There are multiple purposes for this blog. First, I'd like to share with you how mental illness can interfere with or enhance the writer's life. Second, I want to explore a more disciplined approach to the writing life. This blog will hold me accountable as I navigate story throughout my battle with mental illness.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

A Brave New Plan

Just the third week into the new year, and I've decided to tweak my goal of reading one book a week for the remainder of the year.

For just over a month I was out of commission due to a series of upper respiratory infections and sinus infections with a tooth abscess on top. I began reading my first book, WWW.WATCH by Robert Sawyer shortly after Jan 1st, but it was a slow process. When you are down, it's difficult to complete things you know you need to. I rebelled, kicked and screamed all the way until early Monday morning Jan 20th when I finally completed it. It's not that I didn't enjoy the book (I did for the most part). It took 2 rounds of antibiotics only to determine the little buggers were resistant to it. That was 20 days being ill and no relief. It wasn't until I began a 3 day regime of Zithromax that the infection began to slow and I started feeling better. OCD and ADD hardly ever help the situation.

However, I did indeed finish the book in 2 weeks. Last year I picked it up and read the first 40 pages at least on 4 or 5 occasions. Even this late achieved goal led me to completion. So, goal setting really does work. Now for the tweaks I was talking about.

I intend to read (or listen to) at least 4 books in any given calendar month. This leaves me some leeway should I fall ill or some other series of unfortunate events occur. The lesser restrictions benefit the ADD part of me. I realize I made the initial goal of 1 book a week to combat the ADD. Oh well. Come on, throw me a bone. I'm still reading more material than I have in a long time.

The efficiency is much better overall. For example, should I finish a book 2 days before the "week" was over, I'd be uncertain about beginning another for fear that I could not complete it within the 2 days allotted. This caused more anxiety than what remaining time on the schedule was worth. With the new method I can begin that book anyway.

Have any of you tweaked a resolution or goal to suit your needs at the time? I'd like to hear from you.

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