Last year (how time flies!), I wrote about my battle with burnout and how I needed to take a break from what seemed like everything in my life to get back on track.
I am glad to say that this has happened — pandemic and all. It just took a lot longer than I thought it would.
In September 2019 I really imploded and needed to just take some time off to give my body and mind time to recover. However, it’s not like you’re completely burnt out one day and fine again the next day. Oh, how I wish that that’s the case!
With the implosion came a realisation that I would need to make drastic changes to my lifestyle. I needed to stop pushing myself so hard to be everything and do everything. I needed to take more than just one step back and relook everything I was doing.
The pandemic came about about just as I felt like I was getting myself back together again. I was again enjoying writing, wasn’t working quite such ridiculous hours, and had more time to spend on hobbies other than writing.
With the pandemic came a “level 5” lockdown — and time to breathe
On the one hand lockdown and working from home was a good thing as I suddenly had about two extra hours in the day when I didn’t have to commute to and from the office. That gave me the chance to work on a new routine — especially when we saw that the lockdown would be with us for some time still in one form or another.
I also believe that, if I hadn’t received help when I did, the stress of the lockdown, and everything that came with it, would have leveled me.
Having some extra time gave me the freedom to be more creative
As I did not have as much work as usual to do every day (and no children that needed homeschooling, etc.), I did have the chance to daydream and think about the creative path that I want to follow going forward.
That the path would include mostly writing was obvious, but the way I’d be sharing and telling stories changed somewhat. I’d been dawdling along the creativity path for most of 2019 while on my way to implode, and, by doing that, I ended up letting things like my Patreon page and ideas for a newsletter die a slow death.
It does get better
Yet now, some nine months down the line, I do feel renewed. I find new ideas for stories every time I go onto Pinterest (stories that I actually have the strength to write) and started a new flash and short fiction newsletter.
Colour has seeped back into the world and, even with everything that’s going on raging about me, I still feel like there is a spark of creativity left.
I can’t say 2020 has been any fun thus far, but now, a few weeks before my birthday, I can finally say I basically feel like my old self again.
And it’s time to create.