When I was writing about goals, I thought to myself: What if we created goals from a place of self-love and compassion instead of a place of self-improvement or a need to “fix” ourselves. I discuss the implications of the rhetoric of “new you” or a “better version of ourselves” in the context of self-acceptance and enough-ness – because we are enough right now.
Goals are important because they allow us to grow and challenge ourselves if we allow them to help us in that way.
Mentioned in this episode:
Goal Setting with Compassion Workbook
Books mentioned (all links are affiliate links through BookShop.org that helps support Independent Bookstores. I will receive a little commission for your order, but you will pay nothing extra. If you can find the book directly from your favorite indie bookstore, please go there.)
Transcript of episode created with Microsoft Office with some, but not a lot, of editing. Read as your own risk!
Hi and welcome to the first episode of not a writing advice podcast in 2022, so I took off December from doing the podcast and now I’m back and I want to continue talking about how to support the creative community and people who want to harness their creativity to enhance other aspects of their life.
The mission of not a writing advice podcast has not changed. I still do not want this to necessarily be a writing advice podcast because there are lots of sources out there that are giving you writing advice on how to create the best article formatting on how to engage your audience, SEO.
So those types of things which I do know about, and I’ve studied, but I really want this podcast to be more about a place of journey.
So this is a journey of owning your identity as a creative. In my case, owning my identity as a writer and the journey of being an entrepreneur, being a small business and a creative. That’s kind of the idea around Not a Writing Advice Podcast.
And I am so thankful that you’re here to listen to me and to engage with me because I would love to hear any comments or thoughts or anything that you have about the podcast about the topics that I discuss or any topics that you want to discuss in the future.
I would love for you to reach out and let me know and ask your questions and whatever you have to say, I would love to hear it so you could go to my website everydayskype.com to the contact me page and just use that form there to fill out and I will get it.
And I would greatly appreciate it if you did that, and also if you are on Anchor and if you go to Anchor.FM and you go to my page everyday scribe on there, I think you can leave me a voice message even on that, so that’s pretty exciting.
So today I want to, well, actually the entire month of January we’re going to talk about goals and the reason why I want to talk about goals and especially at this time is because it occurred to me that especially at the end of the year, in the beginning of a new year, we are hammered with a lot of rhetoric around creating goals from a place of lack.
So, we need to create this goal so that we can become a new meet and a new improved version of myself, and you know that kind of rhetoric really implies that we’re not good enough right now, and that bothers me a lot and it has bothered me for some time.
And so then, when I started thinking about goals and creating new goals, I was writing an article about it and it this idea just kind of really smacked me in the face of what if we created goals from a place of self-compassion and self-love versus a place of blackened self-loathing that we need to fix ourselves in some way.
I mean especially for creatives, but I know a lot of people do this: They work all year long or all the time on the messages that our inner critic is telling us. Our inner critic is notorious for telling us that we’re not good enough and that we’re never going to make money doing what we want to do that our ideas aren’t good enough, but we work all this time to squash those thoughts that come into our head with our inner critic and a lot of times that those thoughts that.
Our inner critic is telling us are not necessarily our thoughts. They are thoughts that we have inherited from society and from family and from friends, and you know just the general ambience of noise that we live through on a daily basis.
So, we have to actively keep reiterating to ourselves that we are enough that we are good enough that we can do these things and we get to a place that maybe we are in a healthier place than we used to be and then we get hammered, especially around this time of year, with the thought of we need to do this in order to improve ourselves.
So we create goals from a place of lack of a place where, Oh my gosh, I should be doing this if I want to do this, so I need to create a goal that will move me into that direction.
But what if I mean the goal could actually even still be the same? But what if we approached the goal from a different aspect?
For example, say that you’ve always dreamt of being a writer and you just don’t have the consistent writing practice, but you really need in order to have to be a writer.
I want to caveat that comment, even with the idea that you have to write all the time in order to be a writer.
That is not what I’m implying. I just mean you, if you really want to be a writer, call yourself a writer, you can’t not write. You have to write at some point. So even if you write once a month or once every two weeks or whatever, your time frame is, as long as it’s a consistent habit, I think that it’s a perfectly great habit so going back, we need to kind of think about how we’re framing the goal.
