Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Question of the Day #154

My friend Ryan is a professional motivational speaker who does sales coaching and life coaching. Last night he took me to dinner. We talked about how messy corners of my personal life have been affecting my ability to revise the manuscript I'm working on. Logically, my best writing comes when I feel my best. So he gave me some tips on how to avoid negative triggers and thoughts and maximize positive triggers and thoughts.

Normally, in the morning, the first thing I do is get up, check my email and post a question. Through our conversation last night, we determined that checking my email can trigger negative thoughts, "Like there's so much to do," or "more bills to pay," or whatever. And at the very least, checking email right away is a fabulous way to get sidetracked and distracted by anything but writing.

So to avoid that negative trigger, instead of checking email right away, I pulled out the latest notes on my manuscript, read them and went for a walk. I pondered them the whole way and figured out how to solve a timing issue, a plot issue and how to add more tension in several chapters. Then I went home and wrote until right now.

The easy lesson here is that by just shaking up my rountine, I got great results.

So can you think of any ways to shake up your routine to maximize your results?



  1. Yes, I need to stop going on Facebook! Seriously! I'm an addict....
    I also should make a set schedule so that I write regularly. I write a few times a week, usually at night, but would like to do more.

  2. I need absolute quiet for a while and then I can 'let things in' slowly, like a little music but not people; people (and all the noise they carry around with them) can really prohibit creativity in me at times.

  3. Shake up my routine? Hmmm, some life events have done that for me, and it has actually been quite nice, although stressful. :D

  4. I quit listening to music when I am working out and there is someone beside me. I now talk with them and discuss important events that are happening.

    When I get to work, I have found that it is best if I don't start by reading emails either. If I do, I get bogged down and don't do the other things I need to get done first.

  5. I tried the write every day challenge to see what it would do for me. I managed it, with a few days missing, for a couple months. But what it did was break things up and make it more disjointed. It also helped me see that I write best when I have a block of time, and nothing on my desk, and the mental push to keep writing.


Don't be shy! Please join our game of Questions.