Writing in a Busy Life
My Busy Day
The piercing beep of my alarm clock jolts me awake from my already fitful sleep. My busy routine begins anew. Wake up at 5:30am, throw on whatever clothes I find in the closet, and grab a cup of coffee as I dash out the door. The ride to work is no less stressful. Unpredictable traffic patterns make it a frustrating ride to work that usually takes 45 minutes for a drive that should only take 25 minutes. At work, I am swept up in a whirlwind of constant meetings, conference calls, and attempts to make progress that I can only compare to the likes of pushing a wet noodle.
After hours and hours of the daily grind, I get back into my car to fight the growing traffic on my way home. By the time I get through the door of my house, I am mentally and emotionally exhausted. It is now 6:00pm if I got out of work on time. I sit down at the dinner table with my family for a nice meal and conversation. I try my best to not vent about work too much as I concentrate on everyone else’s day.
Shortly after dinner, the battle begins. My three year old thrusts and parries as I try to corral her into the bathroom to get cleaned up for bed. Wash clothes, hair brushes, and tooth brushes fly around the room in a mad attempt to bring the little one back to a semblance of cleanness. Putting on pajamas sounds like an easy task on the surface, but we have to make it an ordeal on whether to wear Spongebob or Frozen tonight. After all of that, it is time to read a couple books before the lights go out.
With a sigh of relief, my day should be over. The last couple hours are divided between discussions with my wife and the two teenagers in the house, any time I can get on social media or projects that I have on-going, and the occasional tv show. Now it is time to get ready for bed, set my alarm, and hope to get enough sleep to tackle tomorrow.
Where is the writing?
Does any of this sound familiar? The details may be different, but I am sure some of you can relate. We all have commitments in our lives that drive our behavior. How are we supposed to successfully write, publish, and market a book when we don’t have the time?
Even with all that I have going on in my life, I have found the time to write and publish two books. How did I do it? I made writing a priority and a habit. My writing habits are not like many you hear. I do not have the time to set aside two hours to write every day. I do not have the luxury of being uninterrupted. My habit is formed of stealing moments to write ideas, thoughts, and do research. During the day, I will find five minutes to write a couple bullets for my book. I will try to find ten minutes to do research a couple days a week. Before dinner, I will write something similar to a blog post.
When you have a busy life, it is up to you to find the method and time to write. It is easy to come up with excuses on why we can’t do something. It is much harder to keep pushing against all odds to make it happen. Here are some tips to help you continue to make progress in your writing, even in a busy life:
- Define what you need to be successful and drive to achieve it. Whether you are closing the door to your writing area for an hour or writing notes on your cellphone, find what works and hold onto it.
- Build or join a support system. When you are alone, the challenge seems too much to overcome. Other perspectives and continued support will make this much easier.
- Write down your goals and break them down into smaller goals. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. You have to start small to achieve something big. The key is to start.
- Don't be afraid to fail. I have plenty of failures in the past year. If I was afraid to fail, I would not have succeeded. Doing something builds knowledge and experience. You can use that to drive success.
How do you find time to write in your busy life?