It seems to me as if this year has flown by and I suppose in many ways it has. 2014 has seen some pretty significant changes in my life with moving out into my own place, getting a promotion at work and being placed on a career progression program. All of that has meant that I’ve had little or no time to even begin contemplating where the year has gone. I barely have enough time to breathe, let alone anything else. I haven’t even begun covering the fact that I have also been trying to maintain a blog and my writing aspirations and when you add those into the mix…well, it’s a recipe for a very hectic lifestyle!
Don’t get me wrong, I love living in my own place and enjoy the challenges that more responsibility at work brings, it’s just that after a while it becomes quite draining, both physically and mentally. I’ve gone from working a shift pattern (which saw me work evenings, weekends and nights, as well as day shifts) to a more regular 9-5 position which is based primarily in an office. How can it be that having more regular hours actually leaves me with less time than I had before?
One of the biggest reasons is that my commute to work got MUCH longer when I took the promotion. It’s a 100 mile round trip for me each day, which may not sound all that much to my American readers, but England is a relatively small country in comparison. If I’m lucky I’ll spend no more than three hours in my car for the commute, but on a bad day that number can easily be doubled. That means that I get up early each morning, leave at the crack of dawn to get to the office on time and then battle the rush hour traffic on the way home. That’s not even taking into account the times when the urgency and importance of the work we do dictates that I have to stay late into the evenings (we support vulnerable adults and so sometimes we HAVE to stay late.)
By the time I get home in the evenings, I have just about enough time to eat some dinner, perhaps answer an email or two, then read for a short while before getting my head down for the night and starting the whole process over again the next day. I’ve gone from writing every day to squeezing it in on the weekends when I can grab a spare couple of hours, and on top of that I also need to run all the errands that I didn’t get a chance to do during the working week. Living on your own means that you have to do all your own grocery shopping, washing, hoovering, ironing etc. and I don’t think I really appreciated just how much my mother did for me when I lived at home.
Not only that, I also need to squeeze in time to meet up and spend time with family during the weekends. My Saturdays and Sundays end up being just as hectic, if not more so, than my working week! I try my best to get at least two posts published on my blog per week, but sometimes this is not always possible. What I don’t want to do is fall into the pattern of publishing a post just for the sake of keeping my ‘numbers’ up. There are times when I have great spurts of energy and creativity and others when I just can’t be bothered, quite frankly.
I’ve gone from being someone who writes every day to someone who writes primarily on the weekends, and at first that made me worry that perhaps I wasn’t fully committed to being a writer. I’ve come to realize that attempting to create an output similar to what I had been producing earlier this year is unreasonable. Writing when exhausted probably won’t make me a better writer and if anything, it’ll probably make me even less inclined to write even when I do have the spare time.
Silly or not, I firmly believe that things will happen for you if they are truly meant to be. I know there is a school of thought that says that you must go out and really fight for what you want. I tend to think that opportunities will arise when they are meant to and when the time is right for you to pursue them. Until my circumstances change or unless I win big on the lottery, I am content to be a part-time writer, but one with their eyes firmly set on one day making my hobby a full-time career.