Big Goals? Bum-Glue Will Get You There

Ever wanted to write a book? Your posterior may hold the key.

Best-selling Australian novelist Bryce Courtney once gave the most useful advice I've ever heard for completing big projects and achieving grand-scale goals. At a luncheon in Johannesburg, he was asked the question: "What is the single most important quality for an author who wants to write a book?" In response, he offered just two simple words of wisdom: "Bum-glue!"

Sound mildly disturbing? How exactly does your rounded posterior plays its part in getting you to your goals? And, um... what's with the glue?

Bryce Courtney is simply saying that in order to be highly productive, and to see large-scale projects through to completion, the most important thing is to sit down each day, block out the world, and earnestly and honestly slog away at it. Come rain, sunshine or extreme boredom. And while his advice was aimed at writers, the wisdom applies in any industry. Writing a novel may require thought, planning and strategy. But the most important thing is simply to write, and write, and write. Bryce Courtney is referencing a quality that has become popularly known as 'stick-to-it-tiveness'.


As 2005 faded in the rear-view mirror, I wrote my own book to completion using this principle. This was my process: I set myself a goal of writing 2 000 words, minimum, per working day, and I stuck to it religiously. If I wrote more than my required allotment on any given day, this did not exempt me from my 2000 words the next day.

By sticking to this simple theory of keeping my bum in my chair before my PC, I was surprised how swiftly 50 000 words - a workable book - manifested.

It was often mundane devoting such large blocks of time to a single project. But once it was done, it felt wonderful.

Writing your own book can be a significant step forward in positioning yourself as an industry expert. It can help you to take a quantum leap forward in your career.


These days, we are all well-acquainted with the adage: Work smarter, not harder. But sometimes it's not about being strategic or trying to find clever innovations. Sometimes it's just about allocating a certain amount of time each day, consistently, to putting your bum in a chair and doing some good old fashioned hard slog.

A great number of people believe that they will someday write a book, start a company, work for themselves, or study for a new degree. I have at least one close friend who has spent the last seven years telling me about the technical course he plans to do, which, when completed, will result in a promotion for him. By December, he will have been talking about it for eight years. He's not aware of it, but he's been talking, and not doing, for the better part of a decade now. That's about one-eighth of his potential lifespan.

What's holding you back? Could it be that all you need is a little sticky stuff on the chair while the clock ticks merrily away?


If you are serious about goal-setting, allocate a decent amount of time each day to your task. And none of that nonsense about waiting for inspiration to hit! The Russian classical composer Tchaikovsky used to say that his job was to be creative, so he would wake up first thing in the morning, and see to it that he produced creative work. French novelist Victor Hugo lived by the same principle, instructing his staff to keep his pants away from him until he had earned them back!

This could be your year to start living a truly remarkable and distinguished life. It is my sincere wish that your conscience will no longer allow you to think of your dream-goals as things you'll do 'one day,' but rather, that you will start to allocate time each and every day to your purpose. And as you work toward it, may you know and enjoy the mighty power of bum-glue!

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