The comprehensive guide to finding time to write

If you are struggling to find time to write you are not alone. I regularly struggle with prioritising my writing. But the reason why I find it difficult to ‘just’ sit down and write changes. So, I make it a habit to check in with myself to see if it is as simple as feeling tired. Or being mentally drained. 

Not all advice works for everybody and that is ok. Focus on what your needs are right now.

When you had a writing schedule but it stopped working.

It’s no secret that having a schedule helps you with productivity. You have probably heard before about establishing a routine, process or plan for your writing. But a schedule can feel confining and threatening if it goes against your natural and unique rhythm.

It doesn’t make sense to adopt a schedule that causes frustration or resistance, especially if you are the boss. Your schedule should help you feel focused and productive without making you feel controlled and micro-managed. A restrictive writing schedule could be the cause of procrastination if you feel you are being stifled. Even if you are the one deciding the schedule.

Scheduling time to write is still a good idea.

But there are benefits to having a schedule. Even the most dependable people who self-regulate need a schedule. A schedule should not feel like a taskmaster who is there to rob you of your free time. 

Making peace with the idea of a schedule is an important part of building one that works with your unique rhythm. 

A schedule is a guide and a method for you to complete tasks and stay focused while you work. Schedules mean productivity and time well spent so you have more of it for other things. 

Here are some tips for building a schedule that works for you and your needs.

How to find the time to write:4 steps to help you write more often

find time to write
You might need to change up your schedule if it stops working for you.

In this blog post I talk about how it can be hard to find the time for writing. It does not matter whether you have a busy schedule or all the time in the world. Sitting down to write regularly can still be difficult. I am not going to tell you to wait for motivation or how to clear a large chunk of time in your calendar. Neither of these things are required to find time to write. Often, they are an easy excuse for not writing.

Tip for Finding the time to write

Decide when you want to work. If you want to be motivated, making the decision about when you want to work is crucial. Having the power to choose what’s best for your rhythm will make all the difference in how willing and able you are to work. If you have the option to choose when you work, do it. 

If you are a morning person, set aside the beginning of the day for your most productive work time. If you are a night owl, create a work schedule that allows you to do work later in the day. Schedule your writing adjacent activities when you are less productive but still want to work towards improving your writing. 

How to build your writing routine in 5 days

Add different elements to your writing routine over several days. This will help you figure out what does and does not work for you.

There is no magic formula that works for everybody. Writing is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ activity. I am going to walk you through the steps so that you can build a writing routine that works for you. While I am giving you a framework you are going to be doing most of the work. I give you the possible options but you make the decision. This puts control into your hands. 

Scheduling your writing tip 1

Know yourself and take care of yourself. Knowing ourselves helps us better understand what motivates and discourages us. It also helps us take better care of ourselves. Knowing some key things about ourselves can help set work time up for success. Consider these things when making your schedule-

What things cause you distraction?

What schedule for meals and rest periods help you stay focused? 

What helps you stay refreshed and energized during the day? 

Knowing the answers to these questions can help you take care of yourself and keep you more productive. Build your schedule and include self-care so you can maximize your time on duty. 

Scheduling your writing tip 2

Protect your schedule. Once you’ve made the schedule that works best for your unique rhythm, it’s important to protect it. There are many ways your schedule can be disrupted and it’s up to you to set boundaries and limits that protect it. Learn to say no to things that are distracting or trying to force you into working in ways that aren’t best for you.    

If you have the freedom to create your own schedule, you’re at an advantage. Being able to craft a schedule that works for your unique personality and rhythm is an excellent way to make your days productive and profitable.   

Making time to write during the summer

Consider where you will write during the summer
You could take advantage of the better weather during the summer and write outside.

Summer means better weather, more outdoor activities and also more distractions. Writing during the summer means navigating these distractions. This usually means a readjustment of your writing routine. In this blog post I discuss some ideas for combining your writing with the fin summer activities.

How to Set up your productive and inspiring writing space

cheerful black man writing in copybook
Photo by Gabby K on

I put the link to this blog post last. Often we distract ourselves with how our writing space looks instead of focusing on the writing. I am not going to tell you to redecorate or the ten point plan guaranteed to produce a masterpiece. The reason this is such a popular topic is because there are so many variables. I am going to help you set up your environment to support your writing. I would often blame my surroundings, the time of day, the bright light – almost anything as the reason why it was difficult to write. I had to change this way of thinking to increase the number of words on the page.

Action Steps

Now that you have read though my advice it is time for you to try it out and see if it works for you.You will probably need to tweak some of it. No advice is right for every person. But you will only know what will or won’t work for you by trying it for yourself.

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