Like the Jedi knight, every writer has to find balance in their lives. That can be especially difficult if we have to juggle a day job or a family that often keeps us away from the desk. Sometimes that can make us feel as if we are unable to make any progress. Or we are overwhelmed by our own expectations or our reader’s wishes and demands. I know that it can feel as if it would be easier to give up on a hobby that costs so much time. And it’s not only the writing process. There’s also everything to do with publishing and marketing your books, especially if you’re an Indie author.
On the other hand: Here we still are. Still writing, still believing in our stories, and feeling the need to tell them.
I’ve been writing for so long now that I’m sure I’m not going to give up on that hobby. But I also know that it’s important that I find a certain balance in my life. There are other things demanding time and love from me. Two of the most important things are my physical and mental health, and we should never underestimate how important that is in our lives. Even if you’re a person who is healthy and in a good place mentally, it needs a bit of work to stay that way. (And of course, these things can change at any moment, even if we took care of ourselves. But they are very likely to if we don’t.)
Modern life puts a lot of strain on us. No matter what job you have in some way or another, it is probably costing you. And writing is also not the healthiest hobby as it involves a lot of sitting and staying inside. On the other hand, it keeps our brains active, which is of course good. And for me, it is also a great way of dealing with a lot of mental issues.
A good way for me to keep track of how I spend my time is my writing bullet journal, which I made a post about in March. I plan which activities I want to do in a week that will be good for me. Sometimes that’s meeting with friends for a coffee or just having a cup of tea by the lake. Sometimes it’s a picnic with my family. These plans can change, but I try to make room in my week for at least two of these kinds of events. In the long run, it will save me time if I don’t feel as if I haven’t had had any breaks.
What loads up your batteries again if you’re feeling low on energy is different for everyone. For some, it’s sports, or reading a good book, or going for a walk. It’s important to take some time to find out what feels right for you.
Another thing to remember is not to put yourself down if you didn’t manage to do any of the stuff you were planning to do during the week. It sometimes happens that we can’t find the time to take care of ourselves. It’s counterproductive if we blame ourselves. Instead, try to find some time during the next week or take a day or even a weekend off.
We hear so often that it’s important to write every day that it puts a lot of pressure on our shoulders. Yes, it may be a good strategy to keep moving in the right direction, but we can’t sacrifice feeling healthy and happy for that.
Do you have things that help you find balance? Let me know in the comments!