career

"I know I'm too busy, but I wouldn't have it any other way."

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This week my life basically fell apart. I worked a six-day week last week and on Sunday, when I was trying to recover, my cat got sick.

Not throw up on the rug and forget about it later sick, but trip to the vet, serious surgery, two days in the animal hospital, massive vet bill sick.

Then he came home and just lost his mind a bit, so he wouldn’t settle down and sleep at night. Instead, he spent his time prowling around my room and meowing in my ear.

I get up at 5am every day to get to work, and so I really value my sleep. This week I did not get anywhere near enough. But my life didn’t stop, I still had to get up and go to work. I still had a million things I had promised to do and events I’d agreed to attend. (And I still had a bunch of episodes of Outlander to get through too.)

"I get up at 5am every day to get to work, and so I really value my sleep." Image: iStock.

To be honest, except for the cat thing, this is basically my every week. And I love it. I know being busy is often seen as a negative thing. That the implication is that “busy” people are either not efficient or think they are more important than other people. I totally reject that.

Busy is great because it keeps you on your toes. One thing I’ve always loved about being a journalist is the variety. You never know what you are going to be doing next and that is just so much fun. It’s unpredictable and fast paced and an amazing way to learn about the world, one story at a time.

"That the implication is that “busy” people are either not efficient or think they are more important than other people. I totally reject that." Image: iStock.

It is basically impossible to get bored when you’re busy. And that’s not because I never get any down time, it’s because I am doing something different pretty much every day. I don’t think being busy means never making time for yourself (um, Outlander anyone?), but it means keeping yourself open to new and challenging things.

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It also means working hard to maintain friendships and interests outside of work. I have a big, stressful, incredibly non-stop job. It is really easy to spend my nights rugged up on the couch watching Masterchef and eating takeaway. But I try not to. I want my life to be more than just the office. So I squeeze in as much other stuff as I can.

"I want my life to be more than just the office. So I squeeze in as much other stuff as I can." Image: iStock.

Sometimes I get to the end of the week and think ‘how did I just do that?’. But I also know I’m definitely not the only one struggling to find time to fit in the latest season of Orange is the New Black, or trying to decide if it’s more valuable to knock over a few chapters of a book or be up-to-date with Q&A.

Every week, when I’m catching up with my friends, I hear the same stories of juggling acts from them. Our catch ups are more fun because it’s so nice to step back from everything that’s going on in my life and hear about someone else’s hectic, crazy world.

This morning I did something I never usually do. I shut my cat out of my room after he woke me up for the 10th time that night, at 4 am.

As I lay in the somewhat quiet (I could still hear him scratching on the other side of the door) I thought about my busy day ahead and I couldn’t wait to get into it. After another hour’s sleep, of course.

How do you manage being busy ?

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