Think of a goal. Any goal. Even the ones that you think are impossible to reach due to your lack of experience, knowledge or own limited abilities.
Following that, write down what needs to be done to achieve that goal. No matter how slow or long it will take. They say that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. What they forgot to mention is to carry on walking, even on days when your mind tells you to “there’s no point in walking any further”.
Jerry Seinfeld, the famous comedian and writer, had a unique way of achieving success.
When it comes to making New Year’s resolutions, we writers aren’t exactly the norm.
Most people resolve to lose weight, dreaming of the day they can hold up their “fat jeans,” as if in a weight-loss commercial. We want to hold up a few freshly printed scripts and know we’ve created something tangible.
Others might hope to finish their first triathlon this year. We hope to finish a screenplay, a one-hour pilot, and a half-hour comedy spec.
This year, I’m gonna write more. It’s a popular resolution amongst our crowd. It’s a great goal, but it’s vague.
Then again, maybe some of us promised to write every day. That’s even better.
But just like hitting a plateau at the gym, we sometimes lose the steam that once powered a new and exciting story idea. We take one day off, which turns into two days off; eventually, we find ourselves opening up a document only to realize it hasn’t been touched in two weeks – or more.
Let’s say you do write most of the time, but you take one or two days off each week for any number of reasons. That’s still a lot of writing. But consider this: at the end of the year, that’s roughly 10 weeks, or 2.5 months’ worth of days that you didn’t write anything.
That’s where Jerry Seinfeld’s productivity tip “Don’t Break the Chain” comes in.
The satisfaction from seeing a long unbroken chain would motivate the person into not breaking it. From consistency, other ideas into improving methods to achieve your goals might appear. I for one, do not believe passion in a certain area is a significant factor in gaining success in it. However, being passionate in maintaining discipline, consistency and other righteous values would benefit us holistically.
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