Creating When You Can't Focus

Saturday, October 17, 2020

I don't know what to blame lately. COVID? The election? My ever changing, ever elusive writing goals? Whatever the reason is, I can't seem to focus too well lately. At least, not on creative stuff. So, what's a writer to do? Today, I thought I'd put together a few suggestions on what to do if you have a hard time focusing on your creative project lately.

1) Make bite-sized goals or tasks.

If you are trying to get yourself back on track with writing, set mini tasks for yourself. Things like: do a 20 minute writing session three times a week, outline a particular project, or write at least 100 words at the end of your work day. Whatever your desire is, whether it's to finish a book or complete a short story or memoir, set mini goals. For me, my personal mini goal is to get out my spiral bound notebook and finish a story I had started. I'm convinced handwriting it will help me.

2) Cut back on social media.

Isn't social media irresistable? In the worst way possible, social media can rope me into a spiral downward these days. It's also really hard to let go once I start. So, I've committed to limit my social media intake. If you can, at least remove the apps from your phone. I think that helps me the best. It's good to stay informed, reach out to your community, and boost your audience platform, but there comes a point when it's doing more harm than good.

3) Write out your distractions.

Sometimes if I can't get out of my own mindset, journaling the stuff distracting me is so helpful. Sometimes getting it out of my head is like a reset button. So, if you are distracted or unable to focus on something creative, write about what IS occupying your mind. You'll relieve stress and get some words in for the day.

With any luck, these ideas will help you. In all honesty, it's quite possible will all just need to ride the wave of 2020 and just do what we can, however we can. But maybe we can get ourselves back on track. 


Jeanine DeHoney said...

Nicole, yes, there are so many things distracting us and happening that makes it difficult to concentrate on any creative project. Your suggestion of working on mini tasks, making bite sized goals definitely works. I do that a lot when I'm having a hard time getting back on track. Great post.

Sioux Roslawski said...

Nicole--Using your distraction to your advantage is wonderful advice. Yes, this is a strange and trying time. Politics and the virus have messed all of us up.

Sue Bradford Edwards said...

Sometimes social media just needs to go! Both because it is a distraction (good) but also because it weighs you down with all the squabbles.

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