Tips & Tools Tuesday

Believe It or Not: They Are Related

Prayer First

Be with me while I work.
When I feel stressed, help me lift my eyes heavenward & breathe in Your peace.
When I feel tired, help me to allow You to be strength to me.
When I feel irritable, help me to draw near to You & fill up my heart with love.
When I feel inadequate, help me to live in Your grace and rest in the knowledge that You are with me.
When I feel down, help me to hear Your voice bringing new inspiration & insight into my life.
Be with me while I work.


Researching, Writing, & Rewriting

When I looked up from all the busy work I was piddling with and realized it had been a month since I published anything new on my blog I almost wanted to body-check myself. Now, tonight I find myself with a pencil & ruler drawing, yet another,  monthly calendar in my PSDP journal. When it suddenly dawned on me that I was building a behavior chart for myself all I could do was think of Mi’ijo & giggle.

At least I can enjoy a laugh about it, because it really is kind of ridiculous. I’ve been working on writing, buying new notebooks, organizing myself, intensely studying writing, & I’ve written through two Dr. Grip ink pens since I started this little endeavor. But there hasn’t been a new post in a month.

I can look back at every week over the past month. I was either dug down in research for particular post or studying something I already knew. I thought Pomodoro would help but it didn’t. As long as I FELT LIKE I WAS WORKING while the clock was ticking; what I was getting done and whether I had completed a post or not wasn’t relevant. Until I realized it had been a MONTH without a new story or bible study.

Studying, Designing, & Reformatting

Really, I loved working with WordPress University & should have signed up for Blogging 101 before building the blog, posting, or even rolling it out to my friends and family on Facebook. By the time I started I had already done every activity we learned in class in the process of setting up The Writing Wife’s Life.

Yes, I learned some valuable shortcuts using the class to set up the Therapy Writing blog I’m working on; but if I can’t get the rhythm of posting on one site right; what makes me think I’ll do better with a whole other blog to manage.

When I caught myself, yet again, spinning my wheels through the same sites, researching the same notes, but still haven’t finished the same post – I also realized it had been a month! I could only shake my head in disbelief while I examined the inner folds of my brain to see where the absolutely ridiculous ways I sabotage myself come from.

NO, “where” “why” or “what” NOT RELEVANT – “How to fix.” IS

I am upset with myself because I know what I want. I know how I want “it” to be. And I know how easy it will be for me to get “it” for us. AND, I have full faith that the writing in getting “it” will be the best part of the journey. But I STILL have to kick myself in the ass to do what it takes to get the words down.

What’s most frustrating is that it’s as if I have more fun researching and compiling notes. When it becomes time to put the notes and research together into a coherent piece I seem to get stuck and have a hard time getting out of my own way to do it. That realization is leading me in a different direction for this work of mine, but not giving up the blog thing, yet.

And remember now, I really don’t HAVE to be working like this. MyHusband thinks all of this is just hilarious as he is takes great care of us. He understands the writing thing but is leery about the blogging thing, and has been reminding me for a month now, that it’s not THAT CRUCIAL every time he sees me get frustrated.

I respond with “But I want to do well at this,” and get  back “Then why are you making it so hard on yourself.” He is right and just for not really wanting me to partake in an.activity that makes me so frustrated with myself. But, I don’t know how to make him understand the buzz I feel when I’m being WonderWife SuperHero Mom and conquering problems in the household, AND in the BlogWorld with my wisdom and teachings.

Why & How Indeed – A Square Solution

Researching (LOL, yes, research again) ways to be more productive and COMPLETE tasks; not just be busy for busy sake, led me to Lift, or “Developing a Daily Writing Habit,” & “500 Words a Day” and 30 Day Business Blog Challenge by Sarah Arrow. This way I might actually get into a daily writing habit that builds a business portfolio for freelance writing and editing jobs while I work on the novels I want to write.

Yes, more than one now. Are you kidding, they’re going to be awesome!!!

Provided I actually complete the writing of them. AND, that’s why I’m here.

So, anyway – all of that; those things that I desire so badly I can taste them; will only come into fruition if I put the words down in notebooks and type them into MicrosoftWord or WordPress, all the way through editing to publication.

