How Do You Create Work, Life Balance, Jacqueline Ingles?

By Jacqueline Ingles

At my previous job, I was gone from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m.  I can remember FTPing in my morning vo/sot while stirring a pot of spaghetti with my other hand. There was no life outside of being a one-woman-band reporter.  Not only was it not good for my personal life, it was not good for my psyche and it even impacted my physical health.

Now that I am working in Tampa, things have changed.  I have made a commitment to having a personal life.  I make it mandatory that I go out at least one weekend night.  I also utilize my mornings by hitting the gym.  But, it takes a commitment.  I like to think of it has having a relationship with myself…and I am not going to cheat on myself because I deserve better.

I also believe better reporting comes from getting out in the community and socializing.  When you meet people outside of work the tone is different.  People find you even more approachable when a camera is not present.  Those things can be intimidating!  It is a reporter’s responsibility to be in the know…and like I say, you cannot be in the know if you are on your couch.

In addition, if you are not experiencing what is going on in your community, how can you report?  You must become part of the social thread.  You have to see what other people are experiencing, their reactions to let’s say changes in public transportation or a growing pothole problem.  And, you don’t have to be hitting every museum or concert.  Opportunities to socialize are endless.  When I fill up on gas, I always go inside.  At four places I know the clerks and we chat.  Hey, it might not be a crazy interaction, but I am being a human being.   When you humanize yourself you will get better stories!

And finally, I live by this motto: “You can love your job, but no matter what it can’t love you back, hold you, hug you or console you.”  Friends, family and acquaintances can do this—and I will throw in my furry four-legged friends.  Make self growth a top priority and stick to it.

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