Monday, March 15, 2010

How Much Effort Do You Put In?

Motivation. Dreams. Ambitions. These words suggest a fire within to accomplish something big.

When we have big dreams, we need to put in big effort.

How would you rate the amount of effort you are putting in to making your dreams come true?

I'm not trying to make you squirm or feel guilty. Most of us lead ridiculously busy lives and simply cannot spend the majority of our hours striving to make one dream come true. But I know many of you routinely give up free time to keep advancing.

So today, take a serious look at how hard you are working to make your dream come true. Here are a few questions to ask.

1. How many days this week did I spend time working toward my dream?
2. Did I have a focused plan beforehand or did I waste time deciding what to do each session?
3. What did I accomplish this week? (Example: How many pages did I write or revise?)
4. How do I feel about this accomplishment? (Frustrated because I expected to get more done? Proud because I exceeded my expectations?)
5. Based on this week's performance, can I honestly say I am actively working to make my dream come true? If the answer is no, why not? What can I do to make next week better?

Big dreams take many steps to become reality. Stay focused.

Join me on Wednesday for more inspiration to make our dreams reality.


  1. I think we are focused the same way this week cause yesterday I wrote a post like this set to run on Weds! But yours is done much better:) We must be thinking we need to keep doing more to achieve our dreams--I do anyways.

  2. Working and focused...check. I'm almost on the extreme where I could use a power lesson on relaxation!
    ~ Wendy

  3. "These words suggest a fire within to accomplish something big."

    What a great way to put it, Jill.

    On average, I have it. I've had a huge setback just this last week, but again, soon, I will persevere.

  4. I think having a goal definitely helps. Need to stay focused!!! :O)

  5. Great post, Jill! I think the key to achieving great things is to achieve a lot of little small things that matter. And to take those that matter along for the ride whenever possible.

    Great list to think about. :)

  6. Wonderful post, as usual. I just eked out the most difficult challenge of my career so far: changing an ending per publisher's request was akin to drawing blood from a collapsed vein.

    Painful! But I'm so glad I "put in the time," as you said. Pretty sure the book will shine brighter for it!


  7. Hmmm....I'd say that most days I put in the effort, but lately I'm learning to pull back just enough to look at other things in life. That no matter how much time I put in, it's not going to happen overnight and that I need to enjoy the journey. Balance. Not quite there, but working on it.

  8. Amiable fill someone in on and this post helped me alot in my college assignement. Say thank you you for your information.

  9. I feel good about how much effort I put into my writing. Sometimes, though, I wonder if I should cut out some of the "extra" things I do, like editing for a literary magazine. Those things are educational, but they do keep me from the actual act of writing my stories.

  10. Good morning!!

    It's so nice to have a normal week again! Well, as normal as possible, anyhow!

    Terri: I look forward to reading your Wed. post. Great minds think alike, right?

    Wendy: You are in the zone! Don't worry about relaxation--you can't stay in the zone forever. It will happen naturally.

    Janna: My last week was full to the brim with non-writing activities. It's okay. We all have weeks like that. This week, we'll hop back on the saddle, right?

    Diane: Goals are vital--vital!!

    Danyelle: I agree 100%. Small steps add up.

    Patti: I'm so proud of you! That must have been excruciating!

    Georgiana: Great attitude to have. It's definitely NOT an overnight biz. We do have to enjoy the process. (Hope you're recovering!)

    Anonymous: Glad it helped.

    Davin: Oooh--tough one. I've made similar decisions this year. Have you considered setting a time limit to evaluate? Write the pros/cons, time commitment, and your happiness level in regards to your editing job. In three months, do the same thing. Compare them and make a decision about the job then. This helps to not regret a decision. Good luck!

    Thank you so much for stopping by!

  11. Staying focused is important and sometimes very difficult. I've recently discussed this with my husband and determined that after one of my commitment is completed in June, I will be letting it go so that I may turn more of my focus to my own personal goals, such as writing.

  12. Hi Jill -

    I'm slowly building momentum again. Life got in the way for a few weeks.

    Susan :)

  13. Self imposed goals are good for me. A few days ago I told myself, "no internet until you finish this stage of revision and print it out so you can do the next step." I just printed it out a few minutes ago!!

  14. Every time I find myself whining about how so-and-so can write so many novels, I get this gentle reminder... "While you are on Facebook, and toying with your e-mail, and generally wasting time, so-and-so is WRITING. Writers WRITE."
    Ouch. I needed this today, Jill! Thank you for the breath of refreshing, as always!

  15. CMOM: I know what you mean. It's been tough for me to say no to the many opportunities that come my way, but ultimately, writing is very important to me, and I have to respect that. Good luck!

    Susan J: Great! I'm sorry you had a few off weeks--me too!

    Paul: I've had to do the same thing. There's something magnetic about social networks, isn't there? Great job printing out your work!

    Niki: No whining?? What? :) It's really easy to fall into time-wasters, but you are right. We have to limit the fluff and concentrate on the good stuff!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  16. Fabulous questions! I'm planning a post for the QT blog this week, and your post plays right into it. I may link to it, if that's okay... :)

  17. I love the new look of your blog, Jill! It totally matches your zen tone.

    And those questions are genius. Focus is key.

  18. Elana: We must be on the same page right now! (Are you revising? Or in-between projects? ha!) Of course you can link! Please do!

    Lisa and Laura: Thank you very much! I dream of the beach on a daily basis--sad, huh!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  19. That is a great list of questions to ask yourself at the end of each week. What a wonderful blog!

  20. Nisa: Welcome! I'm so glad you stopped by!

  21. You caught me on a good week. I worked almost every day on my speech for tomorrow. That felt great. I think it is a move in the area where I want to be.

  22. Nancy: Wonderful! I'm very proud of you! Let us know how it goes.

    Thanks so much for stopping by!


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