For some reason, Mondays always seem to catch me off guard. They come every week, but I just never seem to be ready for them.
Take this week. I had a great weekend—I had a date night with Pookie on Friday, hung out with Kaye and Sparky on Saturday, rehearsal on Sunday, followed by a visit with my brother (who is in the Army and doesn’t get home too often).
Somehow, I even managed to get grocery shopping and cleaning done along with a few other shopping trips. I even cooked dinner last night. All in all, I went to bed last night knowing I had a productive yet relaxing weekend—a great balance of fun and function.
Except I didn’t do any writing. I didn’t do anything to help me to jump into writing this morning. I spent two, almost three days where I pretty much forgot I was a writer. Heck, I didn’t even visit Twitter for more than five minutes.
I had lofty ambitions for the weekend. I was going to brainstorm ideas for both blogs (here and at my own website). I was going to write today’s post as well as tomorrow’s and have a topic in mind for every day for the next month. I was also going to have a bunch of other topics that would fit anywhere. I was going to do this so that I could write the rest of this week’s posts today, as well as some of those random posts that could just fill in when needed—if I am sick or get distracted and don’t get to my post. That way, I would always have a back-up plan.
Guess how many ideas I had when I woke up this morning? None. How many posts were written? Again, none.
I have weekend issues. Major weekend issues. I still have the mindset of a 9-5 Monday-Friday worker. Somehow, no matter how many goals I have, at 4:30 on Friday, my brain shuts off.
Now, part of it is my work area. As I have said before, my “office” is in the middle of the dining room, which is squished between the open-concept living room and kitchen. In other words, I am always in the middle of whatever is going on.
Part of it is also Pookie. He works a lot of hours during the week, but takes most weekend completely off. Call me crazy, but I love to spend time with my husband. When he has that time off, I want to spend it with him, even if he is washing the car in forty degree temperatures with a wind-chill of negative two.
Still, I know myself. I know I do this every weekend. Yet every weekend, I find myself with a list of goals a mile long. Goals that need to be reached for me to achieve my Monday goals. (Have I mentioned I am great at setting goals?) And every Monday, I find myself with none of these goals done.
I know I shouldn’t complain—I am lucky enough to be able to write during the week, when I have no distractions (other than Twitter, Facebook, and other blogs, of course). But here is my issue—I read over and over that, in order to be an effective writer, you need to write EVERY DAY. No matter what.
So, while I could absolutely arrange my schedule that I write Monday-Friday and take the weekends off, I never do, because that advice echoes in my head all day on Friday, almost taunting me. Eventually, I give in, swearing that this weekend I really will get some writing done.
As I wrap up my week, I always set day-by day goals for the following week. And I always end up including in the weekend. It is like I feel that I will somehow be a failure if I plan to take those two days off. (I’m not even going to get into how much of a failure I feel like on Monday morning when Outlook has all those tasks highlighted in red, just in case I didn’t realize I hadn’t gotten them done.)
Even on the few weekends I have managed to get some writing done, it has been terrible. I ended up re-writing it Monday morning. That certainly wasn’t any help.
Is it ok to give in and make a writing schedule that works for me, even if it means taking days off? Or, is it better to keep pushing myself to try to write every day, with the logic that it will eventually fit into my schedule, become a part of my routine? Are there any consistently quoted writing rules that you don’t stick to? Which one(s)? Do you feel as guilty as I do? How do you get past that?