Jill Weatherholt

Writing Stories of Love, Faith and Happy Endings While Enjoying the Journey

Where’s That Sock?

27 Comments

sock“Life is too short to waste time on matching socks.” ~ unknown

It never fails, almost every time I do laundry a pair of socks end up missing its match. It’s become a joke around our house because it happens so often. We refer to it as, “The case of the missing sock.” After folding all of the laundry, I’ll realize I’ve got a sock with no match. I’ll usually check the dryer first. If the dryer is empty, I’ll check the washing machine as well as the route I took when I carried the basket to the laundry room. Sometimes I’ll have to unfold shirts and towels just in case the dreaded static cling is holding the sock captive. Despite my thorough search, many times the sock doesn’t show up for a few days. Some end up in the sock “black hole” and never return. Often I feel my writing time is like that missing sock.

Since I have a full-time job outside the home, most of my writing is done during the weekend. Occasionally I’ll have a large block of free time to devote to writing either on Saturday or Sunday. However, even with a large block of time, if I don’t exercise discipline, the time will disappear like one of our socks.

Reporting to duty, otherwise known as, butt into the chair has never been an issue. My problem comes once I’m in the chair and faced with multiple distractions. Here are some rules I try to follow so my writing time doesn’t pull a disappearing act.

1. Turn off my phone or let calls go to voicemail. Often the weekend is a time to catch up on the phone with long distance friends. I’ve been known to “catch up” for over 3 hours at a time. This definitely eats away at my time, so I turn off the phone and return calls later.

2. Disable the internet. I’m not a big Facebook or Pinterest user, but reading and commenting on the blogs I follow can turn into a huge time suck. Telling myself I’ll only read a couple never works, so disconnecting is my only option. This also prevents me from obsessively checking my e-mails and reading the latest headlines.

3. Go to my quiet place. Sometimes I’ll take my favorite pen and my notebook, go into a quiet room and write by hand. This ensures the internet won’t be a distraction. Also, writing by hand puts me into a calm frame of mind where thoughts come more freely.

4. Remove tempting books from the room. Being the voracious reader that I am, I can easily be tempted by the latest novel I’m reading. If the book is anywhere in the room, the moment I can’t decide if my character will live or die, I’ll head straight for that book.

5. Ignore the dust bunnies. One of my biggest distractions when it comes to my writing time is cleaning. Normally when I’m writing, I feel guilty because there is always something to be cleaned or straightened. My eyes will scan the room, taking notice of that cobweb way up in the corner of the ceiling, so I’ll pop up to get the duster. To prevent this constant up and down, I’ll usually do some cleaning before I sit down to write to prevent the guilt.

These are just a few things I do to ensure my writing time is used efficiently. As for cracking the case of the missing sock, it’s still under investigation. For now, I’ll blame it on the leprechauns.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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Author: Jill Weatherholt

My name is Jill Weatherholt and I’m a writer. I have a full-time job, but at night and on the weekend, I pursue my passion, writing. I write modern stories about love, friendship and forgiveness. I started this blog as a way to share my journey toward publication and to create a community for other new writers. Raised in the Washington, DC area, I’ve lived in Charlotte, North Carolina since 2004. I hold a degree in Psychology from George Mason University and a Certification in Paralegal Studies from Duke University. My first book, SECOND CHANCE ROMANCE, will release in March, 2017. It's now able for pre-order on Amazon. I was the first place winner in the Dream Quest One Short Story Contest in the Winter 2014-2015 competition. In 2014, I placed second in Southern Writers Magazine Short Story Contest. I was also a top ten finalist in Southern Writers Magazine Short Story Contest in 2012 and 2013. I’m a 2010 and 2012 winner of the NaNoWriMo Contest. I love to connect readers, visit me at jillweatherholt.com

27 thoughts on “Where’s That Sock?

  1. I work from home and have the same distraction issues–all day, every day! It is just too easy to spend an hour looking for that missing sock, and some days I have to leave and work in a coffee shop so I can stay focused.

    I’m curious: do you feel guilty when you don’t have time to read blogs for a few days? I feel like I’m letting down my friends! I love reading them, especially when I find links to other great blogs I would have otherwise missed, but going down that rabbit hole can be a real time sucker!

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    • Yes, Candace. I do feel guilty if I don’t read and comment to the blogs I follow. I’m not the type to just “Like” a blog post without reading it. It’s so easy for me to say I’ll check my mail real quick and it turns into an hour or two of reading and commenting. Have a great weekend!

