Slowing Down


Over the past few weeks I’ve noticed bloggers are taking hiatuses or giving up blogging. Reasons for this include S.A.D. (seasonal affective disorder), blogging burn-out, and depression to name a few. Some bloggers disappear without any reason, of course, and I miss them. While I hope they’ll return to posting, I completely understand the need to leave the blogosphere since I’ve done it myself.

I love blogging and the blogosphere so much that I don’t want to sever my connections, but I’ve decided to post once a week. After speaking with my friend Kitt O’Malley, ( she suggested I blog about my progress and frustrations while writing “Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Bipolar Disorder”, a book I’ve wanted to finish writing for years. (Thanks again, Kitt, you blogger extraordinaire!)

In 2013 I submitted a book proposal to a publisher. I was thrilled to secure a contract, and I thought that it would be my magic charm to write the rest of the book before I turned 80. But I had to cancel the agreement due to bipolar depression that was triggered by my tapering off lithium. As devastating as that experience was, I learned so much that it will be useful to write about it in “Birth of a New Brain”.

Someday I’ll blog every day if I want to! I only want to write one book – that’s plenty for me. I’m not like my two favorite female authors, L.M. Montgomery and Madeleine L’Engle, who were amazingly prolific and wrote scads and scads of books! (Before computers!)

I still can’t believe I used to blog every day, even when feeling under the weather (writing usually made me feel better!). Those weren’t just hundred-word posts, but 1000+ word rambles. I wasn’t hypomanic or manic back then; if anything I was going down the opposite direction. I don’t know how I carved out the time to write for hours every day, even on weekends and with a family. The entire phenomenon remains an enigma to me, but that four-month-long stretch of daily writing taught me that I have the ability to be a more disciplined writer. I need only to tap into that potential.

I haven’t been doing much “tapping” lately, and it bums me out. There are a couple excuses:

Sickness in our household – not only mine, but my two children’s nasty bugs obliterated my writing schedule.

Here’s my second excuse: I’ve become a social media addict.



That’s it, but as some of you know, that’s plenty to distract anyone. When Kitt and I had our heart-to-heart, she understood my social media plight as she too gets hooked into black holes of tweets and status updates.


Sure, I could impose upon myself a stringent rule to complete writing a certain amount of words or pages a session before I check Facebook & Twitter. I’ve tried doing that…it hasn’t gone so well!

Kitt suggested going hardcore and turning off the internet router! I write the book on Word so I don’t need the router on. That’s a great idea…except my husband often works at home and he needs to use internet.

Enough of my bellyaching. I’ll figure it out, and I’ll share how it’s going in my next post.

I hope you’ll keep following this blog. I want to stay connected with you! For those of you writing books, I’d love for you to comment about what helps or hinders you. Same thing goes for social media addiction! 😉

take care and have wonderful week!



Dyane Leshin-Harwood, a freelance writer for 17 years, was diagnosed with postpartum bipolar disorder 6 weeks after her baby was born. Dyane founded the Santa Cruz Chapter of the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) & ran numerous support groups.   Dyane was selected as a 2014 International Bipolar Foundation “Story of Hope and Recovery” and she writes for  She’s completing her book “Birth of a New Brain – Healing from Postpartum Bipolar Disorder” with a foreword by founder/postpartum expert Dr. Walker Karraa.  Dyane blogs at

2 responses to “Slowing Down

  1. As a once-a-week poster, currently, I hear you. This time of year it is so hard to pull through – and I find the social media feedback loop (or lack of it) when promoting pieces can drastically change how I feel about putting in the effort to make posts.

    I recently ran across a book about neuro-linguistic programing – and just in the first chapter it goes through a couple of exercises to recreate the creative place that you/we/I need to tap into that creative potential. I’ve not had the time to really cement that in, but it definitely struck me as a useful resource for neuro-diverse creatives. Anyone, really, but the ability to “reprogram” would be really handy!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Dakota, sorry to take so long to reply. Thanks so much for your comment. The neuro-linguistic programming book sounds fascinating and practical! I like how one can immediately start ti implement the techniques mentioned in the very first chapter. However, I wish there were a simple “reprogram button” on my arm or something! 😉 I’m lazy! Anyway, I’ll keep that resource in mind as an option to stir up the creative well.

    I wish you a wonderful weekend and good luck during this challenging time of year! take care,



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