Make Yourself A Ritual

The part of my life where I have been most consistently rebellious is when someone tells me I have to do something every day.

Meditation? Nope. Exercise? Probs not. Flossing? Get the hell out of here.

Even when it’s writing, I hate feeling pinned to something I must do every day. Sometimes I don’t want to, OK?!

That’s why I am unlikely to ever issue you an edict to write every single day.

However, I will say that when you’re writing as a way of getting to know yourself, or to work through something particularly sticky, you will make the most progress when you do it regularly.

It takes time to immerse yourself in your interior world, but once you get there, it’s much easier to stay there.

When you leave big chunks of time between writing sessions, you get out of practice. You lose touch with the depth of what you were doing before, and you end up writing about superficial stuff that will certainly help clear your head, but might not do much to create real forward motion in your life.

Instead of a daily habit, create for yourself a luxuriant ritual.

Make a tangible experience out of your writing, something that feeds your growing sense of clarity and calm.

I like to make a hot cup of tea, swaddle myself in a massive blanket and sit in the sun to do my writing. I crave physical comfort, I think, because often the writing can be uncomfortable.

I know other people who light candles, burn some incense or herbs, pull tarot cards and then start writing. Others get up in the dark morning and sit quietly for a while before they begin.

But everyone I know who has gotten the most power out of their writing has a ritual around it. We all do roughly the same thing each time — whenever it’s possible — and this signals that it’s time to get going.

Carving out a ritual for yourself is not always easy. If you have kids, pets, or a partner who doesn’t really get what you’re doing, it can be difficult to draw the boundary around yourself and maintain it.

Surprise, surprise: this is when you need it most.

This is where the real growth happens — by choosing to do something important and nourishing for yourself, even when it means defying the demands and expectations of others.

It doesn’t have to be daily. But do it often, and define and refine your ritual until it feels totally lush and indulgent and you can’t wait to do it.