Writing is not easy and many distractions can keep you from being effective for your writing sessions. The biggest challenge that any writer can face is to stay focused. Despite their efforts, many authors are easily distracted and may have a hard time getting back into the writing job. But creating the right mindset and remembering the potential distractions that exist and following some of the below-discussed strategies will help you get your writing back on track.
Here are a few tips to avoid losing your goal and preserve your concentration.
1. Set goals
Treat yourself to the specific assignments such as “End of Chapter 1 on Monday” or “Write five pages of Chapter 2 on Wednesday.” Treat your writing, as if it were an everyday job. Every time you get distracted stay motivated by re-reading your goals and remind yourself of what you are trying to do and why you’re doing it.
2. Designate the writing time
Even one hour a day would be enough. Find a time that fits into your schedule, perhaps right before bed or after you put the kids to sleep. If you are a morning person, get up early and write for an hour before going to work. Do not let your busy schedule stop you because a lot of quality of writing can be done in a short amount of time.
3. Create a designated writing space, or “room of your own”
You might get distracted easily when the TV is on or when background noise interferes with your peace. Everything becomes an excuse to ignore the script and the risk of losing motivation very quickly. Feel free to isolate yourself, preferably in a room or a quiet place. A home office would be ideal, but if you do not have one, get an isolated area in your home with a curtain or partition so that your family or roommates know that you are working and should not be disturbed. If you do not have the luxury of your own writing space at home, find a place outside of the home that is conducive to writing, whether it’s a coffee shop, dinner or the park. Being surrounded by people often can be motivating and perhaps a snippet of conversation or a taste of body language can spark your next idea for the job.
4. Avoid distractions
The Internet can particularly be harmful to a writer. Do not check email until your writing is done for the day and avoid the social networking sites like Facebook and Myspace. Better yet, unplug your Internet altogether during your writing time. It may also be helpful to turn off the ringer of the land line and turn off your phone.
5. Play some background music
The music can be very relaxing and helps to stimulate the brain waves, according to the Association of Fitness and Health. Put a little classical or environment because the soft melody music can help you relax and focus, while also drown out background noise.
6. Have an objective
A clear objective is critical to success. Here are 4 steps to help you define a clear goal:
- Step 1: reflect on the place that writing in your life. Is this really something essential for you?
- Step 2: visualize the outcome you want to achieve. Concretely (a draft in your hands, a published book, etc.) and emotional (what do you feel when you have succeeded?).
- Step 3: Plan the different steps to follow to achieve your goal, whether short or long term.
- Step 4: To stay motivated, get inspired by your role models.
7. Try the Pomodoro Technique
You’ll want to consider the so-called Pomodoro Technique: strategy developed in the late eighties by the Italian student Francesco Cirillo, which allows better management of time increasing your ability to concentrate.
This strategy is constituted of 5 different phases, which can be summarized in the points listed below:
- Planning (from early morning to realize to identify activities to do during the day);
- Detection (to be carried out during all the hours of work to earn and collect the raw data regarding the effort and other similar metrics);
- Registration (to be realized in the evening to collect a file daily surveys);
- Processing (to be implemented at the end of the day to transform raw data into practical information);
- Display (to be carried out in the evening to present the information obtained in the previous step in a format that simplifies observation and helps choose the improvement actions to put into practice).
From day one, you learn to put the odds in your favor to succeed in achieving your goal and finish your writing job. You will then see how to adapt your project to your schedule. Find the balance between your passion and your daily obligations. You will find many tips to increase your productivity without losing the pleasure of writing without neglecting your surroundings.