Looking Back, Looking Forward | Message from MWW Director
Well, here we are. 2016 is over and done. 2017 is beginning.
And, of course, folks everywhere are reflecting on our year and thinking about what the New Year will bring. Me, too.
Here’s what I ask:
Step 1: What Went Well?
Whether you write it down, or just think about it in your head, ask yourself, “What went well?”
It may be hard to remember everything. Especially if you’re not a detailed note-taker or journal-writer.
So, what I recommend is thinking about things by month. “What did I do in January? What went well? What did I do in February? What went well?”
What’s important about this exercise is this: don’t just think about huge successes. Think about the little successes, too.
Maybe you came to Midwest Writers Workshop for the first time… and met a new friend.
Maybe you wrote a blog post you never wrote before… and people loved it.
Maybe you wrote a manuscript and got a ton of new ideas.
Maybe you wrote a query letter or pitched to an agent.
Whatever the case, think about the wins. Big wins. And little wins.
Then, move to step 2…
Step 2: Can I Do It Again?
At this point, it’s natural to think about “What went well.” And follow up with “What went wrong?”
But don’t concentrate on the negative stuff. Instead, think about what went well…and ask yourself, “Can I do it again?”
In 2010, I started writing a daily “Happy Day Moment” on my personal Facebook page.
The reaction from others, the discipline of seeing the positive, the mantra of “living with gratitude” went really well. I noticed it, almost immediately. Then I asked myself, “Can I do it again?” And then, I created a Happy Day Moment Page where I post a daily word of encouragement/support/inspiration.
This is important.
You see, everyone always thinks about what went well, and moves directly to what went wrong.
Resist that urge.
Instead, think about what went well. And then ask yourself if you can do it over and over and over again.
Because if it went well once…
…it can go well again.
So, here’s what I want you to do:
Today, take some time to think about what went well for the year that was 2016.
And then, think about whether or not you can do it again.
And then, tell me about it.
Leave a comment on this blog post right here. Write the comment like this:
Hi, I’m [Name]. And I write [insert]
What Went Well:
[Insert What Went Well]
Can I Do It Again?:
Yes, I can. [And here’s how I plan to do it.]
Go leave the comment now.
Let the good things of 2017 begin.
Jama Kehoe Bigger, MWW Director