Wednesday, July 15, 2015

On the Power of Writing Down Your Goals

I've been getting easily overwhelmed this summer. I'm not sure why, but it feels like my brain is having some sort of sensory overload. It's not that I lack inspiration; in fact, just the opposite is true. I've got SO MANY creative ideas floating around in my head, so many projects I want to tackle and, frankly, I'm at a loss as to where to begin. I've got drafts and drafts of blog post ideas saved up. I've got tons of Web site articles I've been meaning to read. And I've wanted to start pitching freelance pieces again.

But, short of magically adding more hours to the day, I've felt so overwhelmed about it all. It's one thing to have goals, but it's quite another to actually bring those goals to life. It can all be downright daunting, you know? I'm pretty sure I'm not alone here!

New York magazine recently wrote about the importance of writing down your goals, that the literal putting of pen to paper isn't something to be overlooked. Motivation researchers from the University of Toronto (who knew these types of researchers even existed!) set out to find out what happened when 700 students did a short writing exercise over the course of two years. As they reflected on their lives, they were asked to pick out key moments that helped shape who they are. They then used these memories as a framework for achieving their future goals, something professor Jordan Peterson dubbed "self-authoring."

"Because these were students, a prerequisite to achieving many of their larger goals involved staying in school and completing their coursework. And in the end, the students who did the self-authoring exercise completed more course credit and were more likely to have stayed in school than the students in the control group, who had not done the writing assignment."

Does this work for you, friends? How are you accomplishing your goals these days? What do you do when you get to feeling overwhelmed? Be sure to check back tomorrow, when I'll be sharing my top 3 tips for how I plan to squash this overwhelming bubble! xoxo

[Photo via That Kind of Woman]

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