Keeping them is a chromatically variant equine altogether. But we do it anyway. It is nice to have something to shoot for, after all. With a goal, you can occasionally yell “I did it! I did it!” But more often than not you wind up muttering (under your breath where no one will hear), “Damn, I almost had that one…”
I will admit to a sort of off-hand approach to goals. It stems from the years I spent in software development, where goals are called deadlines, and they mean it. I got to where I loved the sound deadlines made as they went whoooshing by. Most of the deadlines were unachievable, you see. The bosses felt that no one would ever achieve anything without a deadline putting pressure on them. It never worked.
In fact, it just pissed off a lot of very qualified programmers, project managers, software testers, IT guys and just about everyone else except the janitorial staff, who always seemed to be more than a little jealous of us. I never understood those guys.
When I eventually took over the management of a department and had some control over the development lifecycle, we set practical deadlines, and we achieved them. Most of the time. People seemed more at ease and more in control, and they responded accordingly. When we did wind up under pressure due to our customer’s deadlines, everyone pitched in and got the job done right, the first time.
Goals really are necessary, but set yourself practical, achievable goals. They don’t have to be humongously large or world-shaking. Commonsense, realistic goals, when we achieve them, make us feel good and boost our self-confidence, and we can all use a bit of that every now and then.
So, next Monday I will be driving back to Gainesville for a morning meeting with my eye surgeon. We will set another surgical visit for that Thursday morning for another ‘final’ round of surgery on my left eye. Then I drive uptown to close a deal with the owner of a bookstore, where I will deliver a few copies of “The Big Bend”, and set a date for a book signing. Then I drive over to the local radio station to arrange for an on-air interview set for a few days before the book signing.
Then I drive to The Villages, where I meet with a friend of mine for a cup of coffee and then meet the owner of two bookstores, deliver some copies to her and arrange for two book signings, one at each of her two stores. Then I drive over to the local newspaper office and arrange for an interview to be published a day before those book signings.
I will spend this week assembling four brochures, including color copies of the book cover, a head shot of yours truly and some inserts, such as a short bio, book synopsis, reader reviews and other such stuff.
It pays to stay busy. It doesn’t pay much, but at least I stay busy.
Have a good week.