Life After Christmas

Life after Christmas!

I don’t know about y’all, but I love Christmas — and I hate cleaning up after the holidays. Really hate it! Still, there’s something about getting everything put away, straightened up, and cleaned that speaks to a healthy start to the new year.

I’ve done the same with my goals and plan for 2018. Thanks to the fabulous Maggie Worth, I created a fresh plan for the year with goals that truly speak to me and support the life I want to live.

How about you? What’s your most important goal for the new year, or are you just winging it? (You pantser, you!)

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Another Year, A New Year

About eighteen months ago, I was in one of my favorite places ever, a small town in Michigan where I take my kids to visit with their uncle and his family every other summer. It was the year my health had finally started going haywire enough that I was able to find a couple of solutions (and even more questions). It was a time when I was heading into self-publishing and taking control of my career, and also the time when my ability to write was beginning to break down.

Hump Day Healthy Writer: Journaling

The past couple of weeks have been stressful, and the next couple of weeks promise to be more so. See, I'm releasing a book this Friday. I'm also having surgery. Yes, the same day. It was either that or ruin Christmas with my kids, and I would rather miss a release day. I've been scrambling to get everything finished ahead of time, get my ducks in a row, deal with the anxiety of going under the knife, finish my next book's rough draft that is a month overdue

Hump Day Healthy Writer

I have a secret: for the past year I've worried that I'd lost my mojo. Sometimes I wondered if I wanted to write at all. Every day at the page seemed to be a battle, and I knew deep down it would be easier to give up the fight and just go back to being someone's employee instead of the boss. The responsible one. The creative one. So why didn't I? Because I couldn't.

No Sick Days

ella sheridan, romance, romance author, erotic romance, sick days, writingThere are no sick days in writing. Okay, for some people there are, but unfortunately I’m not one of them. Between the kids and the editing gig and just plain normal maintenance -- hey, this body didn’t get this way by itself. Actually, it did, but I’m trying to work on that! ;) -- I have to write when I have time, not when I feel like it. And that means writing when I’m sick. Depressed. Just don’t want to.

Suck it up, buttercup. You still have to write.

This week I’m on a deadline. My wonderful editor has sent me revisions that will make Just a Little More a “more better” story. And that means I need to actually follow through on them (imagine that!). I spent this past week struggling through therapy for a bulging disc in my neck, and this weekend both my son and I got hit with a nasty virus (him more than me). All I wanted was to curl up in the bed, cover my head, and sleep the bad feelings away…but I can’t. I have to write. The week ahead is already full of work, and the revisions have to be squeezed in around that. The whip must be cracked and the laptop must be opened. There’s no time to waste on a sick day.

My birthday is coming up in about six weeks. Think I could wish for a sick day when I blow out the candles? ;)

How ’bout you, do you get sick days? Wish you did? Save them for when you aren’t really sick? (Wish I had that option!)

~ Ella

Photo courtesy of mcfarlandmo.

The Yin Yang That Is My Life

ella sheridan, author, writer, romance, erotic romance, life, yin yang, balanceThis week, I go back to the doctor for what seems like the umpteenth time. I'm there every three months for a checkup, and it's something I hate to do. Being a perfectionist, I struggle with the constant feeling that, for my doctor, I can never be good enough -- and I can't. At any given time I find I can only work to improve one thing, and something else inevitably gets left behind. If I'm working hard to stick to my diet, I end up not working out enough. If I'm working out five days a week, I'm not watching what I eat carefully enough (usually because I'm starving after all those workouts!). If I'm working hard on a writing project or a new writing skill, both workouts and diet go by the wayside. Needless to say, my doc is never completely happy with any of it.

That's not to say I am completely happy with it. If I was, I wouldn't dread going to see him so much. But this year my goal has been to accept imperfection, to realize that no one is perfect -- especially me -- and to be okay with the process instead of some nebulous end result. The yin yang symbol is my daily reminder that no light is completely devoid of darkness, and yet no darkness is completely devoid of light. It's okay not to be perfect as long as I'm striving to improve, and on my darkest days, I am never a complete failure either, no matter how much I might feel like I am.

Yin yang is all about balance. Balance by its very nature cannot be attained if I am perfect all of the time -- and all that perfection would probably make me arrogant anyway. :) If I am perfect in one area, another must naturally fall away. It's that whole "you cannot be all things to all people," except applied to myself. I can't do it all, no matter how much I want to. I'm trying to realize that, accept it, and not beat myself up about it like I have for the last 39 perfectionist-driven years. So when I go into my doctor's office this week and he looks at me and asks how I've been doing, I'll say I've been doing okay and mean it. I'm not required to be anything else. I don't have to be fantastic. I can just be okay -- a work in progress, as we say in the writing world. That work leads to some really great stories, and I look forward to the process. :)

Great minds think alike! Head on over to my sister Dani Wade's blog and see what she has to say about being a WIP today!

*Above picture courtesy of DonkeyHotey on Flickr.