This is the first time I’m blogging in 2019 and I had such lofty ambitions to get back into blogging as soon as the New Year rolled around. Soz about that, but I feel like having 2 jobs and trying to run a business is a really good excuse for not finding the time for this little space on the Internet.
At the end of 2018 I was offered a contract role for 3 months, full-time working for a pretty big name. The job isn’t as creative as the work I’m used to, but I’m not going to bullshit you…I need the money and tbh it’s going to look pretty ace on the CV. The people are also dead nice, which helps.
The last quarter of 2018 was hideously quiet for business and well, I didn’t want the financial stress to stretch way into this year. So boom, I go from having a part-time remote job and running my own business, to doing those two things with a full 9-5 job on the top. Happy New Year!
We live in a world now where how busy you are is aligned with how successful you are. NEWSFLASH, PEEPS: busy doesn’t equal success.
Busy equals early nights and still feeling tired in the morning.
Busy equals copious cups of tea to try and take the edge off.
Busy equals struggling to find time to look after yourself properly.
This has been my reality for a couple of weeks now, but I am slowly beginning to adapt and introduce a few new practices to make sure I can manage the workload without going completely mad and trading it all in to curl up into a ball and cry.
The beauty of the full-time contract is that there are flexible hours, so I can start earlier to finish earlier and this seems to really work for me. Sure, I feel like a zombie when I first roll out of bed, but that first (or sometimes second) cup of tea has me feeling right as rain by the time I’m diving into emails.
Part of my routine is also to try and get outside of the office at lunchtime for fresh air. The other day I went for a 30-minute walk and my afternoon felt all the more tolerable for it. Having a formal lunch hour is a weird concept for me after working for myself for over a year, but stepping away and outside does the world of good.
When I get home from the office, I get straight into the other bits of work I need to do – this is usually social media planning or emails. I get to it as early as I can so that once I’m done, the evening is mine to enjoy.
During the week, I am doing my best to avoid foods that make me feel lethargic. It’s shit sitting at your desk feeling the need for a nap because you’ve inhaled a large bowl of pasta or nipped to the drive-thru for lunch.
Instead, I’m preparing my lunches the night before (mostly salads, occasionally with ~some~ pasta cos ya girl loves her pasta), as well as a snack box for that 3pm slump when I need something else to stuff in my face. Highly recommend carrot batons, cut up cubes of light cheese, grapes and tomatoes. Never thought I’d say this, but I now prefer that healthy stuff to a biscuit or packet of crisps. Who even am I? What a wanker.
Ngl, this is by far the hardest part. When you work for yourself, with no set hours and no boss breathing down your own, you can take time out for yourself so much easier.
To work around this sitch, I am fitting self-care in first thing before work (usually by journalling if I haven’t skipped my first alarm and decided “sure, 20 minutes is enough time to make myself presentable and do the 10-minute drive to work”). I also occasionally squeeze it in around lunch-time by breathing some of that sweet, sweet outside air during a lunch break – and if all else fails, I’ll pop some self-care time into my schedule in the evening which is often used watching trashy TV or reading a book right before I get some shut eye.
Sure I miss working in my joggers and running errands during the day, but working full-time in an office as well as the other work I do in the mornings or evenings does have its benefits.
For one, working for yourself can get pretty lonely, so being part of a team even temporarily has been nice. Ask any freelancer and they’ll tell you that sometimes you really do miss that. Another benefit is literally just getting out of the house. I get cabin fever pretty easily, so having to be out of the house most of the day isn’t always a bad thing. Yes, I do miss seeing Liam during the day (we both work from home ordinarily), having a bit of a break from each other can only be healthy, right?
People keep telling me how impressive it is that I’m managing it all – but really I’ve just found a system that works for me. Yes, I do thrive when I’m busy, but I know that how busy I am is not a moniker of success (or happiness, come to think of it). Being busy is something we just have to do sometimes, but finding time for ourselves and to take care of our mind and body is something we need to make time for, no matter what.