Goals, Dreams, and Resolutions Questions for 2016
Here are some things to think about, as you look ahead to the coming year. I will post my answers on the second of January, 2016. There may be details related to various questions that are too personal to post publicly; that’s fine. You’re not required or expected to violate your own privacy, or anyone else’s. Write as completely and honestly for yourself as you can, and only post anything that is comfortable for you to share.
Take a look back at the last year, and give yourself an honest assessment. Remember to be kind to yourself. Did you achieve what you hoped to achieve? Where did you fall short of your own expectations, and why? Where did you exceed them? What unexpected events changed your direction? What did you choose to give up because it no longer fit your goals, dreams, resolutions, and life?
–2015 was a challenging year. There was too much loss. I felt that I did nothing but attend funerals from August until the end of the year. My lovely little cat, Violet, also died. I was in a dysfunctional and unhappy situation that I was unable to change, although I tried, on many occasions, using tactics to either cope or live with it. None of them worked, so a different strategy is required for this year. I didn’t write enough, and much of it wasn’t up to par. Towards the middle of the year, I even wondered if I should stop writing.
Fortunately, the writers’ conference and the supportive group in my workshop encouraged me to try new things and stretch in new directions. Between Carole Bugge and Claire Cook, I got fresh inspirations to get me back on track. The second part of the year, in spite of the losses, was much more productively creative, in spite of obstacles by a few choice individuals who regularly tried to destroy said creativity and ‘bring me to heel’.
The time at Kripalu was also important — it gave me tools to pace and plan and cope with certain things that are going to continue to be difficult until they can be removed.
Nano was a surprising positive. I did a “tandem Nano”, working on two novels simultaneously — TIE-CUTTER and DEATH OF A CHOLERIC. Writing in company was more fun than I expected, and I hit 60K over the two of them during the month. Both of them are books I intend to continue, and hopefully use to get a new agent.
KILLER QUINTET was released in February. I wrote a radio drama that I really liked. I wrote/polished a couple of television scripts (both one hour and half hour) and polished a screenplay that’s now solid. I wrote a play as part of the “365 Women” project.
I I wrote several outlines, started knocking out a set of interlocked short stories at the end of the year, and did the first few chapters in the writing workshop of a new book that is something completely different and exciting.
I won a writers’ retreat stay in Vermont, that I will inhabit at the end of January 2016. I started learning Argentine Tango, which is both fun and creatively stimulating.
Looking back, the year wasn’t as much of a creative wasteland as it often felt, but outside pressures and sabotage often blurred my vision in the moment.
Do you feel you are on the right path? If so, what do you want to build on from this year to make next year even better? If not, what do you want to change? How do you intend to change those things?
–I’m getting back to the right path. I’m getting better at fighting — not always overtly — those who try to pull me off my path. I want to build on the foundation the time at Kripalu gave me, because I believe if I do that, I can achieve what I need for myself without causing harm. There are those involved who enjoy causing harm and would love me to lash back, to give them reason to escale the emotional violence. I’ve started the steps for change, but it is impolitic to post them publicly.
Take a look at the disappointments from this year. Can you find their root cause? Did you get something positive from them, in spite of the disappointments?
–The root cause is obvious to me. What I got is that I will work hard not to put myself in a situation where I can’t immediately remove myself from such a cause again.
Take a look at unexpected events which changed your path. Were the changes positive or negative? Did they send you in a new direction you might not have found otherwise, or where they a distraction?
–The obstacles I look at as negative I intend to, ultimately, turn into a positive, although I’m not sure I can completely control the timeline. The time at the Writers Conference and at Kripalu helped send me on positive new directions and give me fresh energy and optimism.
Do you feel fulfilled creatively, personally, spiritually? What contributes to that? If something is lacking in any of these areas, what actions do you need to take in the coming year?
–Creatively: the first part of the year I did not, to the point of despair. The second part of the year, I started getting back on track, and am getting closer to creative fulfillment.
–Personally: no. I am taking steps to change that, but, again, it would be impolitic to post it publicly.
–Spiritually: up and down. Lots of doubts this year, especially because of all of the loss. Re-assessing a few things.
List three goals for 2016 — concrete things that you wish to achieve. Under each goal, list three specific action steps you can do to achieve each of them.
Goal 1. Meet the writing schedule I set out, yet have flexibility
when unexpected opportunities arise.
A. Don’t get distracted by other people’s agendas
B. Manage time and energy better; don’t let the energy vampires
C. Recognize the difference between “opportunity” and “ego.”
Goal 2. Can’t be shared publicly yet; just know that I’m in the process
of taking the steps to fulfill it.
Goal 3. Again, up the physical activity, and get back in shape.
A. Deepen the yoga practice
B. Add other physical activities to the roster
C. Recognize steady, but necessary increase increments
List three dreams for 2016 — things you would like to do, but that may not be ready to manifest. List three action steps under each dream that you can start this coming year, on the road to manifestation.
Again, something I am not ready to share publicly. But I’m working on them! When I am in a position to share, I will!
List three resolutions for 2016– definite things you want to change about yourself or your life for the better. Under each one, list three action steps that you can take to start achieving those resolutions. Again, remember to be kind to yourself.
Resolution 1. Excommunicate the toxic, the crazy, the saboteur, and the
energy vampires from my personal universe.
A. It’s tied in to some of the goals and dreams I can’t yet share.
B. Strengthen my personal shields.
C. Refuse to be drawn in to other people’s dysfunction.
Resolution 2. Organize/purge/unpack basement
A. Get the supplies I need in place so I can organize and have
designated bins/areas to sort/purge
B. Create a reasonable schedule and stick to it.
C. Re-Feng-Shui the house. The place’s natural feng shui is
excellent, but the purging/organizing will help.
Resolution 3. Try something new, out of my comfort zone.
A. Be open to new opportunities
B. Lack of energy is not an excuse
C. Realize it’s okay if I try something and decide I don’t
Take a look back at the last several years, and then look ahead to where you are and where you want to be. Take some time and figure out a one year, three year, and five year plan. Your personal “strategic plan”, so to speak. Part of what I want to do on the retreat in February is finalize that for myself. I hope to have my personal strategic plan done by early to mid February.
Have a wonderful start to the New Year!
Please feel free to share your own goals, dreams, and resolutions below.