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Hi Everyone, it’s Judith Couchman. My assignment for this year focuses on blogging about writing: technique, practical pointers,encouragement, and such. I hope this helps you.

 

If you want to improve your prayer life, try writing.

If you want to improve your writing life, try praying.

—Ed Cyzewski

prayer 1

If any profession produces anxiety, it’s writing. Writers fret about deadlines, the quality of their work, if they’ll publish, whether readers will buy their books, or if they’ll earn income. Potentially, the anxiety can paralyze getting the work done.

Two thousand years ago a writer working under duress suggested an antidote for these worries. To Philippi, the first Christian church in Europe, the Apostle Paul wrote,Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Phil. 4:6-7). To another church at Thessaloniki, he advised, “pray continually” (Thess. 5:17).

Instead of perpetually worrying, you can constantly pray.

Paul’s advice translates to praying generally for a project, but also praying through it as you work: chapter by chapter, section by section. Praying through absent ideas, titles, beginnings and endings, anecdotes and transitions, and anything else.

The result? God’s peace, and most likely, breakthroughs in your work.

Judith Couchman

 

Judith Couchman is an author, speaker, writing coach, and adjunct professor. She’s traditionally published more than 42 works. Learn more about her at www.judithcouchman.com. Write to her at judith@judithcouchman.com.

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Georgia Shaffer

Georgia Shaffer

Georgia Shaffer from Pennsylvania

One coaching client emailed me, saying, “Every time I sit down to write, I’m flooded with anxious thoughts. The voices in my head shout that I can’t write and nobody wants to read what I have to say. How do I deal with all this anxiety?”

In highly motivated people like this woman, I’ve found it is often anxiety that interferes with our creativity and ability to focus. Obviously not all anxiety is detrimental to writing. These feelings can motivate us to take action. But constant anxiety can lead to moodiness, writer’s block, headaches and even insomnia when our brains don’t shut down at night.

You can help yourself resolve some of the anxiety by first asking yourself multiple questions. Could I be trying to do too much? Is this just a difficult challenging time? Do I need to put this writing project on the back burner? Do I need more sleep? Or am I only anxious when I write?

I knew this particular client had been gradually trying to write later and later into the night. Her most productive hours, however, were in the morning. Working longer at night allowed her little time to relax. Since she went to bed, still tense, she had problems falling asleep. The next morning she felt sluggish and had difficulty concentrating. Read More →

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