The “First Wealth” Is …
Happy New Year! And with that, comes a question …
Did you answer “health” when you read today’s subject line?
Because that’s the full quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson: “The first wealth is health.”
And although the pie-loving, chocolate-peanut-butter-cup-munching, would-rather-sit-on-the-couch-and-watch-movies side of me kind of hates that quote …
The rest of me adores it.
It’s just so true. Embracing your health as the first step to wealth really is the way to go, if you want a long-lasting, lucrative career as a freelance writer. And it’s a key part of your Goal Fulfillment System (GFS) that’ll make 2014 your best year ever.
Here’s what I know for sure, after nearly seven years of being a paid freelancer:
- If I pound out 30 minutes of vigorous exercise before a writing session, my mind bursts with new and creative leads for my projects.
- If I eat a balanced breakfast—with fruits and protein and all that good stuff—my focus is stronger.
- If I’m in bed by 9 p.m., I can get up at 5 a.m. and write three hours of solid content. And by that I mean a higher word count with fewer edits needed than anything I write later on in the day.
So, on this first day of this fresh, new year, I urge you to embrace new habits that merge health with your writing goals. Here are 10 healthy-writing strategies I recommend:
- Drink a lot of water. Keep a gallon-sized jug at your desk and refill your glass throughout the day.
- Get up from your desk every 30 – 45 minutes and stretch or walk around your room.
- Put exercise equipment in your office. Could be anything from small hand weights to a rowing machine. Use it when you take your breaks from sitting.
- Get a desk chair with the highest quality ergonomic support you can find. Same goes for your keyboard and mouse.
- Use apps like f.lux to automatically adjust the brightness of your monitor (helps avoid eye fatigue).
- Get one of those massive exercise balls and alternate between sitting on it and sitting in your desk chair. Your hips will thank you.
- Add a second monitor to your computer set up. You’re more efficient when you can see multiple documents and research materials at once.
- Get eight hours of sleep each night, and aim to go to bed earlier rather than sleep in later.
- Have lots of brain-boosting snacks in arm’s reach, like walnuts, protein bars, and fresh fruit.
- Take breaks from writing every now and then to watch a video that makes you laugh out loud or leaves you feeling inspired.
Basically, start the New Year by taking care of your mind and body, and good writing will follow. (And if you have any additional health-writing strategies that work for you, please share them here.)
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