I don’t know about you, but I find myself running around constantly, rushing from one task to the next without ever taking a breath. By nightfall I’m completely exhausted, and mind still spinning, I throw myself in bed where I have tortured dreams about all the things I have to do the next day.
Here’s the thing. We all have to rest. We all have to fill the well in order to be able to draw from it in our pages. We have to replenish.
Even if you have a full time job, even if you have a family that you’re responsible for, even if you are committed to your writing every day, you must find stillness.
Here are some tips on how to find and create quiet in your busy life.
Close the door. Even if it’s just for ten minutes. Moms, it’s not so bad to put your babies in front of the TV for that amount of time. Everyone else, turn off your phone. Lie quietly on your bed or on the floor. Feel yourself in your body.
Sit in nature. In your garden. Or in a park. Don’t read or text or talk to anyone. Just be.
Stop your mind. Even if you take a five-minute break to close your eyes and meditate, do it. There are great apps you can download and listen to wherever you are. The one I love and use is called Simply Being, and has nature sounds and a voice—your choice of which combinations of sounds to listen to.
Notice the ordinary. Wherever you find yourself, give yourself a moment and look around. Take things in. See the beauty in all the things you never notice and take for granted.
If you’re in a crowd and feel overwhelmed, step away. You don’t have to always entertain people. You can also be an observer.
Take a nap. In the middle of the day. Ten minutes can do miracles and energize you.
Relax. Stop trying so hard. Have faith that it’s ok to take care of yourself.
It’s easy to be afraid of stillness, because you know you’ll actually have to deal with the thoughts and feelings that arise. But if you ignore these things, they come to control you. Let them in, acknowledge them, fully experience them as they pass through you.
Take action. Find a time each day to be alone with yourself.
I promise, it’ll make you a better writer.
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