Remember last year when your New Year’s resolution was to write more? So how did that turn out?
Perhaps you’ve heard the old saying about shooting for the moon and landing among the stars, which never made much sense because you’d have to really, really, REALLY overshoot the moon to land among the stars. So does that mean you did far better than expected, or you just have unbelievably bad aim?
Mostly it means that you stumbled across a working prototype of a warp drive, in which case all previous goals and resolutions become moot. You just hit the jackpot and you can die happy, my friend.
But let’s return to the supposed intent of the saying; in other words, if you aim really high, you’ll still achieve a lot even if you don’t reach your goal. The entire premise seems flawed, based on what we know of humans.
For instance, if I say I want to be a rockstar who headlines at major venues throughout the nation and has a platinum album, I am not going to be satisfied if I sell 1,000 records at my local coffee shop’s open mic night.
Or more appropriate for our audience, if I insist I will be the next J.K. Rowling, I won’t be that happy if I self publish in the Kindle store and sell a few hundred copies of my urban fantasy.
Then there’s the opposite mentality, namely the “have low expectations so anything is a pleasant surprise” outlook, which doesn’t seem that productive either.
“I’m going to put this up on the Kindle store but I fully expect that no one will read it. Oh look, Amazon took it down for plagiarism. That means someone read it, which is more than I could have hoped for.”
Nope, not that great.
So, when you make your New Years resolutions, make sure they’re… well, something.
Just stop talking about it and go do it.
Speaking of doing it; wait, let me try that again. If you want to feel that sensation of accomplishment right now, have a go at one of these word prompts. You’ll feel that familiar glow of exceeding nonexistent expectations. Or maybe it’s like shooting for the moon and landing among the hernias.