In case you didn’t know, I have a lot on my plate creatively. I blog, do a podcast and hold down a full-time job in PR. I have some tips to achieve a work-life balance, but also to get the best out of your creative endeavours.
Utilise the spare time you have.
A lot of the time when I get home from work, my day of creating and editing isn’t done. I’ve been known to spend all evening working on a podcast episode, writing a blog post or scheduling the next day’s tweets. So much so, I’ve now been recording most of my show at work, in one of the meeting rooms in my lunch break (colleagues – if you’ve seen me talking to my phone and wondering why I’m doing so, then that’s why!).
Having said that, get off your phone for a while.
If I’ve spent all day in front of a computer, I like to have some time where I don’t do anything and spend time with my family. I don’t even take my phone with me, my notifications can wait. I do self-care activities like getting some fresh air or applying a face mask so I can relax a little bit, so matter how busy I am.
Prioritise what needs to be done.
If I have an episode of Amy Talks that needs to be done, I’ll get that done first before even thinking about what has to be written for the blog that week. I usually write a to-do list of what needs to be done both work and personal project-wise for the day, and try to get it all done. I admit it has been a struggle, but I’ve always been able to get things done on time.
If you don’t feel motivated, don’t force yourself to do it.
I’m a big believer of this – there’s been many times that I haven’t felt up to writing or recording, but felt as if I’ve had to, and then it doesn’t turn out as well as it maybe would’ve done. Motivation can come at random times, so act on it and create your best work. I don’t pressure myself if I want to take a night off, but I have it in the back of my mind for when inspiration strikes.
Celebrate your achievements.
We spend so much time working on the next thing that we forget what we’ve achieved in the past. That’s definitely true for me, so every so often I re-listen to my old podcast episodes or read blog posts that I love, so I still remember how great it felt to write or edit it. I also could’ve learnt something new from what I wrote in the past, so can use it next time.
Write down every idea that comes into your head.
I have wraths of notebooks and iPhone notes all over the place with creative ideas in it, including a potential book idea (don’t know whether I’ll EVER write it, but it’s nice to have written down a synopsis at least). I can have a dream about something and it can inspire a blog post or podcast episode, so I always want to note it down before it disappears. I look at these lists regularly when I’m lacking afore-mentioned motivation and maybe it can spark me into tapping on my keyboard.
It’s exhausting, but I really wouldn’t change it for anything.
Do you have any tips on balancing so many creative projects at once? Be sure to share them in the comments!
A K Jones