How to Write Like a Professional

How to Write Like a Professional
6 Surprising Writing Mistakes That Make You Look Like an Amateur Author... and How to Avoid Them

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

ANNE LAMOTT ON PRODUCTIVITY

If you've never heard of Anne Lamott, she's a National Bestselling American novelist and non-fiction writer. Her books include New York Times bestsellers Grace (Eventually), Plan B, Traveling Mercies, and Operating Instructions, as well as seven novels, including Rosie, and Crooked Little Heart.

Among writers, probably her most well-known book is Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life (1995). She is widely quoted, including the quote as depicted below, "Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes... including YOU."

"Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes... including YOU." - Anne Lamott | inspirational writing quotes | productivity | famous author quotes


Rest Days


Often times, we think of rest days being counterproductive. Or counter intuitive to our productivity. But really, they're not. In the fitness world, rest days are all the rage right now. Scientists have proven that a single day of a 20-minute foam rolling routine actually produces better results the next day. Most athletes know that rest days are essential to recuperate and repair sore muscles, and synthesize proteins. If you don't schedule in rest days, your body would always be in a state of breaking down.

For athletes, that shouldn’t involve merely sitting around doing nothing. The point is to help your body recover for your next workout. You can do this by getting a massage, stretching, or doing self-massage with a foam roller or "The Stick," a special type of massager that runners adore. Massage and stretches help to increase blood flow, range of motion, and eliminate toxins. By decreasing muscular tension, you can increase your ability for greater output in the days to follow.

Rejuvenation


For writers, you have to take rest days too. Children's book author, Jane Yolen, suggests doing character sketches, journal entries, title lists, or other such types of writing. Not every day has to be spent working on your novel. Remember to take rest days! Other types of rest for writers that can help increase productivity include physical rest and mental rest, not just writing rest, meaning that you DO something physical to take a mental break from writing. Or you do something you love to give yourself a mental break.

Physical Rest

  • Go for a walk or a run.
  • Garden.
  • Do chores.
  • Take a fitness class.
  • Go hiking.
  • Yoga or swimming.
  • Sex

Mental Rest

  • Go shopping.
  • Read a book.
  • Watch a movie.
  • Bake cookies.
  • Spend time with family.
  • Cook a new food/meal.
  • Take a trip.
  • Pray and/or meditate.

Productivity


The point is to take a writing, or fitness, break. Repair the damage. Get unplugged. Rejuvenate. So that you can return to your work feeling refreshed and ready to put out more work. So that you can take that stubborn chapter to the next level. So that you can feel more productive. So take time every day, every week, every month to unplug for a few minutes. And when you get back to the work at hand, you'll be glad you did.

What do you like to do to unplug? Share in the comments!

Keep on keepin' on...

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2 comments:

  1. Great advice, and I love the quote! My breaks tend to be forced based on lack of time following kids and activities, but I do love to exercise and read which does tend to help keep ideas flowing.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, Karin! I think most of us struggle with the lack of time phenomena. I'm glad to see that exercise and reading help keep your ideas flowing. That's what it's all about, right?

    ReplyDelete

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