Today I finished the last pages of my written journal. My usual pace is one notebook every two months, but this time it took five months. I’ve been doing most of my writing in my work log and I’m liking it, so there’s no need to buy another notebook for the time being.
This morning I found resistance towards work, meditation eased it, and then I had a great work session which left me quite upbeat. It’s striking how work has the capacity for both elation and misery. I’ve been reading a book which I found at René’s home: Daily Rituals, how artists work. What struck me most is the variety of schedules and habits, there is no single recipe for the conditions to do good work. Finding what works for you is a matter of self-knowledge and consistency.
There’s early birds and night owls, alcoholics and monks, those who work through bustle and those whose work requires absolute silence. There are authors who seek prolonged periods of isolation to bring about creation, others can work around an intense social life.
There’s a lot of talk on the amount of hours that these people put into their work, if it’s healthy, yadda yadda. By happenstance I was also listening to a psychologist on YouTube explaining that some people just can’t get out of bed in the morning because they don’t find it compelling enough. And I knew exactly what he meant: should I know the joy I would have found working, I would have jumped right into it, but as I was expecting toil I put it off until I had done all my chores, and then more. Chalking up numerous hours doing work you don’t enjoy is compromising on health.
In the afternoon I grabbed the bike and head to La Casa Encendida (the only library that is open on Sunday afternoon). It was full, and I got to work on some tables they have in the hallway outside of the reading room. As this was drafting work, I couldn’t space out as well as I do at home, and I found the situation uncomfortable. There was also a beautiful, helplessly unfocused student next to me, shaking her legs and constantly chatting on the phone. Beauty helps me focus, be it in nature, architecture, or in human beings. But I always discover new exceptions to the rule. I came back home to complete my work.