How this Writer “Pencils” In Her Self-Care

deanne.jpgTell me about your business. How long have you been in business? How does your business help women live better lives?

My business is called The Precise Pen Writing & Editing Services. The Precise Pen specializes in writing, editing and proofreading services for authors, business owners, webmasters, students and others. I started the business in 2011 at the urging of my husband after helping him with his first book. That’s when I discovered that I could turn my educational experience, journalism expertise and public relations background into a business that could help others. Since then, I’ve helped many authors, mostly women, realize their dreams of publishing their first book.  

What is a typical work day like for you?

A typical workday for me is one that extends beyond 12 hours. During the day, I work as a public relations professional. My evenings are dedicated to teaching college courses online and serving editing clients. At one point, the days were extremely exhausting as my obsession with completing tasks caused me to work until I could barely keep my eyes open. At one point, I discovered that a tired worker isn’t a productive one, so I rearranged my schedule to make sure I had time for myself. For example, instead of promising my editing clients a draft in 14 days, I promised them a draft in 14 business days. This allowed me to have weekends off. I also look at projects now and set daily goals for completion. That means that there’s a stopping point at everyday and I’m not left working without a goal or left working until something is complete. For someone like me who is obsessed with finishing things, daily goals are very important.

What is your favorite way to relax after a hard day’s work?

Any moment that I’m without my laptop is a great moment for me. These moments may involve spending time with my husband or could even involve some time alone watching some of my favorite shows on HGTV. Sometimes I find relaxation even in the little things like taking a nice long shower with some of my favorite bath products. The weekends involve more relaxation with shopping and spending time with family.

What does self-care mean to you?

Self-care means taking the time out to make sure I’m healthy enough to be happy and healthy enough to serve others. A woman who is overworked is not a productive woman. There are many facets of self-care. We have to start by taking care of our physical bodies. There’s never a time when completing a task is more important than making sure I have a healthy meal to eat. I’m also trying to get to the place where no task is more important than taking at least 30 minutes to workout several times a week. When I make time to workout, I am more energetic and productive. Self-care also means taking care of yourself emotionally and finding time to relax as well as finding the time to nurture your relationships with others. Relationships that enrich your life should not go neglected because of work. Trust me, in the end those relationships will be more valuable than any task you complete.

Why is self-care so difficult to practice?

Our society measures success by external things such as degrees earned, pay earned and notoriety that is achieved in the professional world. With so much pressure placed on that definition of success, driven women feel guilty when they take time away from that to achieve self-care success. It’s not until we get sick from being overworked, encounter an ill loved one or friend or lose someone special that we recognize that one of the most important things in life is taking care of ourselves and our meaningful relationships.

If you could give one piece of advice to a hard-working woman, with a family who is chasing her dreams and could use a little “me time”, what would you say?

The best thing you can do is schedule time for yourself. If you wait to stumble upon some free time, you’ll never find it. With busy women, there’s always something to do. There’s always something to research, a load of laundry to do or a new dream to investigate and chase. Even if you can’t squeeze it in everyday, schedule a time each week when you won’t do any work. Schedule it just like you would a business meeting. For me, that time is Friday night. The laptop goes away and the books are pushed aside. It’s not easy to put those things away when there’s work to be done but the time I take for myself is well worth it.

Need writing or editing services? Visit DeAnne’s website at www.ThePrecisePen.com

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