Are you an overwhelmed writer that needs rescuing? Stop drowning in your to-do list and start living a more joyful creative life!
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I only recently starting calling myself a writer. Although I have never written a book, I do write in another form. I am a blogger. I write book reviews, as well as my thoughts on intentional motherhood. Those thoughts include my experiences, some successful, some complete failures. My hope is to encourage other moms to give themselves grace on this journey.
Yet, writing can be a struggle some days. I know what I want to say, but it doesn’t come out just right. I have great ideas come to mind, but the time just isn’t there to stop and write. I feel like all the tasks associated with blogging stifle my writing creativity.
Being hopeful, I accepted a courtesy advanced reader’s copy of “Overwhelmed Writer Rescue.” It called out to me with its subtitle: “Boost Productivity, Improve Time Management, and Replenish the Creator Within.”
This Mom’s Review
This book now has a permanent spot on my desk. I read through it for purposes of reviewing it. I will now go back through and apply it to my writing lifestyle, as well as other areas in my life. Then, I will give it a permanent home on my desk for easy reference. It has won all 5 stars (if I were to rate my books).
The book is made up of four parts, which easily could’ve been made into four smaller books. I appreciate the author covering so much in one book. I would easily pay for another copy if I were to misplace this one.
The Four Parts of the “Overwhelmed Writer Rescue”
Part One brings reality to the table, addressing the ‘perfect writing life’, time, being human, and the need to let it go. You will be expected to make changes and create new habits. It’s a gentle push, though. The author didn’t make me cry or shut the book angrily. I am motivated by all she has asked of me. I am finally okay with not multitasking. I found out that I don’t have to feel like a victim anymore. Those feelings of powerlessness have no place in my writing life anymore.
Part Two offers valuable tips on prioritizing, focusing, saying no, taking breaks and recognizing time thieves. Knowing your personality and tricking yourself into getting started are also covered in this section.
Part Three brings awareness as you look at seven saboteurs: writer’s guilt, disease, self-doubt, perfectionism, workaholism, destructive goal-setting, and belief.
Part Four Four addresses the area of failure. You learn to use your motivation style, to be flexible and to be persistent. Writer solutions, you know — writer’s block, are offered in this section. It ends with a prompt to answer your calling.
Q&A with Colleen
I am a busy mom that has trouble saying ‘no’ even when I want to. Would you have any advice on how someone like me can get control of her schedule?
No matter who you are, it can be difficult to say “no” when you need to. We are social creatures. We like to feel we belong to the group, and when we go against the tide, we can end up alone. That’s a scary feeling—one that often compels us to say “yes” despite our better judgment.
There are a lot of ways we can address this issue so we say “yes” only when it’s truly in our best interests. I address several of them in Overwhelmed Writer Rescue, but one of the most effective is to think about the people you admire in life—your heroes. Most likely you admire them not because they’re “nice” or because they always say “yes,” but because they strive to reach their goals and dreams, show tenacity and focus, and stay true to their purpose.
As a creative person, you have a sense of what you want to do and who you want to become. These visions rarely involve pleasing everyone. When you need to say “no,” take comfort in the fact that you’re staying true to your creative purpose and becoming more like your heroes every day.
In Overwhelmed Writer Rescue, you talk about how you don’t have to quit your day job to make your dreams come true. Can you share some of your tips for busy moms who also work outside the home?
We all fantasize about being able to create to our heart’s content without having to make money in other ways, but the reality is that the majority of writers, painters, and other artists must have a “day” job to pay the rent. So we have to use the time we have as wisely as possible.
I have a lot of tips for how you can do this, but one of the most important is to prioritize your top three activities each day. Do your three most important things (one of them should be your creative work) when you have the most energy—first thing in the morning is usually best. That way, fatigue and stress won’t stop you.
Then do your best on the rest of the items, and if you don’t finish them all, don’t worry about it. If you get the three most important things done, you can pat yourself on the back, and that’s a motivating strategy that encourages you to go after your three most important things the next day, too.
I’ve often set goals in my life to help motivate myself to accomplish more. You talk about goals in Overwhelmed Writer Rescue, but you say that sometimes they can actually discourage you?
It’s important to set the right kind of goals so that you can motivate yourself. The wrong kind of goals can seem motivating in the beginning, but then over the long term, they can actually be really destructive.
Say you’re a writer, so you decide to set a goal to have your novel become a bestseller. This seems like a worthwhile goal at first, until you spend a couple of years working really hard and you still don’t reach that goal. It’s extremely difficult to hit the bestseller’s list, and it requires a lot more than just a really good book (though of course, that’s important).
What’s destructive about this goal is that achieving it is out of your control. You can write an amazing book, and market like a master, but you just can’t guarantee how the book is going to be received on the market.
For goals to be truly motivating and to work for you long term, they must be about something you can achieve completely on your own. I give you guidelines for how to set those more encouraging goals in the book.
I have a desire to be fit and healthy. You talk in the book about how important it is for creative artists to stay well. Why is that?
