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February 06, 2019

Writer's Burnout Part 5 (Free Your Mind with Walking) + GIVEAWAY


Health Update: The mass on my right ovary has shrunk a bit. We're keeping an eye on it, making sure it doesn't get bigger again, cause pain, or change characteristics. So far, so good. Thanks for your well wishes!


What is writer’s burnout?

Burnout is very different from writer’s block. It’s worse. Writer’s burnout is something you feel deep down…bone-deep. It’s just like when athletes burnout from working themselves too hard and too much for too long. They can lose their love of the sport, physically and mentally. You can get writer's burnout from doing anything related to being an author.




More Tips to Help You START Reversing Writer’s Burnout: 


Free Your Mind with Walking

Walking isn’t only a great form of exercise, but it’s been proven to be a stress-reliever. When we walk, we free our minds. Walking is also an excellent method to help us work through (or walk through) our troubles.

When we move, our blood pumps faster, and the more blood going to our brain increases our productivity levels, further increasing our mental power. We can think better, process better. The odds of us finding a solution or being inspired elevates.

Working out also releases chemicals into our body…happy chemicals. That’s why so many people who exercise regularly feel so good after a workout. If working out isn’t really your thing, or if you’re like me and your options are limited, walking can also do this. After I take a walk, I feel invigorated…free…heightened.

Getting outside, being in the sun and fresh air, and (if you’re lucky) around nature can instantly make you feel better.

To get through my burnout, I started to take a walk every day after dinner, the hour before I usually would turn off the computer for the day. Bumping that time up to 7:00pm instead of 8:00pm gave me more freedom and time to relax, and that time started with a walk.

TIP #14: Take a walk for 20 or 30 minutes at the end of each day.

This is all the time you need to shed pressure, free your mind, and wake up your body. And walking at the end of your busy day is a wonderful way to let go. Let go of whatever struggle or stress you had that day and open yourself to possibilities.
TIP: Walk alone so you can really release and be. If you decide to walk with someone, make a no-talking rule so you both can be in your own heads.

TIP #15: Do one long walk once a week.

If you can’t find the time to walk every day, schedule a nice long walk at least once a week for a good hour or so. This will help you release the week you had and welcome the next.

Even using a treadmill with earbuds in place and music on (or placing the treadmill in front of a window with a nice scenery) can do the same.
TIP: If you’re incapable of walking and are wheelchair-bound, have someone assist you with completing your daily or weekly walks. Just remember the no-talking rule so you can benefit from being outside, in nature, and let your mind go as your stress goes.
Walk.

Breathe.

See.

Expunge.

Receive.


Another post for Writer’s Burnout coming soon!

QUESTIONS: Do you take walks? How do they make you feel?



***GIVEAWAY***

Enter to win a signed, print copy of Write with Fey: 10 Sparks to Guide You from Idea to Publication and writing goodies (index cards, a magnetic mini clipboard with paper, flag paper clips, and a "Genius at Work" sign. Ends February 28th!





a Rafflecopter giveaway


127 comments:

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Spring and fall we often take a walk after dinner. But I'm on my elliptical 20-40 minutes every day, getting my steps. And everyone is familiar with my laps around the sanctuary every Sunday morning before church begins. (I can usually get over 5000 steps that way.)

nashvillecats2 said...

I quite agree Chrys about walking being good for stress relief. Until recently have done my share of walking and hope to continue again soon.
Hope all is well with you.
Have a good February.
Yvonne.

Jennifer Hawes said...

I run two miles on the elliptical every day. It is amazing how many writerly problems get solved during that time!

Lisa Thomson said...

YES. I love to walk off my frustration or stress. Great tip, Chrys. I find it to be like meditating. I always go alone, too and enjoy nature and watch the birds.
p.s. I'm happy to hear your breast mass is not changing. Sounds healthy. I had a lump removed coming up two years ago. Stay healthy and enjoy those walks!

S.A. Larsenッ said...

I didn't know about your health issues. So sorry! I'm glad to hear things are looking up, though. And I love going for walks. That's when we can up here in the north where it's so stinking cold right now. LOL But the non-talking thing is something I'll have to try. Makes perfect sense.

Madeline Mora-Summonte said...

Fingers crossed for continued good health news!

I've started taking more walks, and I do find I'm more energized after. I usually walk with my husband and we sometimes talk, sometimes are quiet. It all works. :)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chrys - that is good news re the shrinkage and better health. I walk quite a lot - but am not good at stretching out for long walks - which I should do ... perhaps once the weather is a little better, and now I'm more settled - I'll get out and do more - cheers Hilary

Tamara Narayan said...

