Where, oh where, is the balance?

In her most recent post, “Mediocre“, Hannah Rainey (don’t get me started on how wonderful she is) writes of her “issue with balancing everything I want to get done.” She describes the routine within which she tries to satisfy her creativity:

I work until five each day, come home, have something to eat and from then on it’s basically get as much written as I can before forcing myself to sleep and starting the whole process again.

“Not being able to do everything at once”, she adds, “causes complete frustration because this is my passion…”

This I would describe as frustrated creativity, and is something I can completely relate to. Personally – following on from something (perhaps) approaching emotional trauma, which had a transformative effect on my habits and relationship with things I once held so dear – I have fought an internal battle to rediscover my once insatiably burning desire to be creative.

It is, for the moment, back. However, I am struggling to reconcile the flame with real-time, in a way that is conducive to my mental well-being; recall Hannah‘s “forcing myself to sleep and starting the whole process again” …

Getting enough sleep is something that I worked out to be vital for my mental health and is therefore a priority

she writes. And I couldn’t agree more. My relationship with sleep has always been odd: unpredictable and scant, at best. More recently, I have let myself “sleep in” – as I believe advocates call it – on weekends – which has resulted in later and later awakenings.

Fine. Okay. I obviously needed it. Probably.

But for me, as soon as I have slept past 8:30am, then I feel as if I am eating into my day; and every further minute between myself and the clock becomes a further mile between productivity and myself.

Obviously, depending on how late I actually sleep in, this is far from accurate. But it seems to be a state of mind, and one which I find inexplicably difficult to break.

The result of all this is frustrated creativity.

I take sleep a lot more seriously than I used to – indeed, I feel now that I have no choice but to do so, for I am (consistently) a heck of a lot more tired than I used to be. Nevertheless, tomorrow morning – Saturday 7th January – I shall get up around 6am, and begin my day.

Sleep is undoubtedly vital for mental well-being – but so, on a personal level, is the fulfillment of creative desires. I ask again:

Where, oh where, is the balance?

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