Escaping an Off-Kilter World (finding a balance when it all falls apart)

In my personal life, I am a political person (don’t worry, I can sense the tension emanating from you with those simple words- this will not be a political post, so heave a deep sigh of relief). So, as I was saying- in my daily life, I am politically minded, I pay attention and I have formed a lot of my own opinions, I join organizations or events that I feel strongly about, I donate time and money to causes that I believe in, I have even gone so far as to attend rallies and similar events to bring light to certain issues. I continually try to read and learn differing perspectives. I don’t force my views onto others, nor do I really talk all that openly about them unless the other person is willing to have a genuine conversation without letting it slip into the hateful and unproductive speeches we’ve been seeing all too frequently. Even here- if anyone wishes to have a conversation about views and opinions, I would be more than happy to share ideas in a constructive way. Though, I must admit, I am sure most won’t be too keen to take me up on this offer.

I’ll be honest, I have contemplated bringing some of my views and opinions to this blog. I have had deep internal debates on the merits and responsibilities towards fighting for what you believe in and bringing light to causes that may otherwise be ignored. I have fought internally about sharing my views so that others might feel like they are less alone, or to share the resources that I have used to personally educate myself on the issues that I care about. This has been a big struggle for me, because writing a ‘fluffy’ piece when it feels like the world is falling apart at the seams- well, it feels wrong. It feels like I’m ignoring what truly matters. And that’s part of why I haven’t been able to write much the past few weeks (well, that and a pretty rough time I have had being sick for over a week now with a fever and sinus congestion that hurts so bad I can feel it radiating in my teeth). I guess in part, it almost feels morally irresponsible to not at least mention the state our society is in. For a girl who processes the world through words, it’s been strange trying to keep myself from writing specific ones right here.

Lately I’ve been overdosing- constantly keeping an eye on my social media and news outlets to the detriment of other aspects of my life. To be honest, I never expected to live in a time like this, I never expected to face the dilemmas we are facing, I never envisioned my country looking the way that it does. It’s easy to get pulled in- after all, these issues matter. The course that we set right now can have a drastic impact on our future. And if I’m being honest, I’m scared for us. Which is why I read, why I ask questions, why I listen, why I play devil’s advocate with my own belief system, and why I fight for what I believe in when it seems like there is no other road to travel.

However, I’m learning that there must be limits. I have kept myself informed, but I’ve torn myself to pieces in the process without providing any solace to build myself back up. We all need an outlet; somewhere to go when the world gets too crazy, somewhere to hide away and recharge when we feel battered and bruised. That doesn’t mean we are being socially irresponsible or burying our heads in the sand; it just means that on occassion, we need a time out. It means that we need to remember why balance in all aspects of our lives is so crucial to our general wellbeing. We need a place to feel strong after the world has worn us down to the point we are far too weak to take another step. That was always what this blog was about; it was about finding my place in a world gone mad. It was about fostering a dream that I still carry. The novels I write in the future may be different, the words and the tone may reflect the state of the world that we are currently living in. But this spot right here is still going to be my sanctuary. True- I am not promising that my views may not occasionally slip in, that I might not have some personal insight to share, or mention of a book that helped shape me. But rest assured, every word that I write here will be one of peace and understanding. Because these are the values that I was raised to believe in. 

My friends, I am a political person. But that does not mean that I have to be one right here- and it took me months to come to this simple realization. This is where I go to hide away and remind myself of the life that I am fighting for, the dream that I am carrying, the hopes that I still hold. And truthfully, if this desire to speak up about policy and opinion persists, well, then perhaps a sister-blog may be in my future, one that is more geared towards that side of my life. But for today, I just needed to touch base with something that matters to me outside of the political sphere. Tonight I needed to remember that the written word can bring comfort, not just opposition and hatred. And tomorrow, I will be back, charged and ready for what comes next. Balance is key, I cannot forget that again.

My friends, if any of you need anything, or just want to talk- my door is always open, my inbox is always waiting. You can contact me anytime and know that I will welcome you with open arms and respect. Because that’s what we’re about here. Small acts of kindness will always find their way into our hearts and lives; that is where we will find our hope. This blog is a small act of kindness to myself, and I hope that others may feel the same way. Goodnight my friends, may tomorrow be a brighter day.

September Goals

This year seems to be slipping through my fingers faster than my dog when he realizes it’s bath time. September is almost upon us, and with that comes a new set of goals and aspirations, something I have been talking a lot about the past week. So what will be on the agenda this coming month? (drum roll please)

September is going to the month of returning to my roots, of refining what I have, its going to be the month to go back and make things shine. I have a large number of projects in some stage of the editing process- in my mind they are still not ready for beta readers, although I know of at least one that is so close I can almost taste it. I have far too many projects languishing in this semi-unfinished state. So this month I am going to hone in and start the tedious task that is editing. I’m actually really excited about it. When I was cleaning out my desk yesterday I came across on of the notebooks containing all of my plot notes for my Twisted Fairytale (I have yet to commit to a name, so nicknames will have to suffice at this point). This one is the closest to completion, and it was one of my all-time favorites to write. That’s probably because when I started it, I meant for it to just be practice, there was no pressure with the prospect of future eyes roving over it in judgment. Along the way, I fell in love with the concept and have been pouring more of my heart and soul into it. It’s about time that the little creation see the light of day and get some input that will really make her shine.

I’m going to also take the time to refocus this blog, getting back on track with quality content that will hopefully interest a few people. I am feeling rejuvenated, and I want that to show in my work. I am going to run with this energy while I have it. I am excited to plunge back into the research and start jotting down lines for a few of the topics I have lined up in the coming weeks. I feel like I’ve lost my voice recently, and I am finally getting it back.

Personally, I am going to keep in mind that balance I’ve been talking about. The plan is to keep up with my journaling, even if it is only for fifteen minutes at night. I will start getting up early to work out, my body is just as important as my mind. I am going to work harder at staying in the moment and giving my full attention to whatever I happen to be doing.

So here we go, the goals, simply laid out:

  • Journal 5 days a week for at least fifteen minutes
  • At least 5 blog posts a week
  • Edit Twisted Fairy Tale until it is ready for beta reading (I am hoping to work on a few other projects, but this is the one I want to have done by the end of the month)
  • Work out 30 minutes five days a week
  • Follow meal plan
  • Walk the dog every day (or substitute another activity to keep him sane)
  • Research projects: 15 minutes a day minimum

I am so excited for this month, it is going to feel fantastic to start getting my projects ready for others to see. It’s terrifying, but that’s the name of the game. I can do this, I know that I can. I just have to make sure that I don’t burn myself out this time around. I have to stay mindful and keep on track. It’s going to be a beautiful month, I can feel it now.