“Environment certainly does play a role in how productive you are, and it can readily affect your mood as well. However, it doesn’t have to be the defining factor of how much you get done on any given day, nor how creative you are. There was a time where I would tell myself that in order to get any work done, I needed to clean and rearrange my desk first, move it closer to the window to let in the light, just so I can focus a bit better. Occasionally, this can help to change things up, to give you a fresh perspective and work environment, but it’s not necessary to do every time you sit down to write (or at least it shouldn’t be). Don’t allow your environment to supersede your ability and will to be creative. Trust me, that sentiment alone has gotten me through some wonderful writing sessions. It’s important to acknowledge that a change of environment can certainly help you work better (but it isn’t what’s going to keep you productive), discipline is.”
ARE YOU PUTTING OFF YOUR WRITING?
We all have moments where we tell ourselves that we’ll get around to writing later, and more often than not, it doesn’t happen in the way we want it to. We surround ourselves with mundane tasks to prevent us from getting started for a variety of reasons, and it wasn’t until I really had time to reflect that I realized why I was constantly needing a change of environment. I had unrealistic expectations of what a work session should look like, what it should feel like. I was filling my mornings with unnecessarily cleaning up my workspace and reorganizing things that didn’t need to be organized just so I could get down to work. I really thought it would have a major impact on me and my work if I didn’t – but it didn’t do a thing.
DON’T FOCUS ON YOUR SURROUNDINGS, FOCUS ON YOUR WRITING
It’s usually incredibly quiet in my apartment, I don’t have many distractions around me, and yet I struggle to get the words down on paper. We fill our heads with the idea that your work station should look a certain way, that we should change it up in the hopes that it will have a positive effect on our work (and sometimes it does) but it isn’t going to have that effect every time we do it. Making it your mission to spend more time on the work, on the writing, on the content your producing, versus worrying about all of the menial things you could be doing will have a positive effect on your work.
YOU CAN WRITE FROM JUST ABOUT ANYWHERE, YOU KNOW?
I know, it sounds simple doesn’t it? We forget how easy it can be to pull out our laptops, or a piece of paper and a pen to simply put the words down on paper, lose ourselves in our creativity for a little while, and it can be really rewarding to forget about all of the other potential hindrances, and focus on the work we’re producing. I was in my head a lot about where I should be writing, how long I should be writing for, and what that writing meant to me. I simply forgot about actively participating in the writing.
DISCIPLINE IS NECESSARY
I was focusing on my environment, on needing a creative space because I didn’t have enough discipline to sit down and get a few hours worth of work done every day (even though I knew I had the time). I would try my best to make the environment feel worthy of an intense writing session, instead of fixing the underlying issue. That being, that I wasn’t actively involved in my writing. I wanted to get up every day and be excited to get back to creating content I loved, and I honestly thought I needed a creative space to do that. Surely, it can help sometimes, but I’ve learned that I now have the discipline to write from anywhere, at any chance I get. Don’t let your space define your work, focus your attention on your words, on what you’re creating and you’ll forget where you are for a little while.
If you’re finding it hard to get any work done, and you’re filling your mornings with rearranging the books on your desk, making sure your stationery is in order, and that everything looks good before you begin – just get straight to it. Sit down, open up your laptop, and get to work. That has been my mantra every time I wake up, because that is when I feel the most creative. When you do this every single day, you’ve created a habit and you then have the discipline necessary to continue – so much so you won’t even care what your desk looks like.
Thank you for taking the time to read this blog post!