Over the holidays, I hit a bit of an emotional slump. It happens almost every year due to my ongoing mental health struggles, and unfortunately affects my writing life too.
As January 1st approached, I was feeling a great need to make 2018 better than 2017. At the time, it felt like nothing had gone right that year.
I saw a Facebook friend post about using Mel Robbins’ Best Year Ever guide to reflect on 2017 and set goals for 2018, so I dowloaded my free copy as well.
As I reflected on 2017, I realized my emotional state was playing a huge role in my interpretation of my successes that year. I began to list my 2017 accomplishments:
- Read the first draft of my novel and outlined the second draft
- Became an official Municipal Liaison for National Novel Writing Month
- Wrote 50,125 words during NaNoWriMo 2017
- Started and maintained my ML on the DL blog on the Silverleaf Writers Guild website throughout the month of November.
- Read 25 books (many of which were research to inform my novel)
- Averaged over $600 per month in writing and editing revenue
- Secured a regular writing job with TimminsToday.com that would allow me to maintain my autonomy as a writer
These were considerable accomplishments, and only covered the writing aspect of my life. I was able to list additional accomplishments related to my family, real estate career, and community involvement.
A lot people forget to reflect on the past before they start setting new goals. As my example shows, sometimes it seems like you’ve accomplished a lot less than you really have, depending on your mindset. Sit down, turn off all distractions, and make a list of what you accomplished in 2017.
The successes and failures of your past should inform your future. Your goals should always reflect a desire to improve yourself, moving forward instead of moving backward.
If I had continued to wallow in my depression, I may very well have started 2018 less productive than I did in 2017. I would have set myself up for failure. Instead, I forged ahead with a positive outlook.
Now, I plan to challenge myself by beating some of last year’s numbers. Here are some of my goals for 2018:
- Read 30 books
- Earn at least $1000 per month in writing and editing revenue
- Finish the second draft of my novel
- Tweak my completed novella and send out query letters to find an agent
- Write 60,000 words during NaNoWriMo 2018
- Post at least 52 blog entries on my website (one per week on average)
- Learn how to shoot great videos and create an online editing course
I’m excited to see what 2018 will bring! What are your 2018 writing goals?