Feeding Your Creative Spirit—Are You Filling the Well or Draining it Dry? by Edie Melson

I’ve had a
crazy few months. Between writing deadlines, family crisis’ and summer
craziness, I’m running on empty. But I don’t have time to lay out for a couple
of weeks and recover. There are still more commitments and deadlines looming in
the near future.
So how do I keep
going and find a way to feed my creative spirit? I do a little inventory and
then get my schedule down to the basics.
The first
thing I’m dealing with is mental fatigue.
My mind is like a muscled that’s been overworked. It needs time to
recuperate. To give it the time it needs, I’ll be watching the clock while I’m
working and taking frequent breaks during the day. I’ll wander around my yard,
have lunch with a friend, or just sit and enjoy a TV show.
Next on my
list of issues is a disrupted routine.
Many of you know I keep a pretty regular schedule. I have to, I’m too
easily distracted as it is. A schedule helps me focus and stay productive. But
the past few months my schedule has consisted of sitting in front of the
computer for twelve to fourteen hours a day, seven days a week. No one can
sustain that kind of workload for any length of time.
So I’ll become
very rigid with my schedule (including the break times). This will help me stay
on track, even as I give myself time to recuperate. My writing time will be
shorter and my breaks a little longer.
The third
thing I’m going to address in my life is nourishment for my creative spirit.
I need something to
rekindle that creative that’s burned so low in my soul.
  • I’ll be spending
    more time reading—for pleasure. I may try a new author, or revisit an old
    favorite. I plan to go where my whims lead me. NOTHING from my to-do reading
    list allowed!
  • I’ll be
    doing some things that spark my creativity, like jewelry making or knitting.
    Something creative, but not something I do for money. Just opportunities that
    encourage my imagination to soar.
  • I’ll be
    going to the movies. This gives me the opportunity to immerse myself in worlds
    that other creative geniuses have imagined and most important, much-needed time
    with my husband and with friends

  • Finally,
    I’ll be finding a time for a short vacation. It may only be a one-day trip into
    the mountains or a local park, but my husband and I need the unplugged time
    with just each other as our focus.  

Now I’d love to
hear from you. How do you refill and refresh your creative spirit? Share your
suggestions in the comments section so we can all learn from each other.

Edie Melson is the author of four books, as well as a
freelance editor with years of experience in the publishing industry. Her
popular blog,
The Write Conversation, reaches thousands
of writers each month, and she’s the co-director of the
Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference
. Her bestselling
ebook on social media has just been updated and re-released as
Connections: Social Media
& Networking Techniques for Writers.
She’s the Social Media Mentor at My
Book Therapy
and the social media director for Southern
Writers Magazine
. You can connect with Edie through Twitter and Facebook.