Punishment vs Reward
Writing should be fun and inspirational, but how do you do it more often. I often think of writing like exercise:
- It’s something I want to do;
- It’s something I need to do;
- It’s something that will benefit me;
- If I build it into my routine it becomes easier;
- It’s something I don’t have time for;
- I just don’t feel like it right now.
Number 5 and 6 can make you go years without writing. Either you don’t have the time or just don’t feel like it. A lot of people will set about to punish themselves. In almost every case, this is a bad solution and won’t work in the long term. Sometimes punishments can masquerade as time management or self improvement. Some examples of punishment might be:
- I’ll stop watching television;
- I’ll spend less time hanging out with my friends;
- I won’t play video games ever again.
Taking something out of your life that you enjoy isn’t a permanent solution. You might find yourself writing more, but you might also end up being more unhappy. Certainly if there are things that waste your time that you don’t enjoy, cut those out. That would be a reward, so go for it. Otherwise, think about rewards that work for you.
- Once I complete my first chapter, I’m going to buy myself that new pair of shoes I’ve been wanting;
- I’m going to watch an hour of television right after I write a poem;
- Once I’ve completed that short story, I’m going to play video games.
For those who have very little time, keep in mind the time where you wait. Almost everyone has to wait for something at some point. You wait for the doctor, the dentist, friends, business meetings, family members, husbands, and wives. For those who take buses, trains, or planes, you can write while you’re commuting. In all of this time you spend waiting, you might be able to get a full novel complete within 2 years.
Good luck, and starting writing again. Feel free to contact me if you want to chat about your next project.