I am writing this blog at 3:37 PM. By 3:37 PM today I have already seen actors auditioning for my December play, queued up social media for my tarot and theatre business, and pitched three articles. I've e-mailed clients, and now I'm writing this. I'm also seeing a show tonight that I'll wake up in the morning and review. On paper, I pass as fairly productive and successful. Yet I stay relatively chill, which causes a lot of people to ask me how I manage three careers so easily. To which I respond: I don't manage them easily. Ha! I'm stressed out all the time! I have like four different anxiety disorders! Only two are work related but still!
I digress. Easily or not, I do manage those careers and have fun in between. So I do understand why people ask me how I do it or what my secret is. Unfortunately though, when most people ask me that they seem to be looking for magick and wisdom, some miracle or pearl they can hold to. My answers are...um...not the most satisfactory.
I sleep as close to eight hours a night as my body will let me.
I don't let myself get distracted during a work session by fun social media or my cats wanting attention, but I do take breaks to nurture those things. I cut my work day down by over 90 minutes a day when I stopped checking Facebook every ten minutes. That's 90 minutes of good cat cuddling time I was wasting every day, y'all.
I take my meds and drink lots of water.
I do something for every career every day.
I also do something fun and something for self-care that isn't just “food and meds” every single day. Every. Single. Day.
I eat when I'm hungry.
I keep my apartment fairly orderly for focus reasons.
I keep a paper planner with to-do lists at my side when working. It's old-fashioned and boring. It also works.
I take days off. Wild and innovative, I know. But this stack of comic books isn't going to read itself, and what am I supposed to do—NOT go to the beach when it's super nice out?! Psssh.
Look, the reality is I don't have kids. I do lose entire days to sickness, but still manage to get a bare minimum done on those days. Not everyone can do that. I also have an incredibly supportive group of friends and family. They are all also part dreamer, part doer who own restaurants, run Reiki businesses, and make lots of of art--so they get it. All of that means that in the grand scheme of things, I'm incredibly blessed in flexible time and having support. My life is probably not manageable with kids, and it certainly was not manageable before I was on proper meds for my 9,000 chronic illnesses. Certainly I have had bad family relationships and incredibly toxic social groups, and you know what? I didn't realize it then but my careers suffered greatly in those times. By sheer stroke of luck, my circumstances allow my careers to flourish and that's the harsh reality of success sometimes. Don't beat yourself up if things take you longer because of other dreams you had, mistakes you made, lack of support in your life, or really anything else.
Regardless of those extenuating factors though, the way I manage multiple careers is by taking care of myself first, my loved ones second, and my careers third. It's not easy and anyone slinging you expensive, magickal surefire tracks to success online is probably lying to you. The path to loving your life, including and especially your work life, isn't easy but it is doable. (Please note: Placing career third doesn't mean you don't do stuff. I work anywhere from a six to a fourteen hour day most days, with my average being around a standard “eight.” Taking care of career third means taking care of it.)
To summarize: If you're juggling multiple careers and a whole life outside of that, how do you ensure success? Allow for it to happen over time. Don't rush. Oh, and take care of yourself first, your loved ones second, and your careers third. You'll get where you need to go.