I love taking walks, but the weather is not the best for that right now. I do try to get out to our local woods at least once a week. Being in the trees with just wildlife and the crunch of leaves is one of my favorite past times. Walking around the neighborhood (or jogging) is a great time for thinking about plot lines. Even mowing the lawn is a good time for thinking.

Lidy said...

I really should start walking. I've been living a sedentary life for a long while and the only chance I get to take walks is when I'm walking to the library. That'll have to change and set aside time to do it, like once a week for about an hour. Get back into yoga too.
Glad to hear about the shrinkage and keeping my fingers crossed.

Carrie-Anne said...

Much of my weight loss over the years has come from walks. Two years ago, I'd gained so much weight, and barely got out, it was extremely painful and difficult to walk even short distances. My hips hurt, and I had to stop and take breaks all the time. Even walking a mile to my main synagogue was impossible most weeks. Now that I've lost almost 60 pounds, it's much easier to walk places.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I go for multiple walks a day and run five miles. Both do wonders for body and mind.

Natalie Aguirre said...

Walking has been essential for my mental health since my husband died. I fell out of it for a few months when I was so busy this fall and definitely felt more depressed. Now I'm back on schedule and feeling better and losing some pounds I picked up.

Chrys Fey said...

I wish I had an elliptical or treadmill.

Chrys Fey said...

I hope you can get back to walking, Yvonne.

Have a beautiful February!

Chrys Fey said...

You're the second one so far to say she uses an elliptical. It would be so handy to have one.

Chrys Fey said...

It is a lot like meditating...moving meditation. ;)

Ovary, not breast, but that's okay. And thank you!

Chrys Fey said...

No worries. And thank you!

Sometimes it's nice to use that time to talk with someone, but not talking helps you more. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Madeline!

It's amazing what walking to do for us. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I forget to stretch, too. I should get better at that.

Chrys Fey said...

No, the weather is not good for walking in many places right now. I should've saved this post for when it wasn't so cold, huh? lol

Chrys Fey said...

I wish I could do yoga, but I can't bend and stretch as I would need to in order to do yoga. *sigh*

Chrys Fey said...

I am glad to hear that, Carrie-Anne. Keep it up! :)

Chrys Fey said...

That's great!

Chrys Fey said...

That's wonderful, Natalie! When I'm depressed, I have to force myself to go out and get some fresh air. Either to walk or to just be around some nature, but it always does me some good. :)

Debs Carey said...

Thank you for the timely reminder. I'd just re-started a walking habit when struck by a virus late last year which impacted my respiration. That's now improved, but my sleeping hasn't. Walking will help with that, especially as I know that my mind is overfull. A good friend & colleague told me that when I didn't have my lunchtime walk, she could see stress getting to me.

So sorry to hear about your health challenges. Hope things remain held at bay. Best wishes.

Rachna Chhabria said...

Walking keeps me happy and fit and I do all my thinking while walking. Sorry to hear about your health issues. Sending you loads of good energy and positive wishes for your health.

Christine Rains said...

Good news about your health. Hope things keep getting better! I like to walk, and I wish we had a better neighborhood to walk in. No sidewalks and the cars speed down the street. It's totally not safe.

Liz A. said...

My father goes for a walk every morning. His goal is to walk down all the streets in his city. Well, again. He's done all the streets a couple times already. He's on something like his fifth pass.

sherry fundin said...

I have a treadmill and walking is always my go to stress reliever. I wish you good health.

sherry @ fundinmental

Jemi Fraser said...

Glad to hear your health update. I'll keep sending those good vibes!!
I walk on my treadmill every morning and that works for me - especially during our winters. I do love going on a walk through so much of our beautiful Canadian forest trails when they're not covered with snow!! :)

Chrys Fey said...

Walking is healing. :)

Thank you, Rachna!

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Christine!

Oh no. That is stuff. Before I moved in 2015 to where I live now, I had a neighborhood I really enjoyed walking in. Here, I have a lot of dogs barking at me, which causes me stress.

Chrys Fey said...

That is awesome! Good for him. :D

Chrys Fey said...

I've always wanted a treadmill. I'd be on it a lot.

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Jemi!

Another one who has a treadmill. Gosh, I wish I had one. I'll have to try to save up and get a used one some day.

Chrys Fey said...

I'm sorry to hear about your health challenges. I really do hope they get better. And thank you for your best wishes with mine. :)

Jacqui Murray said...

I too started walking, with the dog, but walking. No headphones, earpods, phone, just me and my Casey. I always feel good afterwards.

