Maybe you’ve heard the quote, “Being a good writer is 3% talent, 97% not being distracted by the internet.”
Focusing as a freelance writer can be much more challenging than the actual writing. Working freelance jobs requires you to maintain even more clarity, creativity, and productivity throughout your workday because it’s easier to get distracted. Hello, internet!
The key to having the energy for your daily writing tasks may just be hidden in how you transition.
A transition in your writing day could be going from sharing your latest piece on social media to chatting on the phone with a client. Or, from checking your email to writing copy for a sales page. Every time you switch tasks, that’s a transition. And it’s an opportunity to really focus on your goals for the next tasks, or completely lose your focus.
In his book ‘High-Performance Habits,’ Brendon Burchard says, “Every day, people lose tremendous amounts of focus, will, and emotional energy by managing transitions poorly. They also lose the benefit of greater mental and physical stamina throughout the day.”
Freelance writers and creatives are no exception to this. So what is one to do?
A strategy to release and set intention
Brendon calls transitions “a powerful space of freedom between activities.” As a No. 1 New York Times best-selling author and high-performance coach, Brendon knows a thing or two about making transitions work for you whether writing or performing other important tasks.
He suggests before you move from one task to another, that you stop and close your eyes and repeat the word “release” for a minute or two. Focus on releasing the tension in your physical body and your mind and let go of the last task to be ready for the next one.
Once you have released, the next step in this strategy is to set your intention. “Think about what you want to feel and achieve in the next activity you’re about to take on when you open your eyes.”
Consider asking yourself these questions from the book or similar ones:
- What energy do I want to bring into this next activity?
- How can I do this next activity with excellence?
- How can I enjoy the process?
This is not woo-woo stuff. This is science-backed and can help you move more deliberately through your day with less stress and more presence while feeling better and bringing your best self to your work. Think about how much better you will be serving your readers and clients with this much focus and clarity.
You can also use this technique to transition from work to home and be a better version of yourself for your family becoming present with not only your work but also your life.
Consider setting a timer for a certain work period and using a few minutes in between to release and focus. Brendon recommends 50-minute work sprints using the last 10 or so minutes to move your body, release, and ask relevant questions to reset your body and mind for the next sprint.
Use technology to help
Brainstorm and check-in with yourself to stay fresh and keep those great ideas coming and the writing flowing. Set a digital timer to remind you when it is time to stop and release before moving on.
Write down the questions you want to ask yourself to give your best and keep them by your desk or put them as reminders to pop up on your phone or computer.
Renewed focus and energy for the win!