Sometimes we finish things ahead of schedule. We reach goals that we thought would take us longer than they did, or we give ourselves a long while until the deadline just in case life gets in the way. Sometimes we need all that time, but sometimes we don’t.
Yesterday, technically today, a little after midnight, I finished my second chapter for the month of February and I wrote the short story for February in about 2 hours. Yesterday was a very productive writing day, and that’s a good thing. What’s not so good about that is that I completed my writing goals for the month in just two weeks. I underestimated the time and effort it would take to complete those goals.
Now I have two options. I can relax for the rest of the month, focus on writing essays for my class and studying for my license test, or I can write the next chapters, the ones that were supposed to be for next month, and another short story, and perhaps finish more goals ahead of schedule. This should be an obvious choice, since one of my goals is to write every day, and I think after writing every day for a solid month straight, I would be bored if I just stopped.
I am going to continue to write, both chapters and short stories, and maybe finish some of my long term goals ahead of schedule. Instead of waiting for two weeks to continue and halting my momentum, I am going to continue the momentum and continue the inspiration. I am going to put my time to good use and finish something instead of waiting until the last minute like I’ve had to do for so long.
It looks like it’s going to be a great writing year. And that is a welcome relief after the writing years I had the last two years. With Nursing School and all of the intense focus and other priorities, I kept having to set back my writing goals and write when everything else was completed first. Now that I have more free time, and just one online class this semester, I have more time to seriously pursue my goals while I wait for the next stage of my life to begin.
Deadlines can change and that is acceptable. Sometimes we have to push them back month after month after month, and sometimes we finish them way ahead of time. Either way, keep at them. If they are important, they will find a way to be completed. Sometimes it’s in one sitting and sometimes it’s in five minute segments over two or three years. As long as the goal doesn’t change, the deadline can be flexible.
So whether you are ahead of schedule, or behind, keep at it. Something beautiful can come of it if you continue. Enjoy the journey, and what it has to teach you.
How do you set deadlines for yourself?