M.J. Fifield said...

Good news on the health front—I'm so glad to hear it!

I try to walk at least three miles every day, but I am not freeing my mind during that time, even though I should. There have been many walks where, if my significant other comes along, I tell him that I'm walking to work through plot problems, not talk to him. Of course, I usually say it somewhat nicer than that sentence is probably coming off...

Chrys Fey said...

I sometimes like to bring music along because it helps me to really move and let my mind go. I bring my phone with me only in case of emergency.

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, MJ!

Three miles. Wow. I take baby walks compared to that. lol

HAHA!!! Don't talk to me, I'm plotting! :P

Anonymous said...

I take lots of walks when there's no snow. Hubby started walking to work in the summer and I usually will walk with him after his lunch break then again when he's done for the day. It's harder to do once the snow hits because they don't plow all the sidewalks and sometimes it's just too damn cold.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

I used to walk a LOT, but not so much any more. You're right about all the benefits of walking, though. My husband and I still try to get out there and walk as much as our bodies allow, but um, we don't do a very good job of keeping our mouths shut while we're doing it.

Jemi Fraser said...

With our weather up here, it is SO worth it!!!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Exercise is the answer to so many things. I have always preferred to jog or walk alone. I've been on my elliptical during the cold months. Great advice for not just writers but for everyone.

Suzanne Furness said...

I love walking and try to do as often as possible. Walking on my own is particularly good for clearing my mind. Glad you had good news on the health front, wishing you well, Chrys.

cleemckenzie said...

Good news on the health front. I use that Bactine every day. Either I hike, walk, workout or do yoga. The time is well-spent.

C.D. Gallant-King said...

I usually try to go for a jog during my lunch break, weather and meetings permitting. I find it helps clear my head for the afternoon. If I don't exercise, then I actually feel tired and worn out after lunch.

Anonymous said...

I agree. A good walk can help clear the mind. I have my treadmill faced towards a window and make sure there is some greenery within my view as I jam to my music.


Elsie

emaginette said...

I can't allow my mind to wander while I walk. It goes to bad places of late. I like the treadmill, so I can read. It keeps my mind busy and the nasty thoughts out. :-)

Anna from elements of emaginette

Loni Townsend said...

I've taken up doing 30 minutes of cardio on the treadmill in the morning. I think it has helped my attitude, especially since I turn on my happy light during it!

Chrys Fey said...

LOL! That's okay. Sometimes it's good to have that alone time with someone special, out in nature, while getting some exercising in, and chat. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I've been hearing a lot of great things about ellipticals. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Suzanne!

Walking alone is excellent for clearing ones mind.

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Lee!

That's awesome! Time well-spent, indeed.

Chrys Fey said...

Being in a state that gets snow would certainly make it hard.

Chrys Fey said...

Exercising is great for giving us a boost of energy.

Chrys Fey said...

I am jealous! I want a treadmill. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I'm sorry to hear that.

So many have said they have a treadmill. I've wanted one for ages. Reading while walking on a treadmill would be so much better than reading while sitting on the couch.

Cynthia said...

Walking is indeed a picker-upper.

I hope you are doing okay.

Chrys Fey said...

I want that happy light!

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Cynthia! I am. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I can imagine. lol

Pat Hatt said...

With my crummy feet walking can stick it lol but then I've probably walked about 500 km so far this year, 6000 last year, crummy job. Where's my bed?

Olga Godim said...

Good advice! I should do it too. I should shake off my laziness and start walking.

Chrys Fey said...

I have a bad back, so walking is about all I can do. lol

Chrys Fey said...

Do it! :D See how it makes you feel.

Lee Lowery said...

I used to run, until chronic injuries cut that off. Now I walk 3-5 miles daily. I love it! I do mine first thing in the morning. It helps clear the mind and get the blood flowing. I often think about my WIP and often have new scenes worked out, ready to be put on paper. So glad you've found this helpful for you.

Birgit said...

We
Hen I can, I love to walk but my pain is getting in the way. Hopefully, when I have my next infusion on Saturday, I will feel better. Today we have had a horrible day weather wise with freezing rain. I agree with all that you have said. I hope you are feeling better

Samantha Bryant said...

I'm a big believer in walking, too. I'm fortunate to have a few easy paths in my town and a dog who is perfect quiet companionship for a nice traipse through the woods. I'm convinced the extra oxygen from proximity to the trees is what does it. :-) @mirymom1 from
Balancing Act

EliasM said...

Good stuff. I work out work-work and writing work stuff while walking.

