Hi, it’s your friendly neighbourhood ghost. Sorry I’ve been somewhat absent (or at least it feels like I have) Life has been CRAZY.
Right now I’m preparing for my next single release (available for pre-save here *shameless plug* https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/emiliaquinn/games-feat-finola-2) and it’s always little mad at the best of times. But I’m also balancing another two projects including my new business venture the Whiskey Kisses services PLUS my day job (which has increased in intensity recently) AND voiceover work on the side (more of a hobby at the moment but still). I also need to make room for showering,eating, sleeping, paying attention to my family and pets etc.
Now, don’t get me wrong this isn’t a woe is me story, I’m not complaining about any of it. It’s actually all really positive. But it’s very easy for lots and lots of positive things to suddenly turn into negativity, usually around the time you start burning out. Burnout is real people. Working yourself into the ground isn’t cool anymore. Yes I see the irony in that statement compared to the previous paragraph but let me explain.
I know, if I don’t take time out to chill and let myself breath, I will burn out. So this crazy period of time is limited. I have a week’s holiday coming up where I will be doing the absolute minimum (running a business means you rarely get complete time off but still). I know that during that week, I can do life. I can spend time with my family, I can explore new places, I can binge watch netflix if I want to. I also have a cut off point every evening, once I hit that time, work takes a backseat until the morning. And in the morning, I don’t get up and start working (usually). I take 10 mins at least to myself, make a coffee, feed the dog and try to wake up. Making time for yourself is super important. You can’t help anyone else if you don’t look after you!
Other things that take a load off my mind and help ease the probability of burnout is staying organised.
I’m a pen and paper type of gal, so I have a paper diary in which I write and schedule all my activities daily. I will spend part of my evening every day organising the next so that I don’t stay awake in bed running through all the things I need to remember to do and fretting that I’ll miss something. Sundays are my day to set myself up for the well, the bigger plans which usually also go in my phone calendar. I’m not saying it’s a watertight system, or the most organised. But it helps take that mental load off and ensure that I won’t forget something because I’m taking up too much brain space and energy trying to remember my entire schedule.
Another way I personally combat burnout is prioritising. If I’m super tired one day and it’s a full on day in the diary, I will look at what can move to a different day so that I don’t overwhelm myself with tasks when my brain feels like soup. Chances are I’ll also do the task better when I have more energy to spend on it, so it’s a win win.
My point here is that when you’re an independent artist with a day job, or running a podcast, blog or business as a side hustle, life can really get on top of you. It might be difficult or seem impossible, but there is always a way to make time for yourself and look after your brain and body. You might get loads and loads done in a small space of time, but don’t sacrifice quality and health just to tick tasks off a list. Look after yourself and you’ll find it so much easier to handle the busy weeks or months. Proriotise, organise and recognise when you need to take a break. You’re important! So treat yourself accordingly.