I Need to Rest Sometimes. I’m Not He-Man, After All

As time passes and the vagaries of life interfere with the plans I’ve made, I’ve thought long and hard about what I would do if I didn’t write a blog post one day. I had originally planned to write every blog post a week in advance, try to avoid referencing anything time sensitive unless I was going to insert it ahead of other posts, and not sweat it too much if I didn’t have a post for a day. After all, this is supposed to be fun for me, right?

Well, I didn’t write anything yesterday. A confluence of events left me with little creative energy when I finally sat down to write and I just couldn’t come up with anything. It was like tapping the side of a plastic jug, expecting to hear the dull thrum as the plastic vibrates the liquid inside and instead getting only a quiet plink because the jug is empty. I know myself and my process enough to recognize when I’m not going to be getting anything else done, so I set aside my writing goal and played video games instead.

Today, as I do my weekly household chores and reflect on some things, I find myself a blog post short of my usual week-long buffer and, as it turns out, things weren’t as settled as I thought they were. I’m currently, while writing this, running through a dozen different blog post ideas, looking for something fun to do so I can meet what feels like an obligation to post every day but also keep to my goal of enjoying myself. I’m also eating bacon and hashed browns I made for myself, because I like to write in the mornings now, I guess. I am the king of multitasking, clearly.

Despite all that, what is going to happen is that I’m going to write this post and then I’m going to go do something else. Probably play video games while doing laundry in the background of my day. I’m gonna leave all those potential posts as ideas, maybe copy a couple down for future use, and then not check this site again until tomorrow.

One big lesson I’ve learned this year, much more subtly than most other lessons I’ve learned during the pandemic, is that just because I have energy to spend and the ability to work doesn’t mean I should. I can save some for tomorrow. Or next week. Or a more nebulous “later” that better coincides with time and resource availability. I don’t constantly need to push myself to my limits to get work done. Doing just a bit is okay, especially if that allows me to do a bit EVERY day instead of a cycle of burning out, resting, and then burning out again.

Also, context is important. I am writing and editing one blog post a day, working on poetry on and off, writing daily Haiku, running 1 weekly D&D campaign, 2 occasional D&D campaigns which somehow almost always wind up occurring during one four-day period once per month, living alone during a pandemic, working an intellectually exhausting job, managing a household on my own, and making time every day to play video games or read because I actually have to schedule fun relaxation time or else I won’t take it. I am doing so goddamn much. If I could actually sleep for more than 6 or 7 hours in a single night, I would probably have to start cutting back on what I’m doing.

So there will have been no blog post yesterday. It will probably be very stressful for me, but I’m not doing it. Even if the poem I wrote yesterday edits out well, or even if I wind up having the energy for two blog posts in a day, there will have been no blog post yesterday. I needed the rest, so I rested.

I also recognize that I’m writing all of this to convince myself that this is okay, but this blog is still for my benefit, so that’s fine. If you want some benefit from this post, then you should totally go watch the new He-Man show on Netflix. He-Man actually stabs a guy this time. What a twist.

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