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  2. You say it all very well, Jill — ‘been there, done that!’ There’s one thought with which maybe we should start each day — those flowers, those lovely flowers, we need to take time to see them and smell them (all, of course, that might include – time for friends and loved ones). But, then, we are still the creatures we make of ourselves!

    Nice post… You offer good advice.

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  3. I appreciated the two comments above about feeling guilty over not being able to check and comment on blog posts for a couple (or few) days. I fall prey to that feeling, too. Like you, I’m not a person who feels comfortable hitting “like” without reading the post first. It never fails that I’ll sit down thinking I can check emails quickly and get it out of the way, only to end up spending hours with email replies and blog posts. Yikes! Somewhere, there has to be a way for me to teach myself balance. I hope I find it one day soon. *sigh*

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    • It’s amazing how time flies when you’re reading and commenting on blog posts. Maybe one day we’ll figure out how to balance everything. I hope your allergies are doing better. Have a great weekend!

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  4. I used to play “just one” round of Spider Solitaire before writing, but then it turned into “just one win” on Spider Solitaire, and before I knew it my three hour block of writing time would be almost up with practically no words to show for it. I love the analogy of the missing sock – gotta watch out for those time wasters because they totally sneak up on you.

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    • I’ve never heard of Spider Solitaire, that’s probably a good thing! Thankfully, I’m not big on Facebook. I have a lot of friends who spend hours on it each day. I guess we all have those time snatchers we have to watch out for. Have a great weekend!

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  5. I certainly can’t sit down and write if I haven’t cleaned the house first, Jill – so I know exactly what you’re talking about here.

    I blame the leprechauns for the missing socks as well. I’m pretty sure they use them as hats 😀

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  6. Great analogy, Jill. We share many of the same issues, juggling our writing life and a dayjob. I allow myself a 1/2 hour for social media and then I go offline. That’s been my best trick so far this year. I can’t wait to read your work. 🙂

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    • Thanks, Jolyse! Setting a time limit for social media, as a reward, is a great idea and one I plan to incorporate into my schedule. I hope you’re doing well. I’ve missed you blog posts! Have a great weekend!

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  7. Pingback: Anything Is Possible | Learning, Running, and Writing

  8. I heard wearing mismatched socks is a trend now, and I see a lot of people doing it lol. Anyway….I love your tips, I will definitely keep these in mind.

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  9. I know what you mean about the blog following using up so much time. I think all of us writers would certainly understand that when ‘writing’ you don’t have much extra time, if any. I am not writing at present and I still can’t keep up. 🙂

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    • My biggest challenge with following other blogs is keeping up with the comments. I always select the option to receive responses since I often comment back on their comments. Often my e-mail will have 40 messages, an hour after clearing everything out…..I’m overwhelmed! 🙂

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      • I know I used to do that too. But I couldn’t take it. My day was over by the time I waded through all of them. Now I just get notifications of comments on my blog and check on the others in the comments I’ve made section in the dashboard. Sure I miss some I’m sure, but I had to do something.

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      • I think I might have to start doing the same thing, Elizabeth. I feel buried in e-mails and this isn’t my only account. I have a personal account as well as my day job. I feel like all I get done is clear out e-mail accounts each daily.

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  10. Pingback: What’s with this sock? | Jill Weatherholt

  11. You have a great list for creating writing time and atmosphere Jill. And I love the sock analogy. Add me to the list of uncommon voyeurs.

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  12. I think your missing socks go the same place as ours Jill 😉 Your discipline is paying off big time. I ‘work’ from home, as you know, and keeping to the discipline of writing sans endless distractions is a constant challenge. I’ve now turned off all blog email notifications since I had to sign off after Mum’s stroke, and I’ve decided I’m not going to turn them back on for a while otherwise I’ll never get my book written, but that’s not to say I won’t be visiting some blogs, yours a must of course. It’s a constant juggling act but we’ll get there… one way or another 🙂 ❤

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    • Hi Sherri! I agree, the distractions at home seem never-ending. Going off-line is the best way for me to accomplish my goals. You’ve had a full plate lately and with your upcoming class starting, you’ll be even busier. You know what your priorities are and I have no doubt you’ll manage everything. No doubt, some days will be more difficult than others, but remember, I’m only an email away. xoxo

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