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Being Out of Balance Stifles Creativity

January 12, 2022 by in category The Writing Journey by Denise Colby tagged as , , ,

Do you ever feel out of balance in your life? Where you find your days lopsided in your to-do’s, and you aren’t able to dig into your well to do what you really want to do? Have you found yourself with the desire to create stuffed inside but no way to come out? Am I the only one who needed a mental and creative break at the end of last year?

Blog header with rocks stacked on top of each other and words Being Out of Balance Stifles Creativity by Denise M. Colby

When I say creative break, what I really mean is giving my brain a chance to catch up with itself. Taking the time to organize thoughts, goals, wins, and losses, and get out of the funk I found myself in.

Time to conduct a Sacred Rest Assessment

Susan May Warren added the Sacred Rest assessment in her 2022 Brilliant Writer Planner (that I love!). It’s a way to determine the rest you are lacking (and what you are not). It’s all about balance. And she organizes our needs into these buckets:

  • Physical
  • Emotional
  • Creative
  • Spirutal
  • Social
  • Sensory
  • Mental.

When you find your life is out of harmony

For me, my mental and creative areas are sorely lacking. And taking time over the last two weeks to purge through some to-do piles, evaulate my year, and write out thoughts, made me realize I don’t schedule this type of downtime for my brain enough. 

And that’s exactly what the assesment is supposed to do. 

Help you figure out areas you should focus on this year.

For me, I like time to let my mind catch up with my inputs. Let my mind wander. With my scheduled life, I don’t get a lot of time to do that. Yet when I did recently, I found the creative juice I’ve been missing.

Ideas began to pop into my thoughts. Energy to dive in and get to work.

Finding Symmetry

And that what was so exciting, because WORK is my word for 2022. Something I chose because God isn’t finished with me yet. And I am not finished with this writing journey. 

He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it. Philippians 1:6.  

Noun: exertion or effort directed to produce or accomplish something

Dreams don’t work, unless you do.

My manuscript is a work in progress

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart….Colossions 3:24-25

Which is exactly what I plan to do for 2022.

I process my thoughts by writing. I explore what’s in my brain by writing. And what I found myself not doing at the end of 2021 was writing.

It takes work to write. And I’m now ready to get to work.

Figuring Out Balance

In her Sacred Rest Assessment, Susie May asks three questions at the end 

1. What areas do you need to focus more on this year?

2. Why do you feel you are depleted in those particular areas?

3. What activities can you pursue to refresh your life with Sacred Rest?

And just like that I figured out how and what to schedule (what I need to bring balance back to my life) into my week.

How about you? Are you in balance with your Sacred Rest?

You may want to schedule some time to assess to help you bring yourself back into balance this year and together, maybe we can help each other do just that!

Denise M. Colby loves to write words that encourage, enrich, & engage. Every year, she chooses a word to focus on. Her word in 2021 was Wisdom. If you’d like to see more of Denise’s posts on this blog, you can check out her archives.

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The Wisdom of This Year’s Focus Word

August 12, 2021 by in category The Writing Journey by Denise Colby tagged as , , ,

As I’ve mentioned in my January post, my word for 2021 is Wisdom. And as usual, I realize now how perfect this word has been for me this year. That there was wisdom in selecting wisdom as this year’s focus word.

The Wisdom of My Focus Word 2021 Blog post Title page by Denise M. Colby

I selected this word because this was the year. The turning point year where I’d apply the wisdom I’ve learned thus far, and also seek out others’ input for my next step in my writing journey.

Wisdom, I’ve learned, encompasses the integration of knowledge, experience, and deep understanding; and how you apply those three in your decisions.

This is exactly what I wanted to explore in my writing. To make final decisions about how it’s written and get it published.

And that has given me focus.

I’m happy to report that I’ve gotten my manuscript to a point where I’ve shared the entire thing with a select few. And have received positive feedback. That’s a huge step for me!

So as I reflect on this year so far, I think choosing the word Wisdom has helped me reach that goal.

Which is the entire point of choosing a focus word for the year.

But as always, choosing this focus word has not just been applicable to my writing.

I’ve thought a lot about how I apply wisdom in my decision making skills in my life too.

And in my search for quotes and phrases and wisdom about wisdom, I realized some things.

Quote about wisdom from dictionary.com

Each word I’ve selected has been building on each other.  Hope, believe, strength, steadfast, purposeful, courage, and now wisdom. I needed to glean the knowledge of the other words first before I could truly embrace the word wisdom. 

