"Achievement is largely the product of steadily raising one's levels of aspiration and expectation." - Jack Nicklaus
I play silly games with myself. When a new e-mail arrives regarding a submission, I'm equal parts terrified and excited. Before opening it, I tell myself it's a rejection. If I'm wrong, then I'll be super excited. If I'm right, then I can remind myself how smart I am. See? So silly.
It's a matter of expectations. Some people say it's important to set the bar high for ourselves. Others feel it's best to set a series of ascending bars, ones we can more easily reach.
I don't know if I've set the bar too high or too low. All I know is that I'm plugging along, satisfied with my successes--even if they're small. It seems to me that writers, like gymnasts, sometimes need the low bars to propel us to the high bars.
What do you think? What guided you in deciding how high to set your bar?