CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Cheshire Life today CLICK HERE

Louise Minchin on her New Year resolution

PUBLISHED: 00:00 29 December 2017

Louise Minchin

Louise Minchin

Archant

Procrastination is the thief of time, they say. It certainly challenged Chester-based BBC TV presenter Louise...but not in 2018

In 2017 I discovered I was brilliant at something: procrastination.

At the start of the year I was commissioned by Bloomsbury, who publish JK Rowling’s Harry Potter, to write a book called Dare to Tri, about my adventures in triathlon, and my two-year journey from the BBC Breakfast sofa to the World Triathlon Championships competing in the GB age-group team. Given the daunting task of writing 70,000 words in six months, you might assume I would knuckle down and get on with it, using every spare snippet of time I had available. That didn’t happen.

Before I started, I imagined it would be easy to whip up a couple of paragraphs waiting for a coffee, finish a chapter on a train, or type up a race report while the children were doing their homework, but it was much more difficult than I thought. If I opened my computer in any of those situations, within seconds I would be looking at Twitter, replying to an email, checking the headlines, texting a friend, or even flicking through pictures of pugs on Instagram. I was a champion at time-wasting. It was impossible. I couldn’t stop myself being distracted and it very quickly became clear that there was no way the book would get finished if that’s how I tried to write it.

I needed to do something drastic and decided that the only option was a total internet blackout for a day at a time.

That’s how my writing days became sacrosanct. At 9am on the dot I would turn off my phone, put my iPad out of reach and sit down at the kitchen table and force myself to write for an hour-and-a-half, have a twenty minute break and then sit down for another hour-and-a-half until it was time to pick up my daughters from school. The only thing I might let myself do, occasionally, was throw a ball for Waffle, my very patient Labrador.

At first it was tricky, and I would catch myself out reaching for my phone like an automatic reflex, but once I got used to switching off all the distractions, I loved it, the hours flew by and the words soon became chapters. I started looking forward to my writing days and would be disappointed if I had to miss them.

Over those six months I learnt a valuable lesson, how to conquer procrastination, and as a bonus I wrote a book. Hopefully it’s a lesson I will remember for 2018, and it can be one of my New Year resolutions, no procrastination.

More from People

His first job was as a window cleaner on a timeshare resort. Now Steven Hesketh heads a growing hotel and restaurant empire which includes The Townhouse in Chester

Read more

We are loving everything House of Windsor right now, from the birth of Prince Louis, to the two royal weddings and the announcement that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expecting their first child. How can they not be a source of endless fascination?

Read more

After more than 40 years in the music industry, Alexander O’Neal is still performing and is loving life in Manchester

Read more

Is your birthday on Christmas Day? The BBC TV presenter tells us how she makes sure her husband, David, gets his fair share of attention

Read more

Liverpool-born Ted Robbins is the king of the warm-up men, and the comedian who almost died on stage.

Read more

Local life - Williams of Audlem

Monday, November 19, 2018

Putting the spotlight on retailers whose business is an important part of the community.

Read more

Hale residents and business-owners Hanna Miraftab and Martin Kinsella are the newest additions to hit TV show Real Housewives of Cheshire

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today


Local Business Directory

Property Search