Thursday 29th June 2017
I think I burnt myself out a bit today. I had a very active day where I was extremely focused but then never had any energy for the evening’s editing.
The day job fun and games have continued today. What started as demonstrating I had things under control within my department ended up with me pretty much co-ordinating other departments. I had an early teleconference to discuss all the issues and offer advice. I was told afterwards that I was the first person who spoken any sense. I also had a number of people follow up with me asking for my help.
It’s nice to feel wanted. However, I find it quite amusing that I was very straight-talking and practical and only realised afterwards that there was some very senior management on the call. Oh well, I’ve never been daunted by rank or position.
I’m not sure he appreciated my straight talking. Still, he’ll appreciate the results, especially when I helped one guy and he managed to clear off a load of tasks because I basically told him what he needed to do.
Actually today has involved a lot of telling people what to do… including senior management.
It’s made me realise I’m a wartime general. I’m at my best when there is a crisis and someone needs to take charge and just run it. That’s pretty much what I’ve done today and I finished the day feeling pretty good about my accomplishments.
I had loads of energy in the gym this evening and I’m not sure if it’s as a result or not. I tend to be more exhausted later in the week but after holidays and coming back from injury I’m starting to match my best weights. I noticed I was also a lot more chatty, which seems to indicate I had more energy.
I’ve been trying to cut out the occasional bit of chocolate from my diet. I’ve replaced it with fruit which is still bad, but at least I’m replacing manufactured sugars with natural ones. My plan is to try a plan where I can eat as much fruit as I like and see what it does to my weight and energy levels.
Well energy levels seemed up for the first part of the day, we’ll see tomorrow about the weight.
Trouble was that I came back from the gym exhausted (which is normal) but I never recovered from it. I was knackered for the rest of the evening and just didn’t have the focus or concentration to really make progress with the novel.
So I’m not sure what caused my energy levels to be so good in the morning and then so bad in the evening. It certainly wasn’t just a case of procrastination as I had the files opened, I just had run out of mental energy.
People don’t realise just how mentally intensive writing is. At least it is for me. I’ve walked 30+ miles that has left me feeling less knackered than an all-day writing or editing session. It’s not that I have a small amount mental energy so much as writing takes so much out of me. This is why things like stress, or a busy day can just ruin my writing plans. I’ve tried all manners of things, from sleeping more to diet to exercise and it’s never made any difference.
As a result, I try not to take much on beyond my job, especially when I’m working on an edit.
I suppose that I could move my writing to the early morning and see how I get on with that. Back when I was writing Four Realms I did a lot of early morning sessions and they worked very well for me. The problem with mornings is that inevitably there’s a load of Facebook updates, stuff that’s happened in the US overnight (from movie trailers being released to international news) that means it can be terribly distracting.
I guess the real answer is to not be a wartime general, to not step up in a crisis and have my brain fire in 15 different directions at once while I solve people’s problems at the day job. It’s not like I’ll be recognised for it anyway.
If you want to follow more of my journey, then be sure to check me on my social channels. Likewise, if you’d like me to expand on any point mentioned above, please say so in the comments.
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