Juggling and balance

For a yoga instructor, there are days my life balance is completely out of whack. Of course, being a FT newspaper editor, a PT group fitness and yoga instructor and a writer might have a lot to do with that. I’m about a week into a four-week stretch of absolute insanity between pulling extra shifts for work to cover vacations, prepping for an instructor training and then for two special events at the gym. My challenge, as always, is to make time for the writing when it’s the one placing the fewest demands on me.

There’s not a big secret to doing this, no magic wand. I get up early, and try not to get sidetracked by the Internet. I look for little pockets of space I can carve out to at least brainstorm and outline, even if I can’t write. And, as has happened twice this week, sometimes I let the writing go for a day. Yes, I lose some momentum. But I had a six-month period a few years back where I did way too much – mostly work – for way too long and it wasn’t pretty. The resulting three-ring cluster made me a better writer – more emotional material to draw upon. But it also taught me when I need to stop being Type A and just breathe. Last night was one of those nights. I decided I’d chill for a few hours after my 14-hour work day ended, and start fresh this morning. And I did and I am. Today the writing gets first crack at my brain – I’m trying to write two short stories and outline the second act of Fate’s Arrow. Then I’ll be locking myself in the gym for the afternoon to kick my own butt before next week’s training. (Seriously – one-arm, one-leg hovers. I’m insane.) And I’ve said a million times, I wouldn’t be able to do all this if I had pets, kids or an SO. The stuffed animals don’t care if the apartment has dust bunnies.

So how do you guys juggle your writing with everything else you have to do, especially those of you with FT jobs that aren’t writing fiction? (Jet, I know your hours are at least as insane as mine most days.)