Many years ago I started seeing a life coach. I was at a stage where I felt I needed help.

It wasn’t bad to the point where I felt I needed a psychologist, but there was a lot of uncertainty and chaos that I realised I couldn’t work through alone.

After doing an online search and reaching out to a few coaches I finally found one who was a good fit.

When I say Rene Lighton changed my life, it is not an exaggeration

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I was nervous before our first meeting as I had no idea what to expect. What I found was an amazing, bubbly character who was super friendly, but also very focused and brooked no excuses from me.

Goal-setting was one of the things I wanted to focus on, because as someone who had big dreams but constantly self-sabotaged with procrastination and insecurity, I needed to find a better way.

My biggest take-away was that in order to set a goal I needed to be very specific

It was not good enough to say I wanted a great body. I had to break down exactly what that looked like to me: defined calves, toned arms, thighs with no jiggle and a stomach with washboard abs.

The other insight I never forgot was that the mark of a real adult is someone who takes responsibility for the part they play in creating any situation.

The other insight I never forgot was that the mark of a real adult is someone who takes responsibility for the part they play in creating any situation

I’ve been thinking a lot about goal-setting this week, with regard to my writing

I have no formal training in writing: I started studying chemical engineering, then quit that to pursue my current economics degree through UNISA.

Writing happened organically as I started scribbling in a notebook, moved on to a blog, kept honing my craft and ended up with a book.

To date the book is my proudest achievement in life and I am grateful for all the doors it has opened. Last month I had my first column published in the biggest weekend newspaper in the country, as a direct result of the contacts I made through the book. It was one of the highlights of my year.

After basking in the moment, enjoying the adulation of family and friends and nabbing a copy to frame, I immediately started fretting about the next one.

A large part of the problem is that I have never had a solid plan for writing: I just went with the flow because it has worked out really well so far. This sometimes feels like there is no vision for forward momentum.

I have the vaguest idea about the subject matter for my next book. I talk myself out of pitching for articles at prestigious publications in spite of the fact that a few have said ‘yes’, because I still feel intimidated by the glossy mastheads. I let deadlines for fellowships I want expire, because I think I’m not ready yet.

In other words, I seesaw between complacency and ‘impostor syndrome’

Add procrastination to that mix and it’s a recipe for disaster.

I have given myself this weekend to do some introspection, decide what my long-term plans are, then plot how best to achieve them.

Because I know myself, I have set multiple reminders to do the work. I am confident that by Monday I will be a focused, forward-looking person who has defined her plans for world domination.