Have you ever tried to sit down to write, thinking it would be super fun because you love writing, but then it turns into a struggle where you can barely eke out one sentence?
But then the next time you sit down to write it feels so easy, like the wings of inspiration have landed upon you and a whole essay flows like a river?
Self-expression can be unpredictable sometimes, and this unpredictability has always frustrated me as a writer.
I write on Monday mornings, but there's no knowing what kind of writing day any given Monday will be.
I used to beat myself up when I had low inspiration on my writing days. I wondered what was wrong with me. Why couldn't I just get those words on the page?!
On my high inspiration writing days I would feel like a success and wonder why writing couldn't be like that all the time.
In her book, Big Magic, Elizabeth Gilbert talks about inspiration as an unpredictable thing that can't be forced. What can be predictable, however, is you showing up and trying to write whether or not inspiration flows.
What I have found on top of that is I can always do things to make writing more pleasurable, even if I can't always force words to flow out with ease and grace.
For example, I know looking at trees helps me feel at peace. So when I sit down to write I sit somewhere with at least one tree in view.
I also know I love having a cup of hot cacao by my side. A warm drink always puts me in a good mood, so I make cacao at the beginning of every writing session.
One of my favorite kinds of play is pulling oracle cards, so before I write I pull an oracle card to help inspire ideas in a way that's fun for me.
When I have these three things in place I can enjoy myself during any writing session, even ones where the writing is slow.
This week, try adding three things to your writing ritual you know you'll enjoy. It could be sitting with an interesting view, having a drink or snack you love by your side, or generating a writing idea in a fun way.
If you can't force inspiration, that's ok, you can still make writing one of the most pleasurable parts of your life by bringing more joy into the writing ritual itself.
P.S. I would love for you to join me and an amazing group of writers in The Courageous Bloggers Society. We're meeting next Monday evening, 12/6/21, for a Writing & Coaching Workshop where we'll be talking more about the Joy of Writing. Join today so you can participate in the workshop. Hope to see you there!
P.P.S. The image above is the view from my favorite writing window.