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

I definitely agree about walking. I try to walk every day after lunch. Tiger goes with me. He doesn't talk to me so it's nice and quiet. He does climb a tree every now and then or chase a bird, but I keep on walking. We don't hurry, but I'm thinking of speeding up. Always feel better after the walk and hate to miss it.

Jeff (sage) said...

I love walking and do it often (along with bike riding, paddling, & sailing). I also work out (was in the gym tonight). When I work out, I listen to books, but since I live in a natural area with lots of live oaks and marsh, I never listen to anything but nature when I walk. I also like to walk at night and look at the stars, my old friends!

Denise Covey said...

Hi Chrys. Because I've been traveling, not blogging. I didn't know you had health issues. I hope you are okay now. Stephen King walks when he is caught with a plot issue. Don't we all feel better when we walk? Great therapy.

Gwen Gardner said...

I love walking. I get some of my best writing ideas when I walk. Love those endorphins too. Glad you’re doing well, Chrys!

Adrienne Reiter said...

I run. Not for fitness, but mental health. I've had instances when running I would get a golden idea, then run back home to jot/map it out. I always know it won't resonate on my iPhone (I run with head phones). Great post, as usual. Thanks Chrys!

Adrienne Reiter said...

Meant while not when. Stupid iPhone! See what I mean?

Nancy Gideon said...

I LOVE walking - when there's not a -35 wind chill or raining ice. Walking in a mall is just NOT the same thing. I put in tons of steps at work but I wouldn't call that relaxing. Joining IWSG Book Club sounds like it might be. I haven't read REBECCA for more years than I can remember!

Liza said...

Walking is an amazing way to relax the mind. Sometimes I listen to music when I walk, which seems to help the creativity afterwards.

Yolanda Renée said...

Walking is the only go to exercise for me. It started when I walked a mile to and from work when I was 19. Couldn't afford a car so that's how I got around. It continued to hiking the mountains of Alaska and has remained the best solution for me. Love it, and yes I get all those benefits and more!

Sandra Cox said...

I did not realize you had a mass, Chrys. VERY sorry to hear this, but glad it's shrinking.
I used to walk three miles on my lunch hour M-F before I retired. Unfortunately, I'm not walking as often now and I can tell it. Great post.

Juneta key said...

I wish I could stay on my feet to go walking. Getting to where I need to go and I am doing good. I use to walk a mile when I didn't have issues well, issues that knock you don't make you listen at any rate, lol. Great post.

Diane Burton said...

Great advice, Chrys. I'd love to walk (back issues). Sunshine is so helpful. We escaped Michigan's deep freeze. After a week down south, I'm feeling so much better, more energized. Unfortunately, we have to go back. Maybe winter will be over by the time we do. LOL

Lisa said...

I love to walk. I need to do it more, like you said, every day. I get too caught up in my head sometimes and don't get out and walk it off. Having my first winter in Ohio is showing me that I can walk when it's cold, but maybe I have to manage with shorter walks!

Chemist Ken said...

Walking is good, but during the winters here in Michigan, It's just not going to work for me on a regular basis. I spend too much time thinking about how cold I'm feeling during the walk to keep my mind refreshed. We do have an old stationary bike, however. Not as much fun, but I'm sure it will get the blood pumping.

Meka James said...

With 3 big dogs, I always tell myself I should walk them and give myself some quiet time. I've yet to do it. LOL But I have picked back up with yoga twice a week so that helps me center myself, get some movement, and be at peace.

Glad to hear the mass has gotten smaller.

Toi Thomas said...

Glad to hear your health is better. Will continue to keep you in my thoughts.
I've had a recent injury that's made it near impossible for me to work-out. It makes a huge difference. I'm so happy I'm at a place where I can at least walk my dog again and hope to be able to do more in the future (I miss my elliptical). Great post.

Mandy said...

Umm yes. I want to walk. What a great suggestion! :)

Hope your health keeps improving. I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers. <3.

Cathrina Constantine said...

I love walking. And you're right. A great stress reliever and so much more. Great Post, Chrys!

J Lenni Dorner said...

I'm a pretty big fan of walking. I'm more... amused or dismayed... that you have to give people this tip. I mean, I don't know how to put it, like "feeling hungry? Have you tried eating?" I don't... I just... I'm so freaking different. The idea of not doing this wouldn't occur to me.

Okay. I'm going to just thank you for the post and I'm going to set the laptop down and walk away now.

Victoria Marie Lees said...

