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Posts Tagged ‘Lisa J. Jackson’

September 22, 2014

Happy First Day of Autumn

I’m looking forward to the fabulous foliage colors this year.

Here are some favorite pics I captured last year.

LisaJ_fall leaves

LisaJ_fall_red_leaves

Lisa_Nashua_fall_tree

Lisa_GreenAndRed_leaves

I love the myriad of colors we get in New England. And Fall is when I start my serious planning for the upcoming year. It’s a time of renewal for me.

Do you see a lot of colors where you live?

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We talk a lot about managing time here. About setting small goals to realize our big goals. We’ve even chatted about how if you do what you love, it won’t seem like work.

I recently came across Meg Cadoux Hirshberg‘s work-life balance interview with Ari Weinzweig on Inc.com and it touched on all of these things and is definitely worth sharing.

You can find it here: http://www.inc.com/meg-hirshberg/I-never-fight-time-the-way-I-used-to.html.

It’s a short interview, but what particularly caught my interest was her question and his answer about how to make good use of the time you have.

We all have 24 hours in a day.

TryingtoControlTimeWe can schedule our lives down to the minute and feel productive, yet unsatisfied and having a feeling of lack.

We make time for work and family without a second thought.

Making time for ourselves is as important as work and family, yet it’s the first thing sacrificed when time seems to run out. Is this true for you?

It used to be true for me, but since becoming self-employed I’ve shifted my thinking and strive for balance as often as possible. After all, if I’m not at my best, neither are the other areas of my life.

It’s all about balance, of course, and some days it may be a lot easier to have everything flowing in harmony. I believe with practice and the mind shift to realizing life is too short to have it full of “I wish I had…” or “I should have…” or “If only I had…” statements, that each of us can remove that feeling of lack or dissatisfaction.

We make our own choices and not every decision will be 100% satisfying, but I bet by respecting time and striving for the best soul-fulfilling options we can, we’ll find more happiness.

Life is what we make it, right? So why not strive to make it as good as possible?

I’d love to hear your thoughts.

LisaJJackson_2014Lisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with businesses of all sizes. She admits to using downtime to clean her home, but swears it’s more play than work. You can connect with her on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

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Are you finding that you aren’t achieving any of the writing goals you’ve set for yourself?

Do you notice you have (valid) excuses for not being able to achieve your writing goals?

Do you find yourself answering the question, “So, what are you working on?” with “Nothing at the moment.”?

It can feel awkward and embarrassing, right?

Do you think you might want an easier path? An easier career?

When months go by and you aren’t making any strides toward accomplishing the goals you’ve set for yourself, consider that you don’t truly want to be a writer.

Because the bottom line is: writers write.

Writers find ways to carve out the time and do whatever it takes to reach their goals.

If You're Committed

If you’re not achieving what you set out for yourself earlier in the year, why not take now to recommit to those goals? Stop thinking something better or easier is what you want and take actions toward your current goals.

Test yourself and your passion toward being a writer. Recommit to your goals; test them. They will either feel right and re-ignite the flame, or they won’t.

The thing about goals is… you need to want them in order to achieve them.

I’m in this position at the moment, and am taking this moment on this blog to recommit to writing my fiction.

How about you? Do you need to recommit to your goals?

LisaJJackson_2014Lisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with businesses of all sizes. You can connect with her on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

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It’s easy to get so involved with writing, that reading can become a luxury to push aside.

But, it’s so important to read about writing for the little nuggets of wisdom and pearls of inspiration we know, but somehow seem to forget.

Finding books that resonate with our writing lives and experiences might be rare, so when you find a great book, hang on to it!

A few years ago, Diane highly recommended I read a book on the craft of writing titled Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott. I loved it. And it became the first book I ever re-read.

birdbybird2Since I noticed some leaves changing colors over the past week, fall has been on my mind. And with fall, for me, comes renewed inspiration. So, Bird by Bird is back on my desk for its annual reading.

I know how important it is to get words on a page, and more than likely those first words will be junk and tossed later on, but to get to the good stuff, I have to get a lot of words on the page/screen — Ann Lamott reminds me of that — she reminds me that I need to give myself permission to write junk.

We’ve talked about books about writing a few times here. And you can look back at a few posts if you’re in need of something new.

We had the Friday Fun discussion: Should Writers Read Books About Writing. Diane and I shared our Favorite Writing Books, and Deborah had a post specifically on Bird by Bird.

Don’t read to avoid writing, though! Read to improve writing!

Lisa J. JacksonLisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with businesses of all sizes. She’s still amazed to have a book she can re-read that gives her new insight into her writing every time she goes through it. You can connect with her on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

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Of all the social media platforms, Facebook is the one I’m on the most. I can get drawn in by cute cat videos, spectacular b&w photography images, fun with puns, and the variety of posts my friends share.

I admit to being a bit heavy-handed when it comes to clicking the ‘Like’ button. I sign on, start scrolling through posts, when I see something, I like it, I click ‘Like’ to let folks know I was there, and move on.

