Back in early 2017, I remember thinking I was never going to do much, again. I was going through a really nasty bout of depression, brought on by a fairly well-documented life event. I had my day job and maybe once a month or so, I'd see a friend. I was making YouTube videos and writing weekly children's stories, to give myself a creative outlet, but that was it. There really wasn't much more to my existence.
Fast forward to now and I'm suddenly wondering when life got quite this busy.
You see, I now have far more hours in my day job, so I've got less free time. And yet I'm now also a singer with a chorus, I'm training/studying for a qualification in directing, seeing as I'm Assistant Director of that chorus, I'm a member of an offshoot quartet formed via said chorus, I run social media accounts for the chorus, I co-host a podcast, I still have my own YouTube channel, as well as two others to create content for, I try to write whenever I get the chance and my social life actually exists, again. Oh, and my best friend and I are talking seriously about setting up a business together.
It sounds hectic. It probably is, if I actually sit and think about all the stuff I have to do. But I love it.
In the last couple of days, I've had a bit of a stressy "blip," thinking about how I'm going to fit things in. I've asked myself how I can dedicate myself to each individual thing I have to do, without watering anything down due to time constraints. I've panicked that I might focus too much on one thing and let another slide, which is terrifying, especially considering one of the things I'm doing is going to involve exams, which I definitely don't want to fail. And I've wondered how I'll fit in any "down time" for myself.
And then I came to my senses.
I've always managed to squeeze a YouTube recording session into an afternoon off work. I've always fitted editing into my evenings. It doesn't often take more than 4 hours to edit one of my videos and it's frequently less than that, since I'm pretty good at writing detailed notes for myself, so I know exactly what I'm doing. With that in mind, a weekly YouTube video for my channel can generally be sorted out in one afternoon/evening, leaving me the rest of the week for other stuff.
Once I'd gotten that into my head, everything started to feel less hectic. I told myself I'd come up with something of a study timetable (probably worked around evenings where there's not something I really want to watch on telly and I'm not out at rehearsals) for the course I'm doing. My best friend and I have already gone through the calendar for the rest of the year and plotted out when we need to record videos/podcasts, so that's all organised. Social media is an ongoing thing that I love doing and it has become part of my daily activities, without me even thinking about it. It turns out that I was panicking over nothing, really. I can do this. All of it. I can do it because I want to.
You see, everything I've got going on - all the things that are keeping me busy - are things I love. Things I enjoy doing, with people I want to spend my time with. When you realise that, your life feels less full-up and more...just full. Sure, that probably makes no sense to anyone not living in my head, but it makes sense to me, at least.
My life is full of opportunities to learn and grow. It's full of possibilities. I get to keep my creative juices flowing, have a lot of fun in the process and I am discovering new skills. All of that is good. It's something to be happy about.
Sure, there will be days when I still stress over upcoming exams, or worry that I've spent too long on one project and not enough on another, because that's just me. But when I look back at my life in early 2017, it seems horribly empty. Life nowadays is busy, exciting and challenging.
And that's just the way I like it.