Variety News: July 12, 2021

On My Mind
I was reading about sleep again this past week, and how important it is to get six hours at the very minimum. There were also a few articles out about four day work weeks, and Iceland’s experience/experiments with that. The articles go hand-in-hand, methinks, because when I think about getting six hours of sleep a night, and also getting in all the exercise I need to stay physically healthy, and my work schedule, and eating healthy (which generally takes longer than eating unhealthily, at least if you want a varied diet)…I could literally spend every waking minute that I’m not at work trying to maintain my current level of health (not even getting healthier, just maintaining).

That includes very little housework too – mostly just eating, working out, general physical maintenance tasks (lotion, hydration, eye care, dental care, etc), and then cleaning the kitchen from making food all day.

A four-day work week (not four ten-hour days, but four eight-hour days) would leave us with so much more time to take care of ourselves, run necessary errands and have some extra time to just “relax”. Its no wonder that Iceland saw some serious benefits to that work schedule change – including happier, less-stressed workers.

We Americans put far too much strain on ourselves with this whole work-worship culture. It’s not healthy, and it’s not actually making us any richer, healthier or happier. So why on earth do we keep doing it this way? It’s stupid.

The Hydrangeas are blooming, and so is my big peace rose! Beautiful.

I have a bad habit of buying things like watermelon and letting them sit on the counter indefinitely. So last week when there was a huge watermelon in my way on the stove, and I asked myself where I should move it, my more sarcastic self came back with, “You could just cut it up and…you know…eat it.”

My sarcastic self is often smarter than my normal self. And she was right. So I cut it up, and we’ve been eating a lot of watermelon this week (even the dogs have gotten their share). It’s good! I should do that more often in the summer.

My Grandma was in town staying with my parents for a few weeks recently, and the hubby and I went over last Saturday to play Scrabble. I’ve been playing Scrabble with my mom and Grandma since I was old enough to spell. I never win, so I don’t even try – I just enjoy the mental challenge of trying to find spots to use letters.

Bling & Things
Every since I started growing my hair out, I’ve had some issues with buying hair stuff and earrings (as in, I do too much of both). Last week, I told myself I needed to slow it down. Limit it to once a month and a set budget.

Shortly after, I ordered several more pairs of earrings from my local Paparazzi dealer. *sigh* Needless to say, I need more practice at the whole self-discipline thing.

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A Kick in the Head

Things that have happened since I last posted:

– I’ve established a daily writing habit before work (I know, I’m as surprised as anyone to be writing productively in the *morning*)
– I have a fairly extensive mask wardrobe
– Two new tote bags that are lighter than my leather bag was, and I think it’s affecting my shoulder/neck issues for the better
– I’ve actually finished a draft, and started a new one
– I’ve been reading before bed again – finished two books and am working on another

I’ve written a bunch of posts since the “Toast” one, and deemed all of them unfit for whatever reason. Mostly because I felt like posting about mundane stuff might appear tone deaf or inappropriate given the state of things and all the civil unrest. I’ve been “escaping” in Animal Crossing and walking the dogs in the evenings, and generally just staying in my own little work/life “bubble”. Think of that what you will. It’s how I’ve been dealing.

But it’s time to get moving again, and my “kick in the head” came from a rather unexpected invitation by our local bookstore to do a virtual author interview. I agreed, and in prepping for the experience, I realized something important about my writing and myself that made me want to get out of my fog and back into productivity in my writing life (work life has been incredibly productive all year, but also incredibly draining, which hasn’t helped the writing life thing).

The thing I needed most was confidence. I got that – just a little shot, and it’s enough, I think, to get me moving again.

My main focus this week is figuring out the time aspect. I need time to update covers, update social media pages, update blogs, and do various publishing & maintenance tasks. But more than anything, I need time to edit and revise. I have several drafts in the edit/revise phase, and they’re “stuck” there due to my lack of making time to work on them. I could release all of those drafts as finished manuscripts within the next six months if I could just set aside some time for “marking up” and time for “typing in”.

So, that’s my goal for the week. Find two 20-minute time slots that can be “set” for each weekday and dedicated for mark-ups and type-ins. It’s really not all that easy, because I need quiet and headspace for those time slots. But, I’m determined. There has to be a way.

If I can do that early enough in the week, then my secondary goal is to set aside one more time slot for writing blog posts. Will I be successful?

You’ll find out next week!

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