I was waiting for the tech guy at work to fix my computer, again! They got one problem solved, but then my internet was knocked out, and after that was fixed, my phone system wouldn’t work right…
Needless to say, it’s been a rough week, and I’m typing this on a Monday…
While I was waiting for the tech guy to finish, I was thinking about writing this post. I knew I wanted to address the REST and RELAX part from my blog on April 13, where I talk about Balance.
But doing so means I need to do some confessing…
I didn’t listen to my own writing… Since the post on balance and rest, I’ve finished a novel, edited another one, launched one, set up social media for the month of May and June. Worked 40+ hours a week on my non-writing job, spent some extra time with my mentee before school let out…
On and on, I could go with my to-do list.
June is here and according to the task list I made in January (and was SO PROUD OF!) I should be writing book six and final editing book five, which should have been beta tested already… for an August launch date.
Well… I’ve sent my book out to only two people for beta testing, not to everyone I should send it to. I’m also struggling with book six, Giving Grace. I’ve outlined the plot, written a few chapters, and fleshed out most of my main characters, but I’m only on chapter seven and I’m stuck!!! I can’t even seem to finish the chapter I was working on.
Usually, when I have writer’s block, I can do something else for a bit (think hours, a day at most) and then be good to knock out the next chapter… but that’s NOT WORKING this time.
*Insert a Charlie Brown cry of anguish here*
This past weekend, I didn’t work on book six AT ALL. Instead, I created a bookmark for my first & second-grade girls to color next week, and I started finding pictures for my July social media posts. I even created some fun Photoshop images for July based on tips and tricks I’ve learned the past year as a self-published author/promoter/edit, etc. A POST ON THIS SOCIAL MEDIA PLANNING PART II will be available June 25, 2019.
It was fun!
I was also able to work on one of the items off my never-ending to-do list, setting up hashtags for social media. A POST ABOUT THIS COMING IN JULY
Saturday, while watching the pouring rainfall in the early morning, it was like God said, “SLOW DOWN! You’re unraveling FOR NO REASON.”
It all hit me while I was waiting for the tech guy as I came across a quote I’d saved on my phone.
When you’re hanging by a thread, make sure it’s the hem of His garment.
I can see I’m getting to the “hanging by a thread” part and telling myself to rest, pray, do devotions, basically adding more to my list and being mad when I don’t do it is only creating a vicious cycle.
I AM TIRED, but I’m also bored, frustrated, and only see a never-ending to-do list.
Now, I’m starting a Relax & Rest 30 Days of Me Following Through.
This sounds crazy and difficult to me too, but don’t worry, I think God’s given me a plan to show me how to relax!
From June 8 to July 7, I get to do what I want.
Read what devotions I want. (Right now, I’m reading the First Five Study of Psalms Part II, though I’m way behind.) Simple thought-provoking, but NO JOURNALING. No writing everything down. Just read the devotion, the chapter of Psalm, and pray. That’s it.
No writing of book six unless I’m inspired and IT’S OKAY if for the next thirty days I don’t write a single word.
Don’t add anything new to my TO-DO list. (Yes, this is huge and very hard for me!)
Knock out some “fun” things on my to-do list or simple things I just haven’t made time for.
Don’t go crazy with that list!
Get massages, my toes done, a haircut with a shampoo. (This is my birthday week, so it’s allowed to do several of these in one week!)
Watch movies, read books (fun ones or ones I’ve been wanting to read for a while).
Eat out with friends and family.
Nap – Relax, and Rest.
Be kind to myself. No demands, or promises, or new habits.
Last time, even when I decided to “balance and rest” there was still this never ending to do list which kept growing. Books to write, edit, launch…
Having a bit of time in between novels, I’m taking a little breather. Not promoting and running myself ragged with every suggestion I’ve seen/read about promoting as a self-published author.
AND IT’S OKAY.
This weekend, the world didn’t fall apart when I did some fun design. No one got upset or frustrated, even me!
I think I can do this RELAX thing this time for two reasons:
- I’ve got to, I’m unraveling
- I still get to be creative, have fun, and enjoy myself.
So, maybe this time, taking things off my plate, giving myself dates for this rest, and telling the whole world it’s okay for me to take a break, just might let me enjoy this one.
I want to succeed because I know God calls us to times of rest, and not just a Sundays. Sometimes, He says, “Lay down, eat, take a nap.” See 1 Kings 19.
Elijah has basically had a big high defeating all of the prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18) and runs away when Queen Jezebel threatens his life. He goes out into the wilderness and tells God to kill him, life is over.
THEN HE TAKES A NAP.
An angel wakes him, gives him food, and then he takes ANOTHER NAP.
Sometimes, I think God knows we need a nap and a break.
So, that’s what I’m doing for the next 30 days (until July 7).
I’m excited and I’m sleeping again which must mean it’s working.
Thank God for naps and breaks.
Until next time, may God’s grace surround you,