Work-Life Balance Off Kilter

June 12, 2011 § Leave a comment

I’m throwing a pity party for myself. Bear with me.

My plate is full. Dripping gravy off the side, actually. A sample of what I have going on:

  • I’m an editor for a trade magazine. Full time. Travel, writing, managing freelancers and editorial schedules and advertising opps, putting out (a kickass) weekly enewsletter, being a resource 24/7 for my industry, etc etc.
  • I am a paid blogger, weekly posts.
  • I put in about 16 hours a week managing a series of gardens. Seasonal, but still.
  • I’m also a paid podcaster. Twice a month and I’m just the color commentator. But still, it’s about scheduling.

That’s the paid stuff, as meager as it is. On top of that:

  • I volunteer for my local garden tour – on the committee, actually.
  • I’m on my community garden’s board of directors.
  • I’m a die-hard Red Sox fan. That’s three hours a day right there. I know, that’s not a good excuse, but still.
  • I run and bake and cook, or at least I try to. When I have the time.

And all I really want to do is that last line. The running and baking and cooking. All I want to do is Dainty.

Get over it, we’re all in the same boat, right? I know that, but why? Because all the work gets us more money which gets us more stuff? That may be true for some people, but not I. My portion of the spoils pays for half the mortgage and monthly bills, and self-employment income tax—that’s about it. So, it’s not about the money. Okay, so maybe it’s about paying the mortgage—banks do like to get paid. But I’m not doing this for the money.

If I’m not doing it for the fortune, it must be for the fame. Ha! Okay, so, when I travel on business, people I don’t even know do come up to me and talk to me like we’re great friends. And that’s only because I appear in their inboxes weekly and mailboxes monthly and Facebook feeds randomly. Is that fame? Nope. It’s kinda nice, but still.

Then I must do it because it’s all easy, right? Wrong. On my daily to-do list, there is at least one thing (who am I kidding? Three things!) that just doesn’t happen. Even remotely. I have so much going on, I can give none of them the quality and respect due to them. Oh boy, and does that stink. My father the farmer, god love him, is and was always saying, “good enough.” The weed-choked garden was good enough. The produce with spots going into the bag for sale, good enough; the plowing job, good enough; the barn in need of repair, good enough. His health, his family, always just good enough. Dear lord, it’s happening to me. Just in order to get it done—and good enough—to move on to the next.

Why am I doing it, then?

That’s a very good question. One I’ve been asking myself a lot lately.


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