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  • Writer's pictureFran Clark

How to Master Productivity as a Busy Author: A Day in the Life

woman writing in journal

Since making the decision to self publish a four book series, I’ve spoken here about how fast-paced my world has suddenly become. Trying to balance my day job with writing, publishing and learning all my brain can handle when it comes to book marketing, has been really challenging. Finding balance and maintaining productivity isn’t easy. I’ve talked about meditation and Qi Gong having making a difference to my mind and brain and how scheduling the workload really helps. Yet, I still find I’m getting tired, feeling wired and becoming burnt out.

I realise that this has a lot to do with my lack of sleep and the fact that for years, like millions of others, I suffer from insomnia. Having tried various remedies, teas, meditations, sleep apps and lavender oil! I still suffer and that’s even after trying to conquer a sleep routine, several I have to add. Nothing has worked.

So far I haven’t had time to learn how to sleep, but I think I finally turned a corner and it’s been working for the past week or so. You see, it’s not only down to the night routine, it’s all about the morning, too. Logical really. A peaceful night follows a good day and that only happens if you set yourself up with a positive and peaceful morning. With a well-crafted morning and evening routine, it's possible to set the tone for a successful day while also ensuring a restful night's sleep.

How I’m Mastering Productivity and A Busy Schedule

Morning Routine:

Every successful day begins with a solid morning routine, and for me, it's all about setting the right intentions and priming the body and mind for productivity. Here's a glimpse at my morning ritual:

  1. Daily Walk: Regardless of the day or weather, I make a point to taking a brisk walk first thing in the morning. Not only does this help get the blood flowing, it boosts my energy levels, but it also gives me an opportunity for quiet reflection and brainstorming ideas.

  2. Qi Gong and Resistance Training: During the week, I’ll do three days of invigorating, heart conditioning, weight lifting to keep me fit and on another three it’s Qi Gong to help me cultivate mental clarity and focus while stretching and strengthening my body. After each of these sessions I sit and listen to a mindful meditation. Essential for tackling the day ahead. On Sunday I do a longer walk and come back for a longer meditation to set me up for brunch.

  3. Intermittent Fasting: With a focus on optimizing health and energy levels, I began intermittent fasting some years ago, restricting my eating window to between 12:00 pm and 7:00 pm. This not only promotes weight management but also enhances mental clarity and focus throughout the morning. Becoming vegan in recent years has helped feel less sluggish.

Evening Routine:

My sister has recently began Reiki healing and gave me a really good evening routine. It’s a variation on things I’ve tried in the past but really seems to be working for me.

As the day winds down, it's essential to unwind and prepare the body and mind for a restful night's sleep. Here's how I transition from work mode to relaxation mode:

  1. Relaxing Stretches: To alleviate the tension built up throughout the day, I begin with a series of relaxing stretches. Sometimes that has followed an evening Qi Gong routine, journaling and making a To Do list for the next day. This helps release muscle tension and promotes relaxation in preparation for sleep.

  2. Feet Up the Wall Yoga: A soothing and restorative yoga pose, feet up the wall yoga is the perfect way to unwind after a long day. This gentle inversion promotes circulation, calms the nervous system, and prepares the body for a restful night's sleep. This is when I might read. Lately I’ve been listening to an audio book. Very relaxing.

  3. Meditation: For about 10 minutes (and I set a timer) I sit and do some quiet meditation. Trying to let thoughts pass without following them helps me stay present and get rid of worries about what happened in the day and anxiety about what the next day will bring.

  4. Theta Waves: To further enhance relaxation and promote deep sleep, I play Theta Waves from a music player with no internet (I have no mobile or tablet in the bedroom). These brainwave frequencies help induce a state of deep relaxation and facilitate the transition into restorative sleep.

Improving Sleep to Improve Productivity:

Sleep is key to maintaining productivity and overall well-being. By incorporating a healthy morning routine with relaxing evening activities and creating a conducive sleep environment, I've been able to address my sleep issues and see significant improvements in sleep quality.

In conclusion, mastering productivity amidst a busy schedule is all about establishing consistent routines and prioritising self-care. By starting the day with intention and winding down with relaxation, I’ve found the perfect balance between work and rest. I’m setting the stage for success in both my professional and personal life.

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Also, coming soon my latest novel, A Prayer For Junie! Find out more now.


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