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Mindfulness For Writers – Part 2
Overcoming Writer’s Block
When you suffer from writer’s block, it is nothing more than a thought, a belief that you are stuck. Learn to ignore the thought and turn your attention to your writing and the words will flow. It may not be your best work but it will be work and mindfulness is how you get past that block.
The block can also be the result of a cluttered mind. Too much going on around you, too many thoughts buzzing around your head. This can all cause your mind to overflow and nothing else can get in. This leads to worry and the problem gets worse. Read on to find out how mindfulness can help to process all your thoughts and declutter your mind.
It Makes You Better at Editing
Copyediting can be quite a relaxing and enjoyable job, so long as you practice mindfulness and ensure that you are present. When you get more experienced at mindfulness, you will learn to recognize the superfluous thoughts and will know to block them out. Instead of skimming an awkward sentence or paragraph, you will start over, completely focused, and find that you can deal with it. If not, you need to learn when the time is right to walk away for a while and refocus your mind.
It Helps You to Proofread More Accurately
How many times have you looked at articles containing proofreading tricks and tips? Proofreading is tough work, very detailed and any proofreader worth their salt knows that you need some tricks up your sleeve. Mark Twain once said that at times you may think it is proof you are reading but, instead, you are only reading our own mind. He said that “your statement of the thing is full of holes and vacancies but you don’t know it; you are merely filling them in from your mind”.
There is an antidote to this filling in from your mind – learn to recognize that you are not practicing mindfulness. You will learn to tell when you just want the job finished; when you are just skimming rather than reading every word, sentence, clause, space, etc. When you practice mindfulness, you can focus more on your work because you will know when your mind is beginning to slip away and you can bring it back.
Simple Mindfulness and Decluttering Practice
This is quite simple to do but is very effective. Lie down on a comfortable sofa, your bed, even the floor, but don’t get too comfortable. Close your eyes, focus on each part of your body in turn, relaxing each part as you go. Or you can count your breaths. Notice exactly what you are thinking about at every moment but stay out of it – don’t get involved, just be an observer, focusing on your breathing or on relaxing.
As you watch those thoughts, allow them to wander as they usually do. When you find yourself beginning to get involved in thought, let it go. Return to that nice relaxation. That thought will turn to something else or you can make it change and, eventually, all of your thoughts will quieten down.
Once your mind is decluttered, you will feel more energized and relaxed, less worried, anxious and blocked. And you will find that you can focus entirely on your writing, exactly the way you want to.
Written by Readers’ Favorite Reviewer Anne-Marie Reynolds