Planning the harvest – the Lifewriter’s journey

By M. Marcel & Vishaal Chaman

Something continues to stir within. You are heeding the Call and taking steps towards writing and acting on your personal, positive change topic. You’ve begun to clear your field and lay the foundation for a fruitful harvest.

It is now time to take the next important step in your Lifewriter’s Journey: to plan your harvest.

Before planting the seeds, it will be important to articulate your goals and your intention behind your harvest. Why follow your calling and return to your heart? As a unique individual, you have something to offer to this world when you cultivate your Garden of Peace. As you use the following steps to tune in even closer towards the heart, a place that is boundless, powerful, and abundant, you may begin to feel more energized and passionate, with more direction and greater confidence.

Expressing a clear purpose and some success criteria for the process you are embarking on will add clarity and direction to your endeavour. First, clarify what you plan to grow, where, and when. One faces a steep, near impossible climb trying to grow mangoes atop Mt. Everest or orchids in a desert. Try, rather, being more reasonable: growing bananas in the tropics, or vineyards in the Okanagan Valley, for example.

-> Kickstart your planning

Try closing your eyes, and give your undivided attention to what your heart is saying. You may hear words, phrases, or sounds. Write them down – by doing so they can serve as a springboard in your writing at a later point. 

Alternatively, visualize in your mind’s eye what you see yourself writing as if anything and everything were possible. 

Next, while holding your intention in mind, write down whatever you will need to enhance and support the growth of your crop. Take a moment and allow yourself to reach deep inside and ask yourself: what do I need to keep me moving towards my intention? Here, we can once again practice tuning into what your heart says, which may emerge as an image, word, or phrase, or even a bodily sensation.

-> Author’s note: Our most inspired personal writing has come when we’ve supported our crop with fertile conditions and booster nutrients, by doing things like:

  • Reminding ourselves we are not and don’t have to be perfect

  • Giving ourselves time and not rushing

  • Letting go of over-controlling/over-planning; Falling into a Writer’s Flow

  • Nourishing our bodies with enjoyable foods

  • Getting a good night’s rest and setting aside a specific time for writing

Next, outline your project scope – are you planting one potted plant, one garden patch, or a one-acre field? Then, set personal project milestones so that you will be able to track progress towards your goal. Your success criteria may take the form of a checklist of indicators.

For example, let’s say your positive change goal in Writing from the Heart is to write that novel that has so far proven elusive. Project ahead, what does your finished manuscript look like? Now, work backwards and set out your goals in a project schedule. You may set deadlines for the various stages of your project, for example, for drafting your introduction, chapters, and ending, for editing and revision, and for deciding on marketing, business, layout and design aspects, and publishing aspects.

Remember your peaceful garden is your place to free yourself from the noise around you and pursue your personal calling. By first envisioning the change you want to see in the future, and making it concrete through planning that includes intentional goal setting and project scheduling, you will be well on your way to achieving a plentiful harvest.

Next step – Planting the seeds.

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