But now that has changed.

The other day, a friend posted an interesting article that has led to this post.

The article is “I Quit Liking Things on Facebook for Two Weeks. Here’s How It Changed My View of Humanity.” I hope you’ll read through it.

FB_likeThe first item that jumped out at me was that each ‘Like’ becomes part of an algorithm that will throw certain posts in my feed. That’s annoying. I like thinking for myself, thankyouverymuch!

The  second item, the one that got me thinking was about building relationships. I’ve clicked ‘Like’ to let friends know I saw their post, was happy for what was posted, that I truly liked what was posted, that I simply saw the post and was acknowledging it…basic things.

But after reading the article, I see the value in comments more than Likes, although sometimes there are just times to click the Like – such as when someone comments on a post I’ve made – clicking the Like for that response can sometimes be enough. Otherwise, there might be a battle to who is going to comment last, right?

After sharing the post on my wall, I had a few comments, but also had some private messages. And Wow! Private messages are ‘real’ conversations with real people in real time! How great! It felt strange, too. I mean, social media is fast-moving – you click, scroll, keep moving – who has time for an in-the-moment conversation any more?

I found that I did and I enjoyed it. I’m trying to limit my ‘Like’-ing now on Facebook and commenting on posts that catch my attention instead.

Of course commenting does take more time out of the day than a fast click of the ‘Like’ button, but overall, I feel I’ll be more satisfied with the result.

If you’re on Facebook, what do you think about ‘Like’-ing versus commenting, emailing, and messaging?

Lisa J. JacksonLisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with businesses of all sizes. She likes a lot of things on Facebook, but is going to give commenting (instead of hitting the Like button) a chance. You can connect with her on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+, and LinkedIn.

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Do you ever have days when you look back at your To Do list and only 1 or 2 items are checked off?

Days like that can be frustrating and disappointing. (I know I like to see a lot of crossed off items at the end of the day to feel I ‘did good.’)

Maybe the tasks were large and could be broken into smaller tasks. Maybe the day became hectic and getting the 1 or 2 items done was a feat in itself.

Whatever the reason for only a check or two, it’s okay. Really.

On days like that, you can try this: Sit back for a moment and take a deep breath. Think back on the day and how it played out.

Pick up a pen and paper – or open a new document – or open an online task list.

Write down everything you accomplished — small, medium, and large, business-related and personal.

GotDoneYes, create a Got Done list for the day. (I like to add these items to the bottom of my existing To Do list.)

Then go down the list and mark them off as complete. Because they are, right?

And then…remember the ever-important celebration: Congratulate yourself on all that you did.

It’s funny that when I first started doing something like this (it started with adding tasks I did as I went through my day and crossing them off right away), I felt guilty – or it felt like ‘cheating’.

But, really, it’s your list, items you decided you needed to get done, tasks you DID get done (whether planned ahead of time or not).

So, when a day comes along that doesn’t have many check marks in the ‘done’ column, create a Got Done list and see what happens to your mood. I bet you’ll find inspiration for the rest of the week, too.

Honestly, it’s all about forward momentum. If you’re taking at least one step forward in your business each day, it’ll keep you on track to your ultimate writing goal.

 What do you think about the idea of a Got Done list?

Lisa J. JacksonLisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with businesses of all sizes. It’s not cheating if you add items to your task list after they are done and mark them off as complete. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook,  Google+, and LinkedIn.

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If you want to make a living as a writer, there’s one thing you must do – take action.

Take any action that will lead to generating an income from writing.

Stop stalling and do something. Now. Today.

Believe me, I know how easy it is to procrastinate:

  • To plan plan plan so no detail is overlooked
  • To read yet another well-intentioned best-selling book on how to be a successful entrepreneur
  • To organize the office, the desk, and the file cabinets
  • To work toward the moment when you can finally say ‘I’m ready’

It’s incredibly easy to do anything, but take action building the business.

It could be fear of failure or fear of hard work. Who knows.

Take Action!But to make a living at writing, it’s absolutely imperative to constantly – and that means daily – find some task that directly leads toward earning an income and to complete that task. 

It’s absolutely possible to generate money from writing. But you have to work toward it consistently.

Do you want to write for magazines? Then submit queries consistently.

Do you want to write for newspapers? Then pitch ideas to editors on a regular basis.

Do you want to write for businesses? Submit proposals on a regular basis.

  • Make phone calls.
  • Send LOIs (letters of intent).
  • Network with people you want to work with or for, or can help you make those connections.

Just so you know, rejection comes to everyone. Use the rejections to improve the next query, the next pitch, the next proposal, the next phone call, the next letter, the next interaction.

Know that every step you take toward building an income stream gets you closer to your goal.

Take a moment to evaluate your actions.

Are you in constant motion toward building a writing business?

 

Lisa J. JacksonLisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with businesses of all sizes. She consistently reaches out to new potential clients for projects of all sizes. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook,  Google+, and LinkedIn.

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