Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Balance? What balance???


Happy Wednesday All! Time for another Blog Chain round. Lisa started today's round with a topic that made me laugh out loud!

The balancing act. How do you balance your writing time with everything else in your life--including, kids, job, book promotion

This is a great topic for me, and something I have been wrestling with of late. So much so, that I have finally been forced to look at my priorities and make some difficult decisions.

Let me back up a bit, and show you a typical day in my life:
5:00 - wake
5:00 - 6:00 - Blog, read, check day joy email, check personal email, write morning pages (when I can squeeze it in)
6:00 - 6:45 - Get ready for work
6:45 - 7:15 - take kids to school, go to the day job
7:15 - 5:30pm - Day job, filled with a level of stress that is hard to imagine. IF I take a lunch, I'll check email and make sure I've got things to my editors, etc.
5:30 - 7:30 - most days I spend the next few hours taking kids to various activities, running errands, and squeezing in time for research, reading, or anything writing related that I can
7:30 - 8:00 - dinner, tidy house
8:00 - 9:30 - blog, book promo, writing, or anything else I can squeeze in. I often assist the kids regarding homework as needed too
9:30 - 10 - plan out the next day, prep whatever I can
10:00 - hang out with husband watching TV
11:00 - CRASH so I can do it again.

Can you see the BIG problem with this Monday through Friday schedule? Yea, that's right...there is NO WRITING TIME. And very little promo time. And no time for the aspects of healthy living (exercise, meditation, "play-time", sleep) that are so important to me. When I need to get these done, or when the day job spins into an even higher gear, the thing that gives is typically sleep.

BAD PLAN.

After many many weeks of this schedule, and the ensuing stress of missing writing deadlines and not having the "room" to fulfill my goals, I have had to take a long, hard, look at my life. The result of that introspection? Complete clarity on what needs to change AND a plan to change it.

I took time to develop my professional goals - both as they relate to the day job, and to my writing life. I also took time to do some long-range planning, and over the past several weeks have become exceptionally clear on my goals.

This has lead to some exciting things in my life - most of which I can't yet talk about. But, suffice it to say that in the upcoming months, I will have more time to focus on the things that are really important to me.

Enough about me....how do you balance everything? For more on this topic, check out Sandra's from yesterday, and Katrina's post tomorrow.


5 comments:

  1. Wow, I got tired just reading your list. It doesn't make for a high quality of life, for sure. Sounds like yu know what you want and have a plan for getting it, though. Life really is too short to not be doing what you want. Can't wait to hear your plan :)

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  2. Wow that is an intense schedule - I am impressed. Getting up at 5am... that is just a little too early for me.

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  3. That's too early for me, too. Plus, with my luck, the kids would wake up at the sound of my door opening and then I'd just get to start my day with three little monsters earlier than usual. :) That is one heck of a hectic schedule, Christine! If anyone can prioritize it, you can. I've learned so much from your nonfiction for creative kids on how to manage their lives. I think it's fair to say some of that is pretty essential as creative adults, too.

    Excited to hear your new news that you can't talk about yet. That always intrigues me!

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  4. Wow, your life is crazy busy!It's good you were able to step back and evaluate professional goals. Congrats on whatever exciting thing it is that you can't share yet. :)

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  5. Congrats on the upcoming news! I can't do the super early writing thing either. Thanks for the great post!

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Thanks for your input!