Time to Stop

"Time management, done well, means allotting no more than the necessary time to any one task per day (even reading this book) and then, while still energetic, stopping and moving on to other important activities including rest.  In the case of writing, limiting ourselves to brief, daily sessions of, say, no more than thirty or sixty minutes (or to three or four hours maximum for professional writers) means that writing cannot interfere with more important responsibilities such as social life and exercising....

"1.  Timely stopping keeps us from staying with a project too long, until it takes on fatigue and the excesses of hypomania including rushed and nonreflective thinking.

"2.  Timely stopping permits us to move on to other planned tasks and, so, reduces feelings of busyness and overscheduling.

"3.  Stopping on schedule, compared to persisting in binges, produces far more quality and quantity of writing in the long run.

"4.  The habit of timely stopping, again, is as essential to building optimal motivation as it timely starting.  (When we stop with ideas and enthusiasm still at hand, we carry more impetus to the next writing session.)"

--Robert Boice, How Writers Journey to Comfort and Fluency: A Psychological Adventure (Westport, CT: Praeger, 1994), p. 33 (my emphasis).


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