“Goals change what’s possible and what happens next….Whether big or small, for today or this year, goals change how you spend time and resources.”

Abby Covert, How to Make Sense of Any Mess

It was 2:00 a.m. back in late May and the water came down in hard-sounding drum-solos as yet another rainstorm whooshed down outside my windows. I bolted up from a deep sleep and padded off to my kitchen. But before I even got to my normal “grab the bucket fast” spots, I felt drips on my head and looked up to see at least two “new” (read previously unnoticed) water stains spreading fast and dripping from the ceiling of my office…  I had some work to do–and roof companies to call and whoa, how much?– but that’s a longer story.

All that aside, and because metaphors are like medicine for me, what my dilapidated roof got me thinking most about (besides how very blessed I am to have a home I cherish) is that the structural cover of one’s roof can be very much like one’s vision for their book or website or business plan.  Once you crack that plan, which means the Herculean act of bringing your goals in line with your concrete plans or say, chapter by chapter outline, you achieve a sense of cover rather than the feeling of running for buckets.

For me, work leaks usually emerge in my time and energy output.  I’ve come to differentiate between work that gives me a sense of traction and aligns with my overall goals–and distractions that simply spin my wheels and might veer me off course and/or leave me feeling scattered.

Which brings me to my love/ hate/ love relationship with social media. Such a large part of my life and work is immensely deepened by the truly wonderful faces with whom I’m blessed to be connected through social media. I marvel at social media’s capacity to connect kindred organizations, communities and far flung family and friends  But long scroll-brain sessions can also nose-dive me off course.

Such experiences have led me to gurus of time management who suggest we have a whole lot more time than we think, such as Laura Vanderkam,  author of Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done.   

As Vanderkam says: ““We build the lives we want…and then time saves us.”

Damon Brown, TED Speaker and Author of The Ultimate Bite-Sized Entrepreneur, whom I’ll be featuring in a couple of weeks on Monday Morning Muse suggests: “Take it one goal at a time. It’s no coincidence that some of the most recognized entrepreneurs ruthlessly focus on one thing at a time. Focusing on multiple things doesn’t make us get more done, but simply makes us less productive in several areas.”

Based on these two thought leaders alone, I’ve made some changes that have really worked for me. Among many other shifts, before I even type in www.fa…, I  write down exactly what I want to achieve—even if it’s follow my friends for a half-hour! I make sure I’ve already hit my concentration-mandatory goals for the day. That way, I get to really BE in community, giving myself full permission (but structural cover in the shape of a time limit) to like and love and comment.  If there is someone whose post moves me or I see potential for a collaboration, I write or message them directly. When I am finished, I log out.  

Choosing and setting my priorities has proven a powerful way to reboot and recharge myself every week and every morning.  The bonus is that I’m more efficient for my clients (and far more juiced for my own creative projects) because my sense of focus is sharpened and clear. By continually aligning and re-aligning my goals, I give myself permission to be finite. It helps that I know my well-being depends on it! But that’s just one example of a “leak” I was able to fix. And I’m sure it will need regular maintenance (just like my roof!)

Where are your leaks?  it typically takes a while for you to SEE your leaks, even  when you feel them slowly eroding your sense of cover. Drip drip drip. Drip drip drip.  

If you’re anything like me, you hope the problem goes away without your calling the roof company.    It doesn’t go away, of course, until necessary repairs are fully addressed, and patch up materials are purchased and put to work. 

If you are interested in defining your creative goals and building a plan to manifest your vision, feel free to contact me about my creative coaching packages. Click here for more information on how we might work together.