• Phil McDonald

Work/Life Balance

To say 2020 has been a bad year with be something of an understatement. It's been an awful year and one in which Coronavirus has affected everybody in one way or the other. Full time musicians have seen their careers, and therefore earnings grind to a halt and those starting out have had the brakes put on an exciting new career. So it may be the case that you've had to take a day job to make ends meet or perhaps you're trying to juggle a job with a music career. Either way it can be a struggle but there are some good ways to make life easier.

Firstly, keep a tight schedule. Use a calendar and make sure everything you do or need to do is entered and reminders set. When you have a fixed schedule you can see what you're doing and when you're supposed to be doing it. If you have a vague idea of things you need to do, and a rough estimate of the time frame, the chances are those tasks won't get done. Not enough hours in the day becomes the default unfortunately.

Prioritise your tasks. Some things are more important than others and are more time pressing. List the tasks you have to do and number them 1 for the most important and time critical through 2 and 3 for the least important where time isn't such an issue. A system such as this makes everything far more manageable and makes sure deadlines are hit.

Leading on from this, forming new habits can really help to get things done and to manage your time more effectively. Putting some time aside to write or rehearse becomes a habit in itself and one which you'll then stick to without thinking about. A habit is something that become second nature to us and once established, becomes a very effective tool in managing time and getting things done.

With all the technology available to us now, automating tasks can save a lot of time and stress. For example, scheduling a weeks social media posts with a tool like Buffer means you'll not only free up that space in the week where you'd be trying to sort out social media but also means you'll have more time to engage with fans who respond to your posts. You can also automate other tasks such as email responses.

Finally, be consistent. As with many things in the music industry, being consistent leads to rewards and makes life so much easier. If you plan your time as a musician and stick to it you'll find it's much easier to achieve your goals without the weight of everyday life coming down on you like a ton of bricks.

I talk about this in more detail on this weeks podcast which you can listen to here or via your favoured podcast app.

Thanks for reading.


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