As a writer, your creative space is sacred. You may have a space in your home dedicated to display your awesome books and a desk surrounded with all your treasured inspirations. Maybe you have a certain chair or spot on the couch that hugs you back during your writing process. I’ve swooned over incredible posts on social media of such dreamy spaces.
Unfortunately, in my house, there is no sacred space for writing. Let me repeat that and add another word. There is NO sacred or secured space for writing.
Sure, I have an office with a desk and a bookshelf. However, my books magically move on their own with the assistance of little hands. The collection of my treasured inspirations must reside on a high shelf or simply locked away. Other bums sit on my cozy couch. If you’re a mom like me, your writing space migrates based on the state of your home environment.
I have two kids, ages 4 and 11, who challenge me to be a writer EVERY DAY.
Nothing is permanent in my house. We don’t adhere to a daily schedule or bedtime routine because our schedules change. It may be work related or it may be my daughter’s cheer schedule. While we do like to plan the best way possible, we also leave room for interruptions, changes, and flexibility.
I’ve been writing since before my children were born. Things slowed during the younger ages each time. While our family is fluid, there are some tactics to carving out the time to write. I listed a few that may be helpful for others.
Communication: If you’re struggling, no one will know unless you say something. If you have a partner, talk with them about your need and desire to write. Provide them with guidelines and direction to support you. Give them ideas to occupy the kids. Talk with your kids and let them know what you are doing. This is a great lesson on respect. Ask friends and family members to lend a hand.
Portability: Your writing tool must be portable. Whether its a laptop, a phone, a tablet, or a journal, you need to be able to move at a moment’s notice as a mom. Don’t forget to hit save! Side note: I added my inspiration as stickers to my laptop. I’ve seen some moms utilize a tray table too. Whatever works.
Quiet: My house can be busy and noisy. There are times, I just want to scream, ‘Shut up!’ (And maybe I have.) This is the tricky part. Once you establish the first two parts in communication and portability, this quiet time should be scheduled or at least planned in advance. If you come home to the unexpected, but usual chaos, don’t plan to write at that time.
Stealth: Some days I have a burning desire to write and no matter the situation, I’ll find a way to make it work. Sneak in writing ANY TIME you can. For example, I’ve hidden in the bathroom with the doors locked or sat on the front porch. I’ve even ‘run an errand’ and parked at a store, then sat in my car to write. You have to get CREATIVE! If you’re a working mom, write during your lunch break, even if its for 30 minutes. There’s nothing like shoving food into your mouth while allowing crumbs to fall onto your keyboard.
Writing Goals: Set aside some major and minor goals for yourself. If you’re stomach hurts just thinking about daily writing goals, don’t do it. Make your writing goals based on what you know you can accomplish: weekly or monthly. Remember, goals are for YOU and no one else. Stop comparing yourself to others. Deadlines may help. For example, I hope to write another book by my next birthday.
Self-Care: Give yourself a break. You deserve it. Even if you do find the perfect time and space, there are moments when you lost your motivation to write. Don’t beat yourself up over it. Use that moment to refresh yourself. Read a new book. Get a pedicure. Make a cup of hot tea. Take a bath. Go for a walk. Play with your kids.
Being a good mom who’s also a good writer means taking care of yourself too.
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