I’ve spent the past month balancing all of the above and let me tell you something – it was an absolute fucking nightmare.
As in, I felt anxious, rushed and constantly behind with everything. I like to think I’m fairly good at multi-tasking. I can be filling up the sink for washing up, hanging out the clothes from the washing machine, uploading a video to YouTube and be grilling cheesy sweet potato skins for lunch all at the same time. I am bloody good at being productive in the house when I’m in the right go-getter mood, but the minute the multi-tasking extends to outside of my own home, I get flustered and fall apart because I’m not entirely in control, outside factors interfere.
I took on office work at Warehouse doing copywriting mostly because sometimes I get scared that people will stop reading my blog and I’ll have to have a back-up, plus Warehouse is a great fashion brand to have connections with, and well, a little extra money can’t hurt. And actually, it wasn’t the crack-of-dawn starts that made my life difficult, becuase 6am is a surprisingly grand time when the sun is shining and you’re armed with coffee and plans for upcoming Tuscany januts and Bank Holiday weekends.
The thing that made my life difficult was how much I fell behind with blogging and vlogging and how that made me feel inside. How insecure it made me feel. Someone recently commented on my blog and said that if I was going to take on my ‘professional full-time blogger’ role seriously I should have a post go out at the exact same time, every morning, 24/7, and that hit a nerve. It hit an insecurity that I already had – that I could be more organised with posts, I could work further ahead. Because I hate myself for how distracted I get by Netflix and online shopping, I hate having days where nothing goes up, it makes me feel like i’m both flailing and flailing.
When I first started aiming to post every day (or 6 days a week, if I’m cutting myself some slack) I made a deal with myself that I wouldn’t work weird hours. Weird hours would put an unnecessary pressure on me and Chris. I wanted us to be able to spend most evenings together, to have the same bedtime, for us to be in sync – rather than go back to my old uni schedule of 3am bedtimes and 12pm wake-ups, which are fun, but not particuarly great for responsible, mature, adult life.
There are times when I get a surge of motivation at about 10pm to stay up and write all the words, but I deny myself. I’d rather have my blog suffer than my relationship. But then I get work guilt, that if I was as serious about my own little brand as I like to think I am, the way everyone else is, then I would stay up, drink all the coffees, chain drink all the Diet Cokes and listen to the same songs on Spotify over and over again until my ears started to weep with sadness. But I don’t. I don’t do those things because sometimes you have to accept that work doesn’t actually mean the world, blogging isn’t actually the most important thing in life – it is a hobby that in some insane way, pays the bills, pays for me to live. It is not the only thing in my life worth living for.
The other thing with full-time blogging and growing success in the media world is travel. A glorious, glorious perk, and don’t for one moment think I’m not incredible grateful that I’m getting more and more opportunities to explore the world without my bank account having a little cry – it’s in my top 3 favourite things to come out of this website, aside from y’know, the feeling that I’m somehow helping people, somehow making people’s lives 1% smilier. But travel takes up time, and no matter how much time you set aside to pre-write posts to schedule for the time you’re away, and no matter whether or not you take your laptop with you for any ‘spare’ time you have on said travels, there is NEVER enough time. Never enough time to feel entirely happy with your effort and how much work you’ve got done. And then there’s jet lag and general travelling tiredness (because for some reason, getting to an airport, sitting at an airport, queueing for a plane, sitting on a plane, clearing customs and then travelling away from the airport is EXHAUSTING, simply exhausting – why? it’s not like you’re even doing ANYTHING).
You know when you get back from a holiday you just need that day to lie on the sofa and maybe do a food shop and maybe unpack your suitcase and do a clothes wash? You still need that day even if you didn’t pay for said holiday, and it’s hard to give yourself that day when you’re battling the screwed up feelings in the pit of your stomach that you’ve let yourself down, and all your readers, because only two posts went out over four days. You want to rush back to your computer, get scribbling out posts, start building up momentum and ideas on your blog, but you can’t because you’re held back by tiredness and your body’s need to just chill the fuck out.
There are people out there, and maybe you’re one of them, that hold down a full-time job outside of their blog, and still manage to post every day. YOU PEOPLE ARE NOT HUMAN. I am both incedibly impressed of your ability and dedication and yet terrifed that one day you may actually take over the world with dem mad skillz.
And even I can’t comprehend how I used to have the energy to do post a few times a week after work, after the commuting, after the social events.
And then there’s the ‘running a house’ part of this blog’s title. Like, how much time could running a house of two people take? It’s not like I’ve got a whole family to contend with, it’s not like there’s children or babies or any of that future bedlam. But still, finding time for all the ironing, to hoover, to change the bed sheets, to get through the never ending mounds of clothes washing and washing up, to feed Rudey, to feed myself, to feed Chris, to wash the kitchen counters and the dining table, to pick my clothes up of the floor, is an added pressure to daily life.
It makes you realise exactly why one half of a couple always stayed at home to battle the endless cleaning and chores back in the day, because it’s another full-time job in itself.
I don’t mean that in an anti-feminist way obvs, just in the fact that it’s hard to find time for EVERYTHING, when you spend so much of your life slogging away behind a desk.
I’m not exactly sure what the part of this post is, but my end note is one that says something along the lines of THERE WILL ALWAYS BE THINGS YOU DIDN’T DO, IT DOESN’T MEAN YOU’RE LAZY OR NOT TRYING HARD ENOUGH, IT’S JUST THAT LIFE IS TIME-CONSUMING AND THERE’S NOTHING YOU CAN DO TO CHANGE THAT.
Basically, you’re not alone. Everyone is always beating themselves up for something they didn’t do, feeling guilty for giving themselves time out with a cup of tea when the to-do list isn’t quite nailed, but you know what? Downtime, either on your own with a duvet and a half of Tesco Express’s chocolate supply, or with people that are very important to you, will nearly ALWAYS be more important to your well being than the things you didn’t get done. Don’t beat yourself up for being happy, for being relaxed, for taking the time to enjoy life.
No-one else is noticing your downfall, cut yo self some damn slack, gurl.