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The “If I had time off I would write a book” lie

I have a confession to make: I am not writing every day. I am writing a lot (hello, have you seen all the blog articles I have written since I started out less than 3 months ago?!) But I am not writing every day and I am certainly not writing my book every day. The non-fiction kind of memoir book that I wanted to write and complete (!) during my sabbatical. I have fallen deep into the "if I had time off I would write a book" lie.

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A few days ago I got one of these automated messages from HR: Reminder. Your unpaid leave ends. In 60 days.

What?! That cannot be true! How can my sabbatical end in 60 days when I haven’t had time to write my book yet?! What have I done the past 4 months?

Well, actually, I have done a lot.

I have done some serious healing and I feel great 💪

I have caught up (a bit) with my long reading list and I feel inspired 🧚

I have launched The Writing Flow and I am super proud 🥳

I have walked many kilometers on long-distance trails in Tuscany, Italy and on Bornholm, Denmark 🥾 and written 3 blog articles about my experiences with mindful walking and writing (Mindful walking and writing: Getting fresh thoughts on paper)(Mindful walking and writing: Walk of thoughts)(Walk and write: Memories of the Via Francigena)

I have had 2 kids home from school and kindergarten for the past 6 weeks 🛝

And: I have started blogging weekly and have connected with a lot of people on social media (Facebook) (Instagram) (LinkedIn)

But: I have not written the book I had wanted to write.

"One of the biggest myths around writing is that in order to do it we must have great swathes of uninterrupted time."

Julia Cameron, The Right to Write

I even signed up for a 30-day book writing challenge which ended like yesterday. I made it through Day 4 of the challenge and my self-set “punishment” for not completing the first draft of my book was broiling a chicken. As if I am ever going to do that!!

But enough ranting. No, I have not completed the first draft of my book as I had set out to do. But honestly, I know better than that. I know that there is time for writing and there is time for thinking and for other things in life. By now you know that I love writing. And that is all it takes. Love it and the writing will come. 

"If we learn to write from the sheer love of writing, there is always enough time, but time must be stolen like a quick kiss between lovers on the run."

Julia Cameron

A bit of though love is quite helpful though, at times. So here is my plan:

After my upcoming hiking trip to the Austrian mountains where I will experiment more walking and writing techniques with my husband as guinea pig, I will steal  25 minutes a day to write my book. 30 days starting September 8.

Why 30 days, why September 8? Because I will receive another message from HR: Reminder. Your unpaid leave ends. In 30 days.

Do you want to shower me with some tough love during my “last 30 days of my sabbatical”-book-writing challenge September 8 to October 7?

Let’s connect on social media and I will share my progress with you, no cheating!

Sign-up for my newsletter to get the newest on my progress. 

Even better: Let me know your own 30 days – 25 min/day project that you will tackle with ❤️ between September 8 and October 7. Post it in the comment section or write me an email! Let’s have fun together! 👯‍♂️

Entdecke die Kraft des kreativen Schreibens mit dieser kostenlosen Schreibimpuls-Mini-Serie.

Probiere es aus und erlebe die Kraft des kreativen Schreibens. Bei dieser 5-tägigen Mini-Serie erhältst Du jeden Tag eine kurze Schreibanregung, für die Du nur 15 Minuten täglich brauchst. Finde heraus, was Deinen Bauch zum Kribbeln bringt und was Du einem Schmetterling erzählen würdest. Am Ende der Woche und mit nur 15 Minuten pro Tag wirst Du 5 kurze Texte geschrieben haben und Freude empfinden, Dich selbst ein bisschen besser kennengelernt zu haben.

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Dr. Stefanie Köttl-Brodmann
stefanie@thewritingflow.com