Wednesday, 28 July 2010

No rest for the Grumpy

There is something seriously wrong going on here. Work has been busier than usual, which is OK, I can live with that. But it’s not just my paid employment. I’m overworked at home.

Don’t get me wrong, Him Indoors doesn’t have me scrubbing the floor on my hands and knees on a daily basis and starching his shirts with one hand and cooking a roast dinner with the other every Sunday. It’s everything else. And who is it who is pushing me to these limits? Well, me actually.

The thing is, in order to get anything done, I need to set myself little targets. For example, I make myself write for this blog once a fortnight and my fledgling Love to Hate London blog every week. Easy peasy, you might say. But then there is the “long piece”, which I have been chipping away at all year at the rate of 1,500 words a week. No problemo, I hear you cry.

Are you kidding me? OK, so I can fit that into my schedule around the full time job, the housework, the social life and three visits to the gym a week (at my peak anyway ... and no, I haven’t been this week ... yet). But then there are the distractions of the internet.

A-ha! Facebook addict! You may accuse. Well, not really. The thing is I am keen to promote my writing now I have got into the swing of it. And that takes time. Online. A friend of mine introduced me to Twitter. “It is a really good way to network, but you do have to devote a lot of time to fully utilise it,” she warned. I nodded obediently, wondering to myself what the big deal is. I just write a few random comments every now and then, right? Wrong! You need to seek out your followers, retweet them, direct message, reply and mention them in order to get their followers to see you too – and in the hope that they will return the favour of sharing the birdie love. It is not for the faint-hearted.

Then I asked the lovely Maddie York for advice on setting up a newsletter to send out to current (and potential) blog followers – or anyone else who is unfortunate enough to have their email address in my contacts list. She replied with a comprehensive email explaining in technophobe language how to go about it. Now I just need to find the time between visiting my sister up in Leeds and hosting a barbeque the weekend after to get my butt into gear and do it. Then the hostess with the mostest Blogger sent me a very useful email telling me how to fully utilise its promotional tools, linking my blog to Facebook, Twitter and even Amazon. Oh goody, I thought, something else I need to do but don’t know how the hell I am going to find the time to do it.

Then there are the other things I need to do. Like reading my book club book, going to see the osteopath, looking after the plants on the terrace (note to self: I must water them when I have finished being grumpy). Talking to my mum on the phone. Shaving my legs. All things that I need to do (and most of which I enjoy doing) but seem to be finding increasingly difficult to squeeze in at the moment. And yes, it is all self-inflicted. Put it down to over-ambition or plain craziness, I don’t know ... and I don’t even have time to figure out what to do about it. And I’m supposed to be starting a college course in September too ...

Last night I promised myself a night of chilling out in front of the telly with a glass of wine followed by a candle lit bath. I was in need of some R&R, and, what with meeting a friend today, going to the gym, the osteopath and meeting another friend for lunch on Friday before catching my train up north, it seemed like the best opportunity to allocate myself a little bit of “me time”. So, did I have the glass of wine? Oh yes. Did I watch some mindless telly? Indeed – whilst chatting to my sister and pratting on the internet. As for the candlelit bath ... well, that didn't happen. It got to 9.15 and I hadn’t even tweeted yet ...

Read more by Shelly on Grumpy Young Women
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