I’m a list maker. I’ve mentioned this about 6 million times throughout the years I am sure. It’s the only way I’m able to get through this crazy thing called life. As a writer, I have dozens of contracts opened at once. That means there are a lot of people that hold me accountable and those requests come to me from every angle. There is no structure. There are no guarantees. I live in a constant state of chaos. And you know what? Lists balance me. They ease my worries. They help me feel like I have some sense of control over it all.
Yesterday was the first day that I really sat down and started to look at 2018 as a whole. I thought about how I wanted to walk into this new year? Manage my upcoming workflow? And if there was anything that could change from my 2017 process that would create a simpler day?
I came up with a few solutions – all doable. Here’s a quick rundown of my grand plan. Just so you know, I bought a simple day planner that has pages filled with empty lines. I’m using that one book to house most of this information.
8 Things I Plan On Tracking This Year
- Incoming gig income on a daily basis: I tend to do this regularly, but I am going to really stay on top of it in 2018. I want to see WHEN I earn my money. Do I get most gigs in quarter one? Is February normally snow? I can’t tell you this information historically because I’ve never really tracked anything in a timely fashion. I know what I’ve made for the YEAR…but not broken down by a particular quarter/month/season. This year, I want to understand trends. I also want to understand what TYPE of money is coming in. Do I make most of my money on fashion related articles? Consumer products? What should I focus most on in 2019?
- Draft due dates: I am horrible at this. HORRIBLE. This year, I am going to write in when drafts are due for every contract I sign. That way, when I look at my calendar, I don’t find myself scrambling the morning of trying to get everything done in a panic. Draft due dates are necessary.
- Outgoing pitches: Again, this is something I tend to do but I am committing to it HARD in 2018. I have a little section that allows me to track any pitch I put out into the universe. That way, I can follow up in a timely fashion.
- Food intake: This is going to be hard for me because I am not a huge fan of being conscious of what I eat. I hate that I am 40! WAH! I downloaded a food tracker and plan on punching everything in as I go along throughout the day. Starting tomorrow. 🙂
- Water intake: My goal is to drink 5 big glasses of water a day. MEGA for me because I am made up of 95% tea. I also want to get my kids into this habit. Water is a personal goal for 2018.
- A budget for the house: Y-I-K-E-S. Feels like a horror movie to me. But we want to buy a second house out East. In order to do so, we need that big down payment. Honestly, we already own a second property.I don’t talk about it much. It’s commercial real estate out in Islip and we went in half with Bill’s father. It’s all about long-term retirement planning. Our goal is to buy a house out East that we can rent out for the time being and then hopefully retire into 20 years from now.
- Time kids spend on electronics: I’m not going to LOG this data, but we want to only allow the kids about 25 minutes of screen time a day. I’m not sure if you think this is a lot of time, but for us it is NOT. We have digital children. Even Caleb – he knows his way around the PS4 and the iPad like you wouldn’t believe. We need more board games and puzzles in our lives and the screens are getting in the way. We thought 25 minutes would work because it gives the kids enough time to engage with their friends and collect whatever they need from their apps. Then… it’s family time!
- Social media numbers: I recently went onto YouTube and saw that I had over 20,000 followers. Had NO CLUE! I don’t really upload much anymore ever since Bill said he wasn’t interested in being filmed and so I stopped checking. However, that was a nice number to hit. I was excited to see it. I think that once a month, I am going to do a sweep across all channels and see how I am doing, where the biggest increases were and attempt to figure out why they occurred.
That’s it for now! What did I miss? Are you planning on tracking anything in 2018 that I did not include? Would love to hear. There’s always room for another list.