Last year I failed to keep track of what I had been up to, especially in relation to my goals for 2012. I am determined not to let this slide this year and, so far, I have been keeping this promise. Each week I have been writing a quick update in my progress journal. This technique is working for me as it's keeping my thoughts on goals, even if there are some I have not actively started working towards.
Treat writing as a second job - A
I am slowly chipping away at making more time to write. The Artist in the Office has been a great inspiration for this. One tip Summer Pierre suggests is making a weekly appointment to work towards your creative goals (of course this could be applied to any goal, not just creative ones). Make it fixed: write it down or set up a reminder on your phone. I decided upon making Wednesday evenings my creative appointment and wrote this down in my paper diary. It seems to be working. In January I used the time to research markets to submit my work to, attended Weegie Wednesday and prepared two pieces of writing to be submitted to various publications.
Another great resource for me this month has been this book: Procrastination: Why You Do It, What to Do About It NOW by Jane B. Burka and Lenora M. Yuen. You can read my thoughts about this book here. So far, I have only applied the techniques I've learned to my day job but I'm slowly working them into my 'second job' too.
Complete the Artists Way program - B1
This goal is on hold for the moment. You can find out my reasons in this post here. In February I plan to have a good think about my current approach to the Artists' Way and whether it's right for me at this time in the year.
Make and distribute a zine - B2
The problem with this goal is I have so many ideas I want to tackle! It's been hard pinning down what I want to do. Instead I have been putting thoughts into my Notebook and reading other zines to get inspiration. I have also been listening to the back catalogue of the excellent Nobody Cares About Your Stupid Zine podcast on my morning commutes. Nothing is more inspiring than hearing other people talk about subjects they're passionate about. Alex and Derek have been doing a great job of cheering me up on the train to work, as well as providing potential fodder for my zine.
Work on my writing portfolio - B3
Last week I sent out two pieces of my work. One submission was for an upcoming anthology and I sent off some of my poetry. The second submission was for a spoken word event being held in Glasgow next month. Thanks to Writing World, I have a nifty new spreadsheet to record writing submissions in. I'm so pleased that I have already filled out two slots for 2013.
Enter and complete a 10k - A
This goal has taken a rather interesting twist. I finally hit the boredom wall of running on a treadmill at the gym. The weather has not been great this month and that has stopped me from going out, pounding the pavements. A couple of weeks ago, Him Indoors suggested that we go swimming and it turned out to be reasonably enjoyable. Since then, I have been trying to go to two fitness classes and/or swimming at the local gym. I have regained an enjoyment of Zumba and seem to be a bit better at it than the last time I went (almost a year ago!).
So, the running has been put on hold for January - at least, until the weather improves. However, I'm still getting more exercise so surely it's better than nothing?
Update my 2013 Progress Journal on a daily basis - A
This is the one goal I appear to be acceding at. Marceline, the brains behind Asking for Trouble, has created a beautiful five year diary that is easy to update. There's also a space at the front that you can fill out for each year including your hopes and goals for that particular year. I keep the diary on my bedside table and it only takes five minutes to fill out what I've been up to that day.
Have one Internet free day a week - B
Strictly speaking, I have not been sticking to Internet free days. It might have been to become an appointment based tasks, as per my creative hour mentioned above. My laptop is now kept in the spare room/office and not on my footstool in the living room. This simple move has seen a big improvement in my time management at home. Instead of wasting away hours on the Wild Web, I have been more productive at Getting Things Done.
Next month, I'd like to plan my Internet free days a bit better and be more strict at cutting down my activity. A big impact has been an increase in my reading time. This month I managed to read seven books which is a change from months I'd hardly read. At all. It has been intimidating to see how much of my time was sucked up by mindless Web surfing, but it's made me more determined to change it.