Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. — James Baldwin

The Hardest Part Is Always Getting Started

We all know that it is much easier to keep going than it is to get started. That’s the basis of Newton’s First Law of Motion and also the basis of Lisa P.’s First Law of Writing And/Or Exercising. That’s why one of the best ways to help yourself do something is to make it easy to get started.

Use A Cue

I used to have trouble sitting down to focus on my work. I would get caught in a loop checking Email and social media and fritter away my valuable writing time. I knew it was a bad habit, so I decided to start cueing myself to work. Now, when I sit at my computer, I light a candle and head straight to Freedom, which is the software I use to block distracting websites. I then light a fragrant candle. This serves as mini-reward (candle smells nice) and serves as my “The Writer Is IN” sign to myself. Then I get to work. I use a similar cue to make exercise easier. This is simply that I put my exercise clothes and shoes into a bag in the bathroom the night before I’ve planned to work out. When I wake up, my clothes are right there and I don’t have to stumble around in the dark trying not to wake up my husband as I get dressed.

Make It A Habit

When starting is easy, taking action is easy.

When starting is easy, taking action is easy. When you take a particular action often enough, it becomes a habit. Once something is a habit, it becomes harder to not do it than to do it. (When was the last time you didn’t brush your teeth? Do you remember how much you used to hate it as a child? Do you think you’re likely to stop brushing your teeth anytime soon?)

Start Right Now

If one of your goals is to start writing daily, start right now. Take a small action—log into Bookflow and write for five minutes. If you’re looking for an idea, use a prompt. Once you’re done, plan when you’ll write next, and think about how to make it easy for yourself. You can set a reminder on your phone or find some other cue that will tell you when the Writer Is IN. Once the writer is in, the writer gets to work.