I’ve been thinking about balance and boundaries this week. A lot of people assume I’m bad at balance because I do so many things, but I’m actually surprisingly good at it. I know this because I used to be awful.

When I worked in advertising I used to work a 70-hour week almost every week. I also had a commute that ranged between four and seven hours per day depending on where we were living; and I worked in an industry that required me to go out almost every night drinking. It was not a healthy way to exist.  (more…)

This does not come as a great surprise. A couple of weeks ago I looked at my growing to-do list, decided to be sensible, and said I’d be scaling back the blog to 2-3 posts per week.

However there’s this maxim that goes: “If you want something done, give it to a busy person” and I’ve realised I might be the human embodiment of it. Because the less I have to do, the less productive I am with any of it. Jobs take me hours, my house is a mess, etc. Give me more, though, and suddenly I’m a productivity machine.  (more…)

Quit your day job and do what you want.

It’s screamed across the internet like a beacon of hope in a world of soulless corporate drudgery.

But I’m a realist, not an idealist, and like I’ve said many times before, sometimes running off into the sunset to live the dream doesn’t quite go to plan. Even if it does, you might not enjoy your dream life as much as you’d expected to.

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The world has been getting smaller for a long time. Since we invented the motorcar, which made journeys between towns quicker to complete, it seems that humans have been trying to bridge the distance between their communities in new and exciting ways.

The internet, of course, is a perfect example of this. It’s now possible to watch a Turkish political coup unfold on Twitter; to live stream police violence in the USA to Facebook users around the world; to converse face to face with a friend who lives thousands of miles away via Skype.

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People have always asked me how I manage to fit all the various things I do into my life. In the past, the answer was that I was a workaholic who could get by on four hours’ sleep a night.

Nowadays, however, I’m in my late twenties, and while that means I’m still young (right? RIGHT?!), it also means I’ve started making those little noises when I get out of chairs or bend to pick something up, and also that going to bed at a reasonable hour instead of stumbling drunkenly through the streets of Dalston at 3am seems like a perfectly good nighttime pursuit.

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I was in South Carolina. It was 34 degrees outside, which is the hottest I’ve ever been (I’m from Scotland, I’m not used to heat). The sun was shining and there was a glittering pool outside my window, and a giant golden sandy beach stretching for miles just across the road.

I was in Brussels. It was 20 degrees outside and on the way to the hotel I’d walked past several cafes that I wanted to try out. I was there for under 48 hours and I wanted to explore. I’d heard good things about the chocolate shops and the architecture.

I was in Dublin. It was neither 34 nor 20 degrees outside, but it was sunny and I knew there was a good whiskey place up the road. I also knew from prior experience that the Old Library at Trinity College is one of the most beautiful sights I’d ever seen, and I wanted to go back.

But I had to work. So I did. How?

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Some of my favourite features on other people’s blogs are interviews with various people. Sarah does her ‘True Stories’ series, where people share interesting things about themselves. Caitlin does her ‘Vegan Traveller’ series, which documents people who travel whilst following a vegan diet.

So, in true blogger style, I thought I’d steal borrow the whole interview idea and set up my own interview series.

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