Commitment to your Writing Goal
When you commit to your writing goal something special happens. You can only know about it when you do it – commit to your goal, that is.
That’s why it’s always difficult to tell another person how it feels to be successful. Being successful at something like writing is a very personal experience.
You set the goals. The goals are based on your personal view of the world and how you relate to it. Then you commit to those goals and when things start happening, they start happening to you, and you only.
Writing is a thing that happens inside. The development of your skills and knowledge about how to write, your ability to understand that certain feeling that tells you that you’re on to something that could turn into a great story. It’s all about you and what you think and feel.
That’s why your commitment to your writing goal is your decision to make. But when you make it, you won’t regret it. I can tell you.
All I can tell you is that without being committed to your writing you won’t get far. Being committed to your goals in writing will end all the fuss and all the questions about whether you should do it or not, whether or not your story is a good idea or not. The list of questions that you can torture yourself with goes on and on.
The solid decision that makes you a committed writer puts and end to all those questions. It’s a great feeling – a bit like when you’ve been through a terrible storm and finally the cloud breaks and the first rays of sunshine spread across the landscape. The grass is green and the sky is blue. You feel happy and lucky that you didn’t quit. You realise that all those stupid questions were impossible to answer because they were always about the future,
” Will it be Okay?” , “Is my story a good idea?”, ” How can I know that I’m not wasting my time?”.
What is your goal?
Forget the worry questions and focus. On the goal.
Do you know your goal as a writer? If you don’t, that’s Okay, you can create a goal.
Remember, your goals are based on your view of the world – not on the ideas and experiences of other writers. Being a writer is about discovery and exploration of ideas and life. Don’t try and rehash someone else’s life into your own experience. Learn from them, read about them, but don’t copy them like a machine.
You started writing for a good reason. Ask yourself what that reason is. The reason is the because of why you write. It’s the goal. It can be anything you like, so long as we are talking about writing goals it better be connected to writing in one way or another.
If you write to tell stories, then that’s your goal. When you begin to think deeply about this reason you will discover things about yourself. Components of your nature that motivate you to write stories or non-fiction. Be careful. Go too deep when really you should be trying to formulate a clear goal, and you will start asking daft questions about why you decided to write in the first place. Your goal is to write.
How do I know that to write is your goal? Because there is no other goal for a writer. The rest are other goals. Like, “make money with my writing.” Keep it simple and set separate goals that compliment each other. Be congruent in your life and nature.
There’s only one rudder on a ship but it has several sails. You have set one course in life that is important to follow, you keep the rudder on course and the sails will catch the wind.
Your goal is simple. To write and tell stories. To write and show the world an idea from your own perspective. It’s a brilliant idea. Go ahead. Just Do it.
Your goal is the rudder of your ship. Yes, you’re the captain and you steer the ship. You also go down with the ship when you fail to stand fast and see the tough times through. Storms are all part and parcel of a captain’s life.
Most writers have a goal to write something, everyday. That goal often stems from the heart, so trust your own heart. Listen to your instinct and be great. Don’t listen to others who will tell you that you aren’t a writer because of this and that…
People who try to give you advice are often sowing the seeds of doubt. Ask yourself this when a person begins to offer advice, “Is this person a successful writer?” – ” How the flying f***k could they know about publishing or writing stories?” Normally, when you decide to become a writer and commit to it, the experts crawl out of the walls and start telling you that it’s best if you listen to them. They know all about it, because they had an aunt who was a writer and she didn’t get published. So that proves that nobody, ever, can get published or write a book. – right?
How do you know that you can do this?
This is a worry question. It’s one of those horrible thoughts that bounces around your brain last thing at night and keeps you awake. The answer is simple. You don’t know the answer because you’re not a fortune-teller.
But, you do know something about something. What’s in your heart, the thing that inspires you to write. Listen to it and discover how strong and powerful that inspiration to write is. It’s that inspiration that tells you to go for it, keep at it and don’t quit.
The question is really nothing more than fear creeping into your mind. It’s of no help. It’s a good idea to clobber it on the head and think about how great it is to be able to write. Negative thoughts will always follow us. Our job is to keep them at bay. And to recognise them for what they are, negative, heavy, worry thoughts disguised as intellectual pondering.
Fear of Writing
Many writers are afraid of their own work. I feel this, sometimes. The problem is that it takes a few days to realise what has happened. Writing is exciting, it causes passion to arise in the soul. The brain can go into overdrive and get too far ahead of itself.
Fear is always about something unknown. It’s mostly irrational.
To be afraid of the neighbour’s dog because you saw it bite another neighbour is normal. It’s caution.
To be afraid that you are not up to the task is irrational. It’s worry.
You set a goal in the cold light of day. You know that you can do it because you were cautious enough to balance the facts. You’ve got the time to write, that one hour a day. You’ve got that brain between your ears, the inspiration and you’ve committed to the goal to simply write, everyday.
You thought that you’d dealt with the worry problem but it’s back again. It never quite lets up. It’s devious, always lurking in the shadows when you are tired. Be careful, stay alert. Don’t let fear run amok in your brain telling you that it’s common sense. It’s an imposter. Just keep writing and it’ll disappear, quickly.
As writers we deal with the mind. It’s always on high alert, looking for ideas and sailing into murky waters hoping that it’ll stumble upon an idea worth writing. Sometimes, there are whirl-pools and rocks waiting for us. Those whirl-pools will drag us down into the wet darkness and drown our thoughts of achieving anything worthwhile in writing.
You’re the captain. Keep sailing, don’t let the sails get slack and keep your crew in order. Flog bad ideas and keel-haul traitorous thoughts.
Re-establishing your goals
After you have set your goal as a writer you should occasionally update your goals. You’ll know when to do this because you’ll be rereading your goals everyday, making them a part of your mind and thoughts on a daily basis.
Often, the goals we set at first are based on what we need today. Tomorrow comes and changes have happened. You might find that your abilities as a writer have developed rapidly in the last six months. You will want to adjust accordingly and set a higher goal, maybe.
You might find that an idea you had about educating yourself isn’t working out how you thought. Change it, and start learning something useful for yourself.
Keep an eye on your goals and don’t believe that you don’t need them. Imposters, thoughts that tell you that you’ve reached a goal and don’t need to re-set a goal are thoughts that will set you on a dark course into the unknown. Keep on track.
Don’t be over ambitious – stay realistic
Stay within your limits. Be honest with yourself and know yourself.
Set Goals that inspire you and will actually help you achieve things that you can build on.
Most people hate this advice because it sounds like I’m saying that you are limited. You’re not, you’ll find out that your so-called limits are quite high and achievable. Go for it. Write what your heart tells you to write – those are your limits.
The secret to staying Motivated is simple. Know what you want. If you don’t know, find out and set a goal to achieve it. Listen to your heart and ignore the experts. Be a good captain.