Managing Your Writing Goals

Creating and maintaining goals is a great way to stay on track with your writing. I don’t know about you but if I don’t force myself to write, then I probably would not write as much as I do.

So if you’re like me, you should try setting some writing goals for yourself.

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When thinking about your goals, the first thing that you want to do is be realistic. Really think about it, before committing yourself to it.

Here’s why.

We, as humans all tend to become overly excited and extremely motivated when first setting goals. We envision who we want to be and then say that nothing will get in the way of our dreams. And for a few days, maybe even a few weeks it works.

We stay on track and hit our goals. Until…the inevitable happens.  You somehow manage to screw up your goal plan.

If your plan is too unrealistic, you’ll become overwhelmed quickly and when it doesn’t work out, you’ll feel like a failure. But, you’re not a failure. You just set your goals in an unrealistic way. But, kudos to you for your high ambition!

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To avoid this overwhelming feeling that do not serve us, it’s important to set realistic goals. In fact, set your goals low at first and then keep adding to them.

For example, I jstarted this blog about a month ago. It’s something that is brand new to me. I write for two other sites, I have a full time job and I need time during the weekends to mentally chill out. So, while at first I would love to write for this blog 4 times a week, I don’t think that’s really realistic at this point.

Instead, I am going to shoot for once a week. And, I’m able to hit that goal without feeling overwhelmed. In fact, I feel very satisfied with myself with hitting this goal, which in return, inspires me to keep up the work.  As this once a week post becomes an easy habit for me, then I will add 2 a week and so on.

So, once you have a realistic goal, the next thing to do is to write it down. This helps your brain to remember it better and also allows you to have a visual reminder. I like to place my written goal in an area on my desk where I see it numerous times a day. That way it’s a constant reminder and gets into my subconscious.

Another suggestion is to reward yourself every time you complete that goal. Our brain is hard wire to repeat actions that cause us pleasure. So if we do an action and expect a positive reward we are more likely to complete and repeat that action.

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Rewards are a great way to reinforce hitting your goals

The last suggestion is to remain patient. Goals take time to achieve. And learning how to achieve those goals also takes time. In our society we are led to believe that success will happen overnight, but sadly that’s not true. Every achievement takes goal setting, small steps and time. So if you remember to keep on top of your goals and you don’t quit, you will ultimately get there.

Remember no human can stay on track with their goals all the time. But what separates successful goal achieves from non-achievers is how they handle themselves when they fall off. An achiever will always get right back on the horse and try again, no matter how many times it takes.

Questions for you:

When was a time where you set a goal and achieved it? What things helped to keep you on track?

Do you Make These 5 Blogging Mistakes?

If you have a blog and it seems to be going nowhere, you may want to re-examine your technique. Especially if you are losing followers. Below are 5 common blog mistakes writers can be accustomed too, without realizing its harmful.

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Not Writing Consistently

The more consistent you write for your blog, the better. Especially if you have followers. They followed you for a reason, so give them what they want. More blogs that will make their day! This also tends to gain respect and trust from your readers as well. They know they can rely on you for consistent updates and news.

Too Many Topics

Oh man! Talking about too many topics can be really overwhelming and chaotic for your reader. Imagine this scenario….I just discovered your site and am skimming through your blog. Your blog…is right up my alley. You’re talking about the Kardashians, Ariana Grande and all the celebrity gossip. I am loving it! But then all of the sudden, I hit “Next” and your talking about how the architecture aspect of the Sears Tower was based off a pack of cigarettes. What? You completely switched topics and confused me. So, guess what…I’m leaving your site and now going to find another site by googling more celebrity gossip.

For this reason, I would advise to write between one or three topics.

Ignoring Your Audience

You need to write with a purpose and your audience is that purpose. Remember that you are writing for them. They are coming to your site for help, information or to just enjoy your writing. So keep them in mind when discussing topics. If you are unsure who your audience is, then you need to do some research and discover who they are.

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Lousy Quality

Sometimes bloggers focus more on quantity, instead of quality. While it’s important to be consistent in your blog writing, you also want to make sure it’s your best work. Good quality goes all long way. 12 crappy blogs will turn a reader away versus one great blog, which may attract a follower or two.

No Use of Tone

Writing a blog is not the same as writing an academic research paper. So, have fun with it! Do not go all monotone boring. Instead, write like you talk. Show your excitement or your dislike for something. Get your readers involved by letting them see your personality.

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Having a blog means that you learn and grow from your mistakes. That’s a part of the process and it’s apart of the fun of it. It’s all about discovering what works for you from trial and error. Hopefully now that you know these top 5 mistakes, you’ll be able to adjust your blogging methods and see if that helps you out.

Do any of you guys have any other suggestions? Anything that did or did not work for you? If so , please share in the comments. I would love to hear from you.

Master the Art of Writing With These 5 Tips

When you think of a professional writer you may imagine someone who can always find the right words immediately. Which can be true, but it’s not likely a writer begin that way. Mastering the Art of Writing takes time and discipline. Below are 5 tips that will help you prepare to become a better writer.

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#1 – Write every single day

I know. Sometimes writing is daunting and you’re just not feeling it. But, if you discipline yourself to write every single day, it’ll become a lot easier and you’ll find it’s more enjoyable. Throughout the process you will also find your voice and become better with every day.

#2 – Discover your passion and make it your niche

Your energy and love for a topic shines in your writing. Therefore, you don’t want to be writing anything that you find boring. This will reflect in your writing and your readers will likely find your tone boring as well. Plus, why waste time researching and writing about something you don’t like. So be sure to be passionate about your topics.

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#3 – Always be learning and reading

Even if you have found your niche, do not think that you know it all. There is always something else to learn and to research. You want to be an expert at your field and trends are always changing. So, never assume you know it all. Instead open yourself up to learning and reading as much as possible.

#4 – Keep the rough draft…rough

In other words do not edit the first draft. Make the first draft messy! This is how you can let go and get out everything. It allows you to not have any distractions that may interrupt your creative process. Trying to make it look pretty in the first round, can be detrimental. You can easily forget the things you were going to say, all because you needed to go back a spell a word correctly.

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#5 – Take breaks

Once you have written everything out on the rough draft, step away from it. It’s all there on the paper anyway, so you can take a break. Look at it again with fresh eyes in a few hours or days later. This will make the writing process easier. If you do everything at once, your brain kind of turns into mush, and you’ll likely miss easy grammatical errors. So give yourself and your brain some time to relax and approach the piece at a later time.

It really comes down to figuring out what works for you as a writer. One method or tip may work for one writer and not another. These 5 tips usually help most writers learn how to become more productive and thoughtful in their writing. Hopefully you find them helpful as well.