This month the insecure writers are discussing how they get in the zone.
This is an interesting topic for me. Getting in the zone isn't really something I do. The closest thing to a "zone" for me is my kids being relatively occupied enough, and quiet enough, that I can have a moment to myself. Of course, there is usually a cup of tea involved, and some breathing as well. My laptop is on the dining room table located on one side of the living room in our 800 sq ft apartment, so aside from my angry mom stare and yelling the phrase, "I'm busy," there is no protective barrier for concentration. Writing isn't a result of a zone I get into, it is what creates my zone!
Let me explain. I work full time at a childcare center, have two children of my own, two cats, and a husband. I'm a terrible housekeeper, but there are some things that just have to be done every day, like dishes and sweeping. As most of you know, taking care of a family is a full time job by itself. I make it more difficult on myself because I'm old fashioned about a lot of things. I don't like disposables, so no paper napkins or towels, and no paper plates. We eat home cooked meals everyday, and boxed meals don't count. Yes I make my kids yogurt, scrambled eggs, and toast every morning before we leave the house at 6:40. Most of our food is prepared from whole ingredients. Even if the kids do get a frozen corn dog for dinner, I still have to make something for myself. So basically, no corners are being cut in that department. I don't exactly have free time. That's the simple truth. I'm at work, I'm cooking or cleaning, I'm caring for the kids, or trying to squeeze in some quality time with the man who lives in my house (after all it is the only love language we have in common). None of this is a complaint, it is just a reality.
So, I don't create a zone for writing, the writing creates the zone for me. It is my expression. When I write,I am getting all the energy that has been bottled up for hours and hours out of my head and onto the screen. I feel so much lighter when I can write. I think when I am taking this time for myself, it makes others in my house pick up some responsibility, too. My son realizes he has to occupy himself, or play with his sister. My husband realizes he can take care of bath time and help cook dinner some nights. And I also have to be more responsible and make sure I leave time to get things done so they don't pile up and steal away my writing time the next day.
There is so much to be said about taking things that you need. It is very irresponsible to complain about something unless you have tried to first make it better. I believe in taking initiative and being responsible for your own fate. Whether or not I am destined to be a published author will not change the fact that I will be a writer. I think that is the zone I am in right now. I created a zone by writing. For the first time, in a long time, I go to sleep excited to wake up the next day.
***I want to add, there are a lot of things in life that make accomplishments difficult, and I have had a fair share. Some of my own demons include depression and anxiety and parenting an autistic child. The best thing I have ever done for myself was try to make my body the healthiest it could be. Having a healthy immune system and balanced hormones have done more for me than antidepressants and therapy combined. Although I am grateful for those as well, I just don't require them anymore. For me, it is all about diet. If life is dragging you down, look into your diet! I'm not joking. I started back writing on April 10. Guess what I did two weeks before. I started my third round of the Whole 30 diet. I finished my 30 days last week, and I couldn't feel better. Now that I have reset my eating habits and given my body what it needs, I can make better choices. Find something that makes you feel better and stick to it (as long as it is legal...or at least well hidden).