Body vs. Mind

Why is it that whenever I am working seriously toward a deadline (and in this case, multiple deadlines) my health falters? I don’t see what I’m doing differently except less TV and less sleep, but in reality not really that much less sleep. And then when I don’t feel good I am less inclined to push extra hard to make that deadline. So I get behind, which makes the whole process worse, and I just want to lie down on the couch to boot.

Anyway, it’s Wednesday morning and I am about to leave to take over a table in Starbucks with my laptop. I’ve got permission to get in to work at 10am on writing days. I’m making great progress on the outline (yes, I am still working on that outline!), but there is much yet to do. I used my own advice and polished up the end and now I have to make sure the plot elements build up to that outcome. My body is asking me to please go back to bed; it’s not feeling too well this week. But my mind is all raring to go. So all I need to do is drag myself a few blocks west, get caffeine, stow myself at table, and start typing. I may crash at work, but who cares. I think this is why many of the other people who write these books don’t have full-time jobs.

2 responses to “Body vs. Mind”

  1. You have a lot going on — work, living in a wonderful, complex, and difficult urban setting, and the many writing projects you’re doing — and you’re uncertain about how things will turn out. This isn’t easy psychologically to handle, all this stuff. So occasionally, your body will want to turn everything off. It’s not a bad thing, and sometimes you should give in to it, and sometimes, not. When I feel like this, I try to make sure I’m treating my body as well as I can (lots of water, good food, some exercise you enjoy, not the awful kind of exercise that’s a duty not a pleasure) — perhaps then you’ll be better able to accomplish all these amazing things you’re trying to do. It’s just not easy, that’s all!

  2. Stress is a cumulative thing, I think. You can look at individual elements and think that, ‘hey, this isn’t really too far out of whack- why am I so messed up?’ but that doesn’t neccessarily cover all of the stress. Don’t forget that we work differently and even hold ourselves differently when we’re under stress. 1/2 hour less sleep, one extra coffee, pounding keys for an extra hour, thinking about your deadling every 30 minutes– it all adds up.

    Like Bloglily says, you sure do have a lot going on, and she’s right about the physical ‘reactions’ to it. I’m not saying you’re screwed or anything- just try and take it easy in another arena while you’re in this period.

    Long bath: when’s the last time you took one? Massage? Something like that might help to tip the balance.

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