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Instead of Setting Goals, Try Something New
It's that time of year when you are already breaking the resolutions you made just a few weeks ago. When it comes to setting any goals, many people go about them the wrong way. If you have set the goal to write your first novel, then read on. It is time to try something new.
Most people go through life believing that any worthy goal takes continuous perseverance and hard work. But is that how life works? How many times have we strived to achieve a goal, only to feel disappointed when we have reached it? Whether that be a relationship, money or career. Sometimes our goals are not even ours. We look to friends, family, and society to tell us what goals we should be working towards. Basically, we are allowing others to define who we are and what we want. This is a huge mistake because how can someone else know what it is you truly need or want? Sometimes just asking yourself the right questions will determine what goals are going to mean the most to you. This requires a great deal of self-reflection in asking yourself the right questions.
The first question you need to ask is...
What do you want?
Even asking this question of yourself can sometimes feel uncomfortable. Haven't we been told that to think of oneself before others is a selfish act? But if your life goal is not about you, then who is it about?
This is where you need to put your writing hat on and regard yourself as a character in one of your novels. Any great story, and great lives, deal with a character's need to reach an objective and having to overcome obstacles and conflict first. This comes to the second question you need to ask yourself.
What is preventing you from reaching your goal?
If there is nothing standing in your way or the goal is easy to achieve, then how valuable is it? Even if the obstacle is the lack of confidence in your ability, this is still an obstacle you need to overcome.
The next question really requires you to dig deep.
Who must I become to reach my goal?
As a writer, you know that every hero experiences some kind of change by the end of the story. They must overcome challenges and obstacles on the way but in the end, they become a better person for it. To reach your goal what must you change? Could it be your outlook, your circle of friends or something else? Learn to embrace the times when you don’t get what you want. Don’t hang your head in shame if what happened this past year was not what you hoped for. That’s always true in every great story.
Stop thinking in terms of goals
Every great story has its low points so when things do not turn out as you hoped, believe it happened for a reason, learn from your mistake and move on. As you move on in your life journey, think of it in terms of a fresh new chapter in one of your novels.
The final question you need to ask yourself.
Who will I become?
The answer is, of course, you don't know yet. But isn't that the beauty of a life journey; to enjoy the surprises. Surprises are always there to learn from. But by the end of your journey, you can guarantee you will be someone else. You will be the person you were always meant to be.
Written by Readers’ Favorite Reviewer Lesley Jones