Yesterday we mentioned Newton’s First Law, which, if you aren’t aware is: a body at rest tends to stay at rest. So, a writer not writing tends to not write. This is a form of paralysis. Once you get started with a small, nonthreatening, itty bitty chunk of time you can find your zone. Think of it like a swing on the playground. When it sits empty it just hangs there…waiting. It only moves when moved. You have to pump your legs to get it to go higher and higher but if you quit pumping…you slow…and slow…and slow until you – stop. Inertia matters.
Hi! You showed up! Question…am I part of your Process? Do I help you push through the lull and activate the creative juices in your mind? Do I help motivate you? You can tell me. I can keep a secret…promise. Pinky swear. Yes? Awesome! Now go and get your copy of Around the Writer’s Block by Rosanne Bane, fill your cuppa, and let’s not forget the nibbles. YUM. We are currently on page 83. Read along if you wish or just read my randomly, nerdy interpretation of the werds Rosanne imparts. Sup to you.
Have you ever gone out with friends/spouse even though you absolutely, positively, unmistakably DID NOT WANT TO? Did you end up having a good time anyway? Sure, you did. Have you ever dragged yourself to the gym whining the entire way? Duh. But you didn’t regret it afterwards, right? This is what you must do in the beginning. You must force your tush into the chair and sit in front of your computer/notebook, bar napkin and commit to 15 minutes. In the beginning it will feel like pulling teeth, or worse, 15 minutes on the treadmill from hell. Argh.
This is where initial inertia is the hardest. Take running on the treadmill. No, really, take it. I HATE IT! So you climb on the treadmill and start. You start slow and begin to increase as you get into the rhythm. It’s hard the first few minutes but once you hit your stride, 15 minutes is done. Maybe…20 minutes has sped by. Keep going! Or, stop at 15, not 14:53…15. That is the commitment. You can do it.
Here’s a secret. Most writers make the commitment to 15 knowing they will bypass that time and then some, BUT if they committed to longer, they are more likely to fail. It is easy to promise yourself something small and follow through. That’s why they say if you want to lose weight to set your goal small. It is easier to see yourself losing 5lbs versus 55 lbs.
Look, it works. I have sat down and looked at my calendar and found tons of reasons to not write “because I don’t have time.” Once I started to apply the 15 Magical Minutes to my routine, I found an hour here and 3 there. You make time for the things that are important to you. Want proof? How much tv do you watch each day? You don’t have to tell me but don’t lie to yourself. Let’s say…3+ hours. That is 3 hours of looking at someone else’s successful 15 minutes. OUCH! That stung didn’t it. It sucks to think of it that way, but it’s true.
Now, I have been writing about chasing werds around the page and forcing some to stick, but this can apply to so many more aspects in life. Are you a musician, artist, computer developer, fundraiser head? I don’t know! This can apply to whatever you want it to apply to. You are the only person holding you back.
Find your 15.
Frankie the Chiweenie is so teeny. We love our lil boy.