I plan most of my days (the night before) with lists of tasks to accomplish and goals to meet. I am full of good intentions until it is time to wake up and get going. Does anyone else have mornings like this? Days? Weeks? Months? I’ll stop there for both our sake’s. I have spiral notebooks that have countless daily tasks to complete and there are usually only one or two things crossed off as accomplished.
I have been asking myself recently “How can I be more productive in my day?”. It has been a challenge to figure out. I of course started out in denial and full of excuses:
I get up early everyday and go to the gym. I have assigned workouts for six of the seven days of the week. After the gym, I shower and start work. I’m working for nine and a half hours. I’m exhausted just thinking about that. I usually follow work up with tidying up the kitchen in the few minutes before my husband gets home from work. By the time dinner (and dishes again) is finished it is nearly time to get ready and go to sleep. Where is my free time? Where is my stress relief? Where is my relaxing time to read? And what about your writing aspirations? Are you too tired or had too long of a day to do anything about it?
I would almost always push my writing to the side with the excuse that I just don’t have the time. I am too tired from work to do more work. I’ll write tomorrow. I’ll write this weekend. I really would like to write a novel someday. That was a nice dream I had once. WHOA! Stop right there. That is a path I can not walk down any longer.
Writing is what I love. I’m not the greatest at it. I could probably use a full time editor for everything I write, but the passion is still there. The only way I’m going to get better is by actually practicing my craft. This not only includes the act of writing, but reading about writing, and listening to others talk about writing.
Somewhere along the way I think most of us got lost. When did work become a drag? A means to an end to survive? Work should be engaging, inspiring, and we should have clear goals and a path to take us in the right direction. Let’s be honest, no one is going to hold your hand and guide you through your passions. You need to carve your own path. It’s all about the blood, sweat, and tears to go from where you are now to where you want to be.
Here is what I have learned and plan on implementing into my daily life:
1) Writing is my passion. When I “work” on my craft, I do it because I want to. No one is paying me (yet, hopefully…) to put the time and energy into this aspect of my life. I am doing this for me and no one else.
2) Set clear and manageable daily goals.
3) Organize said goals in a priority list. What is most important to me to accomplish? Do that first. If I’m only going to accomplish one or two things on my list for the day, they need to matter and have meaning.
4) Stop making excuses. Everyone is tired. Everyone works hard. I am pushing myself because my passion demands it, and I DESERVE it.
5) Stop and enjoy the moment. Relish a little in the accomplishments of your day/week/month/year. Celebrate the big things and the small. You are chasing your dream. That is a big deal.
6) Forgive yourself. Most days won’t go as planned. You won’t accomplish nearly as much as you had originally wanted to. Some days, just getting out of bed is an accomplishment. You will fall. You will fail. It’s a part of life and it just happens. Forgive yourself when they do, and get up and keep trying. You are worth it.
7) Have fun. Challenge yourself. You’re making history. Enjoy.
What are your passions? What are you doing to achieve your dreams?