For the first time in three years I didn’t post my weekly blog post…for two weeks in a row in fact. It was certainly an odd feeling, breaking habit. But I have had a lot in, including moving into a new house (only just got internet!) and interviewing for a new job. Still, it’s good to be back and I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing of things. As such, I’ve had a little break from writing, and now I’m back at it I thought I’d share the do’s and don’t of taking a break.
Do enjoy your time and relax
If you are taking a break, enjoy that time. Whatever the break is for, allow yourself to fully focus on it. Be it work, school, a vacation, a house move, a wedding, to spend more time with your family… allow that to be your main focus. And when you do have some free time, relax. You’re allowed to take a break.
Don’t feel guilty
Writer’s guilt is a very real thing, but shoot it down. You aren’t obliged to write, and although it may be a constant in your life, you have control over it. You’re not the only writer to have taken a break and you won’t be the last. Allow yourself to enjoy your time off.
Do still jot down ideas
Ideas can spark any time, and they often disappear as quickly as they arrive. So still jot down your ideas. They don’t have to turn into anything, but at least you will have them safe should you ever choose to go back to them.
Don’t leave it too long to get back to it
If the break goes on too long you can fall into a writing slump. I once stopped writing for a year, and I wished I hadn’t left it so long. That said, there is always a way back. So, as soon as you start thinking about getting back to it, make a plan. Whether you plan a phased return or pen in a date for your next big writing session, this will encourage you to get back on track.
Do ask for support if you need it
Getting back into writing after a break can be really difficult. So ask for support if you need it. The online writing community is full of advice and help, and people who understand. But you can also speak to those in your life, for their encouragement.
Don’t stress if it’s tough
If it is tough to get back into it, it’s okay. Don’t stress. Writing breeds more writing, and in time you will re-build the habit. Be kind to yourself, and let it take as long as it takes.
What have you been up to over the last few weeks? Fill me in by leaving a comment below. Speak soon!