I’m a bit of a self-help/self-improvement junkie. I read or listen to a lot of books, watch inspiring videos, and always feel motivated to change…at least initially. But many of them have exercises or new ways of approaching my life and I rarely did them or if I did, stopped after a few days. This is also often, but not always, true with the goals and intentions I set each year for my writing career.

This year, I’m going for a new approach.

One Step at a Time

How many times have I heard that phrase or even said it to someone in a well-meaning way? Too many to count. But when I started thinking about how I want to approach my goals and intentions in 2016, I remembered some of those books and how they talked about actionable goals.

What is one action/step I can take toward this goal today/right now?

The last few years I’ve focused on actionable goals (finish picture book manuscript, complete online course, etc) and then broken them down into smaller goals by month, week, and even day.

So why does the above question feel different to me?

Small Feels Manageable

I think because it starts small. My method had me looking at this often huge goal (and often freaking out) and then breaking it down into manageable chunks. But what if I have the belief that I will get that big thing done and all I need to do today is focus on one step or action?

Maybe it’s all psychological, but it feels less overwhelming that way and also gives me permission to just do one thing. Maybe I’ll do two. Or five. But if I set out to do only one and I know it’s getting me closer to my goal, I can do that and feel really good about it.

 Next week I’ll talk about looking critically at how I spend my time to ensure that I continue to take steps to reach my goals.

How do you handle working toward a specific goal?