Editing my novel… very slowly … but today I finally sorted out a chapter which has always been problematic in terms of just about everything. One part of me said just scrap it. It’ll never work. It’s far-fetched, melodramatic and unlikely. But another part, the stubborn side wouldn’t give in. So I kept going. Writing keeps me going. It’s what I do to give meaning to my life. Not the only thing – there’s gardening too- but writing occupies my mind, the act of ordering and creating. Brings satisfaction. Sometimes peace. Joy.
On another level I’m still struggling hugely with anxiety and depression. The local psychological services NHS Ealing have been excellent albeit on Zoom. Lots of good strategies and exercises to question my ANTs (automatic negative thoughts) and resultant low mood. The most effective, and new to me, is “self-compassion”, a way of learning to soothe and comfort yourself when feeling overwhelmed. The pioneer of this approach is Dr Kristen Neff, an American professor of Psychology. Incredibly helpful. Highly recommended. Saving my fragile sanity.