This year I’ve been blogging my book De-Stress Your Writing Life. You can read previous posts on Creativity’s Workshop for free. In today’s post we continue the chapter Taking Control of Your Mindset. You can read the first three parts of the chapter here, here and here.
What True Balance Means
To summarize these last few chapters, let’s look at what balance actually means.
In our writing life, we want to have balance in our:
We’ve looked at how we can go about that using positive thoughts, freewrites, rescue plans, and personalized pep talks. These are all techniques you can use on an ongoing basis to keep yourself balanced in your writing life.
Yes, notice that word: Ongoing.
Because things are always changing, and with those changes may come problems or emotional hiccups that can cause us to falter in our writing.
- We or a member of our family may fall ill.
- Our housing or work situation may change.
- We may reach a new phase in our writing life (perhaps submitting our work for the first time, or seeing a negative review from a reader) which brings up thoughts and beliefs we’ve never faced before.
- A new writing project may turn out to be more difficult than we first anticipated.
This is where balance comes in, because true balance involves adjustment.
We do not find balance and then rigidly remain in that mindset or routine to maintain that balance. In fact, rigidity is the opposite of balance.
Think of a tightrope walker. He does not talk along the rope bolt upright, barely moving a muscle. In order to maintain balance, he is always moving his muscles – be they the tiny muscles in his toes or the large muscles in his legs, shoulders, and arms. Those constant, minute adjustments are the secret to balance. Without them he would topple and fall.
In a similar way, to maintain balance in your writing life you will need to make continual adjustments as you face different circumstances. A pep talk that worked for you one week might not help you move forward the next. A fear that you conquered in your last project may spring up again when you start your new story. These situations don’t mean that all the work you put in before was wasted. It simply means you need to keep up that work to maintain your balance.
As you progress through the adventure of your writing life, you may wish to come back and read these chapters through again. Each time you read them, you may discover new points that you did not pick up before. As your life changes your needs change too. This is a beautiful part of our human journey, so continue making those constant adjustments to keep yourself balanced and moving forward.
Add your comment below. How do you keep yourself balanced in your writing life?
My writing life is currently out of balance. I am suffering with my third bout of cold/flu in six months, which has thrown my schedule and my plans out of kilter. This unfortunately means I have to make some temporary adjustments to get myself back on track. I will be posting the details of these changes early next week. I appreciate your understanding and support.
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