by Steph Beth Nickel
You may not call them resolutions. You may call them goals, aspirations, or dreams.
Whatever you call them, the end of January is a great time to revisit those decisions you made about what you wanted to accomplish in 2023.
Revisit Your Goals
Pull out that list you made as 2022 wound down or as 2023 dawned.
If you didn’t make a list, why not do so now? Include at least one thing you would like to accomplish this year in each area of your life. Now’s the time to let your imagination soar. It’s okay to squelch those condemning voices that tell you that you might as well give up before you begin.
Break Down Your Goals
Want to write and publish a book this year? Awesome!
When there are 12 shiny new months stretched out before us, that goal may seem easily achievable. If you’re like me, you may push back getting started because a whole year sounds like a long time. After all, many people are self-publishing far more than one book a year.
However, if you break down the goal into each step that you need to accomplish, you’ll realize the year will fly by and you may just be motivated to get started TODAY.
Some of the steps include writing the first draft, self-editing the book, having the book professionally edited, revising the book, having the book proofread, revising the book again, hiring a cover designer and a book formatter, determining on which platforms you will release the book, launching the book, promoting the book…
Each of these steps can be further broken down into even smaller steps.
Suddenly, a year doesn’t seem like much time at all.
Fight Discouragement & Celebrate Success
At this point, writers have a choice.
We can give into discouragement, throw up our hands, and scrap our goals altogether.
We can complete the task of breaking down our goal of writing and publishing a book into small doable tasks and place them on our schedule.
It may take us more than a year to release that book, but with each bite-sized goal crossed off our To-Do List, we will be one step closer.
Don’t wait until you upload your completed manuscript; celebrate each small achievement. Small doesn’t mean insignificant.
Easier said than done, you may think.
Thankfully, although the writing itself is a solitary endeavour, there are countless resources and communities available to keep you on track.
Read skills development books.
Read well-written books in the genre you’re writing in. (Some authors prefer not to do this when they’re in the process of writing their own book, but it’s good to know what reader expectations are and determine the elements you want to incorporate in your own work.)
Join a social media community that will spur you on and motivate you to write.
Attend events online or in person that will fill your creative well.
Connect with a fellow writer and become accountability partners for one another.
These are only a few of the possibilities of things that may keep you motivated.
Just a word of warning: Don’t fill your time with these pursuits instead of writing.
Give Yourself Permission
So, now that we’re at the end of January, let’s give ourselves the permission to do the following:
- Dream big.
- Break down our big goals into doable tasks.
- Take longer than we’d originally planned to achieve our goals.
- Keep working toward our goals one step at a time.
- Seek accountability from individuals and communities that will encourage and motivate us to keep writing.
Steph Beth Nickel is an editor, writer, and birth doula. If you would like more information about her services, you can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org;
join her Facebook group:
or visit her website-in-progress: nurtureandinspire.com.