Friday, December 10, 2010

Short Term

My whole life I've considered myself a writer. I started writing in 1st grade and since then had ambitions to be published and whatnot. I wrote my first "book" in 7th grade - at least the first draft. It was terrible, of course. I haven't finished a long story since then. I'm beginning to see that I might not be cut out for long term projects. I just have a hard time envisioning the long term goal in the minuscule day-to-day things. Even in admitting this my soul cries out, "No! It's not true! You can do it!" I don't want to be a quitter, I just think that I have greater success with shorter-term goals. Like cooking and baking. Very short term. Short stories and haiku. Short term. I lost 30 lbs. in 6 months (before my 2nd baby came along). Relatively short term. I saved $2000 in a year. (No rent, free food, and putting my money in a bank that I didn't frequent except to deposit the odd amount of cash. It was one of the biggest successes of my early 20s life!) Semi-short term.

Short term is so satisfying. It makes you feel like you accomplished something. And it's a real confidence booster. When it comes to long term goals my knees start to quiver and my tummy feels like jello. I know long term goals are really important. And I've heard all kinds of ways to get you on the path to accomplishing those long term goals. Like writing out your plan and all the baby steps along the way. Visualize yourself at the end...

But it's just so hard to visualize that distant future. It's so hard to realize that little actions I do now add up to achieving what I want in the end. Like the book I want to publish someday. Like buying that house with land! Like finishing the 3 quilts I have in the works... (Quilts are long term, by the way. At least in my mind they are, because I insist on doing them the slow way. Crazy, I know. But rotary cutters terrify me!)

You know what it really takes for long term goals besides insane organization? Discipline. Rock hard self-discipline. I used to be so good at that. Not sure what happened. I think major life changes will do that to you; they kind of throw you for a loop and leave you feeling a little dazed. I still feel that way since my second baby. And it takes gumption. That stubborn insistence, that heck yeah, you can do it! I've got loads of that.

So one quilt square, one sentence, one dollar at a time. I'll make it. Just as soon as I find where I put my self-discipline. It's around here somewhere, I swear!


janae said...

My long term goals have changed so much as I've become an adult. I used to think that I wanted to do all these big lofty things ... and now that I know myself better, I've realized that I'm more of a spread thin sort of person. I like to be able to do a lot of things only moderately well. Photography, videography, writing, etc. I'm so completely satisfied with being decent, but not incredibly talented. I don't even care to practice anything to become talented. I actually enjoy being shallow. Weird, huh?! So my long-term goals now basically all involve family history books/documentaries/etc. Good luck doing yours! Be sure to take pictures of your quilt progress - I'd love to see em!

Sarah Rachelle said...

I totally get that! I, too, am happy being "shallow". There are just too many thing I'd like to try without becoming an expert. It's funny, but I don't even consider myself a quilter. I just saw a pattern and thought, "I can do that." We don't even need blankets - so why am I making quilts??!?!?!
I just figured out that I love to TRY new things - to know that I can do them. Then I move on. Or at least I try to. One thing I'd like to try now is felting. It sounds and looks really easy and there are so many things you can make. Here comes another project! Aaaaaah!

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