This is the third year I’ve participated in a writing retreat with a group of friends. Our plan is simple:
- Rent a vacation home far enough away from our daily lives that we can’t be sucked back into our normal routines. The place must have enough space that each of us has a private area to do our work.
- Meet at the beginning of our time together to establish our goals. We each write them out on a giant sticky note and hang them in the public area for all to see and monitor each other’s progress.
- Have an evening meal together (we each take one night to prepare the meal). When we gather at the table, we update one another on how we’re doing with our goals. There are also lots of laughs, a good amount of encouragement, and sharing of tips for those who may be facing obstacles to creativity.
- Other than our one daily mealtime, we honor each other’s need for solitude. It would take an extreme emergency to knock on someone’s door. We communicate through a Facebook page so each of us is free to check the announcements whenever we desire and not feel pressure to respond immediately.
At last night’s meal, I shared that I’m having trouble getting started on my main writing goal – completing the full rough draft for my book. Since I can’t seem to get into that “zone” I need to get into for productive writing, I’m trying to knock some of the smaller goals off my list – things like working ahead on my Encourager’s Devotional Series for this blog.
That’s when one of my friends mentioned the video below by Byran Tracy and the concept of “eating that frog.” The logic is the reverse of what I’ve been doing. Tracy advises to tackle the big thing first – the thing you’re likely to procrastinate about doing. In other words, don’t let the smaller tasks distract you from the more important one. Continue reading