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My husband likes to tell me that I have “too much going on” in my life. Puh-lease. I’m one of those people that can’t help but be busy – I NEED to be busy, I love my side passions. To prove this point – I’m writing this blog post from the comfort of my bed because I threw my back out (again) – my planner and a package of Oreos are keeping me company – side passions people. Mine include: horses, writing, blogging, teacher education (I have another blog that you can check out called My Teacher Craft), vintage vendor, and DIYing. On top of those, I’m also a graduate student, wife, and working mother. The question in my daily life becomes “how to handle multiple hobbies” without sacrificing life. I’m not going to lie and say that I have this down to a science because I don’t – not by a long shot. But I do try to follow three simple guidelines for handling my side passions.
Guideline #1: Give it up if it doesn’t make you happy.
Not to create a Sheryl Crow ear worm for you, but if it makes you happy (even without a huge payoff – cough, cough, blogging, cough, cough) then figure out a way to continue to pursue it. The opposite is also true, if it doesn’t make you happy then give it up! I was writing for an equestrian magazine and I found myself dreading it every month. I loved the content and the concept but hated the editing process (it made me feel like my writing wasn’t my own) and felt that the deadline was also interfering with this thing called “life”. I knew that I had to give it up and I am very happy that I did. I felt that I could devote more of my life to the side passions that truly make me happy.
Guideline #2: Keep your ass organized!
There are two scheduling products that I swear by: my Google calendar app and my Erin Condren LifePlanner. The Google calendar app is free and pulls from all of your calendars – so my school, Apple, blog, and vendor are all combined into one app. Also, the app picks some events to make a cute little graphic so it’s also aesthetically pleasing and FREE.
But I also like have a place for my list making obsession – this is where the Erin Condren LifePlanner comes into play. It is a worthwhile investment and the fact that you can customize the crap out of the layout and style makes it worth every penny. If you want a discount on a LifePlanner, I do have a referral link/code that saves you $10 (https://erincondren.com/referral/invite/meaganbrockway1211). There are three category areas within the planner that allow for me to breakdown my to-do lists into: personal life, work life, and side passion life. It’s on my side passion to-do list to write a detailed post about my planner set-up.
Guideline #3: Prioritize and don’t worry.
Follow the rule of three: pick the top three things that you NEED to do for the day and mark them off of your list for the day. If it doesn’t need to be on the priority list, then don’t worry if it doesn’t work out as planned. As a DIY blogger, shit goes wrong ALL. THE. TIME. I run out of paint, cut the lumber at the wrong size, the piece of furniture I’m picking up is actually press board crap, or I throw out my back and can’t move without howling in pain. But the bills are paid, the baby is fed, the horses are taken care of, and my side passions are going to survive without me for a few days.
I will admit that my side passions can cause a lot of stress and tension when the deadlines all seem to fall on the same day or week. But I love them and know that they fulfill something within me. Without these three guidelines, I’m sure that my side passions wouldn’t have lasted this long.
If you are a side passion type of person and have some advice to share, please let me know in the comments below!