Last week, I talked about my productivity problem — one that I know a lot of people share — and the importance of making time to play and taking time to rest.
Play and rest help boost your creativity and can bring more pleasure and focus to your work. Plus, they’re valuable in their own right.
Today’s topic is closely aligned to that idea. But instead of play, I want to talk about being still.
Author and lecturer Brené Brown cites stillness and calm as an antidote to anxiety in her 10 Guideposts for Wholehearted Living.
But the benefits of stillness don’t stop there.
Stillness is closely related to meditation, but there is a slight difference.
During meditation, it’s common to empty your mind, to acknowledge thoughts as they come, and to release them. During stillness, you may quiet your mind, but it’s common to examine the thoughts that do come up a bit more intently than you would during meditation.
When I’m practicing being still, a number of things might happen with the thoughts that arise.
I may realize that something which has been bothering me doesn’t have as much importance as I’m attaching to it.
I may discover the solution to a problem — when this happens it’s usually because I’ve been letting the problem percolate in the background. I’m not coming up with the solution, it’s simply floating to the top because I’ve taken the time to be still.
I may strike on a new approach for a project or come up with an exciting plot twist for my novel.
I may recognize that I’ve done something out of alignment with my values, giving myself an opportunity to fix it and make amends.
And whatever happens when I’m still, I almost always find that I begin breathing deeper and slower… that my muscles start to relax… and that any stress I’ve been carrying eases up.
All of these potential revelations can be helpful to my business and my writing. Stillness often brings inspiration, motivation, and clearer focus.
But even when it doesn’t, the simple reduction in stress improves my quality of work… and the enjoyment I experience while doing it.
When you find yourself feeling anxious, take 10 or 15 minutes to be still. Get comfortable. Settle in. Breathe deep. Quiet your mind. Then pay attention to what pops up. You’ll often surprise yourself. And, in most cases, after time spent being still, you’ll find your work comes easier… and is better quality, too!
New on the Site
What can help you improve your writing, give you marketing experience to offer clients, and earn a good income all at the same time? Blogging… that’s what! If you have a blog, or are planning to launch one soon, you may be wondering how to monetize it. Here you’ll find three different methods you can use for earning money from your blog.
Understanding why you do what you do, why you want to make a living as a writer, can be useful on a lot of levels… including reflecting on why you’re doing what you’re doing today. In her latest Reality Blog, Suzanna Fitzgerald looks at how she uses a “daily why” exercise to keep her focused and growing.
Want to improve your web-writing skills? You can give your writing a boost by studying a different form of writing than you usually do… like rhetoric. Check this out to learn some of the fundamentals of rhetoric and how you can use them to strengthen your own work.
Join Our Book Review Challenge!
In case you missed the initial announcement, we’ve got a Challenge running on Wealthy Web Writer. The Challenge is to write a book review that will be valuable to your fellow Wealthy Web Writers.
This is a great way to learn something new, to hone your skills, and to potentially get published (and paid!) on Wealthy Web Writer.
And if you need a little extra inspiration, check out our kick-off webinar here.
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That’s all for now. Make it a great week!