Sunday, October 11, 2009

Setting Goals

I swam competitively for 15 years. I started when I was seven years old and stopped when I completed my last year of eligibility in college. During that time, I spent many early mornings crawling out of bed at the crack of daylight - sometimes before, to head off to the pool for morning practice. All this in the months of December, January and February. The water seems colder that early in the morning. I doubt I could have gotten myself up to the pool on those cold mornings if I hadn't set goals for myself.

At the beginning of every season, I'd figure out what I wanted to achieve for that season and what it would take to get me there. I'd plaster my goal times all over my bedroom and doodle my times in the margins of my notebooks in class. No doubt it was a commitment to those goals that got me out of bed and to the pool when I'd rather be fast asleep dreaming of sandy beaches and young men with margaritas in their hands.

With writing, I now do the same thing. While it's a bit harder to determine the timeline of my goals these days, I still write down my goals and focus my attention on achieving them. Sometimes this means working on the craft of writing; other times it means improving my research techniques. Whatever form they may come in, my goals are still important to my success. They keep me going when I'd rather be doing something else. I know one day they will pay off in the ultimate goal of landing a publishing contract.


Picture from Wittenberg Tigers website

1 comment:

  1. I'm not nearly goal-oriented enough. Thanks for the reminder to write down my goals like that.