By Mary Anne Benedetto
I seem to be one of those people who doesn’t know when to pull the plug on embarking on more projects than a reasonable person can hope to handle. Admittedly, if I don’t exercise some degree of discipline, I can easily stay glued to my computer for far too many hours, and before I even realize it, dusk is knocking at my door. I then have to stop and give some serious thought to what might be happening for dinner.
If my husband is working out of town, I have a bit more flexibility and may continue working until 9:00 or 10:00 p.m. because I am researching, adding to my Tweet list for various books, writing a blog post, investigating how to be a better book marketer, writing a book review, catching up with those pesky accounting tasks, seeking potential events for my Beach Author Network group or perhaps I’m on a productive writing roll and can’t bring myself to write just a few more words and call it a night.
Writers, whether independently or traditionally published, are typically wearing multiple hats. How can we possibly track everything we’re in the process of handling, as well as upcoming deadlines, appointments, follow-ups and obligations? Don’t we live in fear of neglecting to recall an appointment or to follow through on something we have promised?
If I could quote precisely where I read this suggestion, I would be happy to attribute it to that individual and give them a gigantic hug, but several months ago I read an article that recommended the use of a white board for organizational success. You may say, “Why bother? My calendar works just fine.”
In addition to depending on my worn-out calendar for future, as well as historical information, I have discovered that an inexpensive, medium-size white board is going a long distance in keeping me organized in this whirlwind journey on which I travel. My white board entries encompass every obligation–personal and professional for the next four weeks. There is something satisfying about removing completed tasks with one swipe of the Kleenex.
At the bottom of my board, I reserve an area to track the names of works-in-progress, whether they are nearing completion or just beginning. This enables me to view ongoing projects at a glance.
Another suggestion for preventing total burn-out is to walk away for a day or two or more. Pre-schedule your Tweets, Facebook, LinkedIn and blog posts so they can go live without the necessity of your physical presence, and then let them work for you while you take a well-deserved break in the action. It is amazingly therapeutic to clear your mind, take some long walks, spend some quiet time communicating with the Almighty Creator, read a book for sheer pleasure and give it a rest.
Sharing this with you will, hopefully, serve as my own reminder to act accordingly. I make every effort to avoid my computer on Sundays and walk away. We aren’t of any great value to anyone when we are living a frenzied existence.
We know that God intended rest for us, just as He did for Himself in Genesis 2:2–By the seventh day God had finished the work He had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all His work. And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it He rested from all the work of creating that He had done. NIV
Therefore, my friends, please consider my suggestions:
1-Rest in Him
Mary Anne Benedetto
Speaker, ghostwriter, blogger, Certified Lifewriting Instructor and author of Eyelash, Never Say Perfect, 7 Easy Steps to Memoir Writing and From Italy with Love & Limoncello, Mary Anne Benedetto’s passions include helping people preserve their life stories, creating Christian fiction, world travel and walking the spectacular South Carolina beaches. Please visit her at www.awriterspresence.com, www.maryannebenedetto.blogspot.com, www.abookfeast4u.blogspot.com and www.4womenwholove2travel.blogspot.com.