Yet Another One: Keeping It Real

By JC Lynne

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired. Of New Year’s resolutions. Of New Year’s articles. And yes, of course, 2020.

And this one from June doesn’t even know what the rest of the year added!

I don’t love these last ten days of the year. The Gregorian calendar is an artificial construct that leaves me flat. This year has been particularly challenging. Without an official schedule to leave the house, even the strictest of Google calendars couldn’t keep me straight. I’m even pretty sure I showered yesterday.

We used to celebrate the beginning of the year in the spring with the equinox. Warming temperatures (in the Northern Hemisphere), green shoots, and snow switch to rain fit my new year mood better. Open the windows! Do a little cleaning! Breath in the fresh, petrichor.

But no, let’s begin the year with traditionally below zero temperatures, dingy, frozen snow, and static shocks.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been confused, full of cheese, and unsure of the day of the week since June.

My writing schedule flew out the window, replaced by the effort to cling to the last bits of my sanity. Despite a new book release, I’m finding it a Herculean effort to get excited about writing. (Pssst . . . shameless plug, today The F*cking Yoga Book: Yoga for The Rest of Us is available in print and ebook. We’ve run into a delay on the audiobook. Thanks, 2020).

The staff here at NCW has represented everyone’s ennui this year. Three months. Six months. Nine months. From the rush on toilet paper to the need for a professional haircut and the moderate torture of Zoom calls, The Writing Bug has felt the sting along with you.

My 2020 list isn’t any better or worse than a lot of people’s. It feels silly to review it all because there are so many things balancing the scales. Just barely. I find I’m holding my breath today because, without hyperbole, the last seven days have presented an extra sprinkle of salt to the gaping wound that has been the year.

Let’s face it, turning the year over on the calendar isn’t an actual reset. It’s a psychological trigger, and we desperately need to flip that switch. It’s a recalibration to adjust our thinking and find our motivation renewed.

Long distance runners call the extreme fatigue and discouragement mid-marathon bonking. I think it’s an appropriate term for what we’ve been dealing with this year.

There are ways to push past the bonk, and they don’t differ much if we’re talking about writing.

  • Train
    • Increased fitness means you can more easily access those deep stores of oomph. Get thee to your writing space and write one word. And then another. Soon, you’ll have a sentence. It might be a shite sentence, but you will have written.
  • Rest.
    • Stop staying up to the wee hours binging whatever. The beautiful thing about how we stream media these days is that we can stop whenever we want and start again later. Listen, I’m as guilty of irritation when a show only drops one episode per week as the next person. And some of us remember when you HAD to watch it or gone forever cough cough. But most things nowadays can wait for us.
  • Mind over matter.
    • This one is the kicker. Bottom line, we can fight through our sensory fatigue and talk our brain into doing what it has to do. I refer back to training. Just write. It doesn’t have to be good. We have to get words on the page.

I’m not even going to bring up nutrition. It’s all I can do to put actual clothes on in the morning, let alone think about giving up my comfort food. Baby steps!

January 3rd, the Yule tree returns to the basement. My brain acknowledges that the holiday season is over. And I’ll reassess my writing schedule. That’s enough. It’s been a long haul and shows no real sign of ending any time soon. It’s a marathon. Pace yourself and have patience for the effort.

And stop reading all of the self-help, new year new you articles. We don’t need the pressure!

Surviving 2020

It’s A Mental Health Crisis

Realistic 2021 Expectations

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