Is it a resolution or a goal?

ImageI love lists.  And I love crossing things off of lists.

This time of year, therefore, makes me almost giddy!  There was a list for my holiday baking, a list for Christmas presents, a list for the grocery store, and my weekly to-do list.  And, of course, a list for both 2013 and 2014.

Yes, I have lists for the year.  Some might call them resolutions.  I prefer the word goals.    Hey, we all know that resolutions get broken.  Goals, however, can be attainable if written correctly.  Resolutions are often lofty ideals (i.e. “I wanna be skinny”).  Goals are smaller and more manageable (i.e. “I want to exercise for 20 minutes, three times a week”).  

Are they really the same thing?  Of course.  I know that.  Yet, calling my yearly list goals seems to work better for me than calling them resolutions.  Besides, I’m a writer.  Words matter.

For instance, if I fall short of a goal, I’m okay with reevaluating and trying again.  If I break a resolution, it’s already broken…what’s the point of fixing it?

So, as 2013 draws to a close, I can reflect on the goals I made this year.  Of my writing-specific ones, I kept some, and missed some.  The ones I missed will be added to my 2014 goals and some new ones will take the place of the goals I’ve accomplished.  And not just my writing goals, but my knitting goals, my self-improvement goals, my personal and professional goals.

What about you?  Do you make resolutions?  Or do have goals for the new year?  And what’s your personal track record for keeping them?

Whatever the answers, I do want to wish you a happy and prosperous 2014.



Nichole R. Bennett has been an avid mystery reader from a young age.  Her first novel, Ghost Mountain, is available from Second Wind Publishing. When she’s not writing, Nichole can be found doing a plethora of crafty things, drinking coffee, eating chocolate, or spending too much time online.  And making lists.


Filed under writing

3 responses to “Is it a resolution or a goal?

  1. I’m not big on resolutions for new years simply because more often than not they lead to disappointment. I don’t set goals for the same reason. However, I do set tasks to achieve, which is not the same as setting, for example, deadlines. I set aside a day on which I write, and accept the word count I achieve, happy with 1,200 words or 3,500 words. I track my progress but don’t set a deadline to complete a novel by a certain date. If I did I’d probably feel rushed or disappointed should I fall behind. I enjoy the creative process, so I look forward to my writing sessions and feel no need to set goals other than to devote myself to the time I allot for writing.

    I probably should set more goals; say, to write a guest blog on a monthly basis, or schedule X number of author appearances, but I find doing the leg work for those to be tedious; I’d rather write.

  2. See, and if I didn’t set those goals, some of that stuff would never get done. Then again, some of the writing wouldn’t get done, either!

  3. I didn’t set any particular goals this year, except that I need to write an average of 20,000 words a month to get 2 books done by September. Not keeping up so far, so I’ll have to get cracking!

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