So say again, we want to start writing, and so we say, our goal is that we’re going to write every single day. Well, if we’re not writing at all right now, then we’re not going – I mean, I guess we could, but it’s very unlikely that we’re going to start writing every single day.
I mean we may do it for a day or two, or maybe a week, but we’re not probably going to stay consistent at it because of a couple of different factors that we’ll go into more in depth through the course of the month.
And I also go in depth a little bit into all of these concepts in the new workbook that I have out of Creating Goals from a place of Compassion. And I’ll link that in the show notes and for at least my podcast listeners for the month of January, it will be free and I am working on an expanded version of the workbook, so that should be coming out probably in February.
But for now, the workbook is a 26-page workbook that we go over all different kinds of aspects of goal setting and goal attaining from a place of compassion and self-love versus a place of lack.
OK, so we are writing. We want to write every single day.
Again, it’s unlikely that we’re going to do that unless we put things in place that allow us to be compassionate to ourselves and we really need to think about why we want to write every single day?
Is it because we think that we should be writing every single day in order to be a writer or is this something that we really want in order to grow and evolve as a person as a as a writer?
Because I absolutely believe that we already have everything that we need inside of us. It just gets buried by all of the noise outside of us that we internalize and so sometimes it’s difficult to find the awareness that we are enough right now, we just maybe need to do a little work to find it.
So that’s why I think goals are important because it helps us grow and learn and expand ourselves versus we have to improve ourselves and get to this better version of ourselves because we already are that better version. Just sometimes it hides from us.
And my person inside of me hides for me sometimes do and I have done a lot of work.
I’ve done a lot of journaling and self-reflective-ness and all of that stuff in order to uncover the person that I am and discover that I really am good enough and I always have been good enough. It was just my own internal critic my limiting beliefs that was causing me to believe that I wasn’t and I think that that’s probably the case with a lot of people now there are external circumstances for some people that hinder them from being able to follow their goals and follow their dreams, and that is a whole separate conversation.
But it is important to recognize that not everybody can just be able to go in search of their dreams, and in their in search of their goals because they have a lot of external obstacles in their way that we they may not can navigate around at least at this point.
All, that said, let’s go back to talking about goals and how to set them from a place of compassion.
So now let’s just, let’s say that we’ve decided that our goal is from a place of self-love and self-growth, and that we want to create a writing practice, but we decide that maybe writing every single day is not going to be very realistic and that’s the important thing is that but even though I want people to dream big and I dream big, I also want to be realistic about what I can actually do.
So if I haven’t been writing every single day for a while, it’s unlikely and unrealistic probably to think that I’m going to start doing it now because I’m going to find other reasons not to write. Maybe I already have a very busy schedule that keeps me from writing or taking the time for it to write so.
A realistic self-love type of approach would be to look at my life and determine what would be the best way to approach this goal so, if I decide that I can’t sit down and write every day, then maybe I can write three times a week. Maybe I can find time in my schedule to do that, and then even on those three times a week maybe I don’t set aside like an hour or 30 minutes, even maybe I just sit down at my desk and pick up a pen and piece of paper and that’s it.
That’s it for what I do for that day, and we’ll talk about these tiny habits and routines that we can put in place in another episode.
I just I just want to start with the conversation now because it is part of deciding what our goals are going to be and how we’re going to decide which goals we want to focus on because we can’t do everything as much as I wanted to believe that for.
Really, I still want to believe it, but I understand that I can’t, so I it doesn’t mean that we can’t do it all at some point, it just means we can’t do it all at once, so we need to focus on two or three hings that we can really put all of our attention on for, say, three months.
So what three things, what three goals do you want to focus on for the next three months? And then really put all of your energy into attaining those three goals, or those two goals. Whatever it is that you decide that you can do.
So going back to the writing exercise or the writing example. I’ve decided that I can write three days a week and my brain is still going to freak out because it’s like, Oh my gosh, I haven’t written. And now I have to take out time and do this and I don’t even know where to start.
So according to James Clear which a lot of the practice is but he talks about in his book Atomic Habits, I was doing long, long before I even heard James Clear’s name but he really is the habit-forming guru like, lots of people talk about him as an expert, so he’s a good person to turn to in order to ook at how to build habits to attain your goals.
