We've all had that experience.
The day is cruising along. One stress leads to two things to think about. Two things think about leads to four urgent emails in your in-box. Four urgent emails lead to eight texts. Sixteen phone messages later and it seems like email is breeding in your inbox.
You feel like you're drowning in a sea of paper and stress.
Writers get overwhelmed too.
For me, it's usually the clash of needing to do many things at once.
Finish a story.
Write a newsletter.
Don't forget to approve that project over there.
Visit this website.
Forget to contact the editor and he's working on something else.
... and suddenly your computer is hacked, your websites go down, and everything is a little crazy.
It doesn't sound like much. But the pressure builds like this:
It's exercise for your health so you can write for a longer time. Write because you love that story. Get your newsletter done because it's how you actually connect with writers. Approve a project so you can get paid and keep the lights on. Visit the website so you can fill in the blanks. Keep the editor engaged before you lose him to other projects.
That's not to mention the fact that you have to get your story done before the appointments and people in your life intervene.
Some moments, all I can do is drown.
My best strategy at these moments is to take a nap.
I know it's counterintuitive. My heart is racing, I'm in fully launch mode trying to survive the wave of pressure and paper. I want to fight. I want to rise to the challenge.
But what I truly need is a break.
I use the pzizz system, which is free right now for some undefined length of time. A favorite of the polyphasic sleep folks, the best thing about the pzizz nap is that it's 20 minutes.
Everyone has 20 minutes to disconnect. (If you work with other people, try the car.)
Lie back, turn on the tape, and 20 minutes later, you'll feel a heck of a lot better.
When you get up, you have another morning. You have an hour or so to start fresh.
Try it - and let me know how you do.
This month, I will attempt to share thirty thoughts about writing - one a day for thirty days.