I recently completed a ten week citizens police academy with the Fairfax County Police Department, something I highly recommend if you have one in your area. During the presentation by the K-9 unit, someone asked how the dogs know when they’re supposed to be working and when it’s okay to play.
According to the officer, when he puts on the dog’s harness he knows it’s work time.
That got me wondering if I need something similar to put me in writing mode. When I worked outside the house, I wore clothes that were different from my weekends or evening attire. My husband dons a uniform every day. My kids strap on a backpack.
I had a—thankfully short—commute that gave me time to switch gears and get away from the physical and mental distractions of home.
I love working from home, but now I have nothing that signals the shift from “play”—laundry, dishes, email, working out—to writing. Not that I want to wear a harness while I write or be forced to leave the house every morning, but I’d like to find something that I can use no matter where I am that reminds my brain to switch gears and get to writing.
Do you use something to signal that your writing time has started? I’d love to hear what works for you.