Writing in Solitude.

Free image courtesy Sixteen Miles Out on Unsplash.

Lately, I’ve been sporadic when it comes to blogging and posting on my various social media networks. The reality is I’m becoming more and more withdrawn.

I’ve been suffering from chronic pain for two years, and a few months ago, I asked my doctor how long I’m likely to put up with my chronic condition. She told me it ‘could last for quite some time yet.’ Earlier this month, I’ve been doing one-on-one sessions for my chronic pain through my local health service. Although they’re simple, these exercises leave me sore and tired (and some days, all I want to do is sleep). As recently as a few days ago, I was in the worst pain I’ve been in for some time. I could not put my left foot down, preventing me from walking as the pain shot all the way from my lower back down to my foot. I had to lean on my husband to help me sit down. Thankfully, the pain eventually went away, but I had to use an old crutch for a while. We’re considering purchasing a cane in case I ever experience such a thing again.

As a result, I’ve made the decision to take a large step away from social media. I will still use it, but nowhere near as often as I once did. It’s always been a distraction from writing, which has been so important to me, but for now, my health comes first.

Our health – both physically and mentally – play a large part of the writing process. It’s something that can easily be forgotten when it comes to being a creative. No matter how much writing advice there is, take it all with a grain of salt. Use what sounds reasonable to you and forget the rest. Listen to what your body is telling you.

When I self-published in 2019, I listened to all the advice – don’t do this, don’t do that, the ONLY way to be successful is to do X. I became anxious, overwhelmed, and exhausted. I began writing because I enjoyed it. Listening to all the ‘advice’ took that away from me. I want to find that pleasure once more.

Yes, I will continue to blog as I really enjoy it (it is writing, after all), however, you should find me reasonably quiet (especially on other platforms). How long for, I don’t know. Perhaps, this may become a permanent fixture. After all, silence is golden. 😉

What do you do to take care of your physical and mental health when it comes to writing? Have you had to take a hiatus from social media?

4 thoughts on “Writing in Solitude.

  1. Physical health: unless I’m having a really, really bad day, I eat healthy. That’s backwards, I know. I should eat extra healthy if I’m having a stressful day, but I admit I stress-eat. (Bring on the chocolate.) I also exercise every day, a jog or a walk, a few hip and ab exercises, a few pushups. I also try not to sit too long without standing up. I get achy.

    Mental health: I read the Bible six days per week (taking one day off so I don’t get dogmatic about it) and I pray. I saw a study somewhere that said prayer helps 79 percent of people who are anxious to destress. I don’t know if it’s a Divine thing or if it’s just a matter of focusing outside one’s own self. But I’m definitely in that 79 percent.

    I really, really hope your pain goes away and that you never experience the severe pain again in which you need someone to help you stand up!

    1. Debbie Johansson 27/09/2023 — 6:15 am

      Thank you, Vera. That incident knocked some sense in me, I think! I’m so glad you have a routine that helps your physical and mental well-being. It sounds like you have a good balance, regardless of diet. Sitting too long is something I know I need to work on, and keep reminding myself I have a standing desk! *face palm*

  2. I hope things improve for you.
    Yes, for a couple years, I took Februarys off of social media–as led by my writing mentor, who wanted people to focus on their actual writing and notice how long they were spending on social media that they could have been using for actual work. It helped me break the cycle of endless scrolling.
    I love my standing desk, but I do find it easier to edit while sitting.

    1. Debbie Johansson 01/10/2023 — 11:26 am

      Thank you, Carrie. I like the idea of taking regular time off social media every year. I’ve never done it that way, just when I felt I really needed to, like now. It certainly feels more relaxing and less stressful without most of it. 🙂

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