OBSTACLES AND OPPORTUNITIES

Regardless of vocation, we all encounter obstacles that make it difficult for us to fulfill our individual callings. A teacher may face distracted students, hostile parents, or school administrators who are not supportive. A doctor – patients who refused to follow prescribed treatments, over-extended support staff, or outrageous insurance costs.

What obstacles to I face as a writer? What things keep me from doing the very task I feel called to do? Hands down, my biggest obstacles are busyness and fatigue.

My job as Mom takes priority over my calling to write. Sometimes, that means the demands of family crowd out opportunities for writing. Right now, for example, I am in the middle of a Mom crunch season – a daughter and a son graduating from high school and college, a daughter and her family moving to Japan, another daughter expecting Grandbaby #6 in a couple of weeks (I love Grandma duty!)…I run hard from before sunup until way past sundown, and this frantic pace will continue through late June. My present reality: it is going to be very difficult to squeeze writing time into my Mom schedule.

When I do find a few minutes to sit down and write, I am pooped from all the busyness I just described. If I am exhausted, I can shift into autopilot and run the next load of laundry, cook the next meal, etc. But writing is brain work, and my brain does not work very well when I am am physically sapped from running too hard on too little sleep!

During a crazy-busy season like the one I am in right now, I have found that I can clear my mind and get the writing juices flowing by taking a few minutes to MOVE. A short break to do seated spinal twists while I am working at the computer, a quick walk outside around the house, a one-minute plank or a set of crunches on the living room floor (I keep my yoga mat handy!) – these short bursts of exercise get my heart rate up, increase blood flow, and deliver much-needed oxygen to my sleepy brain.

Life as a mom is BUSY. While I do not want to curtail my Mom duties, I do still want to write. When life is crazy, a little exercise helps me make the most of brief opportunities to write.

What about YOU? I would love to hear how you overcome particular obstacles to your own calling!

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