Sunday, March 31, 2013

On the Topic Of...Finding a Balance

For many of us book bloggers, blogging isn't our main occupation, it's a hobby. A hobby that takes up a lot of our time, but a hobby all the same. For my part, I'm finishing up my last year of my undergraduate degree, I work two jobs and I read and review books. So if you want my opinion, it's all one big balancing act.

The whole time I've been blogging, I've been a university student. When I first started my blog, it was summer, I didn't have a job and was reading. Blogging just became a way to pass time, give me something to do with my days other than just lying around reading. Since I had nothing else on my plate at the time, I didn't realize just how much of my time blogging would be taking up once I started school again. That first year things weren't so bad since all I really did was go to school, read and blog. But then the second year, I started working while going to school. And now in this third year of blogging, I've been going to school and working two jobs. And as much as I love all those things, at times it's been hard to balance it all.

There are times when all I want to do is read and blog when really I should be focusing on my school work. At other times, once I've gotten through all my school work I want nothing more than to just sit on my couch and do nothing, but I hear my blog calling out to me because it's been neglected. I'm not going to lie, there are times when I just had to neglect my blog because I couldn't even think about forcing my brain to do more work. But through it all, I've somehow found a way to keep up with school, work and my blog. the key thing is to sort of find a balance between all the different things going on in my life. 

But through it all I have found ways to keep on top of it all…or more or less on top of it all depending on how just busy I am. For me, it came down to what my priorities were. As much as I love blogging, my main priorities are school and work. And from that point on things just kind of fell into place. Blogging is something I'll do when I have time and I learned to stop worrying whenever I went a few days without posting any new content. As for reading, there's no better time than before bed to read a few chapters to wind down after a long day. You just have to find a way to make it all work together. And as soon as something feels forced, that's when you have to take a step back and re-evaluate. That's what I did. And now I've been blogging for almost 3 years.

So what are some of the ways you've found that work to balance blogging and all your other commitments? I know what works for me, but I'd love to hear some suggestions!

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5 comments:

  1. Hmmm.. I don't have any suggestions, but I'm an undergraduate, too. It's my second year and I have still 1 and 1/4 to go and I have only one job aside from school (dear god, how do you keep up with two jobs AND school AND a blog? You have my full respect, Emilie!) and yes, sometimes I do feel the pressure of posting at least 5 days a week and two reviews per week, but if I don't, my blogging friends understand and it's cool. I think I'm my worst enemy in the sense that no one expects me to post so much but myself and I feel kind of disappointed in myself if I don't. But just as you said, I must put things into perspective and for me, too, school and work come before blogging. It's great that there are audiobooks out there! I listen to them when I ride to school/work/home on my iPod and then I can still do some "reading" even if I'm not at home + I read some stuff on my phone when I don't bother to bring a physical book with me. I like those options. Other than that, I don't have any kind of advice for me nor you. You've done a wonderful job though:-)

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  2. The only way I can balance for myself is to schedule posts ahead of time. Usually a few at a time so I can have some days off. I like what Book Nerd Canada is doing. She is taking a month off blogging so she can schedule about a month of posts. It's hard how much pressure we put on ourselves isn't it? Blogging should be fun, especially when it's a hobby. But it's nice to know we did our best and so I completely do this myself. Great topic!

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  3. Scheduling posts ahead works for us too. Even if it's just preparing the static part of the post. Putting pictures in and labels and times. I also write up long-hand notes at work for my reviews, that way I at least have a starting point. I'll be away for almost 3 weeks in May, and I'm already scheduling posts to cover my whole vacation. We'll still have to take a few days off though, but we won't be completely quiet. I think we all just do what we can, when we can, and that's the best we can hope for.

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  4. As others have written, I've started scheduling posts in advance to avoid total silence for too long :) When I was an high school student I didn't do it, but I had more free time than now (I'm studying at University).
    Anyway, the most important thing is that I know that I have priorities, and I know that, even if I do love blogging, sometimes it has to shift back and leave space to some other, more important commitment. There's nothing wrong about it :)

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  5. For me, the hardest thing is making time to read in the first place! If I'm able to read, I'm generally able to post. But I'm not a fast reader and if I get really busy in "real life," like when I recently moved, I have pretty much nothing to post about, so I took a break. I like keeping up with my blog, but sometimes life gets in the way and I just have to be OK with that :)

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