now, Christmas has come and gone and I’m now focusing on the year ahead.
One of the purposes of this blog is to look at my life plan. One of the reasons for my meltdown on my thirtieth birthday was that I wasn’t ready. I didn’t accomplish everything I thought I would have “by thirty”. More surprisingly was that I also hadn’t realized that I had such an expectation of myself. I had made goals, but I had no plans or strategy on how to get there. Maybe it was the ice storm that left us without heat (and no generator) during Canadian winter that I now see that this is extremely careless. You have to be prepared.
Having a list of goals of “things to do or accomplish before thirty” is a fun idea but not very realistic. If you have “be successful” on your list, do you really know what that means? Well, in my experience it means that you arrive on the doorstep of your thirtieth birthday and realize you’ve spent the last ten years hoping rather than doing. I also have to question where this idea of “by thirty” comes from. Why thirty? Why not thirty one? Why not just 3 months from now or in five years? Still working on that one…
Much better is the specific goal: “Have X amount in my savings account and be in a career that is progressing.” On my thirtieth birthday I had neither. Zero “Xs” in my accounts and a career that was going nowhere special.
Now I am inside my thirties and I see the road ahead much more clearly. I have goals for the next year that I divided into quarters, like a business plan. After the first quarter, I’ll assess and maybe subject my family and friends to a formal presentation with graphs and charts. Maybe not. But I will work on finding other ways to be accountable for the strategies I put into action.
As you look ahead to 2014 I hope you keep this in mind. Keep your goals clear but also have a plan about how you will get there. If you are truly realistic and well-planned, you will reach your goal. Can it be that simple? I think so. Let’s experiment, shall we?
Here is my working list for the upcoming year (help keep me accountable!):
-Continue to blog once a week for both my blogs and reach 200 followers
-Contribute more to other blogs
-Publish regular articles by sending out regular query letters to editors
-Send out one short story (2nd quarter)
-Organize two speaking engagements (3rd quarter)
I would love to hear your plan or your strategies for the upcoming season of your life. Please leave a comment and have a happy and safe New Year’s Eve!