Monday’s mental dip

Monday was going to be my writing day. I went to bed on Sunday evening full of all the plans I was going to do. I was going to write two positive chatty blog posts about writing. I was going to write at least a couple of thousand words on my manuscript, and by the end of the day I would feel really great and productive.

So what happened? Well, life happened. I woke up on Monday morning with a sore throat and feeling really tired, and just generally down without any particular cause. Any thought of doing work just gave me a headache, and the fact that I didn’t feel like working just made things even worse.

So what did I do? Well, I gave myself a day off from life. I went to the library, and borrowed as many books as I was allowed. And I made sure that they were all feel good books that would take me away to fantasy worlds. And I lay in bed for the rest of the day, just taking myself away from my real life, without thinking about the cleaning I had to do, or the weeding in the garden, or the writing that I wasn’t doing.

I would love to say that I came out of my day’s reading feeling restored and energised, and ready to get on with my life, but the truth is that it was such a mental dip that it’s taken me the rest of this week to persuade my positive self out again. However, the decision I made to just give myself the space to do absolutely nothing productive was a vital step towards this. Plus, while I was reading those books I had several ideas about how to shape my current work, even though I didn’t mean to. And that’s an unexpected bonus which I can really be happy about.

So my lesson from this week is that the more I know myself, the better a writer I can be. If I can tell the difference between procrastinating, and really needing down time, then I can help direct my energies in the most productive way. It’s a lesson that I’ll be attempting to take forward in the future, no doubt with mixed success!

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