Let’s get right down to it: I have a lot going on this year. With five novels releasing, and all the associated marketing and appearances that I have scheduled (who knew that most of the work happens AFTER you finish the book?) I have my work cut out for me. So, what can I do to give myself an edge, and make sure all of this gets done?
Simple: focus on wellness.
Like many others, when my scheduled gets packed the first thing I cut is self-care, and that is quite possibly the worst tactic for a creative individual. Not only do we creatives need to focus on wellness so we can continue creating, if I ignore my health and get sick or exhausted, I’ll start missing publishing deadlines and other commitments. Therefore, keeping my health in tip-top shape is my number one priority.
Over the past months, I’ve made a few small changes that have improved my overall health. Now, I’m not a doctor or a nutritionist, so please don’t take any of this as professional advice. But I did do a crap ton of research, and what I’ve listed below has helped me. If you think you also may benefit, I recommend talking to a trusted health professional, and researching the holy heck out of these topics.
- I increased the probiotics in my diet – This is something that I came across during my wellness research. The link between gut health and mental and physical well being is profound, and one of the best ways to maintain that health is probiotics. I started with daily servings of kombucha (a fermented tea); now I brew my own kombucha, and I eat other fermented foods, such as kim chi and Greek yogurt, on a daily basis. The effect on my mental state has been amazing.
- I became religious about rest – Not just sleep, but rest in general. In the past, I would plug away at my day job for nine or ten hours, shut of my work computer, and immediately fire up my laptop and work on my next release. Since I work at home, I didn’t even have a commute separating my work times; I literally worked for twelve to sixteen hours every day, with minimal breaks. Now I get up at least once an hour and do something besides work, even if it’s just to walk to a different room and look out the window. I also take a few hours for myself after my day job ends. After doing this for a few weeks, I realized that I was getting more quality work done in less time.
- I started eating vegetables for breakfast – Gotta eat your veggies, right? As much as I love vegetables, I could never manage more than two or three servings per day…until I started having kale and eggs for breakfast. Lately, my weekday has been sauteed kale, tomatoes, and onions, and scrambled eggs for breakfast; a grapefruit as my mid-morning snack; and quinoa and whatever leftover vegetables I have on hand for lunch. (Dinner is pretty much dictated by my kids, and that’s just fine.) How’s that for a healthy menu?
- I ended a toxic friendship – And let me tell you, I never saw that one coming. This individual and I had been friends for a few years, and after a series of events I realized just how one-sided our friendship was. For instance, we each subscribed to a paid newsletter, and would share each issue with one another. We did that to save money; writers are poor, you know. Well, the one I subscribed to was $60/year, whereas the one she paid for was $15/year–and the rest of our friendship was similarly uneven, and emotionally draining. Closing the door on that friendship was tough, but I just couldn’t keep doing that to myself. That individual and I had very different ideas of what friendship is, and I do wish her well.
And there you have it, four simple steps to wellness! I began these changes two months ago, and I have to say I feel better than I have in years. As these changes become habits, I’ll be adding even more “wellness hacks” to my routine.
Do you have any wellness habits? Tell us in the comments!
Rise of the Deva’shi (Parthalan #3) will release February 28! Preorder here: http://amzn.to/2ku5kO4
A stolen girl. A legendary champion. A plan that might destroy Parthalan once and for all…
Aeolmar, First Hunter of Parthalan, leads a solitary life. Having long since abandoned his quest to kill Mersgoth—the demon that murdered his family—Aeolmar moves through his days with cold efficiency. Everything changes when he leads a training mission in Brennus, where he’s attacked by Mersgoth himself, and saved by an unlikely heroine.
Latera, first born and heir to Gannera’s throne, is kidnapped and left for dead in Parthalan’s vast forests. A lone human amongst Parthalan’s fae, she makes a home in Brennus, and lives a quiet life—until she finds herself defending a wounded First Hunter from a clutch of demons.
Back in Parthalan, Harek warns Asherah of something called the deva’shi—a warrior loyal only to the demon lord, Asgeloth. Both Aeolmar and Latera suspect that there is more to this deva’shi than what Harek has told them, but before they can learn the truth, Parthalan’s borders are attacked. Will Aeolmar and Latera be able to stop the deva’shi in time, or is it a distraction to hide Harek’s true plans?
RISE OF THE DEVA’SHI – book three of the Chronicles of Parthalan