Staying Focused…

I have a confession.

I never REALLY understood or sympathized with people who talked about how busy they were once they had kids. I used to think that they were exaggerating or just plain not organizing their time well.

Then I had one.

And I immediately felt the need to write apology notes to all those people for all the secretively judgmental thoughts I’d had on the subject. In fact, I did write a few apology letters to my own mother, because, gosh, this parenting thing is HARD.

So when I say having a  one-year-old who could give the Energizer Bunny a run for his money keeps me busy, I promise I’m not exaggerating. Which means I have two set times of day when I can get some writing done. Heck, when I can get anything done for that matter.

  1. Nap Time (Which can last anywhere from thirty minutes to two hours)
  2. Bed Time (Again, anywhere from thirty minutes to two hours of free time once the munchkin FINALLY falls asleep.)

But here is the problem. Sitting down and ACTUALLY writing. Besides the dishes that need washed, the bulldogs that need to go outside for the tenth time, the laundry that needs to be folded, and the dinner that needs prepped- it’s hard to sit down and dial myself into my novel and let the other stuff go.  And that’s not even the biggest distraction.

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(Graphic originally from here.)

The internet, where free time goes to die.

For example, I have a love/hate relationship with Pinterest. I have thousands of pins that represent HOURS and HOURS of my life, and I think I’ve only actually done around twenty projects/crafts/DIY projects from there. And by the way, those HOURS and HOURS spent on Pinterest would have definitely been better served writing.

But here are the rules that I’ve discovered that have helped me get down to the serious business of writing.

  1. No Music
  2. No TV
  3. Disconnect the Internet
  4. Leave your Phone in the other room.  On silent.
  5. No Company (That includes my poor husband who can’t HELP but talk if we’re in the same room. The nerve!)
  6. Caffeine

Now while all those rules are great, I have a particular fondness for number six. Probably because it’s the easiest of all the rules to follow.

I was never  a big coffee fan. That is until I discovered iced coffee. Then all bets were off. I came up with this recipe after a bit of trial and error, and it can be tweaked to fit your preferences. I have one of these every afternoon, and it’s that little extra jolt that helps keep me on track.

Step One: Brew a cup of coffee. (Awesome Harry Potter mug is completely optional, but it will make your coffee taste better.  Fact.)  I do this in the morning and then pop it in the fridge until I’m ready to use it. There is nothing, and I repeat, nothing worse than trying to make iced coffee with hot coffee.  You’ll end up with a diluted mess.

Step Two:  Now that your coffee is nice and cold, you’re ready to assemble. Here is the line up of players.

Step Three:  Pour your coffee over ice. Some people get all fancy and freeze coffee into cubes so their coffee doesn’t get diluted at all. I’m not that picky…or organized…so regular ice it is.

Step Four:  Add your almond milk. I’m sure regular milk would work too, but I prefer almond.

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Step Five: Add a splash of creamer. Not to much or it gets WAY too sweet. And if it’s fall, Pumpkin Spice is a must.

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Step Six: Put a LID ON THAT CUP.   Coffee and computers don’t mix well. Your elbow will hit that delicious concoction you just created and then your hard drive will sizzle. And you’ll probabaly cry.

Use a lid.

Always.

Then settle down and get writing, and don’t stop until that sleeping baby wakes up!

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One thought on “Staying Focused…

  1. Thanks for teaching me how to make iced coffee, I love them too! And your little one is definitely busy busy BUSY!! I’ll come down next week so you can have a day to write.

    Like

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