That was a huge aha moment for me. A small dash of wisdom, which has altered how I look at myself, my writing journey, and my life.

That’s why choosing the word that fits where you are and where you want to go is so helpful.

Other thoughts about my word Wisdom

Did you know that my name Denise means wisdom?

Photo of card that states Denise means wise discerner with bible verse on it

When I found these cards amongst some old papers, it was quite the aha moment. The timing was right for me to select the word wisdom as my focus word.

Denise M. Colby

Because quotes are all about invoking wisdom, I have had to purposely search for quotes and phrases using the actual word wisdom in it, vs finding quotes related to wisdom itself. 

It took some time, but I found some. And they have helped me explore this word further.

I really like to study words and share what I learn.

And I’m excited to have a few more months to explore my focus word, wisdom.

I’m never really ready to let go of my words, which is why I’m thankful to have learned that the words you choose don’t really go away. They are a part of you, like building blocks, helping you grow into the person you are meant to be.

Last year I had so much on the word Courage, that I built a page dedicated to the word to put everything in one place.

I’d love to hear what have you learned about your focus word this year. Please share in the comments.

Blessings,

Denise

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New Year, New Planner, New Word

January 12, 2021 by in category The Writing Journey by Denise Colby tagged as , ,

I love the beginning of a new year, starting a new planner, and working with a new word! Last year, I wrote about how January is a reset month, and how using a planner can help you stay on track.

Blog title with colorful pens on one side and words on the other that say New Year, New Planner, New Word by Denise M. Colby

Aren’t new planner’s fun?

The pages are yet to be written and there’s this anticipation of setting goals and plans for our writing and our life.

This is my second year I’m using the My Brilliant Writing Planner, and this year the pages have been simplified, with two sizes available. I’m using the smaller 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 as I hoped I could take it with me more easily and it would sit on my desk and not take up a ton of room, but alas, I’m not going anywhere and I now have a bigger desk.

However, it doesn’t make me any less excited to use it.  

One of my favorite pages in the planner is the One Word Page.

Every year, I select a word to represent my year. I know a lot of authors do this, so if you have a word, I’d love to know what it is. I have found the process of selecting a word and the focus all year long, has given me extra blessings and has fit me where I am in my writing journey, as well as my life.

I’ve written about some of my words in past posts. 2016, my word was Believe. In 2017, my word was Strength, In 2018, my word was Steadfast. And I liked it so much I did a summary at the end of that year. 2019, my word was Purposeful, yet I couldn’t find a post about that (that was very purposeful on my part, right?)

Last years word was Courage and I did a wrap up blog post as well.

For this year, my word is Wisdom.

Denise M. Colby's Word of the year 2021 is Wisdom written out on a white piece of paper

As I research this word, I have found several explanations that really fit where I’m at in my writing journey. Wisdom is an integration of knowledge, experience, and deep understanding.

I hope that in all the time I’ve been working on my novel, that I am able to incorporate all of those and be able to move on to the next step.

There are other terms associated with wisdom including: insight, judgment, decision-making, discernment, and sense of balance. That last phrase speaks to me. There’s a balance between all the differing feedback I’ve received from others during contests, and figuring out what is best for the book overall. 

I love this quote I found on wisdom.

Wisdom involves a healthy dose of perspective and the ability to make sound judgments about a subject while knowledge is simply knowing.

This is the wisdom I seek.

I also hope to share my wisdom when it comes to branding and SEO. Launching my Marketing for Authors newsletter last year was a huge leap of courage (my 2020 word), and now that I’ve done that, I want to learn more and share that knowledge with others.

I’m still exploring quotes, verses, and synonyms that are connected to wisdom. It’s an interesting word in that, quotes about life and such are considered words of wisdom. So if I’m looking to simplify, I might need to limit to those phrases that only include the word wisdom in them. Not about wisdom in general. 

Although I do love quotes and words of wisdom in general, too!

To end, I wanted to share some of the synonyms of wisdom. I feel like I can apply many of these to my writing goals this year:

Acumen, gumption, foresight, experience, savvy, caution, poise, prudence, reason, discrimination, discernment, practicality, shrewdness, solidity, stability, judiciousness, comprehension, astuteness.

Alas, I hope To grow in my writing with comprehension, astuteness, & gumption this year.

Here’s to a great year of writing for us all.

Share below what your word is for 2021! There are so many words to choose from, I love reading all the different ones people choose.

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