I have enjoyed slicing for the past year or so, although I admit I don’t post a weekly slice, just dip in from time to time (usually when another blogger’s slice has caught my eye)… but as I came home from my appointment this morning, I got to feeling excited about the day I have planned and I realised (to my horror) that one of the reasons it feels so good is because it has been so long coming!
A few years ago I changed my life, gave up a regular full time career with a good salary (and 80 hour weeks) for a life! I have until recent months balanced my teaching and writing lives quite well, I need one to pay the mortgage and the other to feed my soul, I hope that in years to come the writing life will have the bigger portion of pie, but I doubt it will come with a golden wage…. although it might. I realised when my health suffered that there is more to life than money and a career and emotional wellbeing plays an immense role in our physical and mental health. I would rather be alive and get by, than sit on piles of cash, exist on 4 hour sleeps, exhaust myself to the point of collapsing, take the brunt of negativity in the workplace, wake up hating everyday before it begins and not have any time or pleasure cells left to enjoy spending my HARD earned extra cash.
Today I have a LOVELY day off! I was looking at the work in my diary so far this month and due to numerous cancellations by rights I should have managed a writing day before now. The universe threw broken cars, broken phones, sleepless nights, masses of chores, a few poetry events and weekends with Mr G (as he is currently working away I like to keep the weekends free as best I can to plan stuff together). I also pretty much took the Christmas Holiday off too (from writing/ internet) which means that it has been about 5 weeks since my last day of great creativity and action. No wonder I feel rusty!
Today in between appointments I am working on submissions for this month and listing new inspiration and ideas in my notebook (yes, you should always carry one around). I also have tomorrow morning off and hope to get productive on the laptop before going to work.
I called this post ‘Refresh’ because we live in a world of tech – we refresh pages all the time online, we sometimes forget to refresh ourselves. You know how the computer struggles when you have 11+ windows open and you’re waiting for it to load, well life can get like that too.
Think about yourself this – what do you need to do to REFRESH?
As far as the past week – you can read the relevant parts here:
the rest of my week has just been work (although I did work in an interestingly named location – ‘World’s End’ … it was a bit of a tough day too) and box sets – Mr G and I finally finished watching Dexter.
Join in with the SOLC here:
I applaud your brave decision to give up a full-time career, and am all-too-familiar with the problem of finding a decent work-life balance. My partner is a teacher and works 13 hours a day and most of the weekends, and I work similar hours combining freelance teaching with whatever else I can find. Like you, we hope to shift the balance a little in the future, and dream of a little cottage in France, mortgage free, writing and just earning enough to get by on. Good luck with achieving your dreams, and keep your fingers crossed for ours.
Thanks Alan, it is true – dreams can be found and moulded into reality at any point in our lives, it is never too late. The mortgage free part is our dream too because then the lack of money in the Arts wouldn’t be such a problem. Potentially with Life Coaching and Tutoring I could make an equivalent salary, I just haven’t built that part in yet as part-time teaching and writing still uses up most of the hours in a week. Happiness is definitely worth more than all the gold in the kingdom though and after 14 years of 80 hours weeks something had to give, I didn’t want that something to be me! Good luck with fulfilling your dreams too – sounds idyllic!
I once worked on a staff team where I was the only member of staff (so it seemed) not to have holiday property in France! All the Senior Managers, a Teaching Assistant, the school secretary and some of the teaching staff all had getaway retreats…. I only stayed at the school for a year…. not long enough to discover their secret!
Finding that just right balance is so hard – good for you that you took the steps you needed to find balance.
Thanks Tara – it is the point at which I flew – a leap of faith is always worth a punt!
Glad you are back at Slicing – you’re right, it does feed our souls. I love what you wrote about refresh, too. So important to refresh ourselves!
Thanks Dana – I have enjoyed finding some time to read slices today. Here’s to refreshing newness!
So brave to take that leap and you will surely reap the rewards! And I agree, I always feel refreshed and renewed when I sit down and produce a piece of writing.
Thanks Nancy, it was a blind jump really – I knew it was risky so I kept my eyes closed, but it has paid off and now I know I am on the right track. Refreshed by following my heart. Writing in process and when the final edits are made creates the same feelings – you are right!
Oooh, we’ve not long finished Dexter – loved it! Just need to visit Miami now as it looks fab 🙂
Let me know when you do – I can pack a bag in record time! 🙂
It is obvious that you are enjoying your life to a greater degree since making the change. Will it be three years soon? Or more? I’m looking forward to mine this June while still being present in my current one. I think changing locales will be the hardest for me as I will be quite far from my sons; they’re grown and working but I will miss the ease at being able to get together. 🙂
Transitions are hard, especially when they involve family, from my experience I saw my family more when I lived further away than when I was local.
It has been 3 years since I went part time, this is my 2nd year of agency work, the 3rd year of blogging and writing and just over a year of being a poet. There are no regrets, a mild hope to win the lottery and plug the financial gap I have created, but I believe in the ‘money will come principle’ and always have enough to cover my outgoings!
Good luck in your new venture.