Productivity and Limits

There have been a lot of dark, cold days lately. Days like this my back, neck, and other joints ache. I can’t stand up for more than a few minutes at a time, and doing pretty much anything sucks the energy right out of me. Days like this, I can spend more time resting than doing whatever it is I need to be doing. I want to just sit in my recliner and watch TV. The other day, I was determined to get some cleaning and unpacking done (no, I’m not unpacked yet, it’s a slow process). So, in small little sections of time/energy I managed to get a decent amount of work done. Then, this morning, I was listening to a podcast about productivity for writers. And the words hit home. Yes, I’d managed to unpack and sort through a good amount in the living room, cleaned the bathtub, and done a few other things. But was it enough? I hadn’t even opened my laptop, so no writing. I didn’t get the dishes washed, and I still had laundry to fold and put away, and there was a lot more I needed to do in the living room. So, was I productive enough?

My first instinct is to say no. If I had done more, then I’d have been able to get some words on screen. And if I’d been more productive on a daily basis, I’d be unpacked by now and my manuscript would be submitted. *insert beating myself up mentally* Even though by the end of the day I was exhausted.

But why do I feel this way? I know creative people tend to be hard on themselves, especially creative women. And I have health issues that sap my energy and forces me to take frequent rest breaks. 

Then there’s that other issue: depression. I’ve lived with major depression for most of my life, and I’ve worked hard on dealing with it. I was doing pretty well—until my husband died. Honestly, I thought I was through the worst of it. After the anniversary of his death, I believed I would be okay. And then grief hit me so hard I felt I couldn’t breathe. 

I’m pulling out of it now, but here I am, boxes to unpack, dishes to wash, words to put on the screen. And I’m feeling guilty about not doing enough. But I’m determined. I’ll get through this. 

And you’ll get through whatever blocks stand in your way of getting where you want to be. Come with me, we’ll do it together. 


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