Friday, June 21, 2019

Dear Writer, Be Healthy

You're a writer. You make time to write even if your life is busy. It's what you do. I applaud you for that. And now it's confession time.

I don't write every day. I don't even read every day.

I'd like to write and read every day. But I don't. Not anymore. These days, I try to give myself a little more balance. I try to keep my personal priorities straight. (God knows with seven active school-age children I'm lucky to not forget who goes where when. I mean, there's dance, baseball, tennis, horseback-riding, Jiu Jitsu, etc...)

Writing and reading are fit into my busy and ever-changing schedule as necessary. Yeah, I'm a slow writer, and tend to knock off chunks of projects at a time when I can. But not at the cost of family time or my own personal health anymore.

I learned that the hard way. Ever since a depression diagnosis a few years ago, I've struggled at times with the things I love.

I've learned, and I hope you will too, that taking care of yourself is the only way you can continue to do the things you love. The only way you can be your best self. The only way you can give yourself a chance to write - or do anything you enjoy.

When my depression took hold, it wrecked my ability to do the things I'd enjoyed. And it took the joy from all the things I did.

Lucky for me, my wife is a physician. She recognized that I was in trouble and she helped me get the care I needed.

Give yourself permission to take a break now and then. Maybe even move your bar a little if you're feeling overwhelmed with the demands you put on yourself. Step back. Be still. Shut out the noise. Then try to listen to yourself. And by all means, reach out for help or guidance if you are uneasy and think you might be in an unhealthy situation.

There is no limit to the number of barriers, obstacles, and distractions that can keep us from writing - or living the life we should live. That will probably always be true. But please, bear in mind what's at stake when your life feels out of balance. Find yourself again. Be you. Be the best you that you can be.

Also, I love you. I hope you write the best book you can write and that I get to read it someday. And I hope you will take care of yourself so that can happen. I'm rooting for you.

Take care,


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