The Life List Club – Why Are Goals So Hard?

Why does the bridge to our goals feel so rickety?

This post will be its own page on the blog by the end of this week, which is a tremendously big deal here at More Cowbell. We don’t just add in pages willy-nilly up there on that navigation bar under the the masthead. That’s important real estate up there.

The best definition of The Life List can be found here. The Life List Club is about connecting, and publicly stating some life goals you’d like to accomplish over the next 12 months (for me that will be by the next 4th of July). It’s about encouraging others in their goals.

I cannot believe how hard it was to sit down and compile this list. I’ve got ROW80 Goals but those are writing goals. This is a list of goals that address every area of my life, including the messy parts, and I found it to be much scarier.

Being scared just makes me put on my Big Girl Panties and forge ahead so here goes…

Jenny’s Life List

  1. Finish the polished first draft of my high-risk pregnancy memoir.
  2. Visit ROW80 blogs and bloggers every week – encourage at least two new people.
  3. Exercise a minimum of 3 hours a week.
  4. Try kickboxing classes at 24-Hour Fitness.
  5. Send the rest of last year’s presents – with death, moving and baby I’ve been pitiful in this department.
  6. Make more time for reading – at least two hours per week.
  7. Implement guest bloggers on More Cowbell (Life List Club is the start of that!).
  8. Research climbing vines for the back yard perimeter wall – plant them.
  9. Create an area to plant potatoes – plant them.
  10. Plant the 3 bags of bulbs in my garage!
  11. Read “Save The Cat” and Christopher Vogler’s “The Writer’s Journey.”
  12. Take Bob Mayer’s Warrior Writer again when I have time to devote to it.
  13. Take two courses from Margie Lawson’s Lawson Writer’s Academy.
  14. Look into teaching at LWA or elsewhere online.
  15. Attend the 2012 DFW Conference
  16. Begin submitting freelance pieces to build writing income.
  17. Take Baby Girl to Gymboree at least 1x per month.
  18. Take Baby Girl to Story Hour at the library at least 1x per month.
  19. Entertain at home every few months.
  20. Have one night a week that belongs solely to my honey.

The Current Life List Club Blogroll:

Be sure to visit all 12 sites for tomorrow’s Life List Club blog hop!

Attention: Writers! A writer who would like to become a contributor at The Life List Club, guest posting with us, please contact Marcia Richards: marichards320 AT or Jess Witkins: jessi.witkins AT At this time, the Life List Club accepts one new contributing writer per month. (I’m so honored to be the August addition!) Membership is open to all – just state your goals publicly on your site and come see us on Twitter at #LifeListClub.

Care to share your Life List, or parts of it?

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About Jenny Hansen

Avid seeker of "more"...More words, more creativity, More Cowbell! My passion is finding those qualities that are unique in every person and every piece of fiction. Founding blogger at Writers In The Storm ( Write on!
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34 Responses to The Life List Club – Why Are Goals So Hard?

  1. Jenny, love your LifeList. Your #16 is something I’ve often thought you should do. Your voice rocks. I’m a bit fuzzy on how to join (not guest blog on) the Life List Club. Why? Because “Set up Author Site” is number one on my list. ALWAYS love to see an inbound from you in my inbox. Your #4 will be Zumba for me. Exercise masquerading as dancing. What a concept!

    • jessicaaspen says:

      I tried Zumba last year, it is very fun! Be prepared to breathe extra hard and don’t worry about those women who look like they’ve been doing it for years!

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      This Zumba business sounds like something I’d enjoy…gotta check this out! Thanks on the #16 kudos – it’s a very unknown animal for me. As far as setting up an author site, Kristen Lamb recommends that (if you’re going to have a blog) that you simply start with that. You can hook it up to your Facebook and exist quite nicely. :-)

  2. Gene Lempp says:

    Ambitious goals there , Jen! Life List Day tomorrow, hope everyone will join us :)

  3. jessicaaspen says:

    Pretty impressive goals! Especially all the intense classes. Bob Mayer and Margie Lawson in one year as well as read Save the Cat. Superwoman! I love the goals like sending the presents, I’m always late on that. Luckily so is everyone in my family so we all celebrate Christmas in July and Februrary and April and whenever those darn gifts show up! I set writing goals and marketing goals, but I think I need to add some life goals that aren’t business oriented. Maybe I’ll add, make time for fun-goal setting to my goal list first!

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      Thanks, Jessica! It makes me happy to hear you say that because I held back from some of my loftier ones. I really, really want this list to be achievable.

      I’m going to confess that when we moved, I sent people presents – wrote the date on them and said Open at this time and call me. But the Christmas presesnt moved with us mid-December and some of them got very lost, then found, then lost again in all the craziness of moving and combining two households. It wears on me, wondering where they are and when I might find them! I just need to get them out.

  4. amy kennedy says:

    Love your list, and looking forward to hearing about your accomplishments. Some of your goals are one time things while others rely on developing a habits — I think that’s really cool too. The one time things, when done are hugely motivating — just seeing something crossed-off the list is a kick.

