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The Magical Number 15

I spent one month in the charming town of Ludlow in the UK. Gorgeous castles and gardens surround Ludlow; it’s near Wales and a lovely place to visit. I had a lot of time on my own and found some great podcasts that kept me company, gave me tips, and helped me. Writing Excuses became one of my favorite ones, and each episode only lasts for 15 minutes. They introduce the show saying: “15 minutes long, because you are in a hurry and, we are not that smart.” But, they are brilliant. They pack in a lot of information, and it ends before my mind can trail could off. This show knows how to reach their audience: They offer lots of great information in a short time.

My Mood in 15 Minutes

When I lived in Miami, I went to a gym. I noticed that I could feel the difference in my mood after some time on the treadmill or the stair master. It was a wonderful feeling. I felt lighter and more energetic. I decided to time this, and the change happened after fifteen minutes of exercise. From then on, I knew that if I did not have time to do a long work out I could go out for a 15-minute walk and feel better.

It was a challenge for me to work at my desk for hours. I used to get distracted, and it wasn’t easy to come back to my tasks after a short break. I started to walk inside my apartment for fifteen minutes every hour and a half. That changed everything. The exercise made me feel better, and it was great to move during a break instead of just sitting on a different chair and drinking more coffee. I added a few jumping jacks or ran in place to get my heart rate up, and my productivity became much better. It was good to see the change in my mood.

The 15 Minute Research

Something is exciting about the number 15. Andy Warhol made the phrase “15 minutes of fame” famous. But, there is more to it. I decided to research the number 15. I found the English author Anthony Trollope, who wrote 250 words in increments of 15 minutes during two hours. He created a 15-minute system that helped him write efficiently, and he wrote 47 novels, non -fiction books, plays, and articles while he worked full time at the post office.

15 Minute Magic

Last year I found the 15 Minute Magic. I purchased it immediately. Sara Tasker designed this course to help people who are suffering due to procrastination. The idea is to work on a task for 15 minutes. Sara sent us daily prompts; we could all meet online at the same time or do it on our own. Some of us shared our work, and it was a wonderful space to get help and support. I loved this and did it twice!

I had not implemented the 15-minute system to work. I had only done it for my breaks, and I saw that it helped me be much more productive.

How I use my 15-Minutes



My breaks are fifteen minutes long. I know that is the time to change my mood feel happier. I, like many others, have been in and out of lockdown this past year. This last lockdown is the most challenging one because the Portuguese government does not want us out and about. That means no more beautiful and long walks by the ocean or anywhere.

The police caught me walking a few blocks from my house, and they sent me home, telling me that I was lucky not to receive a fine. I do walk around the block several times a day. I take a break every 1 1/2 hours when I am writing, photographing, or painting, and I walk inside my apt for fifteen minutes. These magical 15 minutes have kept my mental health in check, and I have battled lethargy and boredom well. I think! I get up and walk around my furniture as soon as I feel bored or a bit down.


I journal daily for at least 15 minutes. I vent my feelings, and I do a stream of consciousness writing with a pen and paper. I love writing with my fountain pen! Journaling is an essential part of my day. I live alone and I can’t – I won’t call my friends to complain about things, so I write them down. I feel a lot better after a session of venting, and when I write for longer than 15 minutes, I write about my days or things that end up in a blog post or one of my short stories.



I write in increments of 2 hours. I take a 15-minute movement break every hour. When I work in this manner, I can concentrate better, and I work longer too.

Future Plans

The more I think about Anthony Trollope’s system, the more I want to implement it or a personalised version of it. He had a very rigid schedule, and I believe that is an excellent way to do this. I get the lockdown blues every once in a while, and it’s easy for me to binge on murder mysteries.


Links for you

Positive Thinking by Marguerite

Podcast Writing Excuses

Author Anthony Trollope

15 Minute Course

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