Setting Goals as a Writer

We all want to be more productive. We make lists and schedules to keep ourselves on track, but somehow they always get forgotten about. Or maybe they’re remembered but the million of tasks you set for yourself feels insurmountable.

Maybe you’re an over achiever. You think everything has to be done today, right this minute! There’s so much needing done and you have to do it all.

Or perhaps you struggle to be productive. I mean, come on, it’s much more fun to sit down and read, right? (Yeah… totally not speaking from experience here.) But you know there’s things you want to get done—need to get done—but the question is, how can you create a schedule that you will actually stick to?

This is a question that you will have to answer for yourself. Something different will work for each and every person, so I can’t tell you how to schedule your days. However, I have several tips that I’ve learned over the years and thought I would share. Who knows, maybe one of them will help you find your perfect schedule.

Use a Planner

Whether this is a specific planner that you buy for the year, or a bullet journal page you design, or even just a piece of paper—a planner is very valuable. Here you can write down your daily goals in a way that you can get an over all view. It can be very helpful to see what you need to do later in the week or even a couple weeks from now and have that in mind.

I use this for scheduling my blog posts. I take a piece of paper and write down all the days I post for the whole month and then go from there. This way I can start coming up with article ideas from the beginning of the month. Then, when I have the slots filled in, I can start writing the articles and get a head start on blogging for the month! This has worked amazing for me and has been the best way for me to make goals and stick with them when it comes to blogging.

Have Weekly Goals

However, when it comes to day to day tasks, a planner has never worked for me. In this area, I find the most success by setting weekly goals and then breaking that down day by day. This gives me the liberty to have grace with myself because it’s a weekly goal, not a daily goal.

Daily goals always gave me too much stress. Most of the time I’m more of an over achiever and so if I write myself a schedule for the day, I feel I have to complete everything on the list. But this always left me either exhausted from doing too much, or mad at myself for not completing every single thing.

With a weekly goal, I have freedom. I can wake up in the morning, consult what I need to do for the week, and decide what I want to get done that day. This does usually involve some sort of list for the day, but I know that if I don’t complete everything that there is always tomorrow. Which leads us into…

Deciphering Importance

Not everything can be done in one day. There are only so many hours in a day and we, as human beings, only have so much physical and mental energy. You cannot do it all.

This is why we must decipher the importance of each task we’ve set for ourselves. A lot of tasks have deadlines while other ones can be done whenever. We have to pick and choose wisely.

For example, if it’s Tuesday and I know I need to write a blog post for Wednesday and I don’t even have an idea, then I know that’s what I need to focus on that day (just a random example here, not like this has ever happened before…). In this situation, it’s either write the article or skip the day of posting, and since I’d rather not break my consistent streak… write the article it is. However, if I also needed to water my plants but the article took longer to write than planned, maybe the plants can wait until tomorrow.

Do you see where I’m going with this? It’s okay to leave things for the next day. Even if you’re a day by day planner, give yourself grace when you can’t do it all. There is always the next day for such tasks.

Eliminate Distractions

Maybe you’re not so much an over achiever but someone struggling to be productive. Or maybe you are an over achiever but still find yourself easily distracted. It happens to the best of us, myself included. I’ll be honest with you, I love Instagram and it is probably my number one distraction when it comes to getting stuff done. But, just like anything else, this problem can be fixed.

One of the ways I have found to eliminate this distraction is to not turn my phone on until noon. I rarely need it before then and, if I’ve gotten a lot done by that point, I can treat myself to an allotted time frame.

Sometimes I do need my phone before then though, but I also am trying to get some writing done. Simply don’t turn on your sound. Without sound, you don’t know when you’re getting a notification so you don’t know to check it. This can be good and bad (achem, sorry to my friends when they were trying to get a hold of me during this time). So if you would rather have your sound kept on, turn the distracting notifications on mute. Creates the same effect of eliminating distractions.

But maybe your phone isn’t the thing distracting you, maybe it’s a really good book you’re in the middle of or the beautiful day outside. First of all, let me say these are good distractions and maybe you should take some time off to read that book or go outside. Allow yourself to take breaks! But I can also understand the times when you’re on deadline for something and no matter how much you want to do something else, you have to finish the project. For this, we’ll go into our last point…

Setting Rewards

We’re human. And part of being human is sometimes needing a little enticing or even bribery to get something done. Don’t view this as a bad thing, it’s okay to do something to refill our creative well after doing something difficult or draining.

Sometimes this is just the key we need to get something done for the day. Or maybe you’re creating a longer goal, such as finishing your current WIP or at least getting to the next stage of planning. Whatever goal you’re trying to achieve, consider setting a reward for yourself upon completion. This can be anything from taking a break, buying a new book, going out for a fun day, spending time outside or with family—whatever entices you to get the job done. That’s the goal.


So how do we not only set goals, but stick with them and stay productive? First, you decide a plan of action that works best for you. Try out different schedules, maybe ask other people what they find success in. Then implement the one that works for you—and stick with it.

That’s the key here—sticking with it. Too often we find what works best for our lifestyle and our personality, but then after a couple weeks we fall away from it and go back to our previous way of achieving things… Which wasn’t that great of a way.

So don’t let that happen! Be the productive person we both know you to be and stay focused on the plan. Not only for yourself and the people around you, but for God. He doesn’t want us to be lazy, He calls us to be productive—for Him. So get at it!

Your turn!

Do you set goals? How do you find success in sticking with them? Have you already implemented any of these tips/do you plan on trying them?

Blessings, Allyson


6 thoughts on “Setting Goals as a Writer

  1. Wow! I’ve been watching videos on this (guilty overachiever) and I’ve set daily word count goals which has helped me write consistently. Not huge goals just 300 words a day…and I keep my phone silenced all the time. Lol…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha! I’m a bit of an overachiever too, lol. 😂 That’s so great!! Any little bit matters as long as it keeps you writing! Have you heard of the 100-for-100 writing challenge Go Teen Writers hosts every year? Such a great way to stay motivated! I love it!! Haha… That’s a great way for me to stay focused too, lol…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, I have heard of it…somewhere….lol….I think on TWN? Yep, sounds right. So far my weekly and daily challenges are working! I passed this weeks goal by almost a thousand words. Though I have learned that when I set a small goal I will just hit the small goal…but if I set a bigger one I can rise to the challenge and meet it.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s great!! I’m so glad it’s working for you! Yeah, I get that. I do the same! Though sometimes a large goal is motivating for me and sometimes it’s just stressful so I always have to decide which it’s going to be. XD


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