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Mental Health Track 016

Hurray, we have all successfully made it to the weekend – well done everyone. I don’t have much to report really: I feel fine. Not “fine” because I don’t want to think or talk about it, but a pleasant quiet fineness. I set my alarm on a Saturday for a reasonable 9.30am because although I love not waking up for hours and hours and hours, I don’t want anything to get in the way of falling asleep later on. It didn’t even hurt! Then again, I did get myself to bed not that long after midnight, so the ratio of awake:sleep is more or less maintained. I’ve just done my morning workout, making the radical step of moving my weights downstairs instead of hiding upstairs in the library with them. It’s getting too warm up there first thing in the morning, that lovely near-flat black roof and walls absorbing the early sun’s rays. I definitely won’t be able to manage that in summer without dying of heat stroke, so better to make the move now and live with it. This probably does fit a better fractionally modified routine since I have to come downstairs anyway to get water and let the demons out (if they’ve had their GPS trackers on charge anyway. Mostly – Pixie will let herself out, because she’s smart and has realised the cat flap automatically opens at 7 or so, whereas Geiger despises pushing his face into the door and so will wait/shout until someone lets him out of a window), so I may as well exercise in a room where I’m not bound in by glass doors on every side and a low ceiling which I threaten daily. I could even get coffee for writing time…

Clearly these are radical ideas. I am attempting to keep things simple and in check. I’m still a little nervous about ditching the drugs, but it has been a good first working week with only a couple of grey days where sleep did not work out. As yet, I’ve experienced no spikes in anxiety. I feel pretty calm and collected. It’s also been a quiet week for activity, which probably helps. A nice steady work week with the usual range of interesting things to accomplish, each day fairly chaotic rather than planned down to the hour. This is my preference; I don’t like having such a strict work routine that I lack variety in any given day. The goal is to get it all done, and sometimes that requires laser-focus on the same thing for eight hours, but more often I can skip and dance between projects, enjoying the break from each to prepare for returning to them. It probably helps that few of my tasks are radically different, but they all require different kinds of attention and focus: layout out book interiors, creating art briefs for book covers, designing some adverts or merchandise, contracting, reviewing and approving art, then fitting art into cover layouts, formatting ebooks, endless tinkering with a billion graphics files, and recently doing lots of lovely texture work for upcoming non-fiction books. There’s plenty more stuff that I actually do on a daily basis, but it all fits around those core graphics-focused tasks. I like it, it seems to suit me. A quiet week for evenings out too. Aliens at the cinema on Wednesday, and improv on Thursday with its later bedtime, which I still need to figure out how to deal with.

I’m keenly aware that disruptive weekends and evenings of doing fun things are looming up very soon. I must continue to remind myself that they are fun things, and while they will break some patterns, they are events I will enjoy and will enrich my life. It’s so easy to just dread them as commitments instead of activities I really want to do. I suppose a seek a quiet stillness, because it makes me feel calm inside, but all the seeing people and doing stuff is what makes that stillness all the better to return to.

Mental Health Track

A purposeful daily attempt to track how I feel and what I’m doing.

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