Zen Buddhist meditation teaches you to clear the clutter from your mind so that you can have focus and peace.
Zen practitioners will also clear the clutter from their home. I wouldn’t recommend that move for a writer. You need to have lots going on to be a good writer; lots of experience to draw from. A cluttered home isn’t a problem. Why?
Zen meditation teaches focus. It begins with ignoring all thoughts except a nonsense phrase or the viewing of a candle flame. When that succeeds, you forget the nonsense phrase or the flame as well. If you can ignore your thoughts, you can certainly ignore your environment. Physical clutter doesn’t matter.
There are books on how to meditate, but the steps are no longer than a blog article. Do an internet search for “how to meditate” and you will find many articles.
How will this help you write more? Drop the focus on nonsense phrases or flames and focus on what you are writing. Not everything you are writing, the one thing you are writing now.
Eckhard Tolle’s variation on meditation is to forget about both the past and future so you can enjoy the moment. You can’t change the past. The future may be different than you expect. By forgetting both, you remove most causes of anxiety and depression.
Another way to look at it is this. You can’t fix the past because it’s over and you can’t fix the future because the problems haven’t arrived yet. When you focus on only your most important problem in the present, you are free to give it your full attention.
Learn to use these methods to focus on what you are writing now and you will be free of most distractions. You will be using Zen to write more.
Article by Ivan Izo.