Striking a Balance
There have been times in my life I have burned the candle at both ends. I sometimes even diced the candle into multiple candles and lit them at both ends until I found myself devoured by fire and drowning in wax. And that’s not even talking about writing.
With writing (or any of a number of professional and/or positive pursuits), obsession is often a good thing. You take your raw talent and skill and focus your craft and put in the hours you need to get where you need to go. And some bodies can take it. Some cannot. (This is the same with any of a number of habits as evidenced by anecdotal information we gather as we move through lives, be it the guy who runs 40 miles a week who drops dead on a cool afternoon while cutting grass or the rocker who does all the recreational drugs who lives to be an ancient rocker.) Such is life.
Genetics and environment and education and nutrition and this tasty stew of random factors where everything is good and/or bad at any given moment. Your body is going to give you a sense of what you need.
Sometimes, the need is sleep. You are not going to get an award for working a sixty hour week. You’re not going to get a book done if you devote more time on social media than you do on writing. (Well, you might eventually, but that’s slow going and a long row to hoe.)
You’ve got to find your balance between your work life and your recreational life and your social life. Eventually.
You have to decide what falls where on your ladder of priorities, but common sense is gonna tell you the machine runs better if you give it a chance to cool down. You can’t just keep pouring water in the radiator hoping you can stay ahead of things. Fatigue is going to set in somewhere, sometime, and once you crack something, it’s never gonna be quite the same again.
Burning the candle is alright in moderation. As is a cupcake or a shot of tequila or just about most anything. You just have to face the consequences of your actions and inactions. Eventually, the piper must be paid.
Find your flow. Take time to breathe. Create good stuff. Dive into your projects with vigor and passion. Go forth and do good things.