I’ve been meaning to write this blog post for about a week now. Which once you read this you may find how hilarious that actually is. I wanted to write about the important of balance and how our lives can swiftly become imbalanced with certain activities.
For instance, I worked a total of 11 hours yesterday. Granted only 8 of them were at my “Day job” at Caterpillar and the other three were spent at home and drawing. However, my Freelance Illustration is just as much of a job. With the added work that I livestream it. It’s also completely my choice to livestream the art that I do for people. I find it highly rewarding to be in front of the person you’re drawing for as you can get immediate feedback. This generally means quicker turn around time as well as changes that can be made early on so it reduces rework that needs to be done. So all good things. Still, it’s like giving a presentation for however long you’re on that stream.
Before I get too distracted in diving down the rabbit hole about streaming let’s get back to the topic at hand that on average if I stream I spent 11 hours a day working. That’s a lot of work and often times I will stream for many more than just 3 hours.
Then I turn around and look at the time I also spend doing things like chores around the house that need to be done whether its dishes, cleaning the kitchen and wiping down dust, vacuuming, you know, house chores. Oh yah, and yard work.
This sort of list is actually fairly common throughout my household as well. We’ll hold a main “day job,” work additional hours between *for my room mates* running a gym and teaching classes, and doing additional artwork to bring in extra dollars, and doing housework which anyone with a house will know is never ending.
I’m very fortunate in that my “hobby” of Freelance artwork is at its base, artwork. What I actually TRULY enjoy about doing the artwork is creating gorgeous lines, and making beautiful work for people that they can hopefully treasure forever. Or if nothing else that it will bring a smile to their face. With these sorts of bonuses it makes it easy to spend as many hours as I do, creating. In fact I look forward to the time that I will have after I get moved while I look for another job to be doing nothing but art. With any luck my stream will grow to the point that I can do ONLY artwork for you all. HOW COOL WOULD THAT BE?! ((more on that and a patreon later.))
Overall though, creating my own artwork for my own projects, or doing archery, going to the gym more than once a week, or hell even taking the time to take more than a 5 minutes shower to make sure my hair is washed and pits are cleaned becomes difficult.
While I’ve become very good at running on all cylinders for 100% of the time… every engine is going to eventually burn out. Get worn down…. maybe even crash. When I crash… it’s HARD. I hit the ground and generally get sick enough to do nothing but sleep and recover for about three days. In fact it’s more often than not that if I’m sick it’s from exhaustion and not the flu. This could likely be avoided if I found a better way to balance my time.
I feel right now when it comes to balance I need to be better at taking just a bit more time for myself. Be that going to the gym, doing more archery, or doing more art for art sake and for my own sake. We’ll see how that goes though.
Do you feel your life is balanced?
How/what do you do to make sure your life feels balanced between the activities, work, and things that you do?