15.20: Mental Wellness and Writing

Your Hosts: Brandon, Victoria, Dan, and Howard

In this episode we’ll be talking about the things we do to stay creative, productive, healthy, and happy. For the purposes of this discussion, “mental wellness” is not about coping with mental illness, it’s about self-care.

Liner Notes: Here’s the gridded lifestyle tracker for the homework, lifted directly from Victoria’s Twitter feed.

Credits: This episode was recorded by Dan Thompson, and mastered by Alex Jackson.


Get some paper and some colored pencils, and create a lifestyle tracker.

Lab Girl, by Hope Jahren

5 thoughts on “15.20: Mental Wellness and Writing”

  1. Was looking but couldn’t find the episode stated within the episode dealing with depression/mental health. Hoping someone could point out which ep. that was. Thanks!

  2. I have similar goal tracker as Victoria, but strictly for writing, where each square is 250 words, each project like NaNoWriMo on each fancy page etc. and it is motivating, but that’s just writing. I don’t know why it have never occurred to me to use it for drawing, exercises, my real work (not professional writer (un)fortunately) and others. That’s a good idea. And you’re using bullet journal too! Those are a real blessing. I have much more motivation if i’m making fancy notes or planning with colorful pens, washi tape and all.
    Writing by hand is a big thing for me, it helps me to disable my internal critic and just write instead of fiddling with grammar and sentences. I know for some writing by hand is too slow, but i’d recommend anyone who have problem with their perfectionism to at least try this.
    (Also taking notes while listening to Writing Excuses can be fun too, because English is not my native language and so many times i just had to stop, wait how do i write this word?? spellcheck where are you when i need you! Though translating the thing to my native language at the same time i’m also listening to podcast is even worse option, really.)

  3. The caring foursome, Brandon, Victoria, Dan, and Howard, tackled self-care, balancing mental wellness and writing, or even bolstering mental wellness with writing! Carve out time for other things, like family and self-care. What is the smallest bite? Crack the seal! Writing as therapy, writing during bad times? Replenish the creative well. Lots of ideas and good advice, available now in the transcript in the archives.

  4. I would love to hear a three hour one-off unlocking session like Howard was talking about at the end. I’ve been looking for years for strategies to help consistently diagnose, “why is writing not happening today, is the problem over here, over there? What action do I take to avoid hating myself at the end of the day?” Having concrete tips and examples from a lot of creators in one place would be absolutely wonderful to have. The “Evaluating Ideas” episode also touched on a lot of ground, and I’d love to see those ideas expanded on and added to.

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