9pm Curfew

How it started:

It’s New Year’s Day and I’ve been thinking for a few days that I need to do something to help me focus this month. I want to finish reading my first draft and start working out how I’ll write the second one, ready to hand to my publisher by the end of March. It came to me this morning – 9pm curfew for my mind. I have decided to be off my phone, computer or TV screen completely by 9pm for the next 30 days and hopefully beyond that.

It all started with a meme I saw mocking parents who wistfully think they’ll do lots of work once their kids are in bed, yet moments later are sitting wine in hand, stuffing chips and chocolate into their faces, doing nothing productive at all. I laughed out loud and shared the meme with my partner and my friends. But then, it sunk in how true it was. The one thing missing from the meme was a phone. That’s been my vortex, as it probably is for so many. I find myself innocently looking up one thing, only to suddenly find myself wasting hours, doing nothing of value. Then I’m overtired, then I can’t function, can’t sleep and I’m grumpy.

Re-reading The Artist’s Way, I was reminded how I can make time for my creativity and my writing. So that’s what I’m doing. I’ve cancelled my beloved Netflix subscription amongst other things, I’ve set an alarm on my phone so I know to get rid of it after 9pm. And I’ve just finished curating a list of things I’d like to do instead. Fun things in fact. No more playing online chess, I’m going to buy a real chess board. I’m also going to read. And write.

And right now, it’s 8:20pm and I’m excited to turn my computer off and find the printed manuscript I haven’t touched for a long while. I want to be great this year and I know I need to reset a few things for myself. Time to know when to let my mind back in.

9pm curfew starts today.

How it’s going:

This worked pretty well and I. Got. Things. Done. I’m about to do this again because the fun projects I’m juggling are starting to get very real.


Today’s two words are: 9pm Curfew and I’m throwing this question out to you — “How do you really spend your time in the evenings?”

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