Thursday, May 7, 2009

Motivate Me!

Sorry if you are expecting a regional post--I am following my muse and talking about something else today: motivation through goal-setting. I am going to share my motivating methods and then you tell me yours, OK? 

Big: I have issues finding time to pamper myself. I am, like you, so busy. When I am alone, I often choose to write, clean the house or run errands. I have realized that it is OK, even important, to pamper myself. I finished that column (early) that had been giving me fits. That earns me 30 minutes to buy and/or read a book (one of my most favorite things.) I submitted that essay--go take a long bath (another thing I love). I completed a telephone interview that had been making me nervous (whew), I give myself $3.46 for that Skinny SF Vanilla Late I so love at Starbucks. Knowing that I can reward myself when I complete a goal keeps me moving along. And it keeps me sane.

Bigger:  I have been a stay-home mom for a long time. For years, I chose to buy my everyday clothes at discount stores. That was great for then, but this is now. I am making (some) money again. I would like a new purse, some new shoes or an outfit for a special occaision. Or maybe my hair could use an update. When I make "X" number of dollars, I head out for some shopping or a pedicure. Anything to make me feel good about my appearance. Talk about motivation. I better submit because I can't "get" without those checks!

Biggest: I really, really, really, really, really want a big, fancy I-Mac with the TV-size screen. I am determined to make enough money writing to buy my own. I opened a checking account and all of my writing money goes in. I keep a running tally of how much I will need to pay for income tax and, otherwise, I try to watch that balance grow. I also use this account for upcoming classes and workshops that I want to take, as well as all of my office supplies. Having this account has motivated me to spend LESS money on "stuff" so that I can reward myself with items on my wish list. It has also helped me see (I am very visual) my income grow (or stagnate) and I am very motivated to add something to that account every single month.

Mother's Day is just around the corner. There is no better time than right now to appreciate yourself. Take a few minutes to set some writing goals and rewards that will allow you to take care of yourself as you take care of your career!

Happy Mother's Day!


  1. I opened a business savings account, and I put 30% of all moneys earned by writing into that as soon as I deposit the check in my main business account. It's at ING so that it is accessible when I need to pay my quarterlies, but not when I want to buy a new toy for writing.

  2. Jennifer--I LOVE that idea. I am going to look into that soon. Thanks so much for your input. I love it when we can help each other out.

  3. great post, again, Julie! I completely agree with your concept on the third issue and need to open a separate checking account for my writing. Not only will it help to motivate growing that bottom line, but the few little checks that do come in won't get spent on frivolous "things." I have alist of big ticket purchases I feel will help my career/professionalism and with my own account I won't have to go to my husband aka Family Budget Commander to ask for $35 for a yr of Writers' Market online access.
    Thanks, Julie!
    P.S. How do you figure what to hold for taxes? I remember you spoke to an accountatn about becoming a "business"...maybe anotehr post topic? : )

  4. Hmmm, I suck at income tax stuff. Hence the accountant. I have read more than once that 15% is standard. I think that will be enough for this year anyway, since I anticipate write offs and fairly small profit. I would double check that if you're really making big bucks though!