Living “As If”

The Green Study will return to posting on March 8th, 2015.

Thank you to the new readers and commenters who arrived at The Green Study through the Freshly Pressed post Time Travel on Facebook. Sit back, lower your expectations and let’s get to know each other. Or not. I’m not good at small talk. Maybe I should just get back to writing. 

canstockphoto1697101It might have been the two rice and bean burritos that I ate for breakfast. Or the Netflix bender that lasted a couple of hours, watching “The IT Crowd” – a show I’ve been through at least twice already. Maybe it was the fact that I woke up thinking “I’ll never do anything exciting in my life again” or that I wondered if I was dying because everything ached.

Whatever it was, I was ready to throw in the towel yesterday, prepared to sink into a miserable pool of gluttony and self-pity. But I’ve been here before. I know the ending. I’d be filled with recrimination which would fuel several days of deprivation, punishing exercise and a regimented schedule that usually included some pious volunteering, structured writing times and no burritos.

Over thcanstockphoto10115026e weekend, I’d resolved to do some winnowing of my book collection, which was starting to overflow in unstable stacks about the study. I ran across Book in a Month by Victoria Lynn Schmidt. I’d purchased it in 2012 to get some support during National Novel Writing Month. It still had that new book smell. I flopped in my chair and started flipping through it. At the beginning, the author lists secrets to writing a book in a month.

The first secret was to Work “As If”. In summary, when writing, you should take notes of things that need to be changed, but write from that point forward as if those changes had already been done. This keeps you moving forward without getting hung up on the editing. If your character’s name was supposed to be Luigi and you called him Bob, you wrote him as Luigi from that point forward.

I’ll likely implement that idea while working on my book, but it occurred to me that this might be a technique that would work in other areas. What if I went about the rest of my day as if I were productive and energetic? What if I went about my day as if I’d eaten a nutritious breakfast, spent a couple of hours writing, doing yoga,  and getting things done. What if, from that point on, I functioned as if I hadn’t been a sloth?

So, I went to the gym, editing out the doomsayers of feeling good – guilt and self-loathing. I was a tad slothful, but moving. Then I came home, wrote for a couple of hours, cleaned the house, made dinner, did some reading. My deep and erudite thought was “Now THAT is how you pull your day out of the crapper.”

canstockphoto1323495Today I’m going to live as if I’m a writer who needs to get this novel done. That being said, I’m going to do what I often do after a post gets a lot of traffic and I’ve had loads of interaction with humans. I’m taking a break for the next couple of weeks from blogging. It’s an introvert thing. I’ll be back when US Daylight Savings Time screws us out of an hour in the midwest.

Thanks again to the generous readers and commenters. Welcome to the new subscribed readers. It’s lovely to meet you and I look forward to more conversation!

Until I return, I’ve put together a list of posts that I enjoyed writing and that will give you a pretty good idea if you want to keep following along or run away as fast as your fingers will type you:

The Green Study: Have We Met?

Will the Real Blogger Please Step Forward?

Love is Not Smothering…with a Pillow

Snipe Hunting for Writers

Boundaries and the Huggy Sunshine People

From Chicken to Merely Insufferable

She Knows Nothing…But She Should Know Something

Don’t Forget Me When I’m Gone

Being Just Right

Kicking Your Mom

20 Comments on “Living “As If”

  1. You sound well. Get good at being well, and unplug. See you when the light comes back around again. – Bill

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Congratulations on being freshly pressed. Enjoy your time off; and if you really want a burito I think you should have one 🙂

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  3. I’ve tried the “time off”. It just doesn’t seem to work for me. But I love the what if concept. “What if I were…now what do I want to be?” Have a good regeneration period. Deedee.

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    • I’ve taken 2 week breaks from blogging on and off over the last three years and I’ve found them to be useful. Sometimes the reserves need to be replenished and I find that I have more to write about. Also, the introvert thing – need to be in my own brain a bit. Thanks for the good wishes, Deedee.

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  4. I hope the as if thing keeps working – I may have to try that. I can never seem to have too many coping mechanisms for life. My extended blogging breaks have always worked. Enjoy.

    Your time zone comment was funny. We don’t change time so half the time I’m on the same time as my brother and the other half as my son. It really shouldn’t be complicated but confusion is common.

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    • You’re right, there can never be enough coping mechanisms. I add every tool I can try and if one doesn’t work, I have plenty more to fall back on.

      There are two things I can count on each year with the time changes – a rant from my husband about what an idiotic system it is and a tired, disgruntled child who takes longer than should be humanly necessary to adjust to that one hour shift. The last makes me agree with the first.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Congrats Michelle on your freshly pressed post! The “as if” is something I might need to try on the editing of my memoirs. It’s really hard to get going. Enjoy your mini break from blogging!

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  6. First, congrats on FP. I’ve never figured out how that happens, so it’s a foreign (but cool) thing. Second, my variation of “As If” is “It’s a new day.” That way I can start a new day in the middle of the old one. Third, happy blog-vacation.

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