I like to think that I’m quite good at giving advice to people. After all, that’s what this blog does a lot of the time. Want to know what I’m super, super bad at? Listening to my own advice.
This week, I’m going to try and do that more. My next novel, Oracle, released for beta yesterday and that represents a lot of months of work. The past few weeks, where I’ve been finishing and preparing for the beta, have been the hardest. There were a lot of things to get ready, a lot of other things going on at the same time, and … well, I’m exhausted.
But I’m going on holiday for a week now. A few weeks ago, my plan was to do what I did over the holidays in December – prepare all my posts both here on the blog and on social media. Make sure you didn’t miss a moment of content. Thinking about it, though, that’s … kinda contrary to everything I’ve been telling you to do.
What does my advice about self-employment involve? Knowing when to take breaks. Knowing it’s okay to. Recognising that the world won’t collapse around you if you drop one ball, so that you can hold onto the ones that would break everything if they fell.
The ball I can’t drop is what comes next. To keep hold of that ball, I need the break. And it wouldn’t be a break if I had completely obliterated myself in the week before, struggling to both release a novel to beta and do two weeks of blog and social media content in one go. So it’s high time I listened to my own advice.
How do you do that?
You can talk yourself up about it. You can plan, write a list of pros and cons for doing things each way. Or? You just jump.
Taking time off is a risk. My view numbers will tank this month, with a whole week of content missing. But it’s not the end of the world. One week away won’t lose me any momentum, especially not directly after something as big as finishing the whole novel – something that, to be honest, I didn’t expect to manage this early in the year.
So to the part of me that is worried I’m doing you an injustice by taking time off, I say this. It would be a far greater injustice if I was too stressed and overwhelmed to take the next steps in this journey. Oracle is written, but it needs a future. It needs me to be well enough to take those next steps.
To use an MMO turn of phrase, you can’t heal if you’re dead. So heal yourself first.
This week, I’m certainly going to try to.
In the meantime, would you like to read my entire new novel? Yes? All you have to do is pledge as little as $1 a month on Patreon and you will get access to the novel right away.