Excuses

People (meaning myself at the very least) have all kinds of excuses not to write (and exercise can be substituted for write, too).

One of the biggest-“I don’t have time.” I think Rob’s heard this one more than any other.  But it’s really not even that valid because my daily routine is quite, well, routine.

I wake up at 7:30 to get ready for work-get dressed, check websites and email, brush my teeth, make coffee, eat cereal, drive to work.  I work from 8:30 to 4:30, with an hour for lunch.  Aside from lunch, I have no downtime. When I’m in the office, there’s no reason for me to not be working. Even when there’s no power for a couple hours, like happened Friday morning, I can still do my job without interruption. I do try to use part of my lunchtime to write-half hour to eat and read, and a half hour to write.  Sometimes it works; sometimes it doesn’t.  After work, I exercise and then have about a half hour-ish until dinner-usually around 6:30.  Then there’s dishes, shower, and tv until 11.  And sleep.  Rinse, repeat every weekday.

One of the suggestions floating around to make use of time is to wake up earlier to get writing in before work. I flat out refuse to do that for writing or exercise. I’m naturally a night person and have a hard time falling asleep-anywhere from 30 minutes to 4 hours, so I take every minute I can in the morning. Including going back to sleep for 3 minutes between Skittles wanting to come in/go out and my alarm going off. Plus I’m a horrible morning person, and I’m rarely awake enough to even think about writing that early.

So right now, my writing times are about a half hour at lunch and about a half hour before dinner. I can manage around 250 to 500 words in that amount of time, more if I know where I’m going. But if I’ve no clue, I’m lucky if I get a sentence.  More often than not, I have a case of “Oh! Shiny!” And time disappears.

What I end up doing after my shower is clicking around websites, checking Twitter, and watching TV.  What I should be doing is writing.  Especially because, if my mind’s in the right mode, I use shower time to hash out stuff and start mentally writing scenes. I really should get one of those diver slate thingies for the shower.

So the “No time” excuse?  Really doesn’t work.  I’ve made the time to exercise. I have plenty of times I could write. I just have to actually do it.

And I hate it being an excuse, but the reason I don’t write in that time I can’t sleep is that Rob has to be up at 5:15 to go to work. If I stay awake in the bedroom, I’m too loud, and the light bothers him. If I stay in my writing room, I’m too loud and wake him when I open or shut the bedroom door. Really not much that can be done about that.

The other excuse I tend to use-“I have _____ to do”-is trickier.  Usually, it is something that has to be done-exercise, cleaning, dishes, dinner, sleep, etc. Sometimes, it’s more something I feel needs to be done-scanning my photos/negatives, updating my website, and so forth. The reason this gets tricky is because, ideally, these are things I could delegate. In the past, I have. Several times. What happens next is that something gets done, but badly, so I spend time fixing it. Or, nothing gets done, and I spend time doing it. And lately it’s nothing gets done because I don’t have the patience.

In other words, it’s a case of “If you want something done right, do it yourself.” This feeds my unwillingness to ask for help, because when I have asked, I get promises and good intentions. So, until I get actions instead of words, I don’t bother asking for help anymore.

At least, not with the website.  Other stuff, sure. In fact, I want to move a white board to hang beside the bed so that I’ll see my goals before I go to sleep and when I wake up. I hope that’ll be motivation to move past the excuses.

About Rachel

I'm a writer in progress, and in my day job I copyedit/solve puzzles.
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One Response to Excuses

  1. Pingback: Finding my process | Stella Mortis

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