"Do you have an 'artist's date?' What do you do to re-energize yourself for writing?"As I read other posts in February answering the above question, I have to admit I've felt pangs of jealousy. I'd love to have the freedom to enjoy many of the re-energizing activities mentioned, but at this point in my life it's just not possible. I have five children ages 6-17 in my home, including three teenagers and individuals with special needs.
Ann Voskamp reminds us:
"Comparison is a thug that robs your joy. But it's even more than that - comparison makes you a thug who beats down somebody - or your soul."Now there's food for thought! So, instead of focusing on what I can't do, I'll share what I AM able to do to re-energize myself for writing. I call it taking joy breaks:
- Choose gratitude. When I'm tempted to grumble, I make a list of things I'm thankful for and focus on those things. This focus inspires me in my writing.
- Go for a walk in nature. I'm privileged to live on a quarter section with space to roam, natural beauty to enjoy, and fresh air. Taking a walk gets the blood pumping, muscles moving, and oxygen saturating my blood. I often feel like writing after I take a walk.
- Find inspiring quotes. Every day I keep my eyes open for quotes that speak to my heart. Often I use WordSwag or Canva to make a graphic and share it on my social media. I've found this not only encourages me, but it also inspires others and helps promote other authors' work as well.
- Take pictures. Taking pictures makes me pay attention to beauty. It can be all around me and yet I miss it because I'm so busy rushing to get everything done. My camera has helped renew my energy and capture precious memories I would otherwise forget.
|A sunrise picture I took in the middle of getting my children ready for school|
- Have a leisurely bath. This one takes some work, because like most Moms, as soon as I go into the bathroom, one of my children desperately needs me. I've become more intentional about when I take my baths - early in the morning before my children get up, late at night after they are sleeping, or after they've all gone to school.
- Be attentive. A couple weeks ago my husband and I took our three boys to Edmonton (a 2 1/2 hour trip one way) for appointments. We left at 5:00 a.m. and stopped at a truck stop in Sherwood Park for breakfast. The bathroom we've usually used was closed for cleaning, but I was told there was another bathroom on the other side of the truck stop. I followed the directions, but couldn't find the ladies' bathroom. A man was cleaning, so I stopped and asked him. I wasn't thinking about writing at all, but when I saw his name tag, my mind started whirling with ideas.
- Take a nap. Sometimes the best thing I can do for my writing is get some sleep!
- Read a book. Here are some books I've started reading: Growing Grateful Kids: Teaching them to appreciate an extraordinary God in ordinary places by Susie Larson, A Lifelong Love: What if marriage is about more than staying together by Gary Thomas, The Holy Spirit & Power by John Wesley, Write. Publish. Repeat. by Sean Platt and Johnny B. Truant, Let's Get Digital by David Gaughran. How to Market a Book by Joanna Penn, and Self-Publishing Boot Camp: Step-by-step to publishing, promoting and selling your book in print and every popular ebook format.
Ruth L. Snyder serves God as a wife, mother, music teacher, and writer. Her published works include articles, devotionals, short stories, and novellas. Connect with Ruth at http://ruthlsnyder.com