At the close of this year, I’ve been contemplating what to write about, going over those things I accomplished and those things I failed to see through during the previous 365 days. I was fortunate to publish two books in 2017: Slaying Dragons―a book of poetry, quotes, and short stories―and Eena, The Two Sisters from my epic fantasy series, The Harrowbethian Saga. My oldest son return from a mission where he served in Tokyo, Japan, and I helped him settle into a dorm room at a state University. I sent my second son to New Zealand where he is currently serving a mission. I worked as a committee chairman for my youngest son’s Boy Scout troop, and I also helped him to prepare for a performance in the local high school musical. I wrote a little poetry and penned a few words of wisdom, but overall I was unable to spend as much time writing as I hoped. There were goals and resolutions on my "to-do" list that were not accomplished.
Pondering why I was able to see some goals through to the end while others I either partway finished or completely set aside, I came up with what I call the Five P's for Positive Progress. Catchy title, huh? Let's take a look at each one.
1) Priority: The goals I set as top priorities were the ones I saw through to the end. I learned that whatever moved to the forefront of my to-do list was accomplished. Things not considered a priority were neglected.
2) Planning: I have found this to be a huge determiner in accomplishing any goal―planning what, when, where, and how I intend to carry out each step. Writing down the reasons why I want to attain a certain goal motivates me to work at it. Neglecting to plan frequently results in failed attempts.
3) Partitions: My goals were more likely to be achieved when partitioned into small tasks that could be done in short stretches of time. Five or ten-minute tasks I fit into my schedule while time-consuming projects often took a back seat. The impressive thing was watching those five-minute efforts add up to big accomplishments.
4) Preference: The truth is, preferable activities tend to find a way into my daily routine. Goals that I find enjoyable I am willing to sacrifice for, be it a lunch hour or a little sleep. I can get by on five hours of sleep if it means reading a few more chapters in a book I love.
5) Profitable: There is motivation in profit, be it monetary or other benefits. When small accomplishments toward a larger goal result in pleasant rewards, it simply encourages more success toward achieving the end goal.
This new year I once again made personal resolutions. I want to edit and publish book V and book VI in the Harrowbethian Saga before 2018 comes to a close. My son has challenged me to reach a running goal, one he set for himself as well. I also hope to work on writing more poetry with the intent of putting together a book of my best poems. The Five P's for Positive Progress will help me attain these goals. I know that I have to make them a priority and plan how I intend to accomplish each goal. That plan must include partitioning the whole into small tasks that can fit into my busy schedule. Lastly, I need to make the work both enjoyable and rewarding in order to motivate myself. It is doable!
I hope that these suggestions give you something to ponder as you set your New Year's resolutions. Good luck and Happy New Year! Happy reading too!
"If I must start somewhere, right here and now is the best place imaginable." — Richelle E. Goodrich (Making Wishes)