Tag Archives: mental fatigue

How to Squeeze More Words Out of A Tired Brain


by Lillian Csernica on November 6, 2016

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I’m sitting here yawning. Yesterday I left the house at 11:30 a.m. and didn’t get home until around 10 p.m. That means ten and a half hours. I spent three of those hours driving.

When I finally staggered up the stairway to my office and dropped my bags, I realized I had 90 minutes to get the day’s NaNoWriMo quota done. At midnight, that’s it. You’ve either written that day or you haven’t.

You know how your car engine sounds when you turn the key and the engine tries to turn over, but it just won’t catch? Yeah. That’s the sound my brain was making.

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I was a bit ahead of the minimum total word count for Day 5, so I was strongly tempted to just let it ride for one day. No no no. I’d signed up for NaNoWriMo, so I’d made the commitment to write every single day in November. Every. Single. Day.

I did cut myself some slack. Make it to the ten thousand word mark, I told myself. Write that much, and you’re off the hook. That meant three pages, or 750 words.

Great. Now what? <sound  of car engine failing to turn over>

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At times like this I brainstorm. I write down every horrible thing that I could possibly do to my characters. It doesn’t have to make sense, really, it just has to be possible within the story content already established. If all goes well, inspiration will strike, the engine of my imagination will turn over, and the writing flows.

Want some specific examples of how I torture my characters and get the day’s writing done? I’m happy to share.

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Fun: Getting Your RDA


by Lillian Csernica on July 16, 2016

People talk a lot about the importance of nutrition, exercise, supplements, fiber, getting enough sunshine and drinking enough water. All of that is certainly crucial to physical health.

I believe there is another “nutrient” that is essential to the health and well-being of both mind and body.

fun

Given all the terrible events that keep appearing in the news, we’ve got to do something to counteract the weight of grief, anger, depression and loss. Does it seem frivolous to talk about the importance of having fun when the world is awash in tragedy?

Damn right it’s frivolous.  That’s the whole point. For those of us who live with depression, there are times when it is critical for us to engage in some activity that will help lighten our loads. Even if you don’t have clinical depression and/or an anxiety disorder, you too can protect your well-being by making sure you build “having fun” into your healthy lifestyle.

The Benefits of Play for Adults

“All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” is not just some excuse to blow off our responsibilities. Have a look at this infographic:

11 Shocking Employee Happiness Statistics That Will Blow Your Mind

Still don’t believe me? Think we just need to buckle down and make serious contributions to our own lives and the lives of others? Fine, but don’t take that too far. The results can be horrifying:

The Importance of Play: Having Fun Must Be Taken Seriously

I don’t know about you, but I find those facts and figures really disturbing. Bad enough 16  million children in the United States aren’t getting enough healthy, nutritious food every day. How can we possibly get our world into the shape we hope and pray for when such fundamentals as food and good old-fashioned playtime aren’t available?

Let’s be the change we want to see in the world. We’ll work on the serious issues, of course we will.  In the process, let’s make the time to have some FUN.

Today I blew off two important social engagements that would have taken a toll on me physically and emotionally. Instead, I grabbed my son John by the hand and we ran away from home to go see “Ghostbusters” in 3D.

Charity really does begin at home. Give yourself permission to have fun.

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What to Do When Your Brain Dries Up


by Lillian Csernica on July 5, 2014

Ever had that feeling that your brain is so much dead coral inside your skull?  The official name for this condition is mental fatigue.  Studying for finals, doing your taxes, and writing or editing a novel can all cause this condition.  How can you irrigate your creative centers and get the flow going again?

1. Get up and move around.

 

 

Stretch, take a quick walk, jog around the back yard, or just take some deep breaths and shake out your arms and legs.  Get that circulation moving again.  If you have a cat or a dog, take fifteen minutes and get the pet toys out.

 

2. Have a snack.

 

 

Something high in vitamins and minerals is good for the brain.  Fish, cruciferous vegetables, and whole grains are healthy choices.  Keeping the blood sugar stable is important, so you want to avoid sugary snacks.

 

3. Do something totally different.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When I need some hands-on occupational therapy, I make jewelry.  Choosing the colors, picking out the beads, and working with the wire and pliers draw on other parts of my brain.  The writing part gets a rest, and I end up with a new pair of earrings.  Win/win, right?

 

4. Play.

 

 

Another stress reliever that works for me is coloring.  Get out that big box of Crayolas and a coloring book.  You can get coloring books for little kids, or you can get some amazing art books.  Shoot marbles.  Play jacks.  Keep some Legos handy (if you don’t already have some for your kids).

 

5. Give yourself an attitude adjustment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A big part of brain drain can be how we approach a project.  If you think it’s going to be really hard and a total pain to do it, then it will be.  If you get yourself cranked up to a high pitch of enthusiasm, it might still be a complex project, but you’ll approach it with a lighter heart and a more open mind.

 

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