Have you ever felt completely torn in two? Maybe Three? or a Hundred different directions? It’s not a pretty feeling. It leaves one with quite the migraine not to mention little left of your self. This seems to be what’s going on with me lately. I know just DAYS away is NaNoWriMo (for those that don’t know NAtionalNOvelWRItingMOnth), the World Series is going on, work is hectic, the kids are involved in everything under the sun, hubby is working on animation and comic projects, friends are getting married, family is asking about Thanksgiving, and Christmas decorations are out at Macy’s!!! YES CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS ARE OUT!!! I haven’t even finished Halloween decorations people!!!
So back to distractions…… *sheepish grin*
There are many many forms of distractions. Most, not all mind you, can be avoided or dealt with quickly so they are no longer distractions. Let’s start with little things. It’s beautiful outside lately. It’s so easy to set everything aside for an hour (or 24) and join the fire pit outside and the fall pumpkin picking and decorating and parties. I’m never one to say don’t go…. But think, you do have projects to do. So instead of overwhelming yourself, pace yourself. It’s near Halloween….. go to a few of the costume parties ( I know I’m going) but on those days make sure you have time for your projects before hand. Now you can have your cake and eat it too!!! Those beautiful fire pit nights; enjoy them!!! GUILT FREE EVEN!!! During the day put aside some project/family/self time and join the fire pit in the evening when the sky is crystal clear and just the animal (be it cars from the city or animals in the county) sounds and you. If you set yourself up for the I can’t do this if I want to do this you are going to set yourself up for failure in your goal. You have to be able to relax and indulge just as much as you have to be able to hold back and pace yourself.
Things you can’t really help or avoid that distract you from your project goals are inevitable. You have family, professional, and social obligations that can become a distraction to your project. Kids need to be at dance, practice, games, meets, clubs, and all modes of other things and YOU need to get them there and back, make dinner, ready baths, and prep for the next day. Sound familiar?! I don’t doubt it! That tends to be my daily life!!! SO ask for help!!! Don’t be afraid to ask for the help of family and friends. Maybe Grandma can pick up little susie from dance practice so you can make a decent dinner. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Be realistic about what you take on at work. If you know that November and December are busy social and personal months, don’t take on the biggest project at work. No one is getting the best out of you if you are stressed, under fed, and sleep deprived. Social obligations are probably the hardest out of all of this. Your friends can make some pretty high demands and usually can make you feel smaller than an ant for missing said social events. However, these are your friends we are talking about. Be upfront with them and if they are truly friends they will be supportive of you and may even volunteer to help out.
AND last but not least: BREATHE!!! This would seem obvious right?! Not so much. Last year I made a huge mistake in just about everything above. I didn’t sleep, didn’t eat right, tried to do everything myself, AND took on writing a 50,000 + word novel in just 30 days. Needless to say I got a pretty high fever and was laid out roughly 4 days (still wrote during that much to the now chagrin of my editor who needs to make sense of all that I wrote during that time) I forgot to pace, I forgot to ask for help, and I didn’t even think to step back and just say no.
NaNoWriMo is hard. It’s demanding. AND it’s all up to you how you do it. So you don’t finish 50,000 words in 30 days. That doesn’t mean don’t give up. On the other hand so you finished 50,000 words in 30 days, it’s not over yet. It’s a lot of work and it’s dedication all on you. So make the most of any and every resource you can.
Good luck to you on your projects!!!