Outlets

It’s been a rough month, folks. There’s no way I’m going to deny that fact. Some of you that I talk to on a regular basis have probably noticed at least something. Those of you that I get to talk to daily have probably seen it more pronounced. I get negative incredibly easily, I get down on myself, I don’t stay with conversations, I flake a bit, then I say I feel worse because I do.

It’s a vicious cycle that goes all the way down. I end up feeling terrible, and being an ass to people who don’t deserve it. To those of you that I did that to, I’m sorry. You didn’t deserve it, and I had no reason to do that. I don’t want to do that anymore, and I’m trying some new tactics to keep myself from doing so.

The biggest (and most obvious) one is having an outlet. I didn’t realize till now how much I really needed my writing. It’s added a lot of balance for me. I’ve had tough days, but I was able to mitigate and expel some of the excess and/or negative energy that I had in me. If I don’t write, that builds up, and then it starts that spiral downwards. This even happens on a good day, as my brain seems to go to negative options instantly. Being able to pour that into stories and other types of writing have been helping a lot, and it honestly makes me feel better when I do finally do it. I don’t even write that much about what is going on. Actually, I’ve written exactly one single page-long thing about what’s bothering me. Otherwise, I’ve been pouring into my novella and pre-planning for NaNoWriMo. I don’t necessarily have to speak directly to my problems to be able to divert energy and focus from obsessing about the problem(s).

This month, I didn’t really write all that much. I wrote only half the days of this month. The month before I missed two. The month before that I missed a bit over half a week. Looking back, I realized I felt my best then, and this month I’ve just felt atrocious most days, especially when I get home in the evening. This really makes me feel like there’s a bit of a correlation there.

When I realized that, I made a vow to write every day this week. I started on Saturday and I haven’t missed a day yet. The result of this is that I already feel great. Things aren’t the best, I was hoping a situation would pull through and it didn’t. Work is more stressful now than it has been since the day I started. But I’m handling it better, much better than I did the three weeks before, and I’m hoping that this just continues to hold though. It seems like having my writing outlet is working, and it’s truly become something crucial to me. It’s work, but it helps. I feel genuinely positive after I finish writing something, and it gives me some extra energy to think more clearly about the situations around me, both good and bad.

This doesn’t mean that my friends are unimportant or unhelpful in this situation. I had a bit of a breakdown about my novella and character portrayals as recently as last week. One of my friends helped me realize that I was looking for something that I could find wrong in what I was doing, and what I was worrying about wasn’t something that was an issue with this story necessarily. I’m actually going to address this in my next story by writing the kind of character I was worried I wasn’t writing. They’re going to be the lead, and they’re going to be fantastic. But still, this even proves that my outlet isn’t foolproof, and that I can even find a way to usurp that.

Which is why I opened this up with an apology. I may have that outlet, and it may be helpful, but it’s not useful without having those important people, my friends around me. I don’t treat you as well as you deserve, and I absolutely don’t deserve to have friends like you. Thanks for sticking by my side, I really need it. I know that’s selfish to say, but it’s true. Hopefully I can come even slightly close to deserving the friendship we have.

Thanks,
Josh

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