In the last few years, I've recognized that I no longer choose to multitask. I'm not sure I consider it a disability, but I do feel the need to write about it.
For weeks now, I've been concerned about finishing the final edit of my manuscript. I had asked a number of friends and acquaintances to read it and I needed to input their recommendations, copy-edits or edits that I agreed with. Working from a few different versions of the manuscript took way more time than I had anticipated. And although I sent a version of the manuscript to the publisher 14 days ago, I suddenly felt the need to make some significant changes. I'm almost done--but not quite.
At the same time, I had been asked (or I volunteered) to write reviews of two books, to make comments on two others, and to help a friend evaluate her plan for a new website. Although I feel guilty (not a usual emotion for me), until I finish my manuscript I have put all these projects on hold.
Why? I'm not sure. What I do know is that having too many things on my plate at the same time is very stressful for me. I also know that when I work four to six hours a day rewriting and editing my own work, I can't work on other people's writing projects.
What I've learned--over time--is that once I'm done working for the day, I need to ensure that my leisure time is "truly" leisure time. And for me, since my work involves sitting in front of a computer screen and writing and editing, my leisure time must be spent outdoors, or playing an instrument, or taking photographs, or reading for pleasure (with no work attached to it).
Most of all, leisure time must be a period where I don't feel any stress or pressure.
These days I'm handling my hypomania so much better. My family and I are having a lovely summer. I feel like I finally have this illness under control on a daily basis...and I'm so happy...and relieved. Maybe it has something to do with my refusal to multitask and my understanding of the real value of leisure time. Time will tell.