Another good book to read as far as the limiting the number of goals that you work towards at a time is how to get and I’m sorry if there’s kids in the car right now.
How to get Sh*t done and that is by – I have forgotten, Erin Falconer.
I’m very sorry I probably have messed up that last name. I can’t really remember the last name right off the top of my head. I should have written it down before I started recording this podcast.
But it’s How to Get and then it is spelled S H with the asterisk T Done.
And she talks about how to focus on a few things in order to do anything. She has like a whole couple of chapters, I think, on how to decide what your three goals are and how to brainstorm them and all that and so that’s a really good book to determine, or to help you determine which three goals you want to focus on.
For the next, she actually says, for the next six months, but I I like to go with three months just because it’s a shorter time frame and it’s like so it’s a quicker win for my brain and so if I have that quick win I feel almost more accomplished and I’m more achieved if I I’ve achieved more if I have met my goal.
We’re going to finish out the month looking at goals in this way from a place of compassion and we’re going to refer back to those books that I just mentioned.
Plus also, we’re going to probably talk a little bit from Laziness Does Not Exist, which is by Devon Price Ph.D, so Dr. Devon Price and they talk about in their book, well, exactly what the title says – that the laziness does not exist, it’s a societal construct that actually limits our productivity if we think of ourselves as lazy and or we don’t take the time to rest.
So all of these things, plus my own experience with creating goals and working towards them and in the workbook I also talk about Think Again by Adam Grant which I have talked about and on this podcast before, because I just really love that book.
And so I would urge you to check out these books, check out the workbook because the workbook that I created is free, so you might as well check it out and see if it works for you.
And then we can and then we can think about how to frame our goals differently.
So what I was saying about the goal might be the same.
It may just be how we think about it, so the goal is that we want to write more, we want to write more or we want to write 3 times a week but when we say that we’re going to write three times a week and we’ve decided that it’s something that we want, not something that we should do then.
The goal is to write three times a week, so by the end of the three months we should be at the point where we can write three times a week fairly easily and get some words on the page.
So today, if you want to start your habit today of working towards that goal then you’re probably only going to like I said, just sit down with a piece of paper and a pen and maybe not a write a single word, just the act of beginning, which is what James Clear talks about.
He talks about the act of beginning a habit is almost more important than the habit itself, because we don’t want to start the habit, the starting of it is the hardest thing, and I can attest to that from when I ran all the time, I ran six days a week and the getting out the door part was always the hardest part. If I could get out the door it was fine.
And so we’ll talk more about some of the things that I did in order to make running easier for me because that’s another thing that James Clear talks about James Clear talks about is that we need to make our habits easy. Easy to access and easy to do.
So I think that is a good start to creating goals from a place of compassion and so next week when we get together, we’ll talk about how to use those tiny habits – and I say tiny habits, not small habits because there’s enough in this world is trying to keep us small and this practice should not be one of them.
So the tiny practices that we can start putting in place to work towards our goals, which is like I was talking about. We just sit down with a piece of paper and a pen and maybe not even write anything. So that’s just like a step. And so we’ll talk about that. And then we’ll also talk about in another episode about success is what success looks like, and we’ll talk about failure and what failure looks like and is failure really a bad thing? I don’t think so. Spoiler alert.
And I will also talk about reflection and how important the reflection is in this whole process.
So thank you for listening to me talk about goals from a place of compassion, and I hope that you do check out my workbook and if you do, or even if you don’t, you just have some thoughts about what I’ve talked about today. I would love to hear from you, so please go to my website everydaysribe.com and go to the contact me page and let me know what you think, your thoughts and stuff about creating goals, central place of compassion and especially if you download my workbook and you read through it and start doing some of the exercises because there’s lots of journaling prompts and writing exercises within that workbook.
So let me know what you think about that as well.
And then finally you can go to anchor.FM/everydayscribe and maybe leave me a voice note if you would rather do that.
So again, thank you for being here and listening to me talk about goals.
I really am passionate about this idea of creating goals from a place of compassion and actually, my word for 2022 is compassion and I’ll talk about more about that and probably a later episode maybe in February.
So I appreciate you being here.
Thank you for listening and I’ll talk to you next week.
Thank you, bye.