Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Making Time for Things That Matter

by Susan

Life ganged up on me this year. I've just come off a 6-month experiment in total lack of self-care: eating poorly, not exercising, sleep all catawampus. 

I highly recommend NOT trying this at home.

It was not just a question of not enough hours in the day; it was a question of not having enough energy in the hours. I have a tendency to overdo it. I want to accomplish everything and become frustrated with myself for my own weakness. I'd much rather not have to need sleep and real food so much.

But it's not weakness to need rest and downtime and play. Basic human maintenance matters, and it takes time. I might have "KEEP CALM, EAT A @$%$ CARROT AND WRITE ON," on my wall, but at some point I'm going to have to take five minutes to peel said carrot.

I once had someone tell me that I was like a pitcher. I could only pour water out for so long before I needed refilling. Life is returning to normalcy, and I'm finally refilling. I'd encourage all of you to keep an eye on your own water level.

With that, I'm signing off with a few things to watch and read on the subject:

TED Talks
I have little patience with videos online, but I'll watch a good TED Talk. They're usually informative and entertaining.

Writing and Wellness
Then there's the Writing and Wellness blog, where you can hear from actual writers on how they practice self-care. Way too much yoga suggested for me (I hate yoga), but many valuable insights.

Butt in chair time should not hurt. Take that from someone who's experienced more than her share of neck and back pain from poorly adjusted chairs and desks. Invest in a setup that doesn't make you hurt. Take the time to adjust everything properly. Try these resources for the how-to:

Take care of yourselves. The world needs your stories. Your stories need you.


  1. Susan, watching you this year has been like watching a July 4th fireworks display. Beautiful, loud, exciting bursts of energy to create workshops and conferences, to keep two writing websites running beautifully, writing God only knows how many blogs. And in all this you've been a good friend and have stayed calm and level headed. (Perhaps like the duck--calm and unruffled on the surface and paddling like hell down below.)

    I am so happy to hear that you are now going to take care of yourself. You are too beautiful and wonderful creature to let burn out. I really hope you have this Not to Self as a screen saver or as wallpaper on your computer so you see it and read it every time you turn it on.

    1. Don't know what to say, Art. Except you can ask my husband how "calm" I've been. Thank you. :)

      The note to self is going on my writing wall. Definitely.

  2. Amen to what Art said, and I totally agree with your post! Sometimes I want to slow down and read a book or do something fun, and this little voice keeps telling me, "You're not done with everything yet." But I have concluded that I will most likely never be done with everything, so I might as well read.


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