Posted in Life, Writing

When A Schedule Falls Apart

I’ve always been the type of person to have a schedule, to get myself into a routine. I write a to-do list for the following day every night before I go to bed. I even include “shower” on those lists. Yeah, I’m that kind of person.

The summer was great. I was home alone for the majority of the day while everyone else was at work. I read, I wrote, I blogged, I swam, I played with the animals, took walks, among other things. But mostly I was able to get a lot of writing, reading, and blogging done.

I had a good rhythm going for a while. Then work started back up again.

Today is my seventh day of work, but I feel like I’ve been back for months. I still babysit every day after work as well and, on top of that, I’m still running the Sunday school program at my church.

I enjoy all three jobs, but it’s exhausting. Nine to ten hours of my day is gone as I chase preschoolers around the majority of the day only to go help a couple of elementary kids do their homework. There’s not much room for writing during those times.

Sunday mornings are blocked off because I’m at church and I do the majority of the Sunday school planning in my free time at my house during the week. Still, not much room for writing.

Before I started back to work, I attempted to create a new “schedule” for myself. I knew it was going to be a flexible one, but I thought that if I could get in just one hour a day of reading and then one hour of writing or blogging, that’d be great.

I still keep up with my routine where I write on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays and I work on my blogs on Thursdays and Fridays. Sundays are either/or, or I just take a break.

But the hour a day? It hasn’t been working so well.

By the time I get home from work, I’m utterly exhausted. It’s tough to stare at the computer screen, my hand can’t remember how to hold a pen, and my eyes suddenly drop if I try to read.

Needless to say, I’ve barely gotten any writing or blogging done since work started. If I didn’t have deadlines for my book reviews, I probably wouldn’t be reading either (and even then I missed a review this month). The only reason I’ve been keeping up with my daily blog posts is because I spent a whole day on my blogs before I started back to work and got the majority of September done.

It sucks because while I absolutely love my jobs, I don’t want to be teaching and babysitting for the rest of my life. I want my career to be writing related. I know that takes time and I’ve been working on it bit by bit, but the waiting game is hard.

I’m trying not to get discouraged, but I know what I want to do with my life. I just can’t get there yet. I’m not trying to be impatient because I know this takes time as well as a lot of hard work, determination, and dedication, but… I don’t know. This was just something I had to get off my chest, I guess.

Sorry if this post seems like such a downer. Let this be a lesson to just stay positive. Even though this post is the complete opposite of yesterday’s post.

rachel poli sign off

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Author:

Born and raised in Massachusetts, Rachel Poli is a writer and blogger. She has an associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education and a bachelor’s degree in English Studies. She enjoys writing young adult novels, middle-grade, and children’s picture books. She is currently working on her first novel.

22 thoughts on “When A Schedule Falls Apart

  1. Strong strong Rache. It can be very exhausting I know exactly how you feel. I used to also experience a similar schedule that left me either too tired to write when I got home, or I didn’t have the time to write at all. You either have to just fight off the fatigue (it’s a mental thing) and just force yourself to write or you’ll have to wait until this phase of your life passes… which might be a long while ahead and that’s precious time wasted. Don’t quit though, your jobs or your writing. Find a new schedule that works. Write in the morning. Take a nap. Ask your kids to help your write or brainstorm. You’re a writer, be imaginative and creative and work through it.

    You can do it!

    1. Yeah, it’s definitely difficult. It’s hard trying to find something that works. But I do write in the morning. I wake up an hour earlier than I have to to get things done, which is better than nothing.

  2. That does sound like an exhausting schedule. I think everyone who is pushing for an artistic path hits a point like this. So much to balance and a rearranging of priorities to make sure you do what has to be done and what you want to do. That was basically me from 2007 to 2011 since I was trying to handle jobs, social life, writing, and going back to school. Only thing that got me through it was being flexible with the schedule. Some days, I was happy to design a character or outline one chapter or do something that might have only been thinking of an idea while in the shower and jotting it down. Just have to hold out until things settle.

    1. It’s hard for creative people to get started in such a field. I know it takes time and flexibility and I’m trying to be patient, but I feel like something has to give at the same time.
      It especially sucks because I’m one of the few people who actually loves their day job. But I don’t want to do it for the rest of my life, so I’m torn and I feel a bit guilty, too.

  3. Wow, you really have a busy work schedule! I’m sure you’ll get into the pattern soon enough and somehow make time for reading and writing. You just need to give it some time. As writing is your passion, it will find a way into your life, somehow or the other. Remember to be patient and strong. Hey, I’ve missed a lot of posts too and although I feel guilty about it, I just couldn’t have done it any other way, so don’t be too hard on yourself when you miss a deadline. I’m sure your readers will appreciate the fact that you have other things to do as well and will stick with you as you try to figure it out. Stay positive, Rachel! Things will definitely get better. 🙂

  4. It’s hard when you can’t do what you want to do. I’m in the same boat. I work two jobs and by the time I’m done, I don’t want to do anything else but sleep. I’m trying to work out times for writing each week and make sure I have everything I need. That’s not easy either.

    As for the post, it’s fine that you got your frustrations out. It doesn’t do you any good internalizing them. Bringing them to the forefront allows you to see what needs to be done, like having a map. And there will be people who read this and can relate to your plight and offer support. So share away.

    1. Aw, thanks! It’s definitely good to talk about it. And all of my readers are so supportive and it’s nice getting a little advice.
      I’m sorry to hear you’re in the same boat as me. Everything will work out in a good way and in due time. But it’s a long, tough road until then.

  5. Hi. 🙂 This is going to sound like a spammy infomercial, but I promise it isn’t…and saying that just makes it sound worse. Blurg, brain not working. Anyway, I too love making To Do lists and have a super hard time making time to write every day, but I just started using a bullet journal. It’s basically a homemade planner, but it’s helped me tremendously with time management and it’s basically list-making candy. If you’re interested, bohoberry [com] is doing a blog tutorial on it this month with videos. Anyway, hope you’re having a pleasant day. 🙂

    1. Hi Kristy. No problem, and thanks for your input.
      I’ve heard of bullet journals and they definitely look cool, but I tend to do well with the way I write my to do lists. There just aren’t enough hours in the day for everything I want to get done. 🙂

  6. A word of warning: “Be sure to preserve your health. It is a trick of the Devil, which he employs to receive good souls, to incite them to do more than they are able, in order that they may no longer babe able to do anything.” Vincent de Paul, Roman Catholic priest (1581-1660). Don’t neglect your rest, Dear.

  7. Oh trust me when I say you aren’t alone. At the moment I get about 5/6 hours sleep a night, with a toddler and full time work, I live in a permanent state of exhaustion. I know Im not producing my best work because how can I when I am that exhausted. My health is suffering too because I am pushing so hard to write. I don’t know how I get through some days. We can do it though, we just need to stick together.

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