The last post I wrote centered around parsing out your time as a freelancer. If you make a daily schedule that’s filled back to back, with little to no breaks in-between, you’ll burn yourself out. That was more to examine the smaller, day to day time management skills.

What I didn’t take into account was when real life happens.

Like, when a loved one passes away.

Or, your child’s pet runs away.

Maybe your primary job has an emergency.

And sometimes familial drama can rear up out of nowhere.

Time gets taken from you. There’s no stopping it. What’s worse is when you realize it. When you see the turning of the clock, pages falling from the calendar, notification blips on your phone, all originally set up in place to help you. Now, instead they serve as a reminder that you’re not doing the tasks you scheduled to do.

A deadline passes. Then another. Then suddenly, you’re 5+ blog posts behind, you haven’t picked up your novel in 6 days, and everything in your life feels wasted.

It’s a sickness, this feeling, that just because you’re not sitting at your desk writing that everything is pointless, because if you’re not writing, then you’re wasting time. There’s other authors out there, new ones, submitting manuscripts and pitches, taking your place in the sun.

And that’s…okay.

It’s hard to type it because I’m not even sure if I believe it, but I have to. It’s okay to put off the Great Work because a friend needs you, or your partner and you haven’t had a lazy date night in weeks, or because dang-nabbit no one else is going to finally organize and clean out that garage while you and your wife drink beers and watch Modern Family at the same time.

That last one was how my wife and I spend our Friday date night.

This post, while much shorter, is me putting my toes back in the pool. Opening the Dashboard was like opening an old storage tub in the attic full of dust.

It’s only been a week, and I know what I was doing in those 6 days was important.

But still, it’s hard. And I think saying that makes it a little easier.