I love the internet.
I love being able to search for information about pretty much anything and having a ton of resources at my fingertips within seconds.
I love being able to keep up with my friends on social media.
I love being able to quickly find special events happening around town, so I can try new things.
I love the connectivity… the speed… the possibilities that just weren’t there before the internet became so integrated into our everyday lives.
But, that doesn’t mean I always want to be plugged in.
I try to make it a point to have times where I’m completely unplugged. No phone. No TV. No computer.
Just me and a book… or me and a friend conversing over coffee… or me and my family walking through the woods.
These unplugged times are often the best times. And they really make a difference in how creative and productive I feel overall.
I’ve found that a 1-1-1 approach works pretty well for making sure I stay refreshed and energized and that I’m not turning to my screen simply because I’m bored.
So… what is that? 1-1-1?
Well… at least one (1-1-1) hour each day, I try to stay away from screens. And by one hour I mean one solid hour. Not an hour broken up throughout the day. A deliberate hour where I’m mindfully choosing to spend my time unplugged.
The next one (1-1-1) is for one day a week. Be honest… when was the last time you took a whole day and just unplugged completely? No internet. No screen time. If I’m honest, I don’t hold to the one day a week rule as well as I’d like to… I usually end up watching a movie with my family at some point. But when I do hold to it, I notice the positive difference.
The third one (1-1-1) is for one weekend a month. Try it… for one whole weekend every month, commit to no screens. No internet. No phones. No TV. Not even a movie theater.
Play board games. Go for walks. Linger over a cup of coffee and talk through all the problems of the world with a friend.
Go see a play.
Unplug for the whole weekend, and I won’t promise you that you’ll hit the ground running on the Monday following… but I will bet that you’ll have a more productive week overall.
And that you feel better. More grounded. More connected with the people closest to you, including yourself.
If you want to add one more one (1-1-1-1), take one week a quarter and do the same thing.
Do this consistently and you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it!
New This Week
You’ve heard the mantra to write every day… but maybe you’ve wondered how to make sure you’re really creating something useful from your daily writing practice. This baseball analogy from Mike Logan can help you structure your daily writing to see to it that you’re producing content you can use to build your writing business.
Have you ever thought about writing Google Ads? Recently, Andrew Murray landed a project writing Google Ads and discovered it was a lot of fun. He shares what he learned in his latest Reality Blog.
Speaking of taking time to unplug, making time to play is a great way to do that. For ideas on how to incorporate play into your adult life, make sure you check out this week’s featured article from Hayley Michaels.
Mark Your Calendar
August 1: Join us for a live webinar with Jay White. During this event, Jay will talk about key components that go into writing an effective email. And then he’ll review examples of real-life email messages to highlight what’s working and what changes he would recommend to make each email stronger. Details are here.
Around the Web
This starts out with a question we should all ask ourselves… plus some tips on how to conduct interviews for social media platforms.
Some good tips for using an e-newsletter to build your following if you have a book. I think these apply well to web writers, too. And there’s a great list of 20 ideas at the end.
Not every story has to be a BIG story. Sometimes your small stories are the ones that will build the deepest connects. Thanks to Ann Handley for this.
This is geared toward web designers but can be tweaked for writers. For example, what kind of free product can you create that offers tremendous value and also gives you a chance to promote your services?
That’s all for now. Make it a great week!