A Place to Write


Day 6 – The Space to Write (everyday inspiration)


In my head I dream of having a writing desk or a favourite coffee shop where I can tap away and be inspired to write many great things.  The reality though is….well….shall we say slightly different.  Most of the time I sat on my comfy sofa perched at one end, sometimes cross legged and sometimes stretched out balancing my tablet on my legs.  Always though at the same end facing the big window looking towards the bird feeder.  And that is exactly where I am now.

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photo from pixabay…not my sofa…I wish that was my floor…it is gorgeous!

It is by no means perfect, I am often slightly uncomfortable and frequently disrupted by Phillip telling me bits and pieces from what he is reading or by birds coming and going to the feeder.  It is though my spot.  It is where I write my thoughts, where I tell you of my adventures, where I talk of my life with anxiety.

That is not to say that I am fixed to this spot and could not write without it.  I have written perched on a tree stump in a forest, tapped away in a Starbucks (*other coffee shops are available*) or sat in my little camper.  To get attached to a spot is no longer in my nature.  The plan is to write wherever and whenever.  For now though this is my morning spot, the place I write before the day’s adventures begin and life takes me elsewhere.

For a future task coming up, I need some ideas from my readers on what you would like me to write about…pop your idea in the contact form below if you have something you would like me to write about.  Thank you!

Home is everywhere and it is anywhere


Day Three – One-Word Inspiration: Chosen prompt ‘home’


Until 3 years ago, my view of what made somewhere my ‘home’ was very different.  My home was one place, the flat we owned, the flat filled with all our things and stuff we had accumulated over the years.  It was constant and it was fixed.  Then the world changed for me and with it, so did my sense of what makes a home.

An anxiety related ever-shrinking world and a growing sense of ‘is this all there is to our lives’ led to the decision that we needed to make a fairly brutal change to our lives and really push ourselves outside of our comfort zone.  We needed to leave home.  So we sold our flat and went travelling.  This changed us in many ways and it fundamentally changed our outlook on what makes somewhere our home.  We lived in our small camper for several months touring around our home country.  Views changed, accents changed, weather changed ~ our camper changed into our home.

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When that time was over, another camper became our home all the way over in New Zealand.  It was rented and for only 5 weeks yet within days it was our home, our sanctuary, our life.

Motohome in New Zealand

Photo by ColobusYeti

All change again to Tokyo where we lived in a small room for 6 months with only a few bits and pieces to call ours.  And yes it became home almost immediately (and still is the place we have most felt at home).

Returning to the UK, we moved to a different part of the country and whilst struggling with the fact that our life had become stationary once more, our place felt like home.  Travelling changed how we viewed the word ‘home’.  Home is a feeling not a place, you don’t need to own it or fill it full of your things.  Home is everywhere and it is anywhere.

Everyday Inspiration: Day One


Day One: I write because…


Why am I here?  Who am I?  Why do I blog?

I am starting to explore the drive behind my blogging and work out what exactly it is I want to blog about rather than the kinda random approach I have at the moment.  So I have signed up to a few of the courses offered by WordPress to start learning more about blogging and myself as a blogger.  I try to write everyday in the morning, most of what I write never sees the light of day though some of my morning musings do go on to become posts on here.  What I often struggle with is what to write about and it all too often ends up as me using it like a journal.  Not a bad thing in itself yet I don’t feel like it is expanding my writing in the way I would like.  So I am starting with the ‘Everyday Inspiration’ course and starting at the beginning….

I write because….

Why do I write?  I write for a multitude of reasons.  I write because there is so much going on in my head that I need to get it out somewhere sometimes.  Because my anxiety drives me to it.  I write because I love words, I enjoy finding ways of describing the world around me and the feelings within me.  I feel I have things I want to share with other people, to help people not feel as alone as I did when my anxiety was at its worse.  I write because I want to share my experiences, to show my travels and how the world is a varied, interesting place.  I write because I am a writer and I want to keep improving, developing and sharing.

I blog because….

Why do I blog?  Again there is a whole heap of reasons why I blog, some selfish and some not so much.  I blog in the hope that I will entertain, inform, encourage and help.  I share my thoughts and experiences to find connections with others.  I blog because part of me wants validation from others that my writing is good although I know this really needs to come from within.  I blog as a way of advertising that I can write to potential employers, to build a portfolio.  Most of all though I blog because I enjoy it, I am a blogger.