No matter if you’re a doctor, a writer, a busy mom, or some combination of these, your world turns because you make it turn. If you’re pulled out of commission because of an injury or an illness—or just because you aren’t operating at optimal levels—your ability to get things done is severely compromised. Sometimes, things even come to a complete halt. So much for finding time to do your creative work.
Disease of any kind, from a mild headache to a full-blown illness or injury, saps your resources. Think of how much you normally accomplish in a day, from getting up and showering to getting dressed and eating breakfast, running daily errands and taking care of those around you, managing the stress and surprises in your life, and doing it all over again day after day.
Accomplishing even the minimum takes loads of energy. To keep up, you have to be operating at normal speed at the very least. Adding an intense activity like writing to your daily routine means you’re looking to do more than that. You don’t want to just keep up, you need to clear the way to do more. That means you need to become more productive, and trust me—how productive you are depending entirely on how good you feel.
In Overwhelmed Writer Rescue, I help readers focus on three areas of personal wellness that are critical to productivity: safeguarding your energy, keeping your brain sharp, and relieving stress.
Many moms like me are wrapped up in being perfect. We want to be the perfect wives, perfect moms, perfect employers, perfect bloggers, etc. What is your advice for how to get around these perfectionist tendencies?
Being a perfectionist isn’t all bad, and I talk about some of the positive elements of the trait, but it can also keep you from reaching your creative goals. Studies have actually shown that perfectionists are less productive than other people because they take too much time on every project, trying to make it perfect.
I have a lot of tips for how perfectionists can improve their productivity without trying to change their basic personalities. One of those is to realize that you can relax a little bit. Most perfectionists have higher standards than others. What seems good to someone else will seem mediocre to you.
As a perfectionist, when you realize this tendency, you can practice doing things a little less perfectly. On projects that aren’t priorities, do them quickly, and then let them go. Stop short of perfect, especially on things that aren’t going to matter a week or a month from now.
Learn to do some things “sub-par.” It will be painful to you, but most other people won’t even notice, and you’ll gain time to spend on things that are more important to you.
Boost productivity, improve time management, and restore your sanity while gaining insight into your unique creative nature and what it needs to thrive. Find practical, personalized solutions to help you escape the tyranny of the to-do list to nurture the genius within in Overwhelmed Writer Rescue, available today at Amazon and at all major book retailers. Enjoy your FREE chapter here!
About the Book
Book Title: Overwhelmed Writer Rescue: Boost Productivity, Improve Time Management, and Replenish the Creator Within
Author: Colleen M. Story
Category: Adult Non-Fiction, 280 pages
Publisher: Midchannel Press
Release date: Sept 3, 2017
Tour dates: Sept 4 to 15, 2017
Content Rating: G
FIND THE TIME, ENERGY, AND CONFIDENCE TO MAKE YOUR CREATIVE DREAMS COME TRUE.
Do you feel like you’re always behind? Do less important tasks frequently flood your schedule and sink your creative motivation? Are you frustrated and out of touch with your inner artist?
After 20 years experience in the writing industry, author Colleen M. Story extends a lifeline to pull you out of the sinking swamp of “busyness” and back into the flourishing creative life you deserve.
Today’s demands on writers and other creative artists are overwhelming. Not only must you produce the work you love, but build and maintain a platform and market your finished products to the world—all while holding down a day job and/or caring for a family.
You teeter on the edge. What waits on the other side are burnout, exhaustion, and a complete loss of creative motivation.
“Overwhelmed Writer Rescue” provides practical, personalized solutions to help beginning and experienced writers and other creative artists escape the tyranny of the to-do list to nurture the genius within. You’ll find ways to boost productivity, improve time management, and restore your sanity while gaining insight into your unique creative nature and what it needs to thrive.
Ultimately, you’ll discover what may be holding you back from experiencing the true joy that a creative life can bring.
Colleen M. Story has worked in the creative writing industry for over twenty years. Her novels include “Loreena’s Gift,” an Idaho Author Awards first place winner, New Apple Solo Medalist winner, Foreword Reviews INDIES Book of the Year Awards winner, Reader Views award finalist, and Best Book Awards finalist; and “Rise of the Sidenah,” a North American Book Awards winner and New Apple Book Awards Official Selection.
As a health writer, she’s authored thousands of articles for publications like “Healthline” and “Women’s Health;” worked with high-profile clients like Gerber Baby Products and Kellogg’s; and ghostwritten books on back pain, nutrition, and cancer recovery. She finds most rewarding her work as a motivational speaker and workshop leader, where she helps writers remove mental and emotional blocks and tap into their unique creative powers.
Colleen is the founder of Writing and Wellness (writingandwellness.com), a motivational site helping writers and other creative artists maintain their physical, mental, and emotional health and well-being throughout their careers. Sign up for your free weekly email containing tips for living your best creative life at: www.writingandwellness/newsletter.
To find more information on Colleen and her work, please see her website or follow her on Twitter. She loves to hear from readers—feel free to use the “contact” form on either her website or Writing and Wellness to get in touch with her.