Michaeline: Back to School

School really was a lot of fun, and work can be too! (Image via Wikimedia Commons)

Hurrah! I went back to school for my dayjob Friday – for us in Japan, it’s the new start of second semester after a three-week long period of no classes. But the excitement in the air is very similar to the back-to-school period of my youth in America. It’s fun to have a few new clothes, some new stories to tell friends and of course, get back into a routine.

Routines are tricky things for me. I need them desperately, but if I’m too scheduled, I get tired and cranky. This August period gives me a chance to shake up my routine and figure out new strategies before we settle into the rhythms of autumn in September.

I fell away from an exercise routine this summer. My feet and ankles have been very bad, so I’ve been trying a variety of new exercises and rest periods. During summer vacation itself, I was busy walking around new cities, and then trying to chill my feet to recuperate. My feet still hurt, but overall, I’ve come out stronger because of the random exercises. I think I’m ready to take up a more regular routine of stationary biking and trips to the swimming pool.

Fourth paragraph in, and there’s no direct link to writing! Well, more and more I’m beginning to think that physical exercise is the key to dispelling brain fog. A good dose of exercise (not too much, not too little) helps me get a good night’s sleep, and I’m sure the increased blood flow is reaching my brain. If I can get rid of brain fog, story ideas should come more easily and be expressed on the page or in the computer more efficiently. Right? Right?

Or maybe I’m just waving a magic exercise wand and hoping for the best.

There are other routines I want to shake up this August. Things like re-reading and editing in the afternoon, and waking up a little earlier to get a 20-minute writing session in each morning. I’ll have a little more than ten days to assess whether the new routines are working, or if I need to shake things up in time for an October start.

And an October start is better than no start at all, but right now, I have personal history on my side. August is the time for a fresh start, full of books and learning and new school supplies, and I’d be wise to take advantage of the season.

Let’s shake it up a little these last 12 days!

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