Everyone already knows how I hold myself accountable.

So, now I’m asking you guys  to help out by holding me accountable for everything I tell y’all I want to write.If you are reading this and see me online check on me to see if I have followed through to publication today.

Make a comment or ask a question here to see if I’m actually working. Or connect with me on Facebook and we’ll talk a second or two.

I’m willing to bet that spending some time, during the day, answering messages, calls, or texts, and speaking to people other than PreciousGirl might actually drive me to actively work on writing the way I SHOULD.

I know, OCD backward. I am relying on calls & Social Media to keep me on task in a situation when most have to disconnect to complete tasks.

Bringing it back to Behavior Charts, Mi’ijo, & Seinfeld directed me not to “Break the Chain” in their daily instruction for the “Develop a Writing Habit” plan. “Don’t Break the Chain” is a tool that was part of the advice Jerry Seinfeld gave to Brad Isaac about writing and goals.

Seinfeld suggested a wall calendar that has a whole year on one page hung in a prominent place and a red marker to mark a big red X over every day that that the task or goal being worked on is complete.

The satisfaction of drawing a big red X across each square becomes motivation not to break the chain as a few weeks of X’s become visible on that calendar as a reminder.

The VERY IDEA of seeing all those perfect X’s connected corner to corner, in the direct center of every square of my ideal publishing/editorial calendar lit up the inside of my OCD/ADD brain like the bright neon lights of Vegas

IMG_20151208_090606_583 (1280x720)
X Marks the Spot & Builds Good Habits


Of course that triggered the OCD part of my brain to say “let’s make some perfect squares for another calender. we need one more thing, maybe, to check off the box and get a complete post done, and recorded on paper. I bet that’ll get you on track.” Yes, it added another step into my writing process, and a WHOLE other planner – bringing the total to 3 or 4, depending how you count them.

Let’s Count & See How Many

  1. QuoVadis Text Agenda – Household management, receipts for important purchases, bills, important goals & upcoming plans like weddings and road trips.
  2. QuoVadis Scholar – Information for all online writing accounts such as WordPress & Social Media. Data on published posts like word count & final title work-up with URL, and any future posts I want to write and publish are penciled in.
  3. 1st of 2 Separate Monthly Calendars – drawn into PSDP/Journal – “Ideal Editorial Calendar” – coded with posts for the month; each one scheduled for each day along with the posts I want to write in order to build a working portfolio.
  4. OCD certainly not allowing such and IDEAL to be marked with Big Red X’ – How else do you think I realized how long it had been since I’ve followed through & actually published a post.
  5. 2nd of 2 Monthly Calendars – a lot less overwhelming to my ADD head with just OCD squares that I plan to X off every morning when I publish the post/posts I edit from the night before.
IMG_20151208_091004_242 (1400x1050)
May Have Been Too Overwhelming For ADD Brain


As I read the advice given by Seinfeld about building good habits and connect habit building with behavior modification I can only giggle about our Unruly MexiJun and the last Behavior chart I designed; as I come to conclusion that I just have to accept that in order to do this the way I want to do this is to follow the behavior plan, ahem Productivity Tool the way I designed it to see if it’s of any value to this whole Life Management Program I seem to be putting together as I work to improve myself & our lives.

It’s really funny that when we make them for ourselves they’re called productivity tools, but when we make them for unruly kindergarteners & to keep crazy bar friends out of trouble because they don’t want to leave the playground they are Behavior Charts.

I couldn’t help the giggles when I related the behavior chart – CALENDAR – I’m building today to the one we had down at Vista Lounge for our MexiJun when he would come in from being out offshore for 28 days on a tin-can with 6-8 other men.

He would hit the bar running, so ready to burn off all that testosterone & energy that it didn’t take us too many crew changes to build a behavior chart for him to manage the party when he was home. If there were special events & karaoke coming up and he wanted to sing he had to earn 5 Gold Stars that week.

And he was so proud of himself when he did. As proud as I’m going to be of myself as I begin marking off my chain of squares with my own perfect special X’s – better than Gold Stars because of the way they fit in my square.

Nope, I didn’t lie about High School during the Day & Adult Kindergarten at night. I can still enjoy being in Grade School myself.


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