Going up to full-time work with chronic fatigue, I know my long term readers are thinking…Georgia we read your struggles on your last full-time placement, what are you thinking?
I know, I know and 6-months ago when I started having the conversations of increasing my hours to working full-time it was scary and truth be told I’m still very apprehensive about what the next few months will bring, but I do have my reasons.
As many of you will know, I am my own worst enemy and struggle to say no, when I need to. So working part-time is really hard for me, my chronic self needs to work part-time. Yet, no matter how tired I am, I am always seeking to do more.
I’ve just got into napping over the past few months in preparation for going full time – bonkers, I know. For some reason I find it hard to switch off and have a lot of guilt when I do! I wish, I didn’t and I need to keep working on this.
I have come to the realisation that even though it makes me the worst disabled person ever I will always like to be busy as I’m so passionate about what I do.
My business has meant that even though I’ve worked part-time whilst I’ve been a Huddersfield, I’ve still been working full-time because on my days off I’ve been doing freelancing stuff and oh yeah, writing a 60,000-word book. So when I was offered full-time hours at Huddersfield, it made sense for me to go for it for multiple reasons.
One of the first reasons is that in a few weeks I start my PgCert in Health Education as part of my role. This will mean all my time will to be focused on University work. Either in my role as a graduate teaching assistant or as a student on the PgCert. For the next year both my roles at Huddersfield University are my priority. If I was still working part-time I’d be tempted to take on the odd freelancing project and before I know it I’d have too much on my plate again. Being full time means that isn’t an option, it will help me to say no to other projects more easily and help me to focus on my two main roles instead of stretching myself too thinly.
My second reason is so that I can have a healthier routine and occupational balance. I am after all an occupational therapist…I am also extremely lucky that working at Huddersfield University means that I can work flexibly which is going to be great when I become full-time. I have already been starting to work in bed on the days when my spoons are low without feeling guilty. It also means that I can have a lay in and start later if I need to.
I work much better in the morning so I will be able to start the day earlier and finish earlier. Again, I know I could and did do this whilst working part-time but this is when it became unhealthy because I’d end up working less hours on working day then even longer hours on a day off to make up for it because I’d either get carried away or most of the time feel guilty.
I know, I know I shouldn’t but this has meant that I’d hop online most days and look at my emails which wasn’t healthy. Working full time will mean I am working those hours anyway, and because I get fatigued from doing extra hours, it’ll be easier to stop. Sounds ridiculous, right? But I truly believe as a result I will have a healthier occupational balance. Especially as my down time will be my down time.
Of course, I will be still doing bits through AbleOTUK and other work with HCPC but most of that work relates to my role at Huddersfield so will benefit me and at times possibly appear in my work diary! Apart from AbleOTUK socials of course!
Finally, the biggest reason for the increase to full-time work has to be the support I know my team is going to give me. I am so lucky to work in such a supportive team who have already been so considerate of me going full-time and not giving me too much more on my workload. I honestly can’t thank everyone at work enough for their support during this transition.
Yes, I’m going to miss freelancing opportunities and I will find it hard to say no. It might not be forever and it might not be doable these reasons are only my thoughts so far. I know that this next move is the right one for me right now. Of course, I don’t get to work on my main interest of ableism in practice in work everyday but it comes up a lot and it is intertwined in most areas as it’s systemic. I will always find a way!
So yeah, the next few months are going to look a bit different as I’m adjusting, but I’m ready for the challenge!
Thank you for reading,