Whether I’m at my full time job, working on a freelance project, volunteering, speaking at an event or spending time with friends and family, the most frequently asked question I get is this:
Kateri, I don’t know how you do it! How do you juggle everything in your life?
Let me start off by saying that when you work in a creative field, your mind is constantly running wild. When you have so much creative energy, you just want to get it out there in the universe. There are times it is hard for me to shut it off, but I love what I do and trust me, I do have a life.
For those of you who are parents and also ask me this question: you know how your child needs a lot of your time, energy and attention? Compare that to a career and there you have it, my career is my child!
Overall I have key things that I do daily in order to keep energized and feel good before the long day begins (or at times what I like to call “psych myself out”):
- Sleep 9 – 10 hours a night. I’ve been this way since I was a baby and I feel so refreshed in the morning!
- Exercise. I go to the gym a couple times a week at night, doing cardio or lifting weights.
- Moisturize my skin. Your skin needs to be hydrated and fresh. I use the Lancome line, which I’ll talk about a bit more in a future beauty post.
- Drink tea and water. I love the Republic of Tea’s “Get Well” line for your immune system, stress and staying young.
- Take daily vitamins. I take a multi-vitamin and I also love Airborne. Since I started my vitamin/tea regiment, I haven’t gotten a bad cold since 2014! I work an average of 45 – 55 hours a week (if you include the down time in between, these numbers might be a little less), I don’t have time to be or look tired or get sick!
I have what I like to call “dead” months and “hot” months. My “hot” months are usually February because the freelance writing is heavy and I’m volunteering with the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Then August/September – December is crazy because of the holiday liquor account season, maybe some freelance writing and PR work for clients. The rest of the year is somewhat medium to slow.
On a typical weekday during a “hot” month this is a normal schedule for me:
7:40 a.m.: I wake up, glance at my emails, take a shower and get ready for work. I don’t wear a ton of makeup during the week so I throw on some eyeliner, under eye cream, tinted chapstik and my glasses.
I’m also not much of a morning person (night owl for life baby) so I don’t make myself a huge breakfast, but I’ll usually bring along some fruit and non-fat plain yogurt to make at work. If I do have a few minutes to spare, I’ll blend my favorite new drink: an avocado with a banana, whole milk and 1 teaspoon of sugar to go.
9 a.m. – 12 p.m.: I am at my full time job, writing news stories for our company newsletter, taking photos, doing some event planning…anything that my job requires me to do. Sometimes my co-worker’s and I will take a break for 20 mins and go and grab a Starbucks.
12 p.m. – 1 p.m.: This is my lunch break and the time I check my emails. Lunch for me could be a sandwich, salad, sushi (I am addicted to my local sushi place called Anaba) or I’ll heat up a healthy, microwave meal. I usually mix it up. I eat healthy but I’ll also splurge.
Emails can range from an editor offering me a story to write, a negotiated contract to sign, maybe an event manager wants to have me execute an account that coming weekend or weekends ahead, or I could be on the phone making an appointment to interview a source or some typical errand I need to do, like getting the oil changed in my car.
1 p.m. – 5 p.m.: Back at my full time job, doing the same duties as I was doing in the morning. Usually the afternoons are filled with work meetings as well. I’ll sometimes eat a snack like carrots, an apple or crackers.
5:10 p.m.: I am home. That’s how close work is to my apartment! I’ll usually open my mail or maybe take a quick cat nap before my evening begins. I love sleep!
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.: A variety of things can be going on: I could be writing a story, a blog entry, entering an event report, getting my hair colored or nails done, searching the Internet for anyone that needs PR or news writing help, at the gym, on a date, scrolling the Internet for the week’s latest fashions (most retailers update on Thursday’s I have found), attending an event or grabbing some wine with my girlfriends.
I also always make sure I check my Facebook news feed to catch up on news of the day or my friend’s news. I think it’s important to see your friend’s highs and lows so you can offer your sympathy or congrats to what is going on in their life. It makes them feel important that you care.
10:30 p.m. – 11 p.m.: I am in bed happy and feel accomplished. 🙂
Saturday and Sunday: I usually wake up between 9 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. and I am in bed around 12 a.m. – 1 a.m. I’m telling you, mornings are dreadful for me!
I am most likely finishing up writing a news article that is due on Monday, running errands, visiting friends, shopping or most likely if it’s a Saturday I am executing a liquor account for 3 hours sometime in the afternoon. During a heavy season, I’ll work doubles. Saturday’s I am usually in Santa Barbara or LA. If I am in a relationship I make sure to see my man on the weekend. Sunday’s I usually do laundry, clean, maybe do brunch at my spots like Lazy Dog, The Waterside, Cafe Nouveau or the ultimate, Mrs. Olson’s Coffee Hut and hit the gym or relax at my apartment.
There you have it! The key is trying to find that work-life balance. It seems like I have a lot on my plate because I do, but it’s that down time I cherish for myself and with the people I love. You should always, always, always make time for them. 🙂