As a writer I know from my past mistakes how easy it is to fall bad habits while trying to pursue a writing career. We get so involved in our writing that sometimes we fail to see that we haven’t eaten right, lack exercise and the only light we see is that glowing burn from our screens. Before you know it, you’ve packed on the pounds, turned an awful shade of pale, and walking to the bathroom leaves you out of breath.
Set yourself up with some healthy habits and not only will your writing improve, but your body will thank you!
When I first decided to pursue writing I was very excited about the idea of setting my own hours, having more time for my family, and being known as a writer. But what I wasn’t prepared for was that it wasn’t as easy as sitting down and writing a few thousands perfect words and then sending it off to be praised by everyone who read my masterpiece. In fact there is a lot more to a writing career than actual writing. So after a few months I found myself skipping breakfast, sometimes lunch, hoarding chips in my desk, and drinking way too much coffee. And 15lbs later, I realized I wasn’t an instant success and the only thing I’d gained from losing my healthy track was more jiggle when I emerged from my office.
So now every morning before I make my way to my office I have a quick easy breakfast. A quick yogurt parfait, a frozen egg biscuit sandwich that I’ve made ahead on the weekend, or just a simple toast with avocado and feta are quick options that take little time and effort and can be taken with you.
Pack yourself healthy snacks for the day. I like to grab some crunchy nuts and mix them with some dried fruit, toss them into a small mason jar. Then when I feel the snack need coming on, I have something I don’t feel bad about reaching for. Sometimes I’ll even add some ranch dressing to the bottom of a small jar and toss carrot sticks in so I have a small pre-measured snack.
Don’t forget to have lunch! I still struggle with this one. I get into a good groove around noon and I have a hard time stopping to go make lunch. So I set a reminder to have lunch and take a break around 1 and get into a routine of stopping for lunch, stretching, and getting away from my desk.
Don’t Forget The Water!
No, drinking 4 cups of coffee doesn’t count as drinking water. Go ahead, have that cup of coffee if that gets your day started. But pack a fruit water into your day by tossing in some frozen fruit a few ice cubes and a straw into your cup. Try taking a few sips as you sit back to reread what you wrote, or set a timer to take a sip every 30 minutes. Before you know it, you’ll have gotten your daily water intake.
Breaks are important to the writing process
Make a routine out of getting up, walking around, stretching, and getting some water in between you lunch break and the end of the day. Clearing your head and getting movement into your body is not only good for your body but for your brain. How many times have we gotten stuck in our chairs trying to write or take care of business only to see that 3 hours have gone by and only noticed this because we have to go to the bathroom?
I like to take a few minutes to walk away from technology – phones, computers, ect. and get outside. No matter what the weather, getting outside and getting some fresh air is the best way to reset my train of thought and energize. Often I’ll let my co-workers outside to stretch and wag their tails, go out with them and get some yoga movements in and blood flow back to my limbs. You writing will still be there when you get back, but taking care of yourself must be a priority too.
Need a quick pep up? Put on your earbuds and dance music, get your body moving and enjoy being alive! No matter where you are, good music and a quick dance party is sure to bring a smile to your face and some motivation to your writing. That extra dose of oxygen is great for your thinking!
We all have deadlines, schedules, and pressure to accomplish it all in a day. But stress can be a real dead-end for your writing pieces. It’s hard to focus on good writing when you are thinking about how you are going to pay for car repairs, fights with your family, or the drama on Facebook. Take some time when you feel the distraction to calm your mind, meditate, and focus on your writing. You can’t solve every problem. You have to keep moving because you can’t go backwards. And most of all, bad thoughts mean bad writing.
Even for an emotional writer like myself, sometimes I just have to stop and find my happy place for a while before going back to a particular heavy place. My own emotional health is more important than sinking into the depths of stress and frustration. When I am having a hard time letting it go, I know there is a special place called the Internet filled with funny baby animal videos sure to make me smile. It’s okay to be human and need a mental break.
We are all guilty of trying to do too many things in a day and letting our health take the backseat. But with just a few healthy habits, we don’t have to. It becomes easy and routine, so we can focus on being terrific writers.
What healthy tips do you have for healthy blogging?