Step 2: Relax into Resistance

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The first step is to recognize you are resisting your writing. Once you recognize it you can and should let it go and relax. Easier said than done, right? Let’s take a moment to understand resistance. This is where we jump into brain talk again. Wait! Don’t go- we all know this part so it will be semi-easy. Okay, so resistance triggers your limbic system that engages the sympathetic nervous system or, as we call it, the “fight or flight” section of the brain. See?

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Easy peasy. Told you it would be something we (I) could understand. Now, when you experience writer’s block, this is not actually a fight or flight situation. You are not jumping away from a snake or running from a collapsing building that Bruce Willis blew up. (Sigh, Bruce Willis.) You don’t need those lightning fast reflexes to get away. The best way to remove the urge to run is…relax. WHAT!?

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Bruce Willis! ❤

Hang on a sec. I am still recovering from the mention of Bruce Willis. Dang it! I did it again. Okay, I am done swooning (maybe). Alrighty now, we are on page 223 of the book da jour, Around the Writer’s Block by Rosanne Bane. Today my cuppa is filled with English breakfast tea and my nibbles are 2 lovely Honeycrisp apples cut up and a bowl of vanilla bean Greek yogurt to dip them in. Yummers to the max! Go fill that lovely cuppa and grab the candy canes I know you have stashed in your bag. Don’t lie to me, buster. I have mint chocolate chip on the counter.

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Some of the best things in life
you had to work for.

Alright, back to business, relaxing…at least Ms. Bane was honest in this next part. You know, the part where you are just supposed to relax. She lays it out…it is harder than it sounds.  Whew, I thought I was gonna toss this book against the wall. This is a battle between emotions and conscious thought. Emotions always seem to win out. You are sitting there trying to write and the next thing you know your heart is pounding and your emotions have run away with your time. You have been kidnaped.

So how do we escape the grasp of the emotion monster? Breathe, my friend, breathe. Quiet your space and your mind. Close your eyes and talk to your body. Tell your muscles to release their tension. Breathe deeply and slowly and allow your body to accept the idea of being calm. Did it work? No? Me either. But it does require practice and possibly a different method for each of us.

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Meditate: 5-10 minutes of intentional breathing to bring you back to calm. Throw in a few yoga poses for good measure.

Breathe and Count to Ten: This isn’t the- you are so angry you need to count to ten to calm down. No, this is the deep breathing and slowly releasing your breath while counting. One deep breath per number.

Cool Down: “The cooler your brain the more relaxed you are.”- The Owner’s Manual for the Brain. This is the difference between the “hot head” and the “cool guy/gal/them.” Again, breathing through the nose will cool the brain.

Exercise: If you are someone who carries stress like a new purse, exercise will force you to put it down. Kinda hard to stress when you are running, swimming, or doing other intense workouts.

Love On Your Pet: Just spend some time with someone who’s life revolves around your happiness. Pet them. Give them treats. Take them for a walk. Relax.

Learn to Release Muscle Tension: Tighten the muscles in your feet. Watch the toes curl and see everything squeeze tight. Now, slowly release the tension on a sigh. Slow and steady. Try with another muscle.

Pray: This has a calming effect on the brain.

Break it up: We have talked about eating an elephant. Learn to break it down to smaller chunks and do the same for your writing.

Blow Off Some Steam: Scream. Rant to a friend (who is willing to listen). But put a limit on this. You don’t want your ranting to take over. Let it out and let it go.

Appreciate all the little things around you: nuff said

Laugh: It is hard to stay grumpy while laughing at your dog doing something silly.

Get a massage:Yes please.

Find ways to release and relax. You know what works best for you. Maybe you sing or play an instrument, what ever makes you feel calm and joyful is what you need.

Me? I read. I put myself into another world and allow my mind to drift. Off to Neverland…

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Polish your sparkle and keep twirling.

Find joy. Be joy. Enjoy.

I’m always looking for new friends!

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