A meditation by Elizabeth Gilbert taught me how to write through my stress.

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Everyone handles stress in different ways. Some people are paralyzed by stress. Some people can shape shift stress into productivity. And some people can compartmentalize stress so they can get necessary to-dos done before confronting their stress.

Saying we’re in the midst of a stressful time is an understatement. As I self-isolate at home with my family during the coronavirus pandemic, I’m beginning to realize that my method of stress management right now is compartmentalizing, and unfortunately, that hasn’t been good news for my writing.

I’ve been…

As I grapple with my own coronavirus anxiety, I’m leaning on meditation.

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It’s all over the news and social media. Events and travel plans are being canceled. Stores are sold out of hand sanitizer, toilet paper and face masks. Employees are working remotely from home, and schools are closed. Phrases like quarantine, self-isolation and social distancing are a part of everyday conversation.

It’s coronavirus. And it’s wreaking havoc all over the world.

The current outbreak of coronavirus, or COVID-19, that originated in Wuhan, China, has quickly spread to other countries, causing a global pandemic. As the number of people testing…

There are many preconceived notions about how writers become writers.

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When I first started my blog over a decade ago, the writing community intimidated me. I wasn’t a reporter with a journalism degree. I wasn’t a novelist who attended writing workshops. I wasn’t even a member of a writers’ group, either online or in real life.

I was just a woman with some ideas and a passion for writing.

But here I am. I’m a writer. And when anyone asks me what I do for a living or what I write about or what I studied in school or how…

You can’t edit writing that isn’t written.

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My writing career began with a blog. My own blog. I was the only writer, editor and publisher. No one told me what to write or how to write it, and no one chopped it down with edits and revisions. My words flowed freely and quickly as I composed and published posts almost daily.

That blog led to a paying job that included multiple editors, supervisors, editorial meetings, brainstorming sessions and, my biggest mental block, deadlines. I was no longer my own boss with my own editorial calendar. And my words were no longer flowing.

My first few weeks on…

Meditation has taught me how simple yet important it is to just breathe.

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I recently participated in the Real Happiness Challenge. What does that mean? It means I meditated every single day for a month thanks to the daily guided meditations that dropped in my inbox from Sharon Salzberg, meditation teacher for over 40 years and writer of many books on meditation.

In fact, years ago when I was contemplating joining the meditation bandwagon to combat stress, the first book I read was Salzberg’s “Real Happiness,” a book that made meditation less intimidating and more realistic in my eyes. That…

Heather Sweeney

Writer. Mother. Girlfriend. Runner. Yogi. Beach girl. I like words. Tweet at me: @WriterSweeney

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