 

I intend to complete each daily task on this course, some will make it on here….and some won’t.  So for a while there may be a little more of a mixture of topics on here than normal.  I hope you will enjoy them and discovering more about me as I discover more about me as a writer.

If you have any tips on daily writing practice or how you develop your writing, I’d love to hear your tips!

Seeking a feeling of achievement

I have decided to take a new approach to my writing, my work life and my attitude to getting things done.  If I want to make writing my living (and I really believe that I do), this has to become my priority.  My writing has to be the most important thing in my day, the thing I do even if I achieve nothing else work related that day.

Spending some time the other day reading through some of the links I had saved about freelancing and writing made me realise a few things about myself and how I approach my working day.  I confess that I am a list addict, I like to have lots of things on my ‘to-do’ list…mostly so I can tick them off and feel that little frisson of achievement each time I do.  However I have a tendency to get to the end of the day or week and feel that I haven’t really achieved anything significant.  The things I tick off are the easily dealt with rather than what would actually move me forward or allow me to develop myself/my work better.  I confuse activity with achievement.

I read about the ‘eat that frog’ approach of starting your day by tackling the biggest, most difficult, most important task first thing in the day.  This means achieving the big task of the day before your willpower, attention or energy is used up by all those other seemingly ‘urgent’ tasks.  Getting that sense of achievement first thing in the day and using that to fuel the rest of the day free of that feeling of ‘oh I really must do that task’ (and invariably moving it to another day) struck a chord with me so new approach part 1 is – do the most important task first thing in the working day.

This leads me very nicely on thank you to the next thing I realised.  If freelance writing is going to work for me, I need to write and I need to make it the big thing in my day, my most important task.  Okay so I was already trying to write everyday but being brutally honest I wasn’t managing to do anything on at least half the days in a week and on some days when I said ‘yep I have written today’, what I had actually done was insert photos or played around with formatting blog posts.  This is not writing!

Writing needs to become something I do every day, a habit in my life (disclaimer – at the same time though I need to accept that occasionally it simply won’t happen and not to beat myself up over my ‘failure’, I need a goal not another source of anxiety).  Only by making writing part of me will it become something I get quicker, better and more confident at.  So new approach part 2 is – to write 500 words a day (somehow seems more ‘right’ than the 1 hour of writing I was trying to do).

This explains why I was to be found the very next day after reading those links, early in the morning on my sofa, still undressed, taping away and getting words down on ‘paper’.  I had woken up thinking ‘oh maybe I will start this tomorrow…or even next week’ and then I thought no, this needs to start now – I need to start eating that frog, stop making excuses and stop putting things off.  And so I wrote.

One other thing I read was that by telling people what you want to do or what you want to achieve, this is how you make things happen.  So I made that very first early morning rambling about my new approach into a blog post…I hope you enjoyed it.

Where to next?

 

Signpost at Cape Foulwind, New Zealand

photo by ColobusYeti and available at Shutterstock

Go me!  A second post in 1 week – time to give myself a jolly good pat on the back.  I find it easy to say to myself ‘yeah but lets see if you carry it on’ or ‘why celebrate it, other people post several times a week all the time’…I want to change this though, stop listening to that negative part of me that says I am not good enough.  So yay for the little things!

My head is in quite a jumble at the moment.  There is much I am trying to make sense of and much I want to sort…all with the assistance of my ‘friends’ anxiety and depression.  They complicate life though I am determined that they will not make it impossible.  Last year was such a complex and difficult year for so many reasons – getting over the change from our wandering lifestyle and home in Tokyo to life back in the UK where we did not and still do not want to be, as well as dealing with the death of my brother the previous year.  We have come out of that year poorer and slightly battered, knowing ourselves better and tentatively taking steps to find our path onward.

I spoke last about giving my blog new life and focus.  This feels very reflective of what I want to achieve for myself as a whole.  I need change, to sort myself out.  I know I want to improve my physical and mental wellbeing, explore the world surrounding me both near and far.  We know we want to return to Tokyo or travel to new places, ideally later this year.  Join me on my efforts to have adventures, working freelance as well as my button business, rediscovering the joys of writing and that all important self-care that will get me through.  I got this!