Hello my fellow Wandering Samurai. It’s that time of year again…
Resolutions, pinky promises, and goal setting. A New Year has come as we now enter into the second half of the 2010s. As I do every year—taking inspiration from one of my favorite bloggers, James Clear—I’ve decided to publicly evaluate my progress of the year. The 3 themes of 2015 were: Writing For Me, Focus, and Positivity. Here’s how I did:
1. Writing For Me
So I started my second major writing project in early 2015. I wanted this to be my entire focus of the year. Therefore I published less on Tales of a Ronin as well as GaijinPot.
But then I moved to Tokyo, started a new job, and realized how little of a social life I had back out in the countryside. So in 2015, I just lived it up. Traveled, did new things, and really didn’t write a lot (compared to 2014).
Although I’m nowhere near finished as planned, progress is progress. I have to pat myself on the back for at least starting the novel.
At the ned of the year I clocked in somewhere between 18 to 20,000 words. And that’s a whole lot more than zero.
I know what I’m going to say is probably the most common knowledge, ever. But doing just one thing at a time is so much faster than multitasking! I tell myself this all the time. Yet towards the end of the year I really began to understand why it’s true. Multitasking is mentally draining. There is a physical cost to jumping between different tasks. And you come out of it feeling tired, without even getting much done.
Knowing this, I’ve gotten better at doing and sustaining one thing at a time (my definition of focus). Now I even lose myself in writing on the way to work, sometimes barely missing my stop. That never happened in the beginning of the year. Yet I still have a bad habit of surfing the web while I’m in a writing session. 2016 might be the year I kick this habit.
No, it will be.
3. Smile [Positivity]
I really can’t remember a very low moment this entire year. Of course there were some emotional ups and downs, but nothing that caused me to feel ongoing negativity. And that’s the way Life should be.
Positive, Fun, Happy!
For the second half of this post I will introduce the 3 Themes of 2016:
1. Wrap-up Novel/Begin Spec Script
The novel-writing process was enough to make me realize that I really just want to write for television and film. I could sit at my desk and write novels for years on end. But I want my characters to eventually make it to the screen. And getting there can prove to be quite difficult for an author.
I know this sounds like a crazy dream, but as with everything: baby steps. This dream has been on my mind for a few years now. The fact that I’m finally sharing it publicly proves to me that I’m ready to go forth.
I will turn the novel into the long-short story after tying up some loose ends. And maybe I’ll do the same thing I did with The Enlightenment: publish chapters on Tales of a Ronin.
2. Take 10
So I got a little problem of leaving little things (emails, calls, cleaning, etc.) unattended to, and taking forever to start big things. So I’m starting a new habit: Take 10.
- If a task is so small it takes 10 minutes or less, just do it.
- If a task takes much longer than 10 minutes, then simply spend 10 minutes focusing on doing only that task. If when time is up and I made it out of the starting blocks, just keep going.
With this system, I’m always getting stuff done no matter what. And I’m not wasting time trying to figure out what to do next.
3. No Doubt, Baby Steps
This year I get the feeling that I’ll be taking some major steps in the direction I want to go in Life. I’ll admit, I’m scared as hell and some days I feel like I’m not ready. But this little mantra will remind me of my self-worth. Nothing great gets accomplished in a night. As long as I’m taking confident baby steps, I’ll get to where I want to be.
Thanks everyone for all the love. It’s still crazy to see that I’ve been keeping this blog running for two years.
I appreciate you all, honestly. Stay Tuned for the Next Tale.