Set the Bar Low for Success

Last week, I decided to take it easy getting back into goals for ROW80 Round 2. I knew I had a lot of other commitments that would take a lot of time, and for once, remembered those and planned accordingly. I even got a couple things accomplished for the week that I didn’t include in my ROW80 goals.

Dress back

This part’s done except for the hem!

It worked! Here’s how it went:

  • Dress: rework for fit and complete overdress portion – Done!
  • Web design: simple placeholder home page design – Done!
  • Writing: 1,500 words on short story – Done!

I can’t remember the last time I saw that! Maybe because I’ve never limited my ROW80 goals to as few as three things, and keeping them simple. I put many hours into the dress, and my daughter is thrilled. It now fits perfectly! I haven’t heard back from the family member who the web design is for, but I just did that and sent it out today. I like how it looks, so I hope he does, too. If not, reworking it will be next week’s goal.

And the writing: 1,500 words isn’t much, considering I was doing that in one evening for NaNoWriMo, but it’s a lot with this other stuff going on. I’m using what I learned in the writing workshop I took last month, and as our instructor likes to say, it’s “great fun.”

The giveaway has ended. Thanks for your interest!

Since this worked well, and I still have a lot to do on the dress and website, I’m going to stick with this pattern for now. I’m going to start back into some fitness routines too, now that I’m feeling better and less tired than a week ago. So here’s the plan:

  • Dress: sew underskirt and hem. That will complete the dress itself, leaving only the petticoat.
  • Web design: post placeholder home page (depending on approval and extent of any rework needed)
  • Writing: 1,500 more words on short story
  • Fitness: 3 short workouts

Have you ever set the bar low to give yourself a better chance of meeting your goals? What do you do when you’ve consistently not met your goals? Whether or not you’re participating in ROW80, I’d love to hear from you!

Jennette Marie Powell writes stories about ordinary people in ordinary places, who do extraordinary things and learn that those ordinary places are anything but. In her Saturn Society novels, unwilling time travelers do what they must to make things right... and change more than they expect. You can find her books at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, Kobo, iTunes, and more.

15 Responses to \

  1. Good for you, Jennette! Author Jennifer Louden talks a lot about setting “conditions of enoughness” instead of judging ourselves for what we don’t get done. Most women function with the bar too high, IMO. And the dress looks gorgeous! Can’t wait to see it finished and modeled 🙂

  2. Yes, I definitely will set the bar low. If I don’t meet my goals, then I try to consider it all a do-over. If I get too mad or down about it then I end up being mopey and take even longer to start.
    Glad youre feeling better, Jennette. Looking forward to seeing the finished dress. 🙂

  3. Hi Jeanette! Congratulations on meeting your goals – that’s such a great feeling. I tried to set the bar fairly low for my ROW goals as well – it’s my first time participating in this challenge, and I’ve been at a low point with my writing lately, so I’m trying to take it slow and hopefully succeed.

    I like how you’ve broken your goals down into weekly goals – it seems so much more manageable that way. I think I might have to try that as well!

  4. Done, done, and done. Nice 🙂 The dress is adorable.
    The last week kind of disappeared on me. Between hosting my family and then taking off for a short vacation I have no idea where the week went. Glad I finally got my goals posted today. Hopefully my head will be back in it tomorrow.
    For several rounds now, I’ve had a goal that I have not gotten to. I’m trying a different strategy with it this week. I’ll let you know how it works out.
    Hope you have a great week.

  5. Set the bar low, huh? How about the ground? Ha ha!

    I think I just need to know what I WANT to do before I set any goals to do it. However, I am happy the weather seems to be warming up, so I’m hoping to be able to go outside and walk this week. But that goal will only succeed as long as the weather cooperates! 🙂

  6. Debra, I like “conditions of enough-ness!” And I totally agree – many women push themselves too much, or set those goals too high, setting themselves up for failure.

    Coleen, thanks! I don’t consider it a failure if I don’t meet all my goals, but when it’s week after week, that tells me something needs to be changed, and usually its the goals.

    Alberta, the dress has taken many hours, but it’s all worth it! Thanks, and good luck on your goals!

    Leslie, thanks! I find it much easier to gauge progress when I break the goals down into weekly goals. When we set the bar low and consistently meet our goals, that could mean it’s time to raise the bar a bit. 🙂

    SJ, thanks, and good luck with your new strategy!

    LOL Stacy! The weather has been nice this weekend–finally! I think it’s supposed to rain all next week, but maybe you can get your walks in between!

  7. My problem is that goals pile up if I don’t stay on them. And if they’re ignored too long – I have an extra six pounds of weekend fun to shed this week – there are consequences.

    Usually, I’m done in by real life or the fact that sometimes, on a Saturday or Sunday, my brain decides it wants the day off, and no amount of staring at textbooks or that unfinished chapter is going to change that, not to mention getting out and exercising.

    All I can do is get right back on the horse.

  8. The feeling of being able to say “I finished it” is so heady…. Glad you had a chance to enjoy it, Jennette. And yeah… it does seem that a number of smaller, weekly goals works at least a lot better than any number of huge ones. The big ones either feel overwhelming, or they are overwhelming.

  9. Thanks, Kate! I totally agree – any words are a victory!

    Jim, I can sooo relate. These aren’t all my goals by any means. 🙂 And totally with you in that sometimes, we all need a break. The trick is making it not to often!

    Eden, so true! It did feel good to finally say, “I made all my goals this week.”

    Julie, if writing’s not fun, why do it? Although certain aspects of it may sometimes not be! And thanks!

  10. Way to go! Don’t stress yourself out. As I have learned, it only leads to health issues. LOL. Keep your goals at a level that is realistic and attainable within reason. Love the dress. Now I want to see it on a body. 🙂 Can’t wait to hear what you do with your short story.

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