Important Questions to Ask Yourself When You're Short On Writing Time
by Jody Calkins
There comes a time when you need to take a step back and evaluate how much time you're spending on tasks that you don't want to do or that aren't making you money. We all need money and we need to be responsible so that we're able to pay for the things that we have, whether it is the mortgage for our house or a dinner out.
But are you doing too much?
A lot of writers work full-time jobs and then come home to a spouse and kids. And others have a second job. Most writers have busy lives outside of their writing lives.
In order to focus on our writing, sometimes we need to take a step back and figure out how we can delegate certain tasks such as housecleaning and lawnmowing. Can we hire an assistant to take care of some things so that we can have more time to focus on what we are good at (writing)?
Doing things you don't want to do only contributes to your stress and overwhelm, making it more difficult to get any writing done when you finally sit down to write. That was one of my major areas of struggle.
When I was taking care of our 500 chickens while my husband was out of town for his job, I hated it. It was just another thing that I had to add to my massive to-do list. Only given the nature of working with live animals, I had to do it. Otherwise the chickens would die. One of the reasons I hated it was that I have a soft spot for animals. I don't like to see them suffer and it saddens me to see dead birds, especially ones I've named.
It's just the nature of chicken farming; they don't live forever. It was too much for me and I didn't have much time for anything else as I had also taken on a full-time job. I was able to do some writing at work but when I sat down to do it at home, I didn't feel like writing or doing anything else.
Because of that, I was stressed out, overwhelmed, and frustrated with my lack of progress in my writing career. Now with my husband back home, I have more time to focus on my work.
Having someone else take care of the birds during those three months would have been a huge help, lowering my stress levels and allowing me to be more productive.
When you're doing too much and not getting your writing work done, it's time to consider your options and ask yourself some questions. Can you outsource some of your tasks?
If you have a second job or if you're putting in a lot of hours at your regular full-time job, can you increase your income somehow so you can make the same within a fewer number of hours?
Do you really need that additional income? What bills could you eliminate? What kind of splurges could you cut out of your expenses? What kind of sacrifices can you make so you can focus on your writing work?
Making more time for your writing work will no doubt bring you a little bit more happiness in your life. Make happiness a priority.
About the Author: Jody Calkins is a writer and editor with 15 years of experience. She helps businesses and independent writers enhance their writing work, and her work includes copywriting and editing business documents and marketing materials such as articles, case studies, newsletters, and reports, as well as writing and editing short stories, articles, and books (both fiction and nonfiction).
Writing well is all about providing professional material that offers value to readers, content that readers love or find helpful.
For more information on Jody's writing, editing, or copy editing services, please visit http://www.emeryroad.com or write to her here.
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