Monday, May 7

HIT REFRESH


Join us in welcoming prolific author and uber-helpful Joan Reeves to Word Wranglers today. I always love reading her blog posts on SlingWords and this guest post is no exception to that rule. Take it away, Joan.

We're all acquainted with the Refresh button on your web browser. You hit Refresh in order for a web page to update, to show new information, or to reflect changes made.

Wouldn't it be nice if we had a button to hit when we need to be refreshed? Like webpages, we too need a way to recharge – our imagination, our writing, our career, and, sometimes life itself.

Sadly, we don't carry a Refresh button. So what can we do when we just don't feel motivated to tackle that book project or article contract or just to spruce up the home or weed the flower garden?

7 Refresh Strategies

1. Take action.

Regardless of how you feel mentally, emotionally, or physically, take action. This is the "Just Do It" principle. The smallest step forward is still a step forward.

You can't wait for the planets to align – or to be in an optimistic mood or pain-free or whatever – in order to accomplish something you want or need to do. Chances are you have a job in the outside world. You go to that job whether you're happy or sad. Often you go whether you're healthy or sick.

Goal achievement must command the same dedication. If your garden needs weeding, then take an action to achieve that no matter how small the action. Do it even if you're depressed. If you want to write a book, then write every day even if it's only 100 words. Set a quota and meet it even if you're sick, depressed, homesick, or ecstatically happy.

2. Grow an attitude of belief in yourself.

If you find yourself constantly thinking negative, defeating thoughts then do some inner exploration to figure out why you like to beat yourself up. Lack of confidence in one's own abilities is a killer. Face your demons in order to silence them. Write out a script that changes your self-talk from sabotaging to empowering.

3. Hang around with people who are winners.

Winners are people who are charged up with creativity, excitement, and optimism. Chances are many of them are trying to achieve something worthwhile – maybe the same thing you want to gain. Let their enthusiasm expand and rub off on you. Add people like that to your list of friends.

4. Avoid the nay-sayers.

Stay away from people who are only too happy – and quick – to tell you why you can't get what you want. These people are easy to identify. They're the ones who bitch and moan 99% of the time. They are black holes in your universe, and they will suck the life, ambition, and motivation right out of you.

5. Be very specific about what you want.

You can have anything you want, but you can't have everything so figure out what it is you really want. Is it to be a mystery novelist, a crime writer, a romance novelist, or a nonfiction writer? You have to know it in order to go after it. Once you figure it out, then think about it, dream about it, visualize achieving it. Get deep-down enthusiastic about it.

6. Make a list of strategies to help you through challenging times.

A law of the universe seems to be that if you set a goal, the storms of life will immediately beset you. Plan for this in advance. Write down what you're going to do when you're sick and need to write, when you're depressed, when you get rejected, when your sales plummet, when you're overworked, when your kids are sick, etc. Know how you will handle those situations and get work accomplished anyway.

7. Know when to take a step back and rest.

Sometimes, you just have to take a seat on the sidelines and rest. Rest emotionally. Rest mentally. Rest physically. Know yourself and your limitations. When you need this, don't hesitate to step aside for a while.

Avoid burnout and start using some of these techniques today. Figure out others that might work for you. Take mine and change them. The U. S. Marines say: "Improvise, overcome, adapt."

To that, I add, "Refresh."

Joan Reeves (http://www.JoanReeves.com) is a best-selling Kindle author of romantic comedy. She publishes the popular blog SlingWords (http://SlingWords.blogspot.com) as well as Writing Hacks (http://eepurl.com/fX7JT), a free subscription newsletter for writers. Look for Joan's new romantic comedy SCENTS and SENSUALITY, at all major ebook sellers, May 2012.

22 comments:

  1. What good advice. Thanks for coming and sharing today, Joan. I love that title, by the way.

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    1. Hi, Liz. Thanks for having me here. I ended up having to leave the office early this morning and just now getting back. Ah, the best laid plans of mice and women authors, huh?

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  2. Great advice, Joan! I enjoy cleaning and rearranging my furniture as a "refresher". That way, knowning my house is clean, I don't feel guilty about sitting her writing.

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    1. I used to rearrange furniture too until I injured my back. That put an end to that! Now I rearrange piles of paper. *g*

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  3. #4!!! So important - and hard to do. There are people who only serve to tear us down, and excising them from our lives - or at least quieting their noise so we can move forward - is so hard to do. Necessary, but hard.

    Great advice, Joan, thanks for coming by WordWranglers today!!

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    1. Thank you, Kristina! Yes, #4 is the hardest because too many of us have close family members who fit that description.

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  4. Hi, thanks for visiting WW today! Great tips, thank you.

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  5. Wonderful post! And so timely for me. I'm nearing the end of my pregnancy and I just don't have the energy or ability to get everything done. It can be a bit depressing. Remembering small steps are still steps forward is so important.

    Thank you!

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    1. Hey, pregnancy is one of the most important Works In Progress that you'll ever undertake! Cut yourself a break and enjoy the moments.

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  6. Great post, and useful tips! Thanks for stopping by. I needed this.

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  7. Great advice, not only for writing but in our daily life. I have a cousin who's handicapped,depressed and so negative, he manages to depress anyone who spends an hour with him. I am going to repeat to himaid here,

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    1. Life can be so challenging for so many people. Those who are happiest are those who refuse to be beat down. I also have a family member who has had those kinds of challenges, and he never complains. When I find myself moaning about something, I think about him and immediately am ashamed of how I act. He's a joy to be around and an inspiration to remember to embrace optimism.

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  8. Thanks Joan. Very timely. Not refreshing myslf I found was my biggest black hole. I'm learning to step away and breath for a minute.

    Cora Blu

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    1. Good for you, Cora Blu. Too many of us are our own worst enemy. We need to learn to be our own best friend instead.

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  9. Yes, this helpful list is timely. Love them all, but #2 is right-on. If you can't believe in yourself, no one else will either. Thanks!

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    1. Hey, Carol. Yes, that's crucial. Sometimes, belief in yourself is all you've got. Nurture it.

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  10. My daughter and I call negative people Emotional Vampires. They can be exhausting. Better to be positive. We do need occationally to step back and let our minds and bodies recharge. Thanks, Joan.

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  11. Great advice for all of us! A positive attitude can make all the difference in life.

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  12. Love the column...another Joan Reeves winner and love the cover of the new book!

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