Usually I am a slow writer, but circumstances forced me to write my new release, Heart’s Desire, at the fastest pace I’ve ever written. In order to finish on time, I had to push myself to my limit—and I’m sure many of you can relate.
Anyone pursuing a career as an author knows for every “the end,” a new, immediate, “Chapter One” follows, and that’s not counting the time spent on marketing, promotion and career strategy. The potential for burn out is real. It’s up to every author to make their well-being a priority.
With that in mind, I’ve put together several tips and tricks to increase energy and resilience.
Tip One: Exercise
*pauses for collective groan*
Where is a busy author to find the time? That gym membership is going to break my budget! I understand. And with that in mind, here are a few suggestions even the time, space and cash challenged can use.
- Consider investing in a tracker like Fitbit. Smart trackers not only track your steps and help you set measurable goals; the apps are usually constructed in a way that can link you to friends who use the same tracker. Your friends can inspire you and hold you accountable. When I had a fitbit, I was inspired by author friends who made their goals and often squeezed in extra steps because I knew my goals were public.
- Couch to 5K. Inexpensive couch to 5 K apps can be downloaded on any smart phone. The basic plans are also widely available on line. The cost is then a decent pair of running shoes, and the time investment of 30-45 minutes to start, 3 days a week. Once you’ve reached your goal, you can keep track of your runs (or design your own intervals) on an app like Runkeeper.
- T-Tapp. T-Tapp is a calisthenics-like series of movements designed by the late Theresa Tapp to increase cardiovascular health, improve muscle tone and promote lymphic drainage. Once learned, the “Basic” workout is 17 minutes long, can be done almost anywhere, and is surprisingly effective. The work out is especially good for those with adrenal issues and there are modifications available based on your personal needs, including a chair version of the workout. For more information, check out https://www.t-tapp.com/. Portions of the workout are also available on You Tube.
Please note: Always consult with a medical professional before making significant changes to your daily activity.
Tip Two: Research supplements
Stress depletes resources. I’ve tried several supplement combinations to combat fatigue, and found the following helpful. (As with exercise, always consult with a medical professional before adding supplements to your diet):
- Fish Oil: I was advised by my optometrist to take fish oil for dry eyes and was surprised when, after several months on the supplements, I noticed a subtle reduction in my perception of stress. Turns out, several studies have confirmed a link between omega 3 fatty acids and cortisol (the stress hormone) reduction.
- B-Complex vitamins: In one 2011 study, “after individual differences in personality and work demands were statistically controlled, the vitamin B complex treatment groups reported significantly lower personal strain.” Personally, I’ve been taking a Rainbow light B Complex vitamin for the past two years and have had a positive experience.
- Other supplements you might consider researching:
L-Theanine- an amino acid found in tea leaves. L-Theanine has been shown to have a positive effect on stress reduction.
CBD Oil: This hemp-derived oil does not contain the intoxicating properties of cannabis. CBD oil is not legal in every state, can be pricey and it’s quality can vary by producer. My personal favorite is Ananda Hemp, produced in Kentucky and independently tested.
Tip Three: Get a good night’s Sleep
- Create a transition zone. Consider limiting screen time, caffeine and alcohol late in the evening, all of which are known to disrupt sleep cycles.
- Have some tea time. The calming properties of chamomile are well-documented.
- Pick a scent. Rose oil and Lavender oil are said to have calming effects. Test and see if one works for you, and, if so, keep a vial by the bed.
- Block distractions. Sleep masks, ear plugs and/or ambient noise apps can be helpful.
- Browse you tube for guided relaxation tracks. There are thousands to choose from!
Tip Four: In the AM…step away from the phone
Your first thoughts of the day have a dramatic effect of productivity. Instead of scrolling through social media or checking the news, why not spend a few minutes getting excited about all the things you intend to accomplish?
So there you have them, my go-to tricks. Hopefully, there’s at least one that you can use. I hope you’ve found something in this list helpful and or inspiring. And if all else fails, there’s always the age-old strategy of curling up with a book…
Lady Clarissa has decided to live life on her terms. After the end of a ten-year betrothal, she wants nothing to do with marriage or the men of the ton. Least of all her friend’s brother, the very charming Lord Markham, or Hearts, as many ladies call the oh-so-handsome earl.
Markham pursues relationships with no ties that bind. Acting the rake leaves everyone satisfied…until he overhears a wager that could lead to Clarissa’s ruin. He can’t help but step in and claim she’s his intended bride.
Clarissa is appalled. She did not need to be saved. Reluctantly, she agrees to the fake courtship, if only to experience what the rakish Markham can offer. But when lust becomes love, Clarissa must make up her own terms and bet it all on Hearts.
Each book in the Lords of Chance series is STANDALONE:
* Scandal in Spades
* Heart’s Desire