Tammy Helfrich

Life begins right where you are.

Time for a Tune Up

Photo credit: Creative Commons (kelliekp)

Photo credit: Creative Commons (kelliekp)


Last night, I sat down to write.

It was painful!

I felt like an old rusty chain that needed a good tune up.

I have been writing for others lately, but haven’t been doing much of my own writing. The podcast has taken precedence, and I’ve been guilty of putting my writing on the back burner.

I instantly remembered why it’s so hard to get started writing again.

I had lost my momentum. I haven’t been practicing.

Yet, I expected to sit down and write as fluidly as I did when I was writing almost every day. Why do we always think that?

It’s very similar to an old bike. If you don’t use it, eventually the parts will get rusty. To some people, that means it’s time to throw it away. To others, it just means it’s time for a tune up.

I watch as my husband cleans and fixes bikes for people on a regular basis. He takes excellent care of his bikes as well as all of our family bikes. He puts pride and effort into his work.

Writing needs the same time and attention.

Yes, I may be rusty, but it’s time for a tune up.

What area of your life needs a tune up? Share in the comments below.



  1. Great metaphor. Spot on. I think the biggest area of my life that needs a tune up is relaxing. Getting into that place where I can truly unwind, be present, be with people. Rather than living in my head, thinking of things to write about, new projects to start, and feeling frustrated that I can’t do it straight away. I think being able to unwind and relax is exactly the same. It takes discipline and mindfulness. It needs tuning up! :)

  2. great analogy- and I find this so true with my writing also. When I keep putting off writing things in my head and am not writing as often for whatever reason, it’s harder when I sit down too, and I’m not as happy with it. I need to just do it, and let that naturalness come through.

  3. Strength and core training. I used to do them every morning. I had a bad back injury earlier in the year and now, well, I keep forgetting to do them daily. I have gotten rusty. Lost my routine. Good reminder that things don’t just go back into being a habit without work.

  4. Seems it’s like any exercise. Muscles used are muscles usable. :) Much can certainly be said for one who keeps doing without stopping. The beauty of the flow when I do it constantly and persistently. Thanks for writing, Tammy.

  5. For me it’s my daily time management. Recently I began working from home again, and realized that it’s not as easy as it appears. It’s so easy to get sidetracked if a neighbor stops by to chat, or your 15 minutes hot tea break surprisingly turns into 45 minutes. So I started setting the timer on my phone, to keep me in line, and tune up my time management skills.

  6. By the way, I love the podcast, but I sure do love your writing too.

  7. This is so true Tammy! I feel the same way about my writing. I’ve been so busy writing and doing things for other people that I’ve neglected my book writing. I need to get back at it because the longer I put it off, the harder it’s going to be to gain that momentum!

  8. Don’t we ALL need a tune up from time to time? I know the feeling Tammy. You are STILL rocking it in AWESOME fashion!!!

  9. Great reminder, Tammy. And just like riding we never forget how…the practice brings it back.

  10. Sometimes after a layoff I expect to be able to run as fast I as far as I can when I am in fantastic shape. It just doesn’t work that way.

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