As I’ve mentioned in past posts, I have a problem with my family (pets included) that don’t respect my writing time. I can literally open a Word document, only to find someone showing up in my office doorway to interrupt with questions or worse, to ask me to do something for them.
I think in particular, writers who are mothers are often victim of this; where the ‘mother hat’ we wear never comes off. You may need to reconsider this, however, as a habit that needs to change. After all, aren’t you a person worthwhile of some time for yourself?
This touches upon teaching your family basic respect; that you not only deserve respect, but that they, as decent human beings, give that respect to allow you that time to write and create. This also helps teach us self-respect, that we can and will speak up for the time to be what we want to be.
A mother (or father, or any role we pick for ourselves)deserves the time to re-energize, relax, and be her own person. This helps make us better people, whole people, not just the single role we play, so they can do a better job at whatever they do.
Some tips to achieve writing time;
Make a sign– You can put a sign on the desk or doorknob, or taped to a hat. Any place where people can see you’re not writing and must not be disturbed (unless there’s an emergency).
It doesn’t need to be a sign as much as a signal to others you’re writing. Wear a special hat or shirt, light a candle near you, or simply announce to your family “I am writing now…so leave me be”.
Consequences and rewards should be given. If you are disturbed, consider handing out some chores for the kids or something unsatisfying for no allowing your writing time. This might seem harsh, but remember, we’re teaching the kids respect of your time and you, as a person. If they respect that time, reward them with a treat, special time together, or other rewards they like to encourage the behavior.
I’m fortunate that my family find my irritancy of being bothered is enough of a deterrent.
What’s your thoughts? Do you demand the time, ask for it, or find some way through juggling time and chores to find that writing time? Comment below.