Monday, February 7, 2011

Self-discipline and Extenuating Circumstances

Disclaimer: I am loopy on cold medication right now. If this post is incoherent or confusing, please accept my sincere apology. I'm going to try to keep this one short.

Word count since I last posted: approx. 55, on the collaborative Aussie flood-relief project.

Yeah, I know. It's awful.

The intersection of self-discipline and (seemingly/sometimes) extenuating circumstances is something that I come across fairly frequently when it comes to writing.

Example: I have had a cold since I last posted on Friday. My boyfriend, with whom I've been in a long-distance relationship for quite a while, came up to visit. The cold got worse, and has shown no signs of abating so far. I have enough trouble concentrating when things are normal; adding factors like this to the mix have basically guaranteed my inability to get any writing done.

What I'm asking myself right now, though, is this: if one is aiming to drastically improve one's self-discipline, where does one draw the line when it comes to reasons (not excuses) for not getting things (specifically writing, in this case) done? Is it okay not to write if you're sick, or should you just power through? Is it okay not to write if you want to spend time with your significant other?

You know, now I'm not even sure why I'm asking this. The answer seems painfully obvious. Clearly, my sinuses were working to obfuscate my reasoning powers. Of course it's okay. There are no black-and-white cut-and-dried rules for this kind of thing. I don't think it's counterproductive to the goal of building self-discipline to say, No, not today. Now is not the time for this. I'm choosing to use this time for resting/recovery/relationship/whatever. It's the conscious delegation of the time for the purpose that's important.

Now, I'm going to go watch a movie and work on my knitting. And on getting better. This cold is pretty ridiculous. And if I feel up to it - and only then - I'll work on writing.

Hmm. I may not be totally resolved on this issue, actually. I'll have to come back to it another time.

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