If you’re an anxious writer, you can rest assured that sooner or later the anxiety you struggle with will seep into your work. Everything from your writing style to your tone, voice, and perspective can become tainted with tension and unease, discomfort and discouragement.
If you find that you’re nodding your head in agreement, here are five simple tips to help put your mind at ease and infuse your work process with tranquility as you sit down to compose and edit your work each day.
1) Don’t Start Off Stressed
It’s easy to feel that stress and anxiety creeping in as you prepare for your workday. Deadlines, complicated projects, and unfinished manuscripts can call your name, beckoning you to proactively fret and worry about the work that lies ahead.
In order to combat this tendency to start off on the wrong foot, take some time at the beginning of each workday to slow down and think. Try any or all of the following activities to set the tone for your day:
Practice mindfulness: Take some time to consider what you’re thankful for and why it’s a positive thing that you get to write each day.
Find a good morning routine: Whether it’s making a bulletproof coffee, taking a shower, or sitting and listening to some good music (or all of the above), try to find a calming routine to help you shift into gear each day.
Engage in meditation and prayer: If you make an effort to slow down, meditate, and pray you’ll be able to consciously clear out those negative thoughts and focus on a “cup half full” mentality.
Organize your schedule: While you may feel the urgency to dive into a writing project first thing, try to slow yourself down and come up with an organized list of your daily tasks before you start writing. Sort your list by priority and make sure that you’re tackling them in the right order.
If you can start your day off in the right mindset, you’ll be better able to stay focused and stress-free as you go.
2) Consider What Matters
When looking for ways to decrease the stress in your writing, it’s important to ask yourself the question “what matters to you?” This is helpful for finding workplace satisfaction in all fields, from nursing to coal mining, marketing, sales … and writing.
If you approach your work with a “what matters here?” mentality, you’ll be able to better align yourself with the most important aspects of your labor. For instance, if you find yourself writing marketing text to make a living, you may feel tempted to focus on the negative aspects of the “sales-y” writing that you have to compose on a regular basis.
However, if what truly matters to you is the ability to create written content, regardless of the subject matter, focusing on that objective can help you find peace, tranquility, and contentment as you go about your work each day.
3) Fuel Yourself
While the mental battle is important, it’s also crucial to focus on your physical state. As you work throughout the day, take time to properly hydrate, eat healthy food, and get up and stretch and exercise on a regular basis.
If your struggle with anxiety is more profound, you can also try something like CBD oil or even seek professional help to find a medication that aids you in calming your mind.
4) Use The Pomodoro Technique
Another excellent way to help keep yourself focused and calm is to utilize the Pomodoro Technique. This productivity booster has you focus intensely for 25 to 40-minute intervals after which you take a five-minute break.
These breaks provide good opportunities for basic self-care needs (such as going to the bathroom, drinking water, or eating something) and can also allow your brain to rest and refocus.
5) Set Up Your Environment for Tranquility
Finally, make sure to create a writing environment that is optimized for peace. If you plop yourself down in an uncomfortable chair and begin typing away on a small screen in a cramped space, you’re not likely to feel relaxed or peaceful as you work. Instead, try some of the following:
- Get a good chair with lumbar support.
- Make sure your screen is big enough to see clearly.
- Use eye drops to keep your eyes from drying out.
- Set up a diffuser and some essential oils in your workspace.
- Have a workspace that is separate from your living space.
- Light candles to invite a creative atmosphere.
- Occasionally seek out a coffee shop or library to change your setting and boost your creativity.
If you take the time to set up an ideal work environment, it will help to keep you calm and settle your emotions as you work.
Maintaining Tranquility in a Work Atmosphere
One in 10 Americans struggle with work addiction, and the results lead to anxiety, stress, and a lack of productivity. However, if you take the time to observe the above steps and aim for an anxiety-free workday you’ll be able to better focus, increase your productivity, and feel confident enough to finish your work at a reasonable time every day.
Indiana Lee is a writer and journalist from the Pacific Northwest with a passion for covering workplace issues, social justice, environmental protection, and more. In her off time she enjoys hiking with her two dogs. You can follow her on twitter @indianalee3, or reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org