Monday, June 6, 2011

Looking to the Future

A couple of weekends ago, I attended my college graduation ceremony. I sat in the very back row, behind two very tall people. Even with my two inch heels, I stand no more than 5 feet 2 inches. Needless to say, I didn’t see much.
Luckily for me, the ceremony was short. (No pun intended.)
And the lack of visibility gave me time to reflect on the past three years in which I attended college, babysat full time, began my writing career, raised two children and helped my husband farm.
When I first began school, my plan was to double major, get a great job, and work full time once my children were both school age.
Things sure have changed since then.
About halfway through school, I realized writing is what I really wanted to do. I took a look at the classes I’d taken and figured out which degree I was closest to completing so I could be done with school and focus on writing.
It seemed like a waste, for a small amount of time. But I realized that I wouldn’t have gotten to where I am now if I wouldn’t have gone to school. My first re-acquaintance with writing came when I had to take a children’s literature class.
I also wouldn’t be as self-disciplined as I am now if I hadn’t been forced to study. Because really, who wants to spend hours upon hours a week memorizing medical terms and parts of the nervous system?
The bottom line is – my time at school molded me into who I am today.
My motivation to return to school was not only earning a degree so I could be more competitive in the job market – I also wanted to be able to tell my children, “I went to college, so can you.”
When it came to the decision to quit college and focus on my writing…Well, needless to say, that was a tough decision. The writing industry is tough. I knew going in I may never sell my novel. I may never be published.
But I was more motivated to follow my dream than I was to work in a stuffy office for the rest of my life.
So, what motivates you to write? Why did you choose to start your novel?
In the grand scheme of things, are you where you’d thought you’d be by now? Where do you think you’ll be in a year from now?
And as for the short term…What are your goals for this wonderful Motivational Monday?
My challenge for you is twofold.
First, I want you to make a plan. Write down where you want to be next month, in three months, in six months, in a year. Put that paper somewhere you’ll see it every day – on your bathroom mirror, in your planner, on your desk or your fridge.
I want you to know it’s okay if plans change because life is always changing.
I also want you to keep your dreams in sight.
Second, set your goal for the day. And remember it’s the first step toward the big picture.
And if you don’t make your MoMo goal?
Well…the picture shows you what you’ll be suffering – lipstick smeared across your face the next time you go to the grocery. And no, you can’t just run in, get one item, and run out. You must be in there for at least 30 minutes.
So go forth and plan for the future!