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Sunday, 9 February 2014

10 Ways A Writer Can Find More Energy

Image provided by Flicker Commons

Want to boost your energy? Recover your writing Mojo? Read on...


1. Get Moving - Exercise is energising, run, walk, swim, or any aerobic exercise will make you feel good, and you only need a short blast every day! We all know the long-term benefits of increased muscle tone, weight loss, and less stress, but do you know, physically active people escape that sluggishness that descends halfway through the day? Get out there, and do it, just thirty minutes will make a difference, and ideas and words will flow better afterwards.

2. Keep Your To-Do List Short - Adopt the rule of three. List only three things you have to do today. If your list is any longer, you'll feel overwhelmed, tired and it'll have a negative effect on your writing. If you complete your tasks easily, then you can add more. Don't let a long list hinder you, remember, less is definitely more, as you'll become more productive with a shorter list. 

3. Ditch The Mood Hoovers - Or choose your friends wisely. Some people energise us, and some do exactly the opposite. If someone is acting 'better than you' or is making you feel worthless about your writing, dump them!

4. Snack on Nuts And Seeds- Nuts and seeds are a fast way to deliver nutrients, including B vitamins, omega-3 fats and minerals like iron and zinc. Keep a packet handy for a quick boost when you feel yourself flagging, but do make sure it is only a small handful, as although healthy, they are high in calories if you are trying to lose weight.

5. Sleep - Try going to bed earlier, because if you're not rested, you can't expect to perform properly can you? Try going to sleep half an hour earlier each night for a week. Or take a nap during the day. Difficult if you work, but even ten minutes can make a difference to mood and energy levels.

6. Hydrate - Gosh, this one is so easy to do, yet most of us forget. When our heads are down writing, when we are in the zone, drinking regularly goes out the window! Water is best, so keep a bottle with you, put it next to your laptop, or notebook, or get into herbal teas like peppermint, or lemon and ginger, they're caffeine free, and will provide a quick lift when the words are flagging. 

7. Be Still - Stand up, stretch, move away from the desk. Go and sit somewhere else properly. Don't slouch, turn your palms up, close your eyes, and sit there quietly. A few minutes once an hour helps keep you mindful about your posture. 

8. Get a Buddy - A supportive ear, and a critical eye can do wonders, so pair up with a buddy, it doesn't matter if they are on the other side of the world these days thanks to technology. Writing can be a lonely business even when you are surrounded by people, and there is no one quite like another writer to encourage, and motivate. Agree to write something, and send it over to each other, set mini challenges, swap stories for critique. Laugh off rejections together, and bolster each other along when the going gets tough. Give it a go, its a good thing.

9. Unbusy Your Life - Don't take on too much, and don't be afraid to relax. Start immediately, the next time someone asks you to do something, stop and ask yourself, do I really want to do this? Learn to say 'No' to people. If you're afraid to do it outright, say something like, 'I'm busy that day already' and don't justify, simply move the conversation on. If you'd rather be lying back in the bath thinking up your next chapter than going out to tea with Aunt Maud then don't! If something doesn't interest you, why waste your precious time on it.

10. Eat Well - Writers lose track of time, they miss meals completely, or worse, shovel down lots of unhealthy foods that offer nothing to body, nor mind. Try and eat healthily, be mindful of mealtimes, and remember to eat breakfast, its the most missed meal of the day. Yet its the kick-start you need to perform well and doesn't have to be fussy. Porridge oats, wholegrain toast, or a piece of fruit with yogurt. Lunch can still be healthy on the go too, try flatbreads, wraps or soup, and salads can be tossed together in a jiffy. Stock up with fruit. When you eat well regularly, you perform better.

Its easier than you think to rejuvenate and energise, how do you boost your energy?

16 comments:

  1. Such good advice! And I love that term "Mood Hoovers" x

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    1. Yes, its a term I heard a few years ago, and its stuck with me.

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  2. Exercising always gets my muse stirring. It's the combination of the blood flowing, the music I listen to, and being totally in the zone which allows my subconscious to do what it does best: make stuff up!

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    1. I agree Annalisa, the muse needs space to create.

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  3. Excellent tips. Cheers.

    mood (not a hoover)
    Moody Writing

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  4. After several years of intensive studying under my belt, I really agree with numbers 5 and 10. And walking as well. I used to walk to the uni library - it was just under 15 minutes from where I lived. The walk went right through the beautiful old city centre of Leiden.

    Sleeping enough is also super important. Sometimes I go to bed at 8 or 9 (only very, very occasionally though!) because I am so tired and my brain is useless, I just go to bed and rest instead of trying to keep awake until a "proper bedtime".

    And eating well is also so much better than snacks and candy and junk food. I used to do the snacks and junk food thing, because I would be super stressed and pressed for time. It seemed like a good option. But it just does not make me feel good. The past year was also very intensive, but I took my time for cooking and buying groceries that were healthy. It makes so much of a difference as to how I feel. I can't imagine going back to the way I was eating before!

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    1. I totally agree, and try to eat as healthily as I can nowadays too. It really makes a difference.

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  5. It's winter so II treadmill nearly every day for 45 minutes, but all your tips are good. I eat a lot of nuts, too, seldom eat out.

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    1. Wow, the treadmill is impressive, I'd have to have one of them at home though if I was doing it every day, as the weather is too bad to venture to the gym at the moment.

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  6. Some great advice here, Maria. I particularly like the suggestion of restricting 'To Do' lists to three tasks at a time. Ticking those items as 'done' produces a wonderful sense of achievement (even if they are only teeny tasks) Rx

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    1. It works! I have become more productive following this rule of three. :-)

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  7. It is nice & informative blog i like it.

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  8. Good advice Maria,I should learn to say no more often.

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    1. once you do it a few times its easier. Try it today!

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