Achievement Unlocked: Downtime

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It’s always an awesome feeling when you meet your goals, regardless of how major or minor they might have been. You work non-stop, driving to reach your deadline whether they’re self made or otherwise.  Once met, where do you go from there? If you’re like me, there are a ton of other projects to pick up; stories to finish, edits to get to, promos to prepare.

So should you just jump right into something? I’m going to possibly surprise you and say no.

You may have a million ideas brewing but I think there’s a lot to be said for stopping down for a bit to recharge your creative juices. Catch up on your reading (a very important hobby for authors to keep up in my opinion), clear out the DVR before it’s too full to record anymore. Take a walk and get inspired by nature and people. It’s also a good time to get together with friends. Remember how you blew them off while you were busy writing?

“Sorry I had to miss your baby’s christening. I was right in the middle of the epic battle scene in my book!”

“Oh…did I miss your milestone birthday? I was under deadline. Sorry.”

“Uncle Earl won’t care if I miss his funeral to finish my book, right?”

Mend any bridges you might have started smoldering while you were locked away in hermit-mode working on your masterpiece. Spend time with family and friends and they’ll understand when you’re busy next time that their time will come once you’ve finished your project.

You don’t have to spend a long time in downtime, a couple of days could suffice if you’re scared you’re not going to be able to get back into the swing of things. Deadlines are stressful and you deserve to reward yourself before pushing towards the next one.  Remember all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, or some junk.  Celebrate your success by recharging yourself.  Not only will friends and family thank you, but your body will enjoy the tension stress-free time as well.

Do you take time off between projects? What works best to relax you after a stressful deadline is met?

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