Burning the Candle at Both Ends: The Downside of being a Workaholic

So I think it’s been pretty clear that I have an absurd addiction to productivity. In the past four months, I’ve completed and revised book 1’s MS (it’s currently with beta readers), drafted a plan to fix book 2’s MS and have begun outlining book 3. And that’s just the work I’ve done on my book series. I’ve also beta-read a friend’s MS, participated in numerous critique sessions (usually critiquing 30-40 pages at a time), attended my first writer’s workshop and a weekend writing retreat, on top of designing a monthly digital magazine.

By the way, none of that includes my 9-5.

I work extremely hard because I know what I want and I’m willing to put the work in to get there. Having said that though, I often push myself until my brain and body just go, “NOOOOOOPE, No more.”

This past weekend was one of those times. My brain just stomped on the brakes and sent me a handy dandy greeting card saying, “You work too hard, here’s a migraine to ensure you take a break.”

While I know that my brain means well, it doesn’t lessen my irritation any. 1) Migraines suck, 2) I got stuff to do, 3) Migraines REALLY, REALLY suck! It forces me to lay in bed with the blinds closed tight, an ice pack on my head, popping ibuprofen like PEZ. And because my desk is in my bedroom, it also forces me to stare at my blackened computer screen, thinking of all the work I could be doing. Curse you, Migraines!

However, this does make me realize that I do need to slow down a little, or at least not ignore my body’s needs, e.g. Starbucks isn’t dinner, postural muscles need exercising, and massage therapy needs to become a priority again. (Old neck injury makes being a writer and graphic designer fairly difficult at times.)

Though this post isn’t quite about writing, I do think it’s important to note that, as creative’s, we need to make time for ourselves, not just our projects. Otherwise, we run the risk of letting our health suffer.

Wishing you health and productivity!

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