Updated: Sep 2, 2020
From Procrastination to Publication: Navigating the challenges that often come with writing!
By Andrea Seydel
Book Doula | Writing Coach | Founder LLH Publishing
Your procrastination has nothing to do with self-control!! If the procrastination of writing your book isn’t about laziness, then what is it about?
Procrastination is about putting things off until tomorrow, but is it more than just voluntarily delaying something despite our better judgment and desires?
The question is: Are you putting off sharing your knowledge and experience with the world?
Procrastination is about short term mood repair. As humans we have a natural aversion towards given tasks or situations that might feel inherently unpleasant. Also, the aversion to certain tasks might also result from deeper feelings related to the task, such as self-doubt, imposter syndrome, anxiety or uncertainty. You might be thinking, I’m not smart enough. Where do I even start. This is too big of a project. What are people going to think of my book?
All of this can lead you to put the project aside and other things start to look like better options. The delay or procrastination on what you truly desire for yourself can come along with increased anxiety and stress, feelings of disappointment and further self doubt. The ironic part of all this is that we procrastinate to feel better or avoid negative emotions, but we end up feeling anxious or insecure, triggering the stress part of our brain “the amygdala”, which leads to more stress and procrastination. TIME TO TAKE A DEEP BREATH!!
Many of my clients come to me because they have been in this vicious cycle. The good news is that you can overcome this cycle of procrastination and you can write your book! Here are my tips to help you gain momentum on you writing projects. Procrastination is the thief of your time and success. It is time to stop putting off your dreams, touch other peoples lives and reward your future self!
Overcome Book Writing Procrastination with these Tips:
Tip 1: Practice Self Compassion- Be warm and understanding towards yourself when you are feeling the negative emotions that sometimes go along with the book writing process. Lovingly stop the inner critic and offer comfort towards yourself. Give yourself encouragement and loving kindness. Give yourself permission to be human.
Tip 2: Make it fun- I cannot emphasize the need to make your writing experience fun, enthusiastic and playful. Our brains works better when we are relaxed. Creativity flows smoothly and efficiently when we are in a place of calm. Everything is better when it is fun and you are in a relaxed, playful mood. All my weekend writing retreats and one on one clients are playful, energetic and fun for this very reason! You want book creation to feel exciting, not like a chore.
Tip 3: Adopt Atomic Habits- In his book, Atomic Habits, James Clear talks about the compound effect, and the powerful influence that small repetitive action or habits can have on your life. When it comes to writing your book, consistency and regular action towards your book creation is crucial for completion. Break up your book into chunks, segments or sections and slowly knock off each section. Celebrate the completion of each section!
Tip 4: Remember Perfection Isn’t a Thing- Perfectionism can be paralyzing. What I suggest to my clients is to work diligently towards the first ROUGH draft. Not to worry about perfection, but rather, follow your structure and get your content out. This momentum is imperative when it comes to book writing. B- work is better than A+ work never produced!
Tip 5: Do it for Others- You can make a difference in the lives of others. You are almost doing a dis-service to the world by holding back your own personal knowledge and experience. You never know who you will be helping, who’s life you will touch or what impact you will make. The testimonials I have received from my books, reinforces everyday why I write. If you can touch even one life with your book, you have made a difference! Books change lives, but only if you write them!
Tip 6: Seek Accountability- Having an accountability partner, coach or support system helps eliminate the time and effort you spend on things that are unproductive. Being accountable to your actions, performance and decisions along the path to your book creation results in successful completion.
The bottom line is successful book creation comes from people who have been held accountable, make it fun, create regular writing habits and practice self-compassion. Shameless plug here… Consider hiring a wring coach, or better yet, a Book Doula. Someone who can lovingly support your along the process of book creation, so you can go from procrastination to publication painlessly.
Andrea helps people painlessly give birth their books through her writing coach, book doula and publishing services.
Books Change Lives: Who’s life will you touch with your book?