Don't Settle For What Might Have Been

by: Joan Kennedy (with Amy Kennedy)

Have you ever told yourself that someday, when the time is right you're going to do what you've always wanted to do?

Um, you mean like every day?!

For some of us that day never comes: I don't have time right now. I will when I have more money. When I lose weight. When the kids are in school. When the kids are out of school.

It doesn't matter what kind of excuse we use, they all keep us from doing the things we say we want to do. When we have no specific plans for getting anywhere we always have a ton of reasons to explain why we don't, why we can't, and why we haven't.

Uncertainty breeds stagnation. So does overwhelm.

Guess what you need to work toward what you've always wanted, go ahead, guess...give up?
When the big hand gets to the 3...
Twenty minutes. Yup. If you don't make progress toward what you've always wanted in the next twenty minutes, when will you? In the next twenty minutes after that? Sooner or later you have to pick a twenty minute time frame and get started.

Don't be concerned with long range goals in the beginning. Decide first what it is you want, and don't get hung-up on that--just chose. Then set a goal, or goals covering the next twenty minutes--if you decide to go longer than twenty minutes, that's fine, but you may want to stick to twenty for the first week to avoid the dreaded "overwhelm." You can't believe what you can get done in twenty minutes.

Even though seemingly small and modest in impact, they are important--small goals accomplished one after another add up to big achievement. Like, "big dream" achievement.

I'm part of a writing group and one of the things we were taught was to set a timer for fifteen minutes and just start writing (no, we can't write the same sentence over and over again a la Jack Nicholson in The Shining... all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy...) the crazy thing is I can write anywhere from 300-450 words in fifteen minutes--one page of a manuscript is 250 words, so I can write a page and a half in fifteen minutes!

Re-think what can be achieved in twenty minutes!

We know you can find twenty minutes somewhere in your day to start working toward what you've always wanted. Tell us what you plan on doing in the next twenty minutes, we can't wait to hear.