That feels backwards when a lot of people are quitting their gigs for something more creative or liberating in the time department, but for me it's actually quite the contrary.
In fact, at age 36 (37 in a couple weeks) I feel a freedom I've never felt before. Every day I wake up at the same time, spend an hour and a half at home relaxing and getting ready for the day, walk 20 minutes door to door (through madison square park which is pretty swell), spend 8 hours in the office, walk home, eat, workout, relax, sleep, repeat.
I love it. Seriously.
For about 15 years I was a freelance theater technician/stage manager/etc. I was whatever the job needed me to be, whenever and wherever it was. I never knew if/when the next one was coming, but I always knew it was only a matter of time before it was over and I had to scramble again. Weekends didn't exist unless I was unemployed which meant no cashflow to go out and play. I had zero consistency in my life and it was exhausting.
I've been at the new job now for just over 8 months and I've allowed myself to breathe for the first time. What most people have spent their adult lives taking for granted, I'm soaking in as a luxury. Two days off in a row every week without fail. A regular daily schedule. Weekly paychecks that I know are coming.
You should have seen my face the day I realized I could take vacation and get paid.
The other most excellent benefit (aside from actual benefits by the way) is that I'm actually becoming more productive creatively than I was as a freelancer. Being able to relax has given me time to think. The energy I used to think about where the next job came from is now space to day dream. I'm able to concentrate on things that make me happy... guilt free. It's a completely new concept. I feel as if I've hit a reset button.
To be fair, I really love my job and that makes all the difference. I don't come to work feeling miserable. Plus it's a relaxed office where I get to be my creative self (see: Desk Jon) and dress the way I feel comfortable. I won't be here forever, but I'm pleased to be here for now and it's helping me find the part of myself that will be around forever. In my day-to-day grind, I'm discovering more about who I am as a person.
Plus I REALLY REALLY love office supplies and I've never had a reason to use them before. LOOK AT THIS CUTE LITTLE STICKY ARROWS UP THERE!