Saturday, May 14, 2011

Put Your Money Where your Mouth Is


by Teresa Slack

I’m posting a few days late thanks to trouble with Blogger and my own issues with sticking to a regular blogging schedule. Not a good testimony on my part considering this post is the final installment in my series about setting and achieving goals.

We talked earlier in the series about stepping out of our comfort zone in order to reach our goals. The first step was to identify those goals and decide how important they are to us. Then we discussed a proper attitude necessary to carry one through to the completion of those goals. Goals are awesome, but will not get you far in reaching them if you have a self-defeating attitude.

You’ve decided on your goals and determined the staying power necessary to stick with them. You’ve spent the last few days working on a positive, success oriented attitude. Now you’re ready to roll up your sleeves and make those goals a reality.

Here’s where the rubber meets the road. We can talk all day about setting and reaching goals, but until we put plans into action, we’re no closer we were to reaching them than we were before I started this series.

ACTION—energetic, conscious habitual exertion of power.

Nothing will ever change in your writing life until you take action. Like me, you’ve probably read a thousand books on how to write a best selling book and get it published. You’ve attended writers’ conferences and joined writing groups. But until you put into action all the lessons you’ve learned, you’re not one page closer to completing your book.

Robert B. Parker, prolific writer of the Spenser: for Hire novels and scads of other best selling books, reportedly wrote 10 pages a day. 10. Didn’t matter if it was Christmas or a family wedding. 10 pages a day.

10 pages is quite a goal; not one I’m ready to tackle at this point in my life. Consequently I’ll never be as well known or successful as Mr. Parker. Each action we take—or don’t take—comes with consequences. Everything we do, every choice we make is a tradeoff. When I decide to sleep a few extra minutes instead of getting up early to workout, I must deal with excess weight and health issues. When I don’t pursue leads for my Scentsy business on a daily basis, I reap low sales numbers. When I choose to spend my day on the phone or in the flower garden or shopping instead of at my desk writing, I don’t come any closer to completing one of the writing projects on my hard drive.

What action will you take today to make your dreams come true? 10 pages of your manuscript a day? 5? Or just committing to 30 minutes of uninterrupted writing?

They’re your goals. Only you know the necessary action required to make them come true. But take action. Do something. Jump into the great unknown and grow your wings on the way down. They will grow. But not until you jump.

Molly Noble Bull lives in South Texas -- near the southern tip of Texas. It rained there this week, and she thanked and praised the Lord for it. They also had a inch and a half of rain a few days earlier, and she thanked and praised the Lord on that day, too. These rains were a blessing to thristy Texas. But too often, we ask for the Lord's blessing and then forget to thank Him when we get what we prayed for.
Please join us in prayer for rain in Texas and relief from the floods and tornadoes elsewhere.
Heavenly Father, 
We thank and praise you, Lord, for the rains you sent this week to parts of Texas, and we thank you in advance for the rains you are going to send to the dry areas. We also thank you in advance for relief from all floods, tornados and hurricanes.
In the blessed name of Jesus,
Amen and amen.


Molly Noble Bull said...

Well done, Teresa. You got me on the road to reaching my goals.

Brandi said...

Great post, Teresa. Sometimes I get into a procrastinating mood, not wanting to sit down and write or not taking the time to prepare healthy meals and exercise. It's not a good feeling when I see the results of those poor choices. Time to take action! Thanks for the inspiration!

Teresa Slack said...

I have the best intentions, but carrying them out is the tough part. I chose that title with myself in mind--I need to do more than talk a good game. Now if I can keep myself inspired.

Cecelia Dowdy said...

I'm glad you posted this, Teresa. You know, when it comes to action and setting goals, and keeping them...well, these things sort out the real writers fromt the wanna-be writers. So many times I've been to writers conferences and met people who say they want to write and get a book published, then, they do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING ABOUT IT - no action at all! If you really want to see your work in print, you need to set goals and keep them, even if it's just writing for five minutes a day, every day for a year! :-)