Writers can nurture themselves. Seriously. They have special writer things that help them put words together to make cool sentences and paragraphs.
Yes, they can indulge in other, non-writerly stuff, too, because writers resemble regular people in most ways. But I’m talking about what they can do while they’re actually working.
Stretch, do chair yoga, watch a woodpecker perch on the maple outside, practice pranayama breathing, drink a glass of wine or cup of steaming green tea with honey, switch to a beanbag chair, eat the good chocolate (those sea salt caramels they’ve been keeping out of reach of the kids).
Sometimes, though, the best way to nurture yourself as a writer is to acknowledge that your eyes are dry because you haven’t blinked in three hours, that you have a screen-staring headache, that you’re repeating yourself and saying the same things, using identical words over and over, and none of the amazing ideas that are inside your head are reaching your keyboard.
Sometimes, the best thing a writer can do to nurture herself is to close her laptop and walk away.
I have insomnia. I’ve tried everything. And although I (rightfully) complain when I have a cold, I am secretly happy at the end of the day because I get to take NyQuil, which helps me fall asleep.
This time of year can be extra joyful and stressful. So here’s a tip I’m thrilled to share with my fellow insomniacs and stressed-out peeps. Are you ready?
I’m not being cheeky—it’s special breathing.
This special kind of breathing, Pranayama, has been around for thousands of years. I’ve known about it for at least ten years and have used it for calming and de-stressing but I’ve only just started using it at night to fall asleep.
Clearly, I’m not sitting with a straight spine and smiling like you’re supposed to—slumped on my pillow with an I-can’t-sleep frown—and yet, magic! It still works.
No need for special gear (or talent, for that matter). It’s wicked easy. And free. All you need is a nose and fingers. And lungs.