If you’ve recently set yourself a writing or editing goal, you’ll know that these goals can be hard things to accomplish. The key is consistency. Through consistent hard work, we complete what it is we set out to do. But you’ll also know that it’s never quite that simple. Somewhere along the line, we lose our inspiration and motivation. We become disheartened by the arduous process of reaching for our goals. There’s got to be a way to galvanize our chance of success; to ensure the accomplishment of our goals, right?

When you enjoy the process, the goal is already accomplished.

Goals are funny creatures. They don’t happen overnight and we don’t always see them coming. They’re accomplished through the sum of all our daily habits over weeks, months and years. If we truly wish to succeed, we have to change our mindset and shift our focus from the goal, to the journey. If we spend each day waiting for our goals to happen, we’ll soon lose our enthusiasm. But if we spend each day looking forward to our daily habits and rituals, then the goal is already in the bag.

Let the journey become its own reward.

So how do we make the journey as enjoyable as possible? Well, that’s specific to your goal and something you’ll have to work out. But the first step is aligning yourself mentally with the journey of being a writer or editor, and not the goal that you’re working towards.

I personally thrive off all the new things I learn along the way and the skills that I gain. I love having my own space to write and I love that feeling when I create something I’m really happy with. I also enjoy the humble feeling that comes when I write something not too great. It tells me there’s still lots of amazing things to learn! I appreciate the character building that comes when I do something even though I really don’t feel like it. The entire journey tells me that I’m growing as a person. Life is movement. Life is the journey; the little things that fit between the cracks of the bigger things.

Now, don’t get me wrong, staying motivated throughout the process is hard, and we all fall down sometimes. To make this process a little easier, check out my post on increasing your motivation here.

Build your habits.

So what’s next? What’s the first step in living an enjoyable and productive creative life? Start to build your habits. Try to spend time being conscious of what works for you and what doesn’t. Notice when you’re at your most effective and cultivate the things that contribute to this each and every day. And remember, this is a journey. It will be long. It will sometimes be hard and sometimes be the best thing you’ve ever done. Accept both sides of the coin and enjoy the process. If you can do that, you’ve already done it all!

Until next week, keep writing, keep learning and build a better book.

Peter