How to Cast Away Frustration and Achieve Your Writing Dreams

How to Cast Away Frustration and Achieve Your Writing Dreams
Photo by Brian Stetson / via Flickr

How to Cast Away Frustration and Achieve Your Writing Dreams

When you're on a tight schedule, you don't have time to dwell on things that won't get you far in your writing career. You need focus, motivation, determination, and a sense of urgency to complete your tasks in a timely fashion.

The self-employed have to possess strong discipline skills if they want to succeed in business. They can't hang out at the water cooler or take up residence in a coworker's office. Time is money. They have work to do. But the self-employed, especially writers, experience many different forms of resistance throughout the day. They get bogged down by overwhelm, a sense of inadequacy, massive to-do lists, negative thoughts, self-doubt, the rehearsal of recent or anticipated conversations, and distractions by those who fail to take their businesses seriously.

In order to achieve our goals and writing dreams, we must work through these forms of resistance.

The biggest starting point is that, if we want to succeed, we need to take our businesses seriously. Treat it like a real business, like a real job. Set your work schedule and stick to it. As an employee, you would be obligated to show up because you entered into an agreement with the employer. It's no different being a business owner.

Figure out what type of goal motivator you need to get your work done. Do full to-do lists work for you? Or do you get more done if you write down one task at a time? Are you a multi-tasker or a uni-tasker? Studies have shown that focusing on one task at a time is more efficient and productive than multi-tasking. Decide what works for you.

I find it's important to write out a full weekly to-do list so I don't forget a particular task that absolutely needs to be completed. That allows me to pick and choose which tasks I want to work on each day. And it helps keep me from getting overwhelmed. I try to focus on one task at a time. Once it's completed, I can start on the next one. It's a way to keep yourself accountable. There are no half-completed projects. If projects are large, break them down into smaller tasks.

If you're planning a writing session, use the tips I've provided in my most recent blog posts. The importance of proper preparation is critical to making the most of any work session. Set a schedule for the different areas of activities that you need to do throughout the day. For writing, set a schedule that allows you to write for an hour or two at the same time every day without being interrupted. It's best if you can avoid interruptions during your entire work schedule, but I know some of you work at home with children, so just do the best you can. If you need to, schedule some time at the library or some other quiet place where you can work.

Don't let other people's opinions interfere with your ability to work. Sure, that's easier said than done, but do things that will inspire you to think positively and to keep pressing on. Listen to motivational tapes, read inspiring books, find positive and joyful people to be around, and focus on your dreams and how you will feel when you've reached them. Your writing dreams are just around the corner!

Jody Calkins
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Jody Calkins

Freelance Writer & Book Editor at Emery Road Writing Services, LLC
Jody Calkins is a Freelance Writer & Book Editor, Writer's Coach, Content Marketing Strategist, Blogger, Pilot's Wife. Her unique talent is as a Back-to-Basics Step-By-Step Writing Expert who currently serves hundreds of clients in over 50 countries. Her editing services and training programs help novelists improve their writing skills, get motivated to write, improve productivity and time management, and battle self-doubt and other roadblocks. She works with middle-grade, young adult, and adult books in a variety of genres including Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Mystery, Thriller, and Self-Help.
Jody Calkins
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  • Anonymous

    Thanks for the tips Jody! I always enjoy reading them and learn a lot. This particular area is something I need to work on. Even though I’ve been self employed for over 20 years, it can still be a struggle. Especially when boredom with what you’ve been doing all that time sets in and something new comes up that’s much more fun.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Cari

    I am launching my own freelance PR/writing business for nonprofits, and this is EXACTLY what I needed to read as I begin this new (slightly scary) journey. I love the tip about taking our businesses seriously. Thank you!