There’s been a lot on my mind this week. I found out that I hadn’t taken all of my owed leave (for my job with The Reader Organisation) so I hastily arranged cover for my read aloud reading groups, tied up a few loose ends and sorted out some days off. Very handy they’ll be too because I’m travelling to London tomorrow (Monday 8th December) for the launch of my poetry pamphlet at The Poetry Café. Yes, my poetry pamphlet is here, it’s in my hands, I can stop worrying that it’s never going to happen. I can place a tick on my List Of Things I Want To Do.
and while in the realm of To Do Lists, Plans, Goals, Aims, Ambitions, Hopes, Dreams…..I was very taken with a new product – Passion Planner – which has been shared around social media this week. You will see that is a planner which integrates, not only your daily appointments, but also your goals, to-do lists and there’s even space to write what you’re thankful for, plus space to creatively doodle. Although I love the concept of this product, I will probably create my own version of it using a simple planner or diary. I’m sure I’m not alone in having form for this. I tend to write out my goals and plans somewhere in my diary to remind myself what I’m aiming for. Here is a snapshot of something I wrote at the beginning of 2011.
Laugh with me at my naiveté in imaging that it would “take 2 years to write 30 – 40 publishable poems”. The realty is it’s taken me four or five years to write about 22. I’m also smiling at how I imagined I could “make money” from entering poetry competitions. I have made some money from comps, by the way, and I know that this is possible, but isn’t probably to be recommended if your family are feeling peckish and you have no other sources of income.
But in spite of the laughter, there are, nonetheless, two things I wrote here which have more or less come true. My first aim in 2011 was to “write a collection of poetry.” OK, I haven’t, yet, written a full collection of 40 – 60 poems but I have written, and had published, a collection of 22 poems. My other clear goal, documented here, is to “create a website for poems that have had any success” (“success” I defined then as poems being noticed in a competition or being published somewhere). It was shortly after this that I set up And Other Poems, an online anthology of poems which has turned out to be for other people’s poems, not my own. I didn’t set out to be an editor but through And Other Poems editorial experience is what I gained, and very valuable it’s been to me, too.
What am I getting at here? I don’t know if it’s the time of the year, nearly the end of 2014, or because another birthday (December 13th) is fast approaching but I’m very pre-occupied with thinking about what I want to do with my life in 2015 and beyond. I worry about sharing my goals in public, surely it’s setting myself up for ridicule and failure. But if I don’t make them public, have I truly committed myself to them or am I kidding myself?
I wouldn’t mind your thoughts about this. Do you set yourself goals? Do my keep them private or share them? Do you jot them down and carry them about with you? And have you set yourself a goal and then achieved it?