Since writing can be solitary and there is often a long time between the work and the reward, it can be easy to get discouraged about the process.
Here are 5 tips to help you recharge when you are a bit burnt out from your efforts.
1) Use the word YET
Too often we get stuck in the idea that we will NEVER accomplish things but it can be helpful to reframe it to ‘I haven’t done it YET’ – I use this for TKD all the time. I try not to say ‘I can’t’ I spin that into ‘I can’t YET.’ because it keeps the door open for future success.
2) Look at your accomplishments (use a good measure)
A lot of the time we are looking ahead and we forget how far we have come. Can you look back at a time when you didn’t make time for writing, or when you wrote far less than you do now?
Or if you are just starting out, imagine your work now as part of your montage in the movie of your life, the part the movie speeds through to show your amazing skill development.
3) Ask for writing company
Sometimes discouragement is loneliness in disguise. Ask someone to do some sprints with you, join in a conversation on the Facebook page. Ask a friend who has a work project to sit with you and you can both work independently.
4) Write something small that is easily finished
Sometimes it is the length of the project that is discouraging. Keep a list of small projects that you can easily or quickly finish so you have a good boost waiting for you whenever you need it.
5) Use a sideways method to get started
If your discouragement has you feeling a bit stuck, maybe you can sneak up on your writing by doing something unusual, by exploring another form of creativity, or by doing something routine or meditative.
For example: you could ask a kid for advice – you don’t have to do exactly what they say but you can let their answer guide you in a new direction. You could try drawing, colouring, singing, or doing a dance and see if that gets your words flowing. Or, you could go for the tried and true methods of going for a walk, taking a shower or doing some dishes. (Agatha Christie swore by that last one!)
Pick one and try it!
Don’t just read this list and then go on feeling a bit glum about your writing. Pick something, anything, and give it a try. You really have nothing to lose but a little bit of time.
And it really doesn’t matter if you choose one of these ideas or if you find something on your own. I just hope you can find a way to feel a bit more energized for the process of writing.