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Busy Being Busy

Originally posted 27/02/20
To point out that February has been a busy month is an understatement. For the shortest month of the year, it’s been a constant flow of ticking off lists. Not only have I moved into a new house, but I’ve also been constantly formatting my own book, Woeful Requiem, and am busy both with course and client work.

Although I’m blessed to be slowly making something of myself with this editing/writing journey (I hope), there’s still a lot of things to do. As it stands I’m in the middle of reformatting the entire book for print. That’s been a fun endeavour and I’ve learned a hell of a lot in such a short time. On the plus side, it definitely helps with helping clients with these sorts of questions, but boy, processing all this information in such a short span is a lot to take in. Sometimes you need a breather (especially when you want to make your first product as professional as possible).

But as the month draws to an end, exciting things are happening in March. I plan to release Woeful Requiem and get to hold physical copies in my hand by the end of the month, so that’s exciting. I’d originally planned to release Woeful Requiem on the 13th March, but due to my schedule it may look like it’ll be closer to the end of the month.

Also, most of my course work should be finished, which means I may obtain a Diploma of Editing. There’s still a bit of work to do with that, so I’ll have to buckle down and get all that done too. And there’s also an upcoming project that is shaping up, like the Black Dogs, Black Tales anthology I’m helping with (I’ll provide a link with details at the end of the blog). If you think that’s not being busy enough, I have a few clients with their manuscripts, so that’s going to be fun too. I’m fortunate enough to have a few who have some exciting manuscripts for me to delve with, so that’ll be fantastic.

But before I continue, yes I agree with you, it does feel weird studying again. The last time I studied was 2006-2010. Boy, that was some time ago.

Anyway, there’s a lot in life that’s happening for me at the moment. I hope they will all be good things, but who knows. All I can do is take one thing at a time. If life throws lemons, I’m sure I can give them to my flatmate for vodka mixes (if he has any).

In all seriousness though, one thing I want to address is how to self-care. It’s really important not to be too obsessed with what you do, or even push yourself way too much. In the end it never pays off and it can complicate your life more than what you think. All the little things can build up to become an entity much larger than what it should be, but don’t let yourself get to that point. It’s not worth it. After all, it’s all added stress (and lemons) you don’t need.

While I type this out it reminds me of last year before I made the plunge into doing what I do now. It was a very big decision in making a new career shift, but for my own health and well being, I had make that tough choice.

For me, things were becoming the same old, same old, and I wasn’t enjoying what I did. Quite frankly, there didn’t seem to be a way to advance or better myself and my skills. So I decided to take decisive action and weigh up all my options. After much consideration I quit my main occupation, then followed what I wanted to do. What I really wanted to do. You know, the passionate thing.

Now, I know not everyone would agree with this, but it was for the best at the time. I’d surrounded myself with awesome people who I’d once worked with, however, if you have an overly-active mind and like to push yourself, things can become mundane when not exercising your capabilities. This was one of the main reasons why I made the plunge. You only live life once, so why not? What did I have to lose?

Not much apparently.

When I look back, I don’t regret my decisions. Some people tell me I should’ve made it earlier, but I know for a fact that past Jessey wouldn’t have been ready. Always tell yourself that everything happens for a reason, and as a species, we always change and grow through our decades of existence.

Now, everyone should know when to take a break, or even make a change in their life. It can be big. It can be small. But at the end of the day–and if it’s an intelligent decision at best–then do what’s right for you. Although self-doubt is one hell of a thing, you can always weigh up your options with the pros and cons. In doing so, not only will you feel a lot better in the long run, but you’ll also become a better person.

I know I have.

So if you feel as though you’re being too busy and not taking care of yourself, but still feel guilty for taking a break from everything, don’t. Take tasks in your own stride and spend time with family and loved ones. As morbid as it sounds, you have no idea how long they’ll exist in this life. And it doesn’t even matter if it’s something simple like having a coffee date, or watching TV and talking about random topics or interests. The quality time you spend with others is something that can never be replaced.

And stop being busy for the sake of being busy. Notice the people around you and listen to how they feel about stuff in general. At most we tend to forget about this and bitch about things that crop up every day where you really don’t have to explain it so thoroughly. But at the end of the day, everything that builds up as stress could kill you with the possibility of re-occurring health problems.

I feel like we all take things for granted, like a holiday, time off work, or even the simplicity of treating ourselves to some chocolate. However, doing these things in small doses really does help with your mental state. A balance in life is extremely important, and no matter how small it is, every moment counts.

So go for that walk. Take in that fresh air (unless you’re allergic to pollen like me). Spend time with your animals (if you have any). Go for that hangout your friend mentioned about eons ago. Spend time with your son or daughter. Maybe you could take up a new hobby? It doesn’t hurt to try. But above all else, take care of yourself. There’s only one you. You matter more than what you think. And that’s a fact no one considers often until it’s too late.

For more details about Black Dogs, Black Tales: a mental health charity, please visit the link below.

Edit: Unfortunately the Black Dogs Black Tales page doesn’t exist anymore.