A Writing Prompt to Help You Achieve Your Goals
Photo courtesy of Sherman Geronimo-Tan.

A Writing Prompt to Help You Achieve Your Goals

Written by Janet Brent

Topics: Goals

Now that we’ve moved into the new year, many of us are attempting to start off on the right foot by making resolutions. And yet we all know that resolutions typically don’t work. Most of these commitments to new habits last around a week. Many are abandoned by the end of January.

As a multipotentialite, I’m setting off with a boatload of goals, intentions, and resolutions. I’m committing to writing 500 words a day (on anything) during January, thanks to Jeff Goins’s writing challenge. In February, once I’ve gained momentum and formed the habit, I will write 500 words a day towards my first self-published book. I will then keep writing 500 words a day until my book is complete.

Of course, that’s not it. I’m committing to taking photographs daily, to document my upcoming travels to Thailand, Bali, and Berlin, and to take more selfies. I’m committing to daily yoga and meditation, even if that just means spending ten minutes a day on these practices. I’m also committing to, well, committing. In 2014 I will become more productive and I will work on my business, so that I can grow in leaps and bounds. I’ve set a theme for the year (prosperity), and I’ve even taken some serious action by joining my first mastermind and business retreat. This is the most that I have ever invested in myself and my business.

Achieve Your Goals through Writing

It’s important to understand and reflect on the reasons behind your resolutions and goals, so that you know what purposes they serve, and so that you can commit to accomplishing them. While 365 days of photos may seem like a fun, random thing to do (and something I’ve always wanted to try), what purpose would such a challenge serve?

Answer the following questions to examine, visualize, and get yourself on track with your goals.

1. Why do I want to accomplish this? What’s your big why? What will you get out of this?
2. What does this mean to me? Why is it important to me that I achieve this?
3, How will this make me feel? What emotions will you have when you accomplish your goal? What are your core desired feelings?

Here, I’ll do it myself:

Goal: Take 365 days of daily photos and selfies

Why do I want to accomplish this? I enjoy photography but this hobby comes in spurts, and I make excuses for not doing it. I don’t have a good DSLR camera but my point-and-shoot would work just fine. The 365 day photo project looks fun when others do it but I think I’m scared that my life is boring, and that I wouldn’t have anything interesting to take photos of. But I think that’s the point. This project will force me to look at life from a different angle, to go on excursions, explore my surroundings, go to places I wouldn’t normally go, and get out of my comfort zone.

What does it mean to me? When you have a lifestyle business and a personal brand, it’s helpful to document your life, so that your customers get to know you, see you, and want to become your friend. People who want to be your friend are more likely to become your clients. It usually takes seven “touches” with a person until they approach you with a work request, so the more you put yourself out there, the more likely you are to eventually secure new clients. I hate taking selfies because I can be pretty critical of myself. Taking more selfies will help me to build my confidence as well as my brand.

How will it make me feel? Taking more photos will make me feel like Dora the Explorer. I have this fear that I’m more boring than people would think because on the outside I lead a pretty “interesting” life. I live out of my suitcase, and am traveling to Thailand soon. I’m afraid I won’t get to explore as much as I’d like because my natural inclination is to stay in the house once I get settled. Sure, Thailand will be a new environment, and maybe I’ll force myself to explore, but I can’t deny my homebody inclinations. Taking daily photos will make me feel more confident, creative, and primed towards action.

Setting and accomplishing goals shouldn’t be tasks reserved for the start of the year. We can start working toward goals at any time of the year, but it takes real commitment and awareness to actually achieve goals. To ensure that you follow through with yours, make sure you are serious about them before you jump in. Give these exercises a try and see how it goes.

Your Turn

Pick one of your 2014 goals. Why do you want to accomplish this goal? What does it mean to you? How will it make you feel? I would love to hear all about it in the comments.

janet_aboutJanet Brent is an intuitive graphic/web designer for creative, holistic and heart-based entrepreneurs. She’s interested in passionate people making positive change. Find her blogging on Purple Panda and on twitter @janetbrent.


  1. Layla says:

    Insightful post! Never thought there could be so much behind taking selfies! :)

    My goals this year are simpler:
    – drink more water or herbal tea
    – go for a walk daily > it will help me feel more energized and refreshed, and stay healthier!

  2. Somehow my previous response to this got eaten, so I’m trying again.

    My goal for this year (which I’ve just upgraded to something to try to do daily) is to put some aspect of my creative work, be it a blog post, an essay, a drawing, or even a thoughtful blog comment, out into the world each day.

    1. Why do I want to accomplish this? I’ve recognized that I have a tendency to learn new skills but never put this knowledge out in the world and so it doesn’t really benefit me or anyone else.

    2. What does it mean to me? I don’t want to end up as one of those people who after their death, their family finds a room full of paintings or manuscripts or whatnot and says “We had no idea they could do this.” I want to be an actively creative person and to interact with other creative people. Also, if I don’t put my creative work out in the world, there’s no chance I will be acknowledged (or compensated) for it.

    3. How will it make me feel? I’m nervous about this – putting myself out there like this means opportunities for rejection just as much as it means opportunities for acceptance – but I think it’s going to pay off if I just stick with it.

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