Back it up: a hard lesson to learn

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In my post from earlier this year, “Attaching labels to the dreams we chase,” I mention a weekend-long (remote) writing workshop I attended, and the subsequent “book of sorts” I penned. During those three days, I bled sweat and tears, my emotions raw and, at times, forcing me into a fetal position on my nearby bed. I swore, I wanted to quit and I cried. A lot. Yet, I persevered and completed the workshop along with a semblance of a story I hoped I’d return to one day to rework, rewrite, revise. More than six months later, that day came and went with nothing to show for it. Despite the three copies I had saved of my work, my book had vanished. All 50,000 words I’d poured out through my fingertips. Although I had backed it up, there were other avenues I could’ve taken to better protect it. But perhaps it’s simply not the story for me to tell at this time.

How do you protect important files?

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.

The five Rs to getting back on track

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[Image credit: Chaiwat]

I can hardly believe one-third of the year is already behind us.  Which means there’s only nine months remaining to plow through our list of goals — or resolutions — until it’s time to start all over with a clean slate.  In the event you’ve forgotten your good intentions over the past 90 days, the following five Rs may help you get back on track:

  • Revisit your list of resolutions.  What was #3, again?  A few days ago, I pulled out my list of 24 goals and found I’ve only completed or dabbled in eight of them so far.
  • Revise any of the objectives you’ve outgrown.  No sense in putting effort toward something you no longer care about.
  • Recharge your excitement.  What made you want to tackle these goals in the first place?
  • Recommit to pulling out your list on a regular basis — or posting it where you see it often.   It doesn’t hurt to have a visual reminder that you do have a purpose.

This should be a working list, one where you have permission to customize it as your life circumstances change or the mood strikes you.  And don’t forget the best tip of all:

  • Reward yourself for each accomplished resolution.  This can be as easy as a new pair of heels as soon as you learn how to dance, or as complicated as planning a trip to New York City to pitch your completed novel to an agent.

How are your goals taking shape in 2012?