As a young professional working full time with a 2+ hour a day commute all while balancing my creative side hustle of blogging, I’ve certainly got my hands full.
Over the summer, there was a solid month in time where I just felt exhausted. Like I was a hamster running on a wheel, over-extending and over-committing myself in all areas of life. Since then, I’ve worked to create more systems in my life to find work / life blend. Notice, I didn’t use the world balance – because I don’t think that there’s such a thing. It’s not black and white to me, it’s very grey. Schedules change, demands are never ending, priorities shift… I think the start of finding “balance” is realizing that there’s no such thing as balance.
My ideal typical day looks like:
5:45 – 6:00 AM: wake up, work out, meditate
7:00 AM: shoot, edit + write blog content before work
8:00 AM: commute 1+ hour(s) to my job
9:00 AM – 6:00 PM: a full day of work – i have a full-time job at an advertising agency.
5:00 – 6:00ish PM: commute 1+ hour(s) home.
6:30 PM: shoot, edit content if it’s still light out.
7:00 PM – make (or eat) dinner.
8:00 PM – write blog posts, respond to emails, edit content, etc.
My weekends are jam backed with various events / meet ups / brunches / networking, oh yeah and BLOGGING. It seriously feels like I have two jobs at once – that’s how much of a commitment blogging is. Somewhere in the midst of that craziness I have to find time for: family, friends, and MYSELF.
WORK LIFE BLEND TIP 1: SAY NO MORE OFTEN
As a highly empathetic person and recovering people pleaser, the word “no” slips right out of my vocabulary more times than not. It’s almost like word vomit – I feel every piece of me wanting to say no, but out comes: “YES!”
I think to myself, OH CRAP! There I go again – signing myself up for something or overcommitting myself when I know that it’s going to burn me out.
However, there’s power in saying no. Finding a greater work life balance / blend starts with saying NO more. Every NO that you give to someone or something else is a YES that you’re giving to yourself. Doesn’t it just feel good to command your own life + schedule?
Practice speaking up for yourself, not overcommitting your calendar and keeping yourself sane.
WORK LIFE BLEND TIP 2: PASSIVE MULTITASKING
For me, my two hour commute each day is a really big time suck. Instead of being able to cross things off of my to-do list, I’m sitting in a car (most times in traffic), thinking about all of the things I could / should be doing. I used to get stresseddddd out from my commute.
BUT, I started implementing more passive multitasking + it completely changed everything.
So, while I can’t be writing a blog post – I can be ideating and thinking of new creative ideas. I shifted the way that I think about my commute. Instead of viewing it as a stressful part of my day, I view it as time for me to just be alone with my thoughts and let them run wild. Trust me, this took a lot of patience + work but it has completely eliminated the stress of commuting to and from a major city away.
If I have phone calls that I have to make, I strategically take them in the car while I’m driving (hands free over the Bluetooth in my car of course). If I know that I have to schedule a doctors appointment, car maintenance or return someone’s phone call… I’ll do it while I’m driving.
My other HUGE tip is to LEARN. Unless you live under a rock, I’m sure that you have your fair share of favorite podcasts. I listen to a podcast almost every single time I hop in my car. I learn so much from these podcasters – everything from: business to blogging to self improvement to plant care. Seriously, there’s a podcast for everything, here are some of my favorites:
- The Skinny Confidential Him & Her Podcast
- She Lift Podcast with Rachel Hollish
- The School of Greatness with Lewis Howes
- Girlboss Radio with Sophia Amoruso
So, if you’re like me and you’ve got a long commute every day… Start podcasting more and passive multitasking.
WORK LIFE BLEND TIP 3: CARVE OUT TIME FOR SELF CARE.
You all know how big of an advocate I am for self care.
For me, self care looks like: a warm cup of tea at night with a sheet mask on and essential oils diffusing in the background as I’m curled up in bed with a good book.
I try to do this at least once a week, if not more. Finding time for yourself is the most essential tip to finding work life balance / blend in all of the other areas of your life.
If you’re not taking care of yourself, how can you show up as your best self for the people in your life that need you most? The truth is that you can’t.
So, put the phone down, put a mask on + let yourself RELAX.
I hope that you guys enjoyed this post on how to cultivate and find greater work and life balance – if you’d like to see more of these types of posts please let me know!