A Day in the Life

Something that people frequently ask about is what do I in a day? I think a lot of creative people get asked about their processes and how they manage to 'find the time to do all that', at least a lot of the people I know get asked that question a whole lot. So I thought I'd give a peak behind the curtain of what a typical (if there really is such a thing) day looks like for me. Now note here, I have several advantages as far as time goes: I have no romantic partner; I have no kids; I live with two roommates to split chores with.  So with all that aside, let's get started! 

5am
On the best of days I'm up at 5am to get some writing and/or staring into space contemplating life time. I tend to be a morning person so I try to make the most of it. Realistically, I roll out of bed about 5:20 and have some time to read. 

5:45 am
This is when I stop staring into space/working and actually start getting ready for the day. I brush my teeth and my hair (with different brushes of course), wash my face and go through a whole skincare routine, put on makeup or don't, get dressed, and throw my lunch into a bag. Most of the time I've packed pretty much everything I need the night before so it's just a matter of grabbing a bag and going. 

6:00 - 6:55 am
I commute in to work on the train so I spend my time reading or listening to podcasts. If I'm on a really tight deadline, I'll write on the train but I prefer writing at home. Not having to drive makes my life so much better, public transit is amazing y'all. 

7:00 - 11:00 am
Day job! 

11:00 am - 12:00 pm
I usually take lunch around this time. Generally, I go for a walk or workout during this time and eat at my desk (bad, I know!)

12:00 - 3:45 pm
Day job! 

4:00-5:00 pm
Commuting back home on the train. Usually I listen to podcasts more often in the afternoon. 

5:00 - 6:00 pm
Dinner! I walk in the door hungry most days so I pretty much walk in the door, change into my pjs, and start dinner. I tend to batch cook on Sunday so cooking consists of heating up leftovers which is awesome. I also watch some Netflix or Youtube while I'm eating (bad again, I know!) Sometimes I'll go play PokemonGo with my roommates when I get home too. We're awesome at the raid battles. (Go Team Instinct!)

6:00 - 8:00 pm
This is when I try to get the bulk of my writing or editing done. If I'm working on two projects, I'll split them to work on one in the morning and one in the evening. 

8:00 - 9:00 pm
Hang out time! Most of the time this is time I'll spend with my roommates watching Netflix or playing video games. It's really helpful for my mental health to do something fun like games. I try to do this most nights but some nights it doesn't happen. This is also when I pack my lunches and get together whatever I need for work the next day. I frequently lay out my clothes and things too.  

9:00-9:30 pm
Bed time! Seriously, I really, really struggle with sleep so I go to bed early. I have a whole bedtime routine that I've talked about before and that's all because I have a hard time getting more than 3 hours of sleep a night. I go to bed early to help me get the maximum number of hours possible. Sleep is important y'all.

Of course, this isn't every day and sometimes I get more done than other days, but I try to keep a consistent bedtime and get-up time even on the weekends and holidays. Sleep is my main struggle and this schedule has helped me get a handle on it. So there you have it, a day in the life. On a good day, I can clock in between 4000-5000 words on a project. On a bad day, it's a big 'ol goose egg word count. I am still tweaking what works and doesn't work for me, like writing on the train, it works in the morning but if I try in the afternoon I have a tendency to get motion sick and be out the rest of the day. Big lesson: Experiment with what works for you and learn about your process. 
 

Source: Photo by Eric Rothermel on Unsplash

Opinionated

For a long time I've been scared to have a strong opinion. I like to try to make everyone happy, and that means not disagreeing, not sharing things I agree or disagree with all because I want everyone, down to strangers on the internet to like me. It's meant that I keep quiet when I'm in situations that make me uncomfortable, when I see something that upsets me. It means I've kept my mouth shut when I needed to be speaking up. 

I've let people walk all over me. I've bent over backwards to help people who don't deserve it and I've watched friends fight battles alone because I was afraid of the reactions.

And I'm so tired of being afraid. Fear has become a small part of my life and I'm so over it.

So now every Friday I'm going to share an opinion piece. Looking forward to it! 

The Productivity Ninja Lied To You

Sharing time! I'm obsessed with productivity tips and blogs. Articles like '7 Habits Only Happy People Have' and '12 Ways You Waste Time Every Day' devour my morning and leave me feeling productive even when I have literally just spent 3 hours on LifeHacker and have nothing to show for it but chapped lips, dry eyes and a lingering sense of guilt. 

While I love reading about these tips, it's just because it feels productive without me having to actually do anything hard. Reading an article? Psssha, that's easy work and a total time waster, but this article will teach me how to optimize my morning so I get everything done and become a productivity ninja! 

 

 

That's not to say that these articles don't share good advice or fun tidbits of information that make you feel great about yourself. (I mean, did you know that millionaires tend to smile a lot. I smile a lot, I'm totally on the way to being a millionaire since we have so much in common.) However, at some point it's time to stop with the fun articles and buckle up for a ride. 

Accomplishing things sucks sometimes. Even things you're excited about can be hard to motivate yourself for. I love the novel I'm working on but some days the last thing in the world I want to do is park my cute, little butt in a chair and sit (or stand) at my desk to write. I love the story, the characters, everything, but UGH WHY CANNOT I TELEPATH MY STORY INTO PEOPLE'S HEADS?

But the work is necessary. There are some ways that might make it easier. For example, setting a timer and racing to see how many words I can type in 25 minutes (My best record was 2,003 whoo!) gets me typing and having fun. Some days though, that just doesn't work. I sit at my computer for an hour and type three words and ignore the timer. 

It's a matter of working with myself and knowing that sitting down to work is the only way this project will get done. So yeah, I might pop on Facebook or Twitter or Tumblr or the whole of the Interwebs, but eventually I fall back into my work because I know I have to or it won't happen. A simple motivation? Maybe, but it's the one that stays constant. 

I still dream of being a productivity ninja who talks about how I rise at 5am to go on a 6-mile run before having a kale smoothie and meditating for twenty minutes, but I don't think I ever will be. And I'm totally okay with that. But what I can do is work with what I am, which is a procrastinating over-achiever who wants to live in a Real Simple magazine but would only break everything I touched there. 

And that's okay because who wants a kale smoothie anyways?