You're a mom. Sometimes it feels like you don't have time for anything. And how can you? How can you write when you have a to-do list longer than the Great Wall of China? If you had free time, you'd write. Right?
But you do.
I used to tell myself this because to me, writing used to mean sitting down for hours at a time letting inspiration flow through me in an almost ceremonial way. That was before I became a mom. Before I spent most of my days with cuddle fights, cleaning dishes, floors, cuts, scrapes, reading tiny books over and over. I love my busy kiddo filled days because I love being a mom, but somehow I got it into my head that that meant I simply didn't have time to write anymore.
But I did.
I'm in a Facebook group for eating healthy and a woman posted that she just didn't have enough time to make a healthy meal every single day and she felt it was impossible to eat healthy if she didn't have the time. The advice she got was pretty standard: Make a meal plan, Follow easier recipes, etc. And then I saw this suggestion that changed my life:
Put your healthy food in front of you. Get a veggie platter, fruit, or a healthy snack out of the fridge and on the counter throughout the day. That way if you don't always eat a healthy meal, at least you are eating healthy snacks.Genius! I thought. But ahem, let me stop for a second to address that you might be thinking eating vegetables is what changed my life. Well, yes, but no. That is not the Happily Ever After I'm heading towards. It's how I used that advice that made me realize I do have time to write.
When you're going throughout your day how many times does an idea pop into your head? And how many times does a dialogue scene play out, or a plot idea? And how many times do you just let it slosh around in your brain until you forget?
The thought of opening up your laptop to write out the entire scene might not be an option. But it's not your only option!
A successful writing session doesn't have to be hours of zoning out. Just like the idea of putting vegetables in front of you to eat healthier, put writing in front of you. Make it easier to quickly jot your ideas down.
- Get a thought journal that has a pen attached to it so you're never frantically searching for one. Keep it somewhere you won't lose it and that the kids can't reach it. AND NOT IN SOME DRAWER. Somewhere you'll see it.
- Use your phone. I use Google Keep because then I can access what I've written from my computer. I'd advise not to use an app that has way more cool features, because really, you just want to open it up, and get your thoughts on there before you've got a clean up on isle the kid'(s)' room.
- Get a white board and hang it on the wall. Write down your thoughts there. If you don't want your whole family seeing it, or if it gets too full, take a pic with your phone and erase. And if you really don't want to miss an idea there's this,
- Surround yourself with what will inspire you to write. There's no rule that says you can only keep your writing stuff in your writing nook. An awesome quote on the living room wall might just look good. Gasp. And even in the kitchen! It doesn't even have to be a quote. It could be a painting or photograph that makes you feel like a writer.
- MAKE SOME TIME. There's nothing wrong with taking time for yourself. You work hard. You deserve it. And you will be happier and better for it. But as tempting as just zoning out and watching TV sounds, don't do it. Ok, you can watch some TV. I'll be the first to admit I like my shows and I'm not ashamed, but don't give all of the time you've made for yourself to TV.
- Call yourself a writer. You can surround yourself with the idea that you're a writer but you have got to believe it. No, you probably aren't spending hours and hours writing unless you go to the occasional retreat, but writing is writing. No matter how unconventional your way of doing it is.
- Something is better than nothing. If you think what you're jotting down is pointless, it's not. This is J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix on one piece of paper.
So just do it. If this is your writing zone,