How to quit

How to quit

I haven’t signed into my Twitter account since June 4. “I need to be on Twitter” is one of the stories I’m testing out during my #40StoriesProject, a yearlong attempt to learn which of the things I’m telling myself are outdated. The plan for this particular story was to stay off Twitter for three months, but having hit that milestone a few days ago, I don’t see myself going back. I was better informed when I was doomscrolling every day, but about what? If I want to know what’s happening in the world, I get the important stories elsewhere—newspapers, texts from friends, even Instagram. I don’t miss being extremely online, and my reduced exposure to, well, everything has freed up a lot of space and energy, which I’m putting toward personal projects after a lengthy creative drought during the pandemic. Even the alleged value of Twitter for someone interested in a writing career seems largely negated by how bad being on Twitter makes me feel about writers and writing.

Continue reading “How to quit”

How to get out of your own way and do the work

How to get out of your own way and do the work

I’ve mentioned before that I’m three months into a yearlong creativity course: the Raise Your Hand Say Yes Inner Circle with Tiffany Han. Our group discussion the other day turned to how to push past self-created drama to actually do the work. I shared some thoughts in our private group on Mighty Networks, but wanted to share them here as well. Here are three ways to shake off doubt, fear, anxiety, whatever to get your work done:

Continue reading “How to get out of your own way and do the work”

Spiritual band-aids vs. sustainable change

Spiritual band-aids vs. sustainable change

Taffy Brodesser-Akner’s recent New York Times article on Gwyneth Paltrow and Goop ends with Brodesser-Akner being stuck on a bus, desperately having to pee. This incident, fortunately resolved without catastrophe, nonetheless leaves the author unable to regain the feeling of zen she’d accessed just a few hours earlier at the In Goop Health wellness summit, described earlier in the piece: Continue reading “Spiritual band-aids vs. sustainable change”

How to stop wasting food

How to stop wasting food

While everyone loves SMART goals, it occurred to me a couple of months ago that vague goals can also work — if they’re tied to values. It also occurred to me I really wanted to stop wasting food. When 49 million Americans are struggling to put food on the table, I really don’t want to throw food away because I never got around to eating it. Continue reading “How to stop wasting food”

Plan a DIY creative retreat for this weekend

Plan a DIY creative retreat for this weekend

A few weekends ago, I cleared my schedule and holed up in my apartment  for a DIY creative retreat. The main goal for this weekend was to catch up on the writing schedule for my novel, which meant writing 21 pages over the duration of the weekend. There were other things I wanted to get done — two blog posts, a visual rebrand for my blog and social media accounts, and an editorial calendar for my blog through the end of April — but all were secondary (and tertiary, etc.) to the main goal.

During the weekend, I reached my desired page count, wrote two blog posts, and made incremental progress on my other goals. Want to do something similar? Here are some tips. Continue reading “Plan a DIY creative retreat for this weekend”

5 benefits of a growth mindset

5 benefits of a growth mindset

I spent much of the past year reprogramming my brain, but until recently I didn’t have a term for the big change that has had a halo effect over all areas of my life. Recently, through the On Books podcast (also on iTunes), I discovered Carol Dweck’s excellent book Mindset, which gave me the phrase I was looking for: growth mindset. Continue reading “5 benefits of a growth mindset”