Respecting Your Time

ClockThe last post in my Writing Up series was all about making time to write. If you haven’t read it, take a minute and check it out. This post will still be here when you’re done.

Back? Good.

So now I’d like to talk about how you spend that coveted time. It’s simple. Use it for writing.



Especially if you can only manage fifteen minutes here and there. That is your time to work on your goal. Don’t waste it doing anything else.

Email? – It’ll still be there later. Email is the gateway drug to internet surfing. Read even one and the likeliness of getting anything else done is next to nil.

Internet? – Unless you use cloud storage, there’s no reason to even be plugged in. If you’re on your laptop, switch off the wifi. There are even apps out there to disable it for you if you don’t think you’re strong enough to do it yourself.

Invite a friend? – Unless it’s another writer who has also agreed to do nothing but write, then no.

Avoid eye contact? – If you are writing in a public space, then avoiding eye contact is important. I’ve been sucked into time-wasting conversations with total strangers just because I made that fatal eye contact.

This is your sole time to write. Don’t give it up to anyone or thing. As soon as you let a minute or two slip through, you’ll let the rest slip too. Respect the time you worked so hard to get. No one else is going to take this seriously for you. You have to show that you’re self motivated enough to make your desires, dreams, and goals come to fruition.

I guard my time by making myself look unapproachable in a public setting. Earbuds in even if there’s no music. Make sure I scowl every time I have to look up from my computer screen. Scatter my stuff about. People don’t tend to like cluttered people. Although that sometime can bring the cafe staff by more often to clean it up. So I walk a fine line. Muttering to one’s self is hit or miss. It might keep people away, but it can also encourage unwanted eye contact.

If you decide to try any of these tactics, I’ll warn you not to overdo it. I believe in the power of attraction. Acting off might keep the normals away, but full-on crazy could attract more crazy. And trust me, it’s much harder to disengage from a crazy person.

So what do you do to guard your writing time?