A New Year – Setting Realistic Goals


It’s that time of year when people are thinking about their possible New Year resolution’s. I remember when I was younger and heard about these promises of what people would set for themselves and I thought I had to do the same things. A familiar list of what I thought I should do, versus, the things that were reachable started to appear.

  • eat healthier
  • lose ten pounds
  • make Lloyd B love me
  • stop eating candy on a daily basis

These practical goals were in my teenage years and twenties. I wanted the boy to love me as much as I thought I was in love with him, but I never had the guts to do anything about, except for write stories about how we would fall in love. Then in my twenties I was able to stop eating candy for the first few weeks of the New Year, but then the ego slipped back in and I found myself eating candy again, not a daily basis, but more than I should have when I was in my twenties.


As I took my writing more seriously and the ego was still part of me my lists because a bit more creative:

  • Write and publish a book (in one year)
  • Write and sell a movie screenplay.
  • Write, sell and act in a TV show.
  • Write a book of poems.

The theme is very clear and write is what I did every year. I wrote more and more each year. I did write a book of poems that I sent to a publishing house and was told the poems where not what they were looking for. Those poems turns into a memoir and now that memoir is being reviewed by a publishing house and if the memoir is not published traditionally, it will be self published. One step a time.

holding a red heart in hands

I’ve read and seen many news topics on how people don’t set realistic goals. I’m sure I was setting some goals that I maybe knew that I wasn’t able to follow through on, but they were my highest intentions and that’s okay as well. Setting intentions is great for the creative being – it’s how you take the next steps that is important.

Most people set goals ineffectively, says Dr. Neil Fiore, author of The Now Habit and Overcoming Procrastination. Rather than setting concrete, achievable goals, they tell themselves that they must do the impossible. They think, “I have to write a best-selling novel, instead of I will make a like of potential characters for a story right now. ~ Naomi Epel, the Observation deck


Maybe try focusing on what you can actually do in the next few hours. Write a small list of ideas that you want to work on and give yourself a time frame. I sometimes like to write in sprints, giving myself fifteen minutes to just go for it and see what lands on the page. I’ve come up with some interesting characters and situations this way.


You have to create attainable goals, things you can begin t accomplish right away, yet you also need a larger vision to sustain you. Take a few minutes to imagine where you’d like to be in ten years from now. Choose one specific thing you’d like to accomplish as a write in that time. Now work backwards from the future. Draw a time line from then to now and fill in the milestones you must pass along the way. Choose one action to take today. If  you want to become the world’s leading writer on mushroom hunting, concentrate on getting a short article written for the mycologicial society newsletter. ~ Naomi Epel


I don’t know about writing about mushrooms, but you get the point. If you want to write about romance, then you need to do some research and read and write romance. Get involved with a romance writing group, anything to get you into the world of romance. One step at a time.


For me, I write about memories and I have to give myself some time to get myself back to the particular time and place that I want to share. Sometimes it takes no time at all, but other times I have to settle into the memories and I may have to putter around the house before I am able to take step back into a world I already lived.


I have a full-time job so setting writing goals is huge! On my days off I commit to my writing. I have to set the intention of the time I will spend on the chapter, if not then I’m puttering around the house a little too long and time slips through the letters on the keyboard waiting for me to press each letter to create words, into sentences, into a chapter. One step at time.


Depending on what you are writing about, ask yourself what you want to accomplish. What goals will you set for you and your creative being for the New Year? If your goals have been hazy this year, make them concrete, if they are unrealistic, modify them. Don’t let yourself slip away from own dreams. The ego has a great habit of creeping back in after you have worked so hard to set your intentions and now it wants to sit on the sofa and binge watch Netflix. It’s time to binge on writing.

Wishing you a very Happy New Year, until next time, keep on typing. . . .


3 thoughts on “A New Year – Setting Realistic Goals

  1. The one thing that kept me from accomplishing my goals last year was myself. I did what you quoted: I set impossible goals for my skill set. In addition, I based my goals on what others accomplished. That’s no way to live, let alone write.

    This year, I’m changing that. I set some more realistic goals, I believe. I made a plan for them as well. I will say there will be research involved. But this year, I want to see these goals through to the end.

    Happy New Year, Marion.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy New Year!
      So happy to hear you are taking some time to set the attainable goals – I know what you mean by setting goals of others – I thought I had to do the same as some of my other author friends, but really, I can do what this author can, one step at a time 🙂
      This year will be very productive for all of us – time to celebrate!


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