The key to effective change

Last year, I blogged 5 Tips To Keep Your Writing Resolutions. It occurred to me that these types of breakdowns can provide some perspective and motivation but perhaps don’t have any lasting effect on what you want to do in order to see real change. And maybe that’s the problem with New Year Resolutions in that we pile on too much hope and expectation, and struggle to form a new winning routine based on the big overhaul that we’ve given ourselves. Personally, I think it’s useful to reiterate the number 1 tip in last year’s blog post:

Effective Change is Gradual.

Whether you want to lose weight, or write more pages, or get into a productive routine, I would argue that doing it progressively is better than expecting instant results.

Regular readers may be aware that I hit a low patch of confidence in 2011 (I blogged about it here). Luckily, I started to recognise the warning signs of the deeper rut I was bedding myself into, so I decided to make some changes. But these changes didn’t happen all at once. I took them one at a time (exercise, diet, routine, outlook, new workspace, new challenges etc), and gradually these changes started to become the norm.

By the start of 2013 I was well back on track, and I was grateful for a good year of work. 2014 was even better, thanks mainly to Tim and Nelson Nutmeg but also to the other great opportunities that emerged. But the new routine I managed to establish over 2012 and 2013 has been positive because it suited me and my habits.

If you’re looking at the year ahead and wondering how to make it all work, make the first small change and build momentum at your own pace. Write a page a day, read the 1st ten pages of a script a day, analyse a film/TV ep once a week, brainstorm a new idea one hour a week, and so on. Things might start off slow but you might be surprised at the acceleration of progress.

Here’s to a happy and productive 2015, whatever your routine!

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