Finding balance

Pastel painting of a Tawny Frogmouth.
Pastel painting of a Tawny Frogmouth. His face mirrors my feeling at the moment.

2017 was going to be the year to spend more time on my art and and photography, attend a few workshops and make the effort to ‘just do it’. I even ditched the Master of Marketing I had enrolled in at the end of 2016 because I knew I could not commit to study, do the things I love, stay married and work full time. In November I signed up to do an online photography course with David duChemin which I am slowly progressing through and I recently bought The Artist’s Way because I thought it might be beneficial to my creativity (or lack thereof) once the other program finishes. I have also been looking into the idea of selling some of my work through online shopfronts like Printful or Fine Art America and perhaps offering pet portraits.

That, said I find myself keen to improve my physical and our financial health. On my desk are books supporting those idea’s: Scott Pape’s The Barefoot Investor, Sarah Wilson’s Simplicious and David Gillespie’s Eat Real Food although I know I have no hope of getting hubby to ease up on his favourite sugary beverage, Rum and Coke.

With all of these potential ‘balls in the air’ the following questions have crossed my mind:

  • Am I trying to do too much or is it a case of better managing my time?
  • Can I squeeze more into my weekends and mornings?
  • Is this perfectly normal and others manage it fine, even with children?
  • Am I overthinking it?

The question of moving from full time work to part time isn’t an option at this point hence the interest in online shopfronts and the Barefoot Investor. One day I would love to be able to dedicate more hours to my art and photography than I currently can and possibly make a little money to support my habit. The other things I can’t and won’t give up is Hubby (of course), walks with Bundy and my Sunday mornings at the Animal Welfare League. Spending time at the shelter and giving homeless dogs the love and care that they all deserve feeds my soul and makes me happy.

Unlike my previous posts this post has been more of a brain dump, me trying to get my head together and sharing it with you. No doubt it is going to require more processing, hopefully without experiencing analysis paralysis. Have you experienced something similar? Would love to hear your thoughts and feel free to share your answers to my list of questions.



16 thoughts on “Finding balance

  1. colinandray January 14, 2017 / 12:35 pm

    Perhaps you should write down all the things you want to do, and then write down what is necessary to do them. I rather suspect that you will have to decide what is feasible now, and what needs to be stalled for some time.
    In my experience, you have every chance of currently starting everything… but finishing nothing. I would suggest that you consider organizing on a priority basis; applying the necessary financial and time requirements, and then deciding what is practical now vs what should be reviewed in (e.g.) 6 months.

    • Two Black Dogs January 14, 2017 / 7:18 pm

      I think you’re right, taking the time to work out what each entails would help me prioritise. My experience is that I am great at starting things but not always good at finishing. Thank you 😊

      • colinandray January 14, 2017 / 7:52 pm

        Recognizing ones shortcomings is the first step to resolving them! Go for it!

      • Two Black Dogs January 14, 2017 / 8:00 pm

        Thanks! Have a great weekend 😊

  2. Languedoc Lady January 14, 2017 / 1:34 pm

    I’m going through the same conundrum myself. My early retirement and our 18 months in France hasn’t helped our finances (although we’d do it again in a heartbeat). Neither has opening our home to our son and our two grandsons (and we’d do that in a heartbeat again, too). That said, I also am struggling to find a way to increase our income, get diet and exercise back on track and find time to update my blog (so many stories left to tell). I feel I’m in good company 🙂

    • Two Black Dogs January 14, 2017 / 7:24 pm

      We do have a tendency to take on more, I wonder if that is the nature of our life now because of technology and the world/opportunities it has opened up. We possibly place more pressure on ourselves as a result. Nice to know that I’m not alone 😊

  3. Ogee January 14, 2017 / 3:05 pm

    I think you’ll figure out the right balance, but one thing I know: life is short. Leave out the “shoulds” and focus on the things that make life full and happy for you and your family. And lack of creativity? Girl. That’s not you!

    • Two Black Dogs January 14, 2017 / 7:55 pm

      Life is short and I have to remind myself of that sometimes, there are some things in life that aren’t worth the fuss. I don’t always feel creative so thank you for the kind words 😊

  4. restlessjo January 14, 2017 / 6:09 pm

    Ogee said it pretty darn well, Sam. (I should pop over and introduce myself, but you know that leads to more online conversation and time gets even shorter 🙂 ) I’m a lot of years ahead of you and still struggling to make it all fit, and I’m lucky enough to have retired. Set your goals and keep an eye out for opportunity, but mostly just squeeze as much joy out of life as you can. And your owl is beautiful 🙂

    • Two Black Dogs January 14, 2017 / 7:59 pm

      Thanks Jo! I think you are right, will be giving this more thought and write down my priorities and set some goals. Can always count on my fellow bloggers to give sound advice 😊 Glad you liked my owl, they’re such fascinating creatures and we don’t get to see them very often. Have a wonderful weekend!

  5. fredrieka January 15, 2017 / 2:52 am

    Balance is key. I tried to balance to toys in my mouth. It didn’t work all I ended up accomplishing is frustration

    • Two Black Dogs March 25, 2017 / 2:16 pm

      Ha ha! That is priceless, would love to see that 🙂

  6. Sunshinemind89 January 25, 2017 / 11:57 pm

    I have hard core analysis paralysis right now. It’s surrounding the decision to leave my full time job and start working part time and pursuing my own personal goals.
    My hubby is on board with the decision and we are fortunate enough to be at a place where we could probably swing it. But the fear is still super intense. And I can’t seem to make myself go through with submitting my two weeks notice.

    • Two Black Dogs January 27, 2017 / 10:32 am

      It is a big decision to make, going from the familiar to the unknown especially in terms of financial security. It is something I’ve been thinking about for a while but my work has always been the stable income so I haven’t had the courage to take that leap. At some stage I will have to decide what is more important, time to do the things I love or financial security which is never really assured. Good luck with whatever you decide, would love to know how it works out for you 🙂

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