Stop to Keep Going

by | Jan 24, 2013 | Writing | 2 comments

In the last five days I’ve had four feature stories due—three of them on the same day—two editing projects, plus I had to turn in a PowerPoint for a speech I’m giving later this week. For the first time in my life, I’ve felt like I might actually run out of words .

All creative people, I think, feel like this at one time or another. You go back to the well too many times, you’ll find it dry.

Hair stylists stare at another mop of hair and wonder where to start. School teachers sit in a classroom filled with apathetic teenagers and struggle to find a way to reach them. You don’t have to be an artist to recognize that one more blank canvas might just push you over the edge.

And I’m not talking about writer’s block, either. As a journalist, I’ve always felt that writer’s block was a luxury that I could not afford. If I don’t make a deadline, I don’t get paid. So no, I wasn’t blocked. Just depleted.

I did the only thing I could do. I got up from the desk and took a walk. My husband, Rob, came with me.

The blue sky greeted us, a rare winter gift here in Washington State. The air was crisp but the sun was shining. We didn’t talk much as we climbed the hilly sidewalks near our home. I studied the shapes of frozen puddles in the roadway, noticed the outline of bare tree limbs.

I had exchanged the tapping of my fingers on the keyboard for the pumping of my legs, the beating of my heart. It felt Good.

When we got home, I went back to my desk and wrote with a renewed energy.

I realized that all I really needed to do was stop, in order to start again.


  1. Linda

    Love it! We all need a renewal of energy from time to time and a way to recharge our batteries. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Andrea Carroll

    Another good one … always interesting.