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The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines doldrums as “a spell of listlessness or despondency.” Life experience has taught me the things which helped me cope when I was feeling down and out of sorts. Here are some of the things I’ve learned to help me ward off the blues.

  • REST YOUR MIND. For some like myself, concentrating isn’t always easy. In this fast-paced world, it’s easy to multitask our lives away. While we know efficiency is a great trait, being still for a time has value. Concentrate and complete tasks one at a time. I sometimes find myself all at once:  checking social media while updating my budget spreadsheet and checking email with a music playlist sounding in my ear. Taking a break short break can jumpstart our minds back into focus. I used to work with numbers and spreadsheets for many hours during the workday. I found getting up and walking around the office for as little as a few minutes helped me refocus my concentration.
  • GET ENOUGH SLEEP. I can’t speak to the adequate number of sleep hours required for anyone except myself – those recommendations are better left to the experts. I need at least seven hours or more of sleep per day to feel rested. When I wake up feeling refreshed, my entire day usually goes well. I’ve discussed sleep patterns with friends and family over the years. Some people in my life claim to get no more than four hours of sleep and feel great.  Others claim at least eight hours of sleep makes them feel rested. I remember seeing an interview on television years ago with a nonagenarian. The woman claimed the key to her long life was getting plenty of sleep and walking daily. I’ve seen people I’ll just call “moody” who weren’t the most pleasant people when they lacked hours of sleep. I know from experience about how things like overall health, medications, and caffeine can interfere with a restful sleep session. One thing most of us might agree on is how sleep is necessary for our mind to function properly.
  • MAKE YOUR OWN FUN.  I pride myself on what I call ‘making myself happy.’ I think of things I enjoy and take some action. Everything we enjoy can’t always be done at a moment’s notice. However, simple things like taking a walk, reading a book we enjoy, or participating in physical activities can do wonders to uplift our spirits. Do what you love. Music listening and dancing in my home are my go-to activities for feeling better. I listen to music daily and often!
  • ENERGIZE. I can remember learning the fact food is fuel for our bodies in science class as a child. The nutrients in certain foods provide boosts of energy throughout the day. Eat recommended foods high in nutrients (you can Google them). Certain food increase energy, and, in turn allow us to do activities we enjoy.
  • MOVE YOUR BODY. Whatever works for you! If you jog, run long-distance, or walk you know the benefits these activities provide toward feeling better.  For those of us with physical limitations, modifications to popular exercises work the same way. Dancing in my home, most times alone, is one of my favorite things to do. The body’s release of endorphins is said to be responsible for those good feelings we get when we move our bodies.  
  • PRACTICE RELIGION OR SPIRITUALITY. Whatever your belief system, connections to a greater power or with our inner selves can go a long way toward boosting one’s spirit.  
  • SEEK HELP. If you’re sad more than normal and find your daily life is affected, seek professional help. We know ourselves better than anyone else. Today’s plugged-in society comes with the benefits of websites, text lines, support groups, and toll-free numbers to seek help. Here are a few links that may help.

This is strictly an opinion piece and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice or treatment.

Thanks for visiting.

Blogs, Creative Writing, Uncategorized

A Very Brief Rant on National Cake Day

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The holiday season in the United States is here.  Mass media ads for Pre-Black Friday deals have hit the airways, television, and online. It’s not even Thanksgiving yet! Enough about the inevitable because I want to take issue with National Cake Day this 26th day of November 2019.  

Who decided to name a National Day where cake and all its variations are celebrated two days before the day, we Americans traditionally overindulge? Dessert cakes, coffee cakes, cake donuts, cupcakes, cookie cakes, and cheesecakes are being discounted at vendors throughout the country. I personally have no fears about my food intake on Thanksgiving Day. I enjoy the day with my family eating delicious food to my heart’s content with no shame. It’s only one day. With that said, I realize this time of year brings with it endless celebrations involving food more than any time of the calendar year. Now starts the time of year I struggle to avoid gaining potential pounds which will be harder to take off in the coming year. The weight loss struggle is real and I only fret for recent health reasons. I love myself and my life enough to attempt healthy eating for most of this festive time – with Thanksgiving being the exception. (health nuts, save your comments – I’m good) 

So National Cake Day, I’ll pass.  

Thanks for reading!

Below is a picture of a Chocolate Chip Bundt cake I usually make for a family member every Spring (a perfect time, in my opinion, for a National Cake Day).


Halfway through NaNoWriMo19

It’s been quite a while since my last blog post. I saw a GIF recently which read: “I’m busy with my free time.” I laughed when I saw it and I can relate. At the halfway mark of National November Writing Month, I’m reflecting on my progress at this point in 2018. Last year I took on multiple projects during the month of November. During NaNoWriMo18, I took on a chapbook poem daily challenge, writing a flash fiction story daily, and working on a novel. It stood to reason something would suffer and it was the novel. The novel is currently completed for content but I’m not ready to let the self-editing process end yet. The novel is near and dear to my heart and I suspect it’s the reason it’s not completed a year later – I can’t let it go. The poetry written last November was published as the first book in my Second Act Writings series in January of 2019. The flash fiction content was published in the Spring of 2019.

In this month of November 2019, I decided to spend half the month concentrating solely on writing a new novel in a new genre. I’ve decided on a Young Adult full-length novel. My experience in writing short stories and flash fiction goes back to my childhood. The NaNoWriMo2019 novel will be my first work over fifty-thousand words. By my calculations, I’m three days ahead of schedule in my word count so I’m feeling good about my progress on the novel.

I decided the other day to make things interesting and push myself yet again. I’ve worked on a novella on an off for the past six months. It’s nearly complete and will be part of a series.  My goal for the second half of November is to devote half my free time daily to the novel and the other half finishing the novella.

I’ll let you know how it turns out. In the meantime, I’d love to hear what other writers participating in #NaNoWriMo are feeling and doing at this half point of November. Please share your thoughts or comments.