Poor mental health should not be added to the mix of writing. It’s hard to quiet the anxious thoughts in your head long enough to focus on writing.
I have been writing since I could hold a pencil. I have been mentally ill for as long as I have been writing. I went through periods of depression where I didn’t create for a while. I would pick it up again and look at my issues on the page at the doctor’s request. If you don’t want to write, what do you do?
I have been writing for seven years. My writing took off after I joined within this website. I have improved as a writer. I spend most of my time typing into my laptop, even though I can’t write anything. I do it every single day.
I wrote about my life with mental illness during my 30’s. I was not a good writer, but I had a readership who identified with me on a deep level. I was more honest with my therapist than I could in regular conversations. She was able to tailor the topics for me to address in my sessions after reading about what was happening to me.
How are you able to do that? Even though I have a severe mental illness, I have done all this.
For me, getting a lot of writing done is dependent on three things: motivation, positive thinking, and stubbornness. How do I keep writing even though I have hallucinating, racing thoughts, panic attacks, anxiety, and depression? How am I going to increase my output in May?
I spend a lot of time motivating myself to write. I wouldn’t get up every morning to tell a story if I didn’t do certain things every day. There is motivation.
I am writing even when I am not typing. I am still writing when I read, research, and think. I write in my head when I drive. I record conversations when I post on social media. I use my dreams as canvases to create new ideas. I keep myself motivated by thinking about writing all the time. I find if I keep my writing goals in front of me every day, I am always working hard.
They know how I ruminate and overthink, so they do everything they can to make sure that I am in the right frame of mind to be ready to write whenever I can. I have a family life. They know how important it is for me to keep writing. They don’t put pressure on me to do otherwise. They know that I need to be reading, interacting with my fans, and promoting my next story. Even if they have to ask me something twice because I wasn’t paying attention, I love them and value them.
Positive thoughts. I do everything I can to stay motivated.
I think of a positive thought when I have a negative thought. Or more than two. I lift myself out if I see myself heading down a rabbit hole.
You have heard it all before, I know. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not Pollyanna. I think of ways to keep myself in a positive frame of mind. I do have negative thoughts. I counteract the negative with the positive when my mind wanders down a dark road.
If you let it get that way, social media can be a battleground. A few months ago, I couldn’t scroll because there was so much negative stuff in the post. I gave all my accounts an enema when I shut off social media for a few months, because I was ready to go back. I stopped following people who caused me anxiety. I didn’t like the pages that were feeding my mind. I cleaned everything away that didn’t make me happy. If you looked at my Facebook feed, you would see that I have carefully chosen people to follow so that I always have positive input when things are not going well. I see positive things on Facebook, as well as on other websites.
I’m stubborn. I am a much more positive person today because of the drastic steps I took to get rid of the negative in my life.
I have to be tough if I want to get anything done. If I complain too much, I chastise myself. I leave if I join a pity-party online. I steer myself back onto the right road if I start with a negative attitude.
I’m simply stubborn. I force myself back if I start deviating from my goals. I am not easy.
Don’t forget to get ice cream once in a while. Be tough if going easy on yourself isn’t working. I needed to make drastic changes in my life, but I didn’t.
It is possible to be a great writer. You can be a lot more prolific. Even if you have a mental illness, you can do it. You can do that!
You are welcome to try what I do, I told you what works for me. You need to find what works for you. Until you stop feeling sorry for yourself, you will never find what works for you. If you aren’t convinced that you can change your life, you won’t get anywhere. Push yourself to do what you are told to do.
You should motivate yourself. Think optimistically. You should be stubborn about the things that matter. Take your life by the neck if you don’t stop letting things happen to you. Don’t be nice if you don’t have to guide it.
You will be where you need to be one day.
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