"Required reading" for today's smart writer.

"Required reading" for today's smart writer.
Information & inspiration to hone your craft and increase your cash...Since 2009

Thursday, October 11, 2018

5 Reasons You Should Cut Back to Give More!

Is your "plate" full of the wrong things?

It's hard to believe it, but we're in the final quarter of the year, folks. The last inning of the game. And If I were a bettin' woman, I would wager that many of you will thoughtfully compile and compose a list of New Year's resolutions in the upcoming months, to gear up for 2019.

Mired among those future promises to lose weight, live differently, start that blog, write that novel, save money or heal fractured relationships, will likely be a "vow" to carve out more "me" time and take better care of yourself.  Am I right here?

If not, it definitely should be. Here's why: there's great validity to the expression "You can't give from an empty cup."

Here's a cautionary tale to provide greater clarity...

Some years ago, I befriended a sweet lady who initially started out as one of my writing clients. Robin D. Williams was a high school teacher; talented writer; caretaker for her elderly mom; and a volunteer for many school-sponsored activities throughout her more than 20-year tenure in academia.
Though she had her share of health challenges, she refused to slow down. Despite the fact that I often pointed that out to her (out of loving concern).

Robin assured me that retirement was right around the corner for her, and when it arrived, she would definitely do better.  Turns out that she never saw retirement. My friend died unexpectedly, taking many of her talents and dreams with her.
Something similar happened with my brother.

My point here?
Many of us stretch ourselves to the limits trying to be ALL things to ALL people at ALL costs.
When this happens, we deplete ourselves of the time, energy, resources and creativity to move the needle forward on our writing careers and realize our full potential.

Though it may seem contradictory in nature, to BE more, you'll need to cut back.

"You can't give from an empty cup."

Cut back on what...?

  • Providing an array of creative services, year after year, for free or for "exposure"
  • Blogging 2-3X a week with very little R.O.I. (return on investment)
  • Pet sitting for your neighbor's pet rock collection and other senseless acts of charity
  • Toxic relationships that fail to honor you or ones that you've outgrown
  • Volunteer activities that don't reflect your current values, views or interests

Why cutting back is crucial...

  1. It provides time to live a life of purpose, passion and balance; as opposed to operating on "auto-pilot".
  2. It decreases stress levels, resentment and plaguing regrets.
  3. Cutting back allows for more personal reflection and inventory for a better quality of life.
  4. It prevents overload and ultimate burnout.
  5. It contributes to a life of authenticity and inner-peace.
According to the creator of the Writing and Wellness Blog: "Self-care is an approach to life that understands we must captain our own ships. As captain, you have to make sure that your “ship” is in good condition, and that you’re maintaining it as best you can, because you know that it needs to get you through 90 years or more (hopefully). It is a type of stewardship over your body and mind, a responsibility you have to not only keep yourself in optimal operating condition, but to be aware of things that may harm or damage you, and take steps to protect and prepare yourself."

To wrap things up here...

Make yourself a priority. Don't think of it as being "selfish"; think of it as self-preservation.
Trust me. You'll be glad you did.

Your turn.
If this post "spoke to you," I hope you'll "speak" to me by leaving a comment.
Thanks for reading.

Image credits: Pixabay.com


  1. Yes! This is a current discussion topic here at home, and also with a few writing friends. Appreciate your insight and advice. Thanks, Jen!

    1. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 13, 2018 at 8:56 AM


      Self care is crucial to writing longevity and progress. Thanks so much for the feedback here.

  2. Jennifer: I needed this list. Also, I need to share this with a friend of mine so she can save it for the right time to share it with her daughter.

    1. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 13, 2018 at 8:58 AM


      So glad that this post resonated with you. Thanks so much for sharing.

  3. Wow, amazing blog layout! How long have
    you been blogging for? you made blogging look easy.
    The overall look of your website is magnificent, as well as
    the content!

  4. Self care is not being selfish... this is an impressive take away. Your points are well taken.

  5. Jennifer Brown BanksOctober 16, 2018 at 10:50 AM

    Thanks so kindly, Lin. Thanks for adding to the mix.