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A child watching TV.

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A dissertation coaching client said that she stopped watching TV and picked up her writing pace in order to meet a deadline.  Now that she has met the deadline, she worries that she will be sucked into watching all of the TV shows that she recorded during her heavy-duty period of writing.

Do you record TV shows?  It’s just too easy, isn’t it?  I doubt that I’ll ever catch up on all of the International House Hunter shows that I seem to record every day. Occasionally I wonder how on earth all of the shows pile up, foolishly forgetting that I clicked on “record series.” And there must be at least 3 International House Hunter shows a day!

My client also worries that not only will she binge on watching all of the TV recordings waiting for her, but from experience she knows of the torpor that will hit her once she starts watching the hours of  TV.  It will be hard to get back into her writing routine. Digital stress strikes again!

Recently I stayed in a small town at an absent relative’s house (no I wasn’t a home invader–it was by invitation!).  This was a house with no TV and no internet access.  I was looking forward to seeing how the absence of TV and lack of email would affect me.

It was a little eerie, but good.  Many clients say that it’s hard for them to get into flow while writing and sometimes they find it hard to jump into a long book that is required reading for their topic.  Experience tells me that if you remove yourself from the easy temptation of  TV and the internet, flow will be much easier to accomplish than you might imagine.

With no TV and internet, I moved quickly into a reading and writing routine.   I gave no energy to avoiding writing and no energy to avoiding TV. And I wasn’t recording TV shows for later.  It was a win-win-win.

Often, clients who have a day job say that one change they are making in their lives as dissertation writers is to leave their blackberries at work.  I feel the same way about checking office email at home.  Too often employers expect the unreasonable–that is, that you are online, plugged in, no matter what time of day, no matter where you are.

If you can leave the blackberry and the office email at the office, cut way back on what you are recording on TV, and limit when you will check home email to an absolute minimum, you may be surprised how easily you, too, can move into flow. 

And you can control digital stress.

Do you have some strategies on how to avoid digital stress and the temptations of  TV and email?  I would love to hear from you.

All good wishes,

Nancy

Nancy Whichard, Ph.D., PCC

nancy@nancywhichard.com

www.nancywhichard.com

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This is an encore of a blog post that appeared here April 30, 2008.

Note:  If you haven’t signed up for my free e-newsletter, Smart Tips For Writers,  you can take care of that by going to my website at www.nancywhichard.com or www.smarttipsforwriters.com.

The next Smart Tips e-newsletter goes out this week-end.  Thanks so much. I appreciate your time and your support.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

Are you writing at a snail’s pace?  Are you stopping short of making your deadlines?  Are you still not meeting your goals?  What’s it going to take at the end of the day to have completed what you said you were going to do?
 
Try a fast, easy adjustment — making a small change can sometimes have a good effect.  Let a quick-fix jolt in you into action.

Here are three quick-fixes that are truly Smart Tips:

1.  Put your dissertation on your Desktop.
How many clicks does it take for you to get your writing up on your screen? Make it easy to get to your work.  At the same time, lessen the possibility of getting distracted by another file or (Quelle horreur!) email.

2.  Be a good boss.
You’re the manager for your writing project, so act like one.  Decide how much of one hour you work.  A 52-minute hour sounds good to me.  Work 52 minutes and get an eight-minute break.

3.  Plan your writing breaks.
What are you going to do during each break? Make sure the break refreshes.  Sitting down in front of yet another “Law and Order” or “Medium” will not refresh.  Take it from me, TV is addictive and exhausting. Instead take a shower and wash your hair. Or see how far you can walk in 4 minutes.

I have more Smart Tips for you.  I’m ready to send out my Smart Tips newsletter. To make sure you get your copy, go to my website at www.nancywhichard.com. Underneath my picture on the home page, you’ll see a box where you can sign up for the Smart Tips for Writers e-newsletter.

My very best to you,

Nancy

Nancy Whichard, PhD, PCC
Your International Dissertation Coach and Academic Career Coach
nancy@nancywhichard.com
www.nancywhichard.com
www.smarttipsforwriters.com

Read Full Post »

Are you writing at a snail’s pace?  Are you stopping short of making your deadlines?  Are you still not meeting your goals?  What’s it going to take at the end of the day to have completed what you said you were going to do? 

Try a fast, easy adjustment — making a small change can sometimes have a good effect.  Let a quick-fix jolt in you into action. 

Here are 3 quick-fixes that are truly Smart Tips: 

1.  Put your dissertation on your Desktop.
How many clicks does it take, for you to get your writing up on your screen?
Make it easy to get to your work!  At the same time, lessen the possibility of getting distracted by another file or (Quelle horreur !) email.

2.  Be a good boss.
You’re the manager for your writing project, so act like one.  Decide how much of one hour you work.  A 52-minute hour sounds good to me.  Work 52 minutes and get an 8-minute break. 

One of my relatives, who is coaching his son’s first team sport, told his son, “While we’re practicing and playing, you can call me Coach or Mr. ______, but not Daddy.”  His son smartly said, “O.k., Coach.” 

When you’re writing or on a break, call yourself Boss and listen to that Wise Person within that you’re addressing as Boss.

3.  Plan your breaks.
What are you going to do during each break? Make sure the break refreshes.  Sitting down in front of yet another “Law and Order” or “The View” will not refresh.  Take it from me, TV is addictive and exhausting.  Go there and you’ll regret it! Instead take a shower and wash your hair. Or see how far you can walk in 4 minutes. At 4 minutes, turn back in order to be at work when the “boss” starts to look for you.

A colleague told me yesterday that her coach told her to “get out of your own big, fat way.”   How about you?  Do you need to get out of your own big, fat way?  To get into action fast, it’s time to get serious.  Put one of these Smart Tips into use today.  Try just one quick fix and say to yourself, “Thanks for that tip, Boss.  I needed a change.”

I have more Smart Tips for you.  I’m just about ready to send out my Smart Tips newsletter.  I think you’ll enjoy it – the lead article in this issue is “5 Strategies for Drastic Situations.”

Go to my website at www.nancywhichard.com, and underneath my picture on the home page, sign up for Smart Tips.

My very best to you,

Nancy

Nancy Whichard, PhD, PCC
Your International Dissertation Coach
www.nancywhichard.com
nancy@nancywhichard.com

 

 

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