Blogger: Mary Keeley
Let’s face it, all things Christmas are demanding our attention, and rightly so. You’ve worked hard at your writing career this year, and it’s time to enjoy your accomplishments and put the year’s unfinished goals aside for now. Unless you have a contractual deadline to meet, give yourself permission to adjust priorities for the Christmas holidays.
Easier said than done, you might think, because writers are told they need to write every day. But this season is different. There is purpose in Christmas downtime. Remember the many times throughout the year when your family supported you by doing the laundry, accepting microwave dinners with a smile, running your errands, all the while understanding your semi-attentiveness while you were researching or writing. And what about relatives and the friends in your real life who have been relegated to the back burner too long. This special season is your opportunity to gift these VIPs with your full attention and love.
Here are a few suggestions to help you unplug without disconnecting completely.
- First, clear your head. Step away from your computer and, dare I say, away from all things having to do with books and the publishing industry—except our blog, of course, but only briefly.
- Indulge in your favorite Christmas movies without feeling like you should be doing something more productive. This IS productive. It will help you to wind down so you can give yourself fully to those who are most important in your life.
- Visit an older relative, friend, or a lonely person in a retirement home and listen to them reminisce about life and Christmases past. You might be the best Christmas blessing they receive. Chances are their stories will ignite book ideas that perhaps wouldn’t have occurred to you otherwise. Jot them down to think about after the holidays.
Don’t discount the many ways unplugging from your writing life for this short period of time will return a blessing to you too. I guarantee you’ll be excited and eager to get back to writing in 2016, free from nagging pinpricks of guilt and remorse over lost opportunities. Your need to be fully in the moment with your real life, whether consciously recognized or not, will be satisfied. And your heart will be light, having fully given your gift of time and love to others. What better way to be obedient to God’s Word and thank him for his unspeakable gift of Christ.
Embrace your Christmas downtime. You have permission.
What do you do to switch gears and focus 100% on the important people in your life at this time of year? What is the hardest part of unplugging for you? What Christmas traditions are important to you and your family?
Unplugging over Christmas is good medicine for writers and those who love and support them. Click to Tweet.
Use the Christmas downtime well. Focus 100% on those who are most important in your life. Click to Tweet.