I'd put money down that this headline probably sounds like clickbait to you. I mean, who really wants their laptop to break and pay almost $500 to get it fixed? Certainly not me, at first. But in my days without the option to jump on and get work done, I was forced to rest.
As a writer, all my work is online. I work from home in the comfort of my bed and type away at the keys until something comes up that makes sense. The only time I put pen to paper is when I'm writing solely to get overwhelming thoughts and opinions off my chest that I don't feel like sharing with other people.
There's no greater comfort than sharing your words without any form of judgment and what I've learned is that only paper can do that for me. But within those five days, all I had was my notebook, and that time forced me to stop. It forced me to reflect on my life. It forced me to be still.
I've never been a person who likes to rest. Whenever I have any moment of downtime, I still like to be intentional with how I spend it, whether that means sharing quality time with the people I care about, reading a book I've been meaning to dive into, or practicing self-care in the form of pampering. I never have much time to relax so when I do, I prefer it to be spent wisely.
Also within that downtime, I find that I spend a great deal of those hours on my laptop, reading and clicking from one article to another, and more often than not, working in some way on Odyssey. I've never seen this work to be as a burden. In fact, it offers me a great deal of accomplishment and satisfaction. If I go into a session and have a to-do list ready, once I've completed the tasks and have marked them off, I feel better with continuing on with my day. What's more gratifying than seeing instant reward?
Well, a relaxed mind might be better. Although it's crucial to continue working on goals, dreams, and mundane obligations, it's equally as important to give your mind a break. Because although I feel wonderful after completing a list of things I've been meaning to do, it doesn't feel wonderful when all I feel is stress and anxiety as I work through it.
A packed schedule can be rewarding, but it can be equally as exhausting. If I have any advice for you it's that you need to listen to your body and listen to your mind. If you feel your mental health spiraling, create adjustments to your schedule to make sure you take care of yourself first. Don't wait until you're crying every day and feel relief when your laptop breaks like I did. No job, person, or task is more important than your health - ever.
Don't be afraid to have a staycation for a day or two and do only the things that make you feel alive. Paint, write, draw, play games, read... do whatever you need to do to feel human. We are not robots. We don't need to have our laptops tied to our hands in order to feel productive. Sometimes, staying home and watching a movie is as prolific as going to work for a couple hours. That may sound insane, but when you focus on your mental health as much as you focus on your tasks, I promise your life will get astonishingly easier.
I'm learning that, too.