Monday, December 1, 2008

A career shift or a shift in daily routines?

Hey, congrats! That's what most of my friends told me when they learned I was taking on a full-time job, after being a freelance for the past six years.

That I was making a major career shift in my life.

Yes, for the past 6 years, most people (especially my neighbors) I know, thought I had so much free time to bum around. But how can I do that, when I was always in front of this monitor, re-viewing a lot of documents and finishing a report so I can get my professional fee, in time to pay for my bills.

This is one thing I like in being a freelance -- nobody knows for sure when you really got a job out there, or you are just feigning to have a job out there.

There are actually a few reasons why I decided to try working full-time again. And these are the things I give in response to such query:
  • I got burned out from working freelance for a long time; (burnout out? freelance?)
  • I want to experience working in an office, to relate with officemates, again;
  • I want to stay out of the house more often (as I think am getting a bit too domesticated already)
  • My office wear were getting dusty and outmoded; (that's what my daughters tell me)
  • Change of daily routine, as I was getting too attached to our pet cats and dogs, who are my constant companions at home, while my two daughters are out to school;
  • I need a social life daw (what's wrong with wanting to stay at home all the time?) ...

After a month of working in an office (again), I found out that indeed, it was not simply a matter of changing my daily routines at all. Okay, I love the feel of sunshine touching my skin every morning while am on my way to the office. I also find it more enjoyable to observe the changing weather condition while sitting in an office with glass walling and no windows, than doing it at home.

For the first two weeks, I realized I was resisting the idea of waking up early, which also meant sleeping earlier than I used to. This created a lot of self-imposed pressure and stress, not only to myself, but also to other people inside our house.

After I succumbed to the idea of waking up early as part of the choices and decisions I made, things became much easier to bear.

Coming home from the office each day turned out to be an enjoyable walk from the office, passing through the mall, then walking a little bit farther, taking a few left and right turns around a few corners ... and then I am home!

But I was not prepared for the physical fatigue I experienced at the end of the day. Having been used to working alone, I never thought that relating with several people each day can be tiring din pala! Makes me wonder how other people manage that everyday!

However, despite the 8 - 5 or a 9 - 6 schedule, my mind still works like a freelancer. Thoughts about work still go beyond an 8-5 and a 9-6 type of mindset.

There are several other changes that occurred - both positive and negative, and new things learned as well. That includes my concept about "free time". Before, I simply let my day flow by slowly (or swiftly, if there are deadlines to beat) ... then wait for my free time to come, where I can sit by the window and start writing ...

But now, if I don't schedule it, I mean when my "free time" is going to be, I would never get to enjoy it anymore.