Yesterday I felt incredibly flat. My mind flitted from one thing to another and it was difficult to focus on any one particular task for longer than a few minutes. Every time I had a new idea it was important for me to find out more about it, to stop the work I was doing – which I get paid to do – and research it to its endpoint. This is incredibly troubling as I thought I was controlling what I could, and removing from my life as many distractions as I was able. I guess this is a necessary reminder of just how lacking in control I am over my life some days.
For the past month I’d booked in my time rather densely and didn’t feel like I had given myself enough time to rest. The weekend just passed was one of recovery. There was a writing and reading festival here in Wellington but I chose not to go out because my social and mental energy levels were low and I needed time to myself to recharge them. As someone aspiring to be an author, to work hard on their craft, this may seem like a negative choice. Authors and publishers and editors speaking about their work and the world of writing is a great way to learn. I’m still feeling like it was a choice that may have limited forward motion for me as a writer at this time. But, I take solace in the fact it was a choice I actively made with good reason. It will certainly not be the only opportunity to learn from people who know more than me, but I still find it hard to turn my mind away from its negative perspective.
Good, productive things did happen over the weekend even though it was one of rest. Our flat watched the Hunger Games films, all four of them. Two on Saturday and two on Sunday. Spreading them over two days was a good idea considering the heavy ideas and emotions these films are dealing with. I had watched them before, and usually I find watching something a second time less enjoyable, but I managed to get a lot from this experience. I realised the dystopia genre interests me greatly, and watching the films helped the beginnings of a story idea form in my mind. (This very second I am jotting down the notes of this story in my notebook!)
Perhaps this inability to put my mind to rest is one reason I feel flat today? I want to be spending my time researching stories, and writing them, and crafting them to be the best they can be, but working for someone else? I enjoy my job in as much as one can, but I am finding myself more and more looking to craft stories, wanting to read books for research and to get new ideas, and to set aside my perfectionism and just write!
Time management. At times I’ve thought I’m good at it, but the reality is I fly by the seat of my pants. This flat feeling is reminding me of one goal I set myself earlier this year: to schedule blocks of time for writing, reading, playing guitar, writing music, recording music, exercise, playing video games, watching football, and spending time with friends and family. There are many things I want to do with the limited time I have available so I must harness the ability I have to do them. Thanks Inspirechief for reminding me there are 1440 minutes in a day, and it’s up to me to use them. (Check out his helpful post on just that here: https://inspirechief.com/quotes-about-time-1440/)
Wallowing in my inability to focus yesterday was not productive, and it hurt. So, I lost the battle yesterday. That was then. This is now. Another helpful tip from Inspirechief is to make positive affirmations every day, believe them, and work hard to make them happen. I am a writer. I have finished the draft of my first book. Now, I want to become a published author. This is the first step to clearing the fog in my brain and bouncing back. Set a clear goal. My next steps in terms of my book are to give myself a deadline for editing my manuscript, sending it to an assessor, and contacting publishers, editors, and agents. Right now I am unpublished and unknown, with a small but absolutely wonderful following. My next steps in terms of creating visibility are to setup my author website and start sharing my poems, short stories, and created worlds there. What’s stopping me? Me. Bam. I said it. No excuses. Schedule a time to do it Hamish, and do it.
Thank you for reading this pseudo letter to myself. This kick up the backside which will remind me I am capable of getting up and getting it done.
What’s holding you back from getting too where you want to be? Are you doing all you can to control the things you can control? If you’ve got a creative project on the go, let us know about it in the comments and we can encourage each other to keep working hard to make it happen.
Thank you, dear friends, for reading and supporting me on this journey. Peace.