By Shelley Munro On Jan 6 2011, 4:01 am
At the beginning of 2010 I started having problems with my writing. I didn’t feel like sitting down to write and I was low on inspiration. I still lived and breathed writing yet my overall progress was almost nil. Something I loved doing had suddenly become a chore. Yes, I was suffering from burnout.
Taking a break wasn’t really an option because I had commitments to meet, but I came to a decision. I needed more balance in my life. The hobbies that I’d let slip and the things I enjoyed such as walking and cycling should make a reappearance.
The change in routine actually made a huge difference. I started cooking again and experimenting with new recipes. (Check out my blog to see some of the things I’ve made). I started walking again and cycling most days. I dabble in photography and take my camera with me everywhere. I’m not an expert but I enjoy it and that’s the main thing.
This year I’m starting Tai Chi, something I’ve always wanted to try, and later in the year I’m going to take a class in decorating cupcakes. Oh, and best of all, next week we’re picking up a terrier puppy we’re adopting from the Humane Society. (Our last dog died over a year ago so it will be fun to have a dog around the place again).
Here’s one of the recipes I tested last year. (I made non-food recipes too, and this is one of them)
Chocolate Bath Salts
1 cup Epsom salts
1 cup sea salt or kosher salt (coarse grain)
3 teaspoons cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 tsp oil (almond, olive or sunflower will work)
Combine all the dry ingredients in a clean bowl. Add the vanilla extract and oil. Mix well to ensure oil is completely blended. Transfer to small clean jars or cello bags and close tightly. Sprinkle 1 – 2 spoonfuls in your bathtub, lie back in the water and relax.
Notes: I added some baking soda to my mix to make my bath salts fizzy. I also omitted the vanilla extract and added 5 drops of peppermint essential oil. I gave jars to family members for Christmas. The Epsom salts and sea salt is good for soothing sore muscles and aches and pains.
My change in routine has certainly helped me rekindle my love of writing. I’ve also noticed the hobbies I take part in have the added benefit of providing inspiration for my stories too.
For all you writers out there – what hobbies do you have outside of writing? And readers – when you’re not reading what hobbies do you take part in?
Shelley Munro lives in New Zealand and writes contemporary and paranormal romances for Samhain Publishing. You can visit Shelley at www.shelleymunro.com or on Facebook or Twitter.