Save on office supplies at Amazon.


12 great ways to clear mental clutter for writing

Daily distractions detour determination.

Seriously, constant interruptions create stressful situations for writers, whether we work in publishing offices, corporate alcoves or home offices. Virtually every wordsmith groans about the perils of thought tangents.

What spontaneous interferences cause the most commotion for communications professionals? Some of the most cited culprits include:

  • chatty colleagues or cohabitants
  • city sounds
  • kinetic kids
  • loud music or TV
  • mental to-do lists
  • nosy neighbors
  • persistent pets
  • ringing phones
  • virtual game invitations
  • and more.
 Conflicting responsibilities and simultaneous deadlines can wreak havoc on writers’ powers of concentration.

Freelancers, in particular, often wear multiple hats.

Perhaps we punch out of on-site jobs and begin punching stories or articles on our laptop computers or tablets in our spare time. Maybe we work at home because we also parent young children at the same time. Especially in the summertime, when school kids are out and about, distractions are a given for at-home writers.

For a host of reasons, our brainpower may seem to seep away at a moment’s notice, when we are interrupted or lured from our work.

What can creative communicators do to minimize such mayhem?

Short of slipping away for some seclusion (as many poets and novelists have been wont to do), we working writers can reset our thought processes in several ways. Here are 12 practical ways wordsmiths may step back for a few moments to recollect our thoughts for more focused and productive writing.

  1. Walk around the block, or ride a bike.
  2. Phone a friend for a casual conversation.
  3. Take a drive, and crank up your favorite tunes.
  4. Read a book or a short story.
  5. Do some desk work to clear away clutter, and sort story files for future writings.
  6. Close a few internet windows, shutting down social networking sites for a while.
  7. Work a crossword, Sudoku, or jigsaw puzzle.
  8. Prepare a snack for yourself and those around you.
  9. Fold laundry, while ironing out your thoughts.
  10. Play a game, either electronically or with others.
  11. Make music. Play an instrument, sing, jam, or just dance.
  12. Stand in the shower, letting ideas soak in.

Most of these simple diversions take little time, but they offer writers a chance to take a break from composing copy, editing complex materials, or pondering potential topics. Often, these short stops help us to refocus our thoughts, while also giving us opportunities to interact with those who may be clamoring most for our attention.

Sometimes short stops rejuvenate writers, even as these brief breaks reassemble our reflections for increased awareness and productivity.

Curious facial Expression by Tine Steiss –
Creative Commons Licensing/Wikipedia Commons Photos

Feel free to follow on GooglePlus and Twitter. You are also invited to join this writer's fan page, as well as the Chicago Etiquette Examiner, Madison Holidays Examiner, Equestrian Examiner, Madison Equestrian Examiner, and Working in Words on Facebook.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Agree? Disagree? Have related insights, ideas, or a story to share? Feel free to comment, and let Working in Words know you were here.