    It’s been awhile since I’ve really thought about my goals — for life. Might be a good goal for today to specify some of them and writie ‘em down.

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      I’ll tell you, Amy, I walked up to my computer to do this list about 12 times before I could actually sit down and type it. I don’t know why it freaked me a bit, but it did. I really do recommend the practice of a comprehensive life list.

  5. Stacy Green says:

    Impressive list. Major pat on the back for putting it out there and holding yourself accountable. I’m looking forward to seeing you reach your goals. I think getting yourself out there as a freelancer is a great idea. You’ve got a strong voice that needs to be heard.

    Well done!

  6. Jenny great post and list! I’ve felt in the past that my goal lists had to be separate animals. So I would have a writing list, a weight loss/wellness list, work goals list, reading list. Too many baskets with a scattered focus. I love this concept to create not only goals, but also new life practices.

    • Jenny Hansen says:


      I’ve always done that too and I either got overwhelmed by so many lists or I lost them. (See the window people get into your disorganized world when you blog??) Having one list out where the world can see it will be good for me. It helped just to make the list and see which things I really want to accomplish more than anything else.

      You let us know if you make a list of goals – we’ll come see them!

  7. amyshojai says:

    For me, setting up such a list I fear sets me up to fail. *sigh* I’ve got some writing goals written down somewhere but as for the rest…you’re a brave woman!

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      LOL, Amy. Watching 12 other people go before me and put their goals out there where the world could see…that’s what gave me the courage to GET ON IT. I know this list is going to potentially get added to, but it was good for me to sit down and do it.

  8. Jenny, you know how I feel about you; therefore, it shouldn’t come as a shock when I tell you that I know you can do this! You are an amazing woman, and the simple fact that you put these life goals out there for all to see reiterates to me that you can and will do this!

  9. Kudos to you, Jenny. I agree with Amy–I’m terrified to do the life goals list. I’ve gone to the page a dozen times in the last month, but just can’t seem to make that step.

    You’ve got such wonderful goals, and a ton of encouragement behind you. Go for it!

  10. Catie Rhodes says:

    Jenny–would you chase me down and whup me if I said goals are hard because they just are? LOL

    A lot of your goals are similar to mine. On the teaching bit, have you looked into Savvy Authors? They offer a wide variety of classes and seem to adding more all the time.

    Good luck. :D

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      Catie, you always make me laugh! Your goal page was the one that finally gave me my nerve. Do you think it’s because we’re a little bit…intense? Is that why they’re so scary? Thanks for the encouragement – the Club’s been good for me already.

      • Catie Rhodes says:

        I am intense. If I could change one thing about my personality, that would be it. At least I’ve found a few people who understand because they’re intense, too. LOL

        • Jenny Hansen says:

          ROFL, Catie. I don’t think it’s a bad thing to be as a writer. I have select areas where it comes out and work/goals/writing is one of them. Most of the rest of the time I’m pretty laid back, but not about the things that really, really matter. Then, like you, I’m intense. :-)

  11. Vicki Keire says:

    Wow, you’ve got a lot going on! But I love how you’ve integrated ROW80/ writing goals into the rest of your life goals. I’ve always felt writing arises from our life experiences rather than something done in isolation. Good luck this week!

  12. jamilajamison says:

    So glad to see that you’ve hammered out your list of goals! These all look excellent. I finally jumped aboard and came up with 10 of my own (making this kind of thing public really is kinda scary, isn’t it?) that seem plausible for the next year. I’ll be looking forward to your August guest post.

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      Thanks, Jamila! How exciting that you started on your own goals (and yes, it’s wicked scary…I don’t know why that was such a shock).

      I’m looking forward to the August post(s) as well – I have fun with motivational blogs. I’ve always had a few people ask me where I plan to find the time to accomplish these goals so I’m living with them for a while and seeing if I’ve over-reached. I left like 6 goals off so I hope I didn’t get too lofty. :-)

  13. carrie m says:

    Welcome to the club, Jenny! I love that your list of goals contains a mix of personal, writing and fitness goals. I look forward to following along as you complete them!

  14. Author Kristen Lamb says:

    Crap! ANOTHER club I want to join. Damn all of you for being so clever and damn me for being a total joiner, LOL. What an awesome idea.

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      I know the pain of being a “joiner” with a toddler…still some things are just WORTH joining. Even though I’d absolutely SQUEEEE if you were on the contributing writer rotation (and guest posted on my blog), you can be a member simply by stating your goals publicly and adding them as a page to your blog. That’s it! Oh, and be part of a fun group 0f writers rooting for each other. :-)

  15. You’ve got an awesome list! I’m starting to think my list is a little small. Maybe I need to think more about my general life goals and not just my writing goals. Welcome again to the Life List Club. :D

    • Jenny Hansen says:

      I don’t think your list is small. i’ve been wondering if mine is too big! Laura Drake and my honey both had me take a good long look with an eye toward cutting. I feel like, if I just combine some activities, I can work this out!

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