Getting On Track (Help Wanted!)

On Track...

It’s been an interesting week. Largely in that “Chinese curse: may you live in interesting times” sorta way, but interesting.

And this post has been a pain in the ass. The main idea is to talk about things I’ve done this week to get my life back on track, and the plans I have going forward, and also to ask for some help.

But I’ve started several times, each time digressing as I tried to establish context and discuss what got me to this point, until the post becomes more  a rehash of recent history than a plan of action. If you need such a rehash, I’ve covered most of that ground here already and you can easily catch up. In the notes below, I will briefly cover some pertinent details.

I don’t want to make the mistake I’ve made at times in the past and cook up a huge plan of action that is too much to take on, only to inevitably (and quickly) falter. So I’ll focus on certain areas, and commit to a few definite tasks in those areas, allowing for the plan to grow more complex over time as appropriate.

And, as I said, I’m asking for help. I want friends to help me stay on track by holding me accountable. If you’re interested, I’m looking into ways to post my progress day to day (probably on Facebook) so you’ll know if I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing, and you can alternately cheer me or badger me. I think it’ll help me a lot. As I figure the tracking system out, I’ll post more info.

Now, the foundation…



Pertinent Posts: Thinking About Writing, More Thinking About Writing (Regarding Tools & Positioning), Looking For Advice: Writing On The iPad

  • I’ll write every day but Sunday. My son splits his week between me and his mom, and he’s always here all day Sunday. Depending on what we’re doing, I always have the option of fitting some work in.
  • I will write a minimum of 500 words a day on my current big project, working toward a goal of 1000. If I’m in the groove, I can keep going beyond that.
  • I’ll polish as I go, trying to make the first draft as final as I can. That’s just the way I work best, so I’m going with it.
  • Every evening, I’ll revisit that day’s writing, look over my notes, and make sure I have a good idea of what the next day’s work will focus on.

Accountability: I’ll send each day’s work to my trusted muse so she can look it over.  I’ll post my daily word count, along with general info about my current goals/progress, so others can monitor my progress. (I’ll update soon with info about where it’ll be posted).  Ill also track my progress on the Write Chain app on the iPhone, which treats each day you meet your goal as a link in a chain. The goal is to grow your chain, which will break if you don’t do the work.



Stress, depression, heartbreak, sickness, inertia…it’s all taken a toll. I’m not in terrible shape, but I’m not where I’d like to be, or even where I should be. For example, I’m 6′ tall and my entire adult life my weight has averaged 165-170. It never went below 160, and the highest it ever got was 182. When Kate broke up with me a month and a half ago, I weighed 174. When I got up this morning, I was at 155.5. Not great, but there’s opportunity in the fact that I’ve burned off my fat and now I can regain the pounds as muscle.

  • I’m starting simple. Next Monday(5/30) I’m starting the 100 PUSHUPS program, which is designed to get you to a point in 6 weeks where you can do 100 consecutive pushups. I’ll be doing it M/W/F. Pushups are great for chest, arms, back, and core, so it’s a good launching point.
  • I’ll also do 20-30 minutes of some sort of cardio at least three times a week. This week, I got on my bike for the first time in two or three years and have started riding again. I’ll take walks. I’ll dance. Something.
  • And I’ll stretch every day.

Accountability: Every day, I’ll post my morning weight and what exercise I’ve done.



Through years of depression, I retreated quite a bit from social connections, and badly need to get out of the Byrdcave more and spend more time with people. This is an area folks can help me with even if they’re not monitoring my progress in other areas.

My basic action items here are to be more open to making social contact, and to be more willing to  say “Yes” when people offer me the chance to join them for something.

I think that works as a start, and I’m sincere when I ask for your help. My recent ECT breakthroughs have given me back some previously lost functionality and vitality, but I think allowing myself to accept assistance from others will make a lot of difference in whether I ultimately succeed.

2 comments on “Getting On Track (Help Wanted!)

  1. Robyn Weldon says:

    This is very interesting. I am going to Joe’s Goals to check out the “On Track Chart” you are using, I think it could be beneficial to me in many ways. Some of what you express here, I can completely relate to: the need to progress toward desired goals, the rehashing of faltered plans, the despair of depressions and bad relationships, and the effect on your body because of them……..
    Ha! Makes me sound like a pitiful loser!!! But I know better.
    I appreciate you sharing this and look forward to watching your progress. I expect it will have a favorable outcome and I am going to try the same.

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