So glad you've got things under control with that nasty growth on your ovary. You are still in my prayers, Chrys. I totally agree with walking or hiking or working out. I do all these things. It's my time away from my computer screen. A time to think and clear my mind in order to consider the possibilities. All best to you, my dear!

Rebecca M. Douglass said...

I’m pretty much addicted to exercise, and am outside nearly every day. This last month may have taken the walking thing too far :D. I think we did about 130 miles... my head should be nice and clear, but it’s full of scenery and logistics, so the writing is struggling.

Nick Wilford said...

Glad to hear things seem to be stable health wise.

I get a walk every day with the dogs. They get all their exercise running around and I get my thinking time - win-win!

Stephen Tremp said...

I not only walk but I incorporate shorts bursts to keep the heart rate going. I find this helps set the pace for the rest of the day.

Gina Gao said...

I really enjoy walking out my frustrations. Thanks for sharing!

www.ficklemillennial.blogspot.com

Sherry Ellis said...

Walking is great! I do it all the time, and it really helps.

Ronel Janse van Vuuren said...

I sleep much better after a long walk at the end of the day :-)

Ronel visiting for Feb's IWSG Day Being an Insecure Writer -- And Happy About It

Magic Love Crow said...

A good sleep and exercising is great to keep the mind and soul going! Take care of your health! Happy the mass has shrunk a bit! Big Hugs!

Chrys Fey said...

Using walking time to think about a WIP is a great idea.

Chrys Fey said...

Walking a lot or for a long time causes me pain, too, but it's the only exercise I can really do. It's difficult at times, but it makes me feel good mentally, if not physically.

Chrys Fey said...

I usually just walk around my block, but I should look for nice parks and natural places to walk. That would be even more peaceful.

Chrys Fey said...

That's how to do it. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Not hurrying, just going whatever pace you want to go is nice. :)

Chrys Fey said...

You are very active. That's great.

When I walk around my neighborhood, I like to listen to music to turn out the cars and people outside, but in a place with a lot of nature, I also like to listen to nature. It's so peaceful.

Chrys Fey said...

I think we do tend to feel better after a walk.

That's okay, Denise. Thank you! I am better now.

Chrys Fey said...

I get many ideas while walking, too. Walking is just so good for creative minds. :)

Thank you, Gwen!

Chrys Fey said...

I can't run because of my back...with a rod in there, it just feels so weird. lol But I've tried running when I was little and even ran track one year, but I never got in to it. I often wish could run, because I see how happy runners are after a god run and want that. lol

Chrys Fey said...

No, walking in a mall isn't the same. The shops would stifle my peace and creativity process while I walk.

I hope you do join our book club. We have a lot of fun there. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I love listening to music when I walk. It really helps me to escape.

Chrys Fey said...

Same here. I wish I could do yoga, but I can't. Hiking the mountains of Alaska would be something.

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Sandra!

Maybe you'll start taking some short talks a few times a week now. I used to do more walking back in the day, too, and should do it more often. I'm afraid I've grown a bit lazy.

Chrys Fey said...

A mile. Wow. I don't think I've walked that far. Well, maybe I have. I don't count steps or time myself to know.

Chrys Fey said...

I hear ya with the back issues. It does make walking for a good period of time difficult, but walking is the only exercise I can manage.

Yes, walking in the cold would not work at all. lol

Chrys Fey said...

A short walk every day or a nice, long one once a week could do wonders. If I lived in a cold state, I'd invest in a treadmill. lol

Chrys Fey said...

No, I can imagine that walking in Michigan in the winter would be a no-go. A stationary bike is a fine alternative.

Chrys Fey said...

I wish I could do yoga, but my back won't allow it. Sadly.

Thanks, Meka!

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Toi!

I'm sorry to hear about your recent injury. Hopefully you'll get back to where you were soon.

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Mandy!

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Cathrina!

Chrys Fey said...

Well, it may not occur to people who are burned out that getting out and walking may help them. Especially if they are experiencing depression, too. In that case, they don't usually even want to leave the house to take a short walk. I've been there. You are very nature orientated, so this is an obvious solution to you, but everyone is different. And sometimes a reminder is good.

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Victoria!

Time away from the computer screen is a must. :)

Chrys Fey said...

That's wonderful. I admit to have gotten lazy. I can stay inside for days and then get the itch of needing to be outside or go somewhere, anywhere.

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Nick!

Having dogs is a great excuse to go out for a walk every day. :)

Chrys Fey said...

That's great!

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you for commenting, Gina!

Chrys Fey said...

That's wonderful. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Another great reason to take daily walks. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Absolutely. We need both to stay healthy, physically and mentally.

Thank you! <3