Goals equal happy

The strangest realization is that having and accomplishing my goals is making me happy.

I don’t have to stress anymore about what I should be doing and what I’m not doing. All that’s figured out. There’s no more beating myself up because of dithering. I have a list of what to do, it’s pointing in pretty much the right direction and, more or less, it’s getting done. What a relief.

On to specifics:

1) Health: Just because I get sleepy around 10 doesn’t mean that’s when I go to sleep! So, no, I’m back to not getting as much rest as I need. But at least I’m on a more healthy schedule. For example, I started typing this at 8:50 p.m., not 12:50 a.m. In other news, the deer ate the top off the new jujube tree though it was protected by a tomato cage, so I wound some chicken wire around it. The tomatoes and jalapenos got planted, and I’m still hitting the elliptical a reasonable amount. [Real: Health: sleep (lights out at 10:30 p.m.), move (get up from desk every hour, spend 20 minutes outside).]

2) Work: Back on a 9-hour daily schedule. The new job duties are starting to feel natural, though I still have to keep extra aware of the deadlines. [Real: Work only 8 a.m.-5 p.m., no evenings or weekends. Fantasy: Maintain job quality and make deadlines without stress.]

3) Writing: Averaging 250 words a day, and seems like I can write at any time. What a change. Don’t know what I’m writing with, but it feels less like the top of my head and more like my diaphragm. Tonight I’ll finish typing my current longhand pages and then I’ll be up to date. [Real: Add 250 words/day to equal 20,000 words by 80 days. Fantasy: Add 40,000 words.]

4) Epubs: Spent 3 hours today working on a JPEG that can’t be used. Oh, well. Now I know it can’t be used. Finished THE SHELFLESS BOOK—good info! [Real: Clean up & format 1 short story or flash anthology on weekend, create cover & publish. Market when 5 are available. Fantasy: Create 3 anthologies, publish & market. Read THE SHELFLESS BOOK.]

5) Social media: Ninety minutes doesn’t seem long enough for this! As all of you know who’ve been kind enough to comment here, I’ve been very bad about replying. Not to mention commenting on your blogs. This is a priority and I have to make it happen. On the other hand, the local writers’ mutual aid group I was thinking about is under way with 7 members in the Facebook group besides myself. Twitter’s going well, probably because it’s the most fun. Oh, about the blog: I started using the Press This tool to mention interesting posts that I find. It’s not the same as writing an original post, so I feel it’s sort of cheating. But it seems to make blogging more like tweeting, and I like that. [Real: Social media no more than 90 min/day. Be efficient. Fantasy: Post here 1x/wk & ROW80. Comment on blogs. Use other SM.]

7) I finished the DH Lawrence collection, though the book wasn’t really his complete works, just 8 novels and 19 stories, a few of which I’d never read before. Haven’t started Holly Lisle‘s book yet. Alicia Street‘s story, “Snow Dance,” sneaked in between (enjoyed it a lot!), and today I read Bob Mayer‘s ATLANTIS: BERMUDA TRIANGLE. I like that series! [Real: Finish reading Lawrence, then Lisle. Fantasy: Finish reading DH Lawrence. Read & do exercises in Holly Lisle‘s updated MUGGING THE MUSE.]

8) Social stuff: Yes, I had some fun (don’t you know all this stuff is fun?)—Yesterday we went to a big fish fry, a benefit for the Blanco Volunteer Fire Department. About a thousand people came, ate and participated in the raffles. We didn’t win nuthin’ but the catfish was delicious. [Real: Fit in fun, ad hoc social/useful things. Fantasy: Get to some Austin RWA meetings. See friends more often. Edit for business.]

Now I get to type pages. Then good-night!

18 thoughts on “Goals equal happy

  1. Pingback: Taking the Plunge – ROW 80 « Margaret Miller's Blog

  2. Marcy Kennedy

    I’m always amazed at how much having a list and sticking to my list helps me too. On the days when I don’t have a list, I find that the truly important things get pushed aside by the concerns of the moment. I’m very glad to hear ROW80 and making a list is working for you as well!

    1. SJ Driscoll

      Hi, Marcy! The day before each of my kids was born, I made a to-do list (not that I knew they’d be there the next day). Everything on the list got done before the big event. It helps to remember that!

  3. Judythe Morgan

    I’m convinced goals and accountability are the key to moving forward. I’m not doing Row80, but I’ve been blessed to be a part of an accountability group that has been together for years. Every Tuesday, rain or shine, want to or not, I post my weekly goals. At the beginning of the year we post yearly, three year, and five year goals and analyze throughout. Often we reassess by the end of the year. BUT it’s the goals and accountability that motivate me to keep moving on.
    Glad Row80 does that for you. Congratulations, SJ.

    1. SJ Driscoll

      Hi, Judythe! I was fortunate to have a small, close-knit writing group when I lived in California. We didn’t focus on goals, but it made a difference to be able to discuss them. Your group’s focus on weekly goals sounds so useful. Time evaporates unless we become more aware of it!

  4. prudencemacleod

    Hi Sally, isn’t it amazing how, when we set small goals and meet them, we get a major sense of accomplishment? I love how ROW80 keeps me moving forward even when things get a bit crazy. It’s hard to give up when you know you have to check in and report. Great post, love it. 🙂

    1. SJ Driscoll

      Thanks, Prudence! I still have some goal lists from years and years ago. At the time, I didn’t think I was making much progress, but now I see that goals are cumulative over time. Some things have to come to fruition before others, no matter how frustrating that is. It’s less frustrating now that I understand.

  5. alberta

    Go for it – ROW80 is great -I have become more productive – less stressed and have made some friends up here on cyberspace since I began with the ROW’ers –

    looks like a good week – the sleep thing is always a difficult one yo work out and yes getting up to move – wish I could remember to do that:( I resolve every week then realise by wednesday I’m doing two/three hour stretches!!

    all the best for coming week

  6. Margaret

    Sally I’m so glad your ROW80 is working. In fact I enjoyed reading this post so much I’m this close (picture thumb and index finger tips nearly touching) to taking it on myself.

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