4 Ways to Make Time to Write

by , Monday October 3, 2016
4 Ways to Make Time to Write

(When Life Gets in the Way)

LET'S FACE IT -- we're all busy. We all have responsibilities that require chunks of our time and, more often than not, that time slowly depletes throughout the day.

 

Sound familiar at all?

  With the best of intentions, it's super easy to neglect your projects."Tomorrow will be better," you tell yourself. "I'll power through it then." And tomorrow, you're just as busy. The next day doesn't look good either. 
   Before you know it, your project is collecting dust. 

   Let me tell you something that will make things crystal clear: 
​   If you don't make the time to write, then you won't write. No one else is going to do it for you.

   So, how important is your project to you?

   If you're still with me, then I salute you. More power to you! Let's see how you can make the best of your time and make your writing a priority in your life. 

 

  • ​Planning Ahead -- One way to ensure that you attend to your writing needs is to treat each session as you would any other important item on your list. Schedule time to sit down and make some progress on your project. Stick to it. You wouldn't keep your boss waiting at the office, would you? Or leave your mother stranded at the train station? Didn't think so.


   (Okay, if you nodded just then, move onto method two... And remind me not to tick you off.)

  • De-clutter Your Day -- It's okay to get distracted every once in a while. Sometimes, distractions can be a good thing. They can let us know when it's time to take a break and give your mind some down time. They can also slow us down and limit our progress. Obviously, I'm talking about the second kind, here. By removing unnecessary distractions from your day, you're giving yourselfextra time to play with. 


   (Sounds good, right?)

   For example, if you get up in the morning and watch an hour of TV over breakfast, try using that golden hour to jot some ideas down, work on a short story, contribute to the latest chapter of your novel... Your options here are endless. Yes, you may enjoy vegging out in the morning to your favourite programme, but do you need to do it every morning? Compromise. Mix your week up a bit. 
   And you don't have to be a morning person to make this work for you. Limit your Facebook time and use the extra to be productive. Use online shopping as a reward, not a distraction.

   Focus on your immediate task. Try not to let your every whim and impulse control you

   Don't want to give anything up in order to write? That's fine too. You just need to be a little more disciplined, my friend. 

  • Optimise your time -- Some people are what you would call 'morning people'.  A morning person functions better first thing in the day and tends to get less productive as the day goes on. Others sit at the opposite end of the scale, better suited to evening activity than at the start of the day. Personally, I find I'm useless  before 9am. I also can't write when I'm tired, so I like to find my happy medium; 10am to 11am and 4pm to 6pm. These are my optimum times. 


   What are yours? Record your activity for a week. When are you most productive? Is there a pattern? If you discover your optimum time to write, protect it fiercely (where humanly possible). These are your initial go to writing times. 
 

  • The Ever Ready Approach -- You may not have much 'breathing room' in your weekly schedule, so to speak, but at some point something unexpected is bound to happen. Say, by some unforeseen act of God, you have 20 minutes all to yourself. (Woohoo!) So, what are you going to do about it? Quick, grab your writing book and your notes -- oh, wait... You left them at home. 

      And, just like that, the moment passes you by. Well, no more. This method is for all you opportunists, and for those that like to fully plan out their day in order to make best use of their time and energy. 

   (You've made your point. Now, get on with the method!)

   Carry a note pad around with you wherever you go. It doesn't have to be big, it can be handbag sized, or even shirt pocket sized. And whatever you do, don't forget to carry a good pen, too. These are your basic writer's on-the-go tools, perfect for unplanned moments of productivity and brilliant bursts of inspiration. 
   You can also use your phone or tablet, if gadgets are more your style. Writing with a phone can be fiddly for longer paragraphs, but speaking them is easy. There are two ways you can do this: 
 

  1. Speak into an open writing document
  2. Record your voice using an app


   Both of these methods can be effectively used in a hurry. They're also good for those chaotic moments when your hand struggles to keep up with your epic imagination. 
   As for the reams of notes you may have made on your project, well... I know what you're thinking. Why should I carry them around with me all day, you say? After all, you may not even get to use them. Fear not, dear writers. You can carry them around with you without breaking your back. 

   (I'm going to go ahead and assume you have a mobile phone with a camera. If you don't, I apologise. But you really are missing out!)

   Take a picture of all important notes and keep them stored in their own folder. This way, you'll have ready access to everything you need to pick up where you last left off. You can also email yourself typed notes, or carry them on a memory stick. 

   I hope you found something useful  in all that. You can use all of these methods to make time for your writing projects, or just pick the one that suits you best. Maybe you have a better idea. In any case, I'd love to know what works for you

There is one thing of which I'm absolutely certain -- writers write. 

 

Liked this post? Find many more like it on my website, www.authorrachelhobbs.co.uk.

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