Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Defeating the Writing Dull Drums, Part 1: Get Out of Your Cubicle

If you’re like me, you spend 40 hours a week in an office, working at a computer. For most writers, the art of writing alone doesn’t pay the bills (at least not initially), so we keep other jobs to support ourselves. The rhythm of a steady job can be comfortable and enjoyable. However, the repetition can also become mind-numbing.
After staring at a computer most of the day, the last thing I often feel like doing is sitting down in front of my laptop and writing. My day job has exhausted the creativity of a fresh mind, and I feel as though I’m in the “dull drums” – my analogy for writer’s block.
Self-starting writers realize that discipline is essential if their writing career is going to clear the runway. But the question remains: How do we keep ourselves motivated? How do we peel back the glaze from tired eyes and press through the mental fatigue?
Getting out of the cubicle is the first step. It’s not just the physical relocation of your body; it’s the mental reorientation your mind. Coming home, turning on the TV and being a couch potato is not the solution.
Find a physical hobby that can stimulate your energy and help shake off the lethargy. I like to take a bike ride around my neighborhood or sit down at the piano to practice. You many enjoy playing a few games of tennis or shooting basketball hoops. Sometimes, we have to settle for mowing the lawn or making the best of our household chores.
Whatever the task, it needs to help refocus your energy so that you shake off the cubicle mentality and arouse your creativity. Then, you can return to your desk less mentally fatigued and more focused on what you are truly passionate about: writing.
Next time, we’ll look at how getting out of your comfort zone can give you a new perspective and some fresh ideas for writing.

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