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Writing 101 - 5 Tips On How To Finish What Youve Started
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No matter what kind of writing it is you are working on - be it a report, ebook, autoresponder, or blog content, distractions are a common thing and you'll easily find or think of other things to do. Subconsciously you know that the quicker you finish your writing, the sooner you'll be done with it. But for some reason, you just keep putting it off! Here are 5 top tips to help you get through this habit that plagues 99% of writers:

1) Time Yourself

There is such a thing called the 80/20 rule which runs something like, 80% of your results come from 20% of your actions. If you only exert 20% effort to get 80% results, I'm sure that 20% will be the most productive part of your working hours when you concentrate on it fully, and one of the best ways to do this is to work under time pressure a.k.a. a definite deadline.

Set your alarm or timer for 10, 15, 20, or 30 minutes (whatever is up to you) and focus on giving the task at hand your best effort - write without stopping to think, edit, delete, or proofread. Once your time is up, that's when you go over your work. You get more speed and quality out of your writing this way because you eliminate distractions.

2) Take a Day Off

Days off from your writing is a must-have. Theoretically, we can work on our writing tasks daily for a month without fail, but we will find ourselves dreading and resenting these tasks if we put this to practice in reality.

How many days you want to work before you take a break is a highly personal choice and everyone has different work thresholds, but a good idea is to set a 6 or 7 day challenge to finish all your writing tasks and then taking 1 day off. Or working Monday to Friday the way they do in brick and mortar offices, and then taking the weekend off.

3) Don't Sweat It

This will probably be the hardest tip to put into practice! Writers are generally detail conscious and like many creative minds, they are probably their own worst critics and workhorses and it is easy to feel guilty during non productive and no-inspiration moments.

Doing so won't make your feelings about the task any better. All writers have good days and bad days. Just admit defeat and pick yourself up where you left off. Sometimes a momentary break from your work is all you need to shatter the "wall" and get going.

4) Keep Your Eyes on the Goal

At some point in your work, you'll find yourself in the middle of a sea of words and you'll start to wonder what you're doing all this hard work for. During times like these, it will definitely help for you to look back and recall what got you started in the first place, and where (or what) you want to achieve once you are finished.

It is also helpful to share your purpose with someone else you trust so they could hold you accountable and remind yourself of the things that are important to you the moment you start to lag in your efforts.

More often than not, we just need to be reminded and know that someone believes in us. After that, you can get yourself up and running again in no time.

5) Find and Work with Your Natural Flow

Some find that they are more productive during certain times of the day and they are less productive during others. Find this for yourself, be it morning, afternoon, evening, or dawn and stick to it.

The important thing is that you are not exhausted or distracted during that time you set to work. Once you work with what works for you, you will be achieving more in less time.

Bonus Tip: Reward Yourself!

All the previous tips are about committing yourself to working smart and hard. Once you finish, what's next? The reward, of course! Treat yourself to that reward, be it a delicious snack, a hearty meal, a movie, a date, whatever.

When you follow a "sacrifice now, paradise later" approach, you'll find joy in finishing what you started and feel like it was all worth it in the end.

Street Talk

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