Five Tips to Set and Achieve Your Writing Goals
by Melinda Copp
If you want to write a book, or tackle any other important writing project, then setting clear, powerful goals can put you on the path to success. No matter what you hope to accomplish, the following five tips can help you get there.
1. Define Your Goal. The first step in setting and achieving goals is to determine what exactly you want. Strong goals are specific goals. For example, “I want to devote more time to writing this year,” doesn’t have as much meaning as, “I will spend one hour a day writing my book.” “Devoting more time to writing” offers too much flexibility. Spending one hour a day writing is much more specific and easy to understand. So be clear about what you want if you really want to see a difference.
2. Give Yourself a Deadline. Putting a deadline on your goals gives you a target to aim for and allows you to gauge your progress with a timeline. For example, if you want to write a book this year, you might give yourself an intermediate deadline for completing the first draft and a final deadline for completing your revisions. This timeframe will help you moving forward and give you checkpoints to aim for on the path to success.
3. Be Realistic, but Stretch Yourself, Too. Overly lofty goals are often unattainable, which can be frustrating and disappointing. If you aim too high, then you risk giving up on your writing goals. So make sure your goal is something that you can reasonably achieve in the timeframe you’ve established for yourself. At the same time, don’t set your goals too low. Stretching yourself a little will make your success that much sweeter—and you’ll feel empowered to accomplish even more!
4. Write Your Goal Down. We’ve all heard that if you want to make something happen, you have to write it down. And it’s true—writing down your goals gives them more power. Writing your goal in an important place that you can revisit often will help you stay focused, as opposed to writing it on a napkin or scrap of paper that eventually gets thrown away. So write your goal in your journal or on an index card that you carry with you all the time.
5. Envision Your Success. If you really want to achieve your goal, then imagine what it will feel like when you’ve already done it. Imagine the satisfaction you’ll feel when your book manuscript is completed and polished. And imagine how wonderful it will feel to see your name on the cover of your book. Revisit this feeling of success and satisfaction every time you sit down to write, and before you realize it your dreams will come true!
To Your Success
Writing a book, or completing any other writing project, is easy when you are clear about what you want and you take steps to make it happen. With these five strategies, you can achieve any writing goal you want. So what will you accomplish?
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