Monday, January 04, 2010

Crawling Out of the Cave and Rejoining Life

The holidays are great! A chance to relax and do something outside of the normal routine.

Unfortunately, that can be a negative as well, because it's difficult returning to that routine.

My routine was disrupted in several ways:

My husband took time off during the holidays, so he was home a lot more than usual.
We had several Christmas parties and social events in December.
After a long year of traveling and promoting, I decided to take a break.
Outside of seeing a couple movies, we didn't venture from the house.
We had Christmas toys to play with!!

While it gave me time to work on several big projects, it also sent me into withdrawl mode. I'm half extroverted Sanguine and half introverted Melancholy, and usually I can maintain a happy balance between the two. However, I think I slipped a little too far one direction these past few weeks, and now I find myself with the task of reving up the outgoing part again. Writing can be a lonely life and many authors are naturally introverted, but as a speaker, I can't afford to get stuck in that phase. And with the last book in my YA series coming out in two and a half months, I really gotta rev it up fast!

How do you feel about withdrawing from the world? Is it a place of comfort? Is it the norm for you? Or if you succumb to the temptation, is it difficult to climb back out of that hole?


  1. TOTALLY with you on this one! I was away from blogging for a few days and was torn between withdrawal and enjoying the motivation I happened to be having for other things.

    Left to my own devices I would be perfectly happy curled up in a ball on the couch watching TV or reading a book with my family. But only for a while before the other half of myself yearns for that creative outlet I seem to need.

    Getting back into the groove of juggling all of those ordinary things we do in a regular day is a bit hard to get back into. I too am searching for my multi-tasking motivated post-holiday self!

    Good luck!

  2. I am half-and-half as well and feel your sludge. For me, blogging is a solitary thing I can do in the quiet Michele mode. This is my introvert side. So maybe that doesn't totally fit. But I could sit in this chair all day if my husband took the kids somewhere. That sounds nice, maybe I'll beg him...

    Last book in the series! Congrats! What's next? Down time?


  3. Yep, I seem like an extrovert to most folks and I have no problems mingling, talking, speaking to anyone or any amount of anyones AND I need time to myself or I get cranky. It was most difficult after living alone for years to enter into a relationship that not only included my partner but two small kids. But now, 8 years in, I'm good. I've got the balance figured. I also see people in my other work as a therapist - which is intense but lots of real intimacy so filling. So I not only need alone time - I need stupid time - with books that don't require me to think too much or movies that I can collapse in front of or in the winter knitting and in the summer gardening. It is a constant balancing act - keeping all these parts of me somewhat happy!

  4. Hard to go back to work today. You can crawl over to my blog contest today!

  5. I can very easily spend hours or days isolated from the world without socializing. However, I have enough family around to make sure I get out and about on a regular basis – which is a good thing.

  6. I jump back and forth between the two. At book signings, after the first bunch of people, sometimes it's hard to sound enthusiastic and greet each person as if you haven't been doing it for over an hour already.

    Morgan Mandel

  7. Honestly, if it weren't for the kids, I'd rarely leave the house except to go to the library and coffeehouse!

    I'd much rather stay in...

    Mystery Writing is Murder

  8. Working on normal stuff today and I've got to leave the house at some point to go get stamps...

    Terry, I shall visit your contest!

    Morgan, I can stay "ON" for signings & speaking engagements, but I usually crash & hide the next day. What's helped is the discovery that the more I do, the busier my schedule, the less apt I am to crash...

  9. Diane, I can totally relate. I'm a bit of a both too. I've done public speaking and taught seminars to thousands, but I'm not in that place the last couple of years. You really have to be *on* during those times. When you don't do it frequently, the *on* takes a lot out of you. I crash too.

    Now days, I tend to stay at home more and I'm a person who needs quiet time to myself or I get antsy and cranky.

    I let quite a few things slide the past few months and now I have to get my schedule readjusted and get with it.

    Hope your New Year brings you lots of good things!

  10. That was so funny to read about your sanguine/melancholy personality from the Personality Plus book! That is exactly what I am! I had a couple of days where I didn't leave the house over the holidays myself and I loved it, but I also had a couple of parties and dinners with friends that I wouldn't have missed for the world.

  11. Diane, I am so much the same way. I can make myself be "on" in public, but if I have my druthers, I'd just as soon curl up with a book and a cup of tea. But then I get lonely if enough days go by without talking and seeing others. I think we need both and it's hard to find that balance. You'll get there, Spunky. We know you will!

  12. I think people would say I'm hiding in my cave most of the time...

  13. I'm with you. It is hard for me to crawl out of a hole, as well. Really difficult. Habits are so easily broken.

    Straight From Hel

  14. I'm with you. Slowly getting things done today after several weeks of family and travel. Not quite back to normal, but at least most of the decorations are gone, right?

  15. TexasRed, thank GOODNESSS the decorations are gone!

    Jo-Jo, you know right where I'm at then. BTW - that mix is supposed to be 'not good' as it's both emotional personalities in one!

  16. I really enjoy withdrawing into quiet space. I am surrounded by kids and people at work (teacher) so any down time is welcome. :)

  17. I used to think that there was something wrong, then I read that it is natural for women (not sure about men) to want more alone time as they age. Perhaps we are just more confident in our skins.
    So welcome solitude! It's healthier than worrying what others are thinking.
    Carolyn Howard-Johnson
    Blogging writing resources on

  18. I tend to be an introvert outside of business. And I love to sometimes withdraw from the world and enjoy my alone time so I can get things done, unfortunately I usually have so many things going that I don't get much alone time anymore. For me, I find it harder to make myself withdraw (always been one that hates to let people down) than to motivate myself to get back out there.