New York City, NY

New York Content Creators Can't Take a Break. Or Can They?

Michael Loren
Photo by Siegfried Poepperl on Unsplash

It’s 3:15 pm on a holiday weekend in lovely New York City. The sun is shining through the gently blowing bedroom curtains. The whir of a neighboring air conditioner and the noise machine echoing through the baby monitor where my son is napping lull me into a peaceful reverie. I’ve had a lovely morning with my family and now I feel the need to…be productive.

Yep. That’s my brain. Snap out of it, Michelle. All I really want to do right now is take a nap, but I can’t because there is a gnawing and relentless chant that echoes in the twisty caverns of my brain.

Must. Create. More. Content.

This is the New York content creator’s paradox. We strive for a life that is free from the constraints of “working for the man,” but we then often find ourselves in the unrelenting hamster wheel of content creation. We eject ourselves from the New York roller coaster of corporate life and we fall into a situation that can be equally as exhausting.

I find it difficult to rest. Because I assume that if I do, the momentum of my previous accomplishments is lost and I let down those who are following my writing trajectory. In short, if I don’t keep pushing that boulder up the hill, it will begin sliding back down, taking me and my progress with it.

In the world of New York content creation, there is no time that is off-limits for writing, be it 5 am, Sunday afternoons, on road trips, or in parking lots. If there is a digital device and content can be created, I am either creating it or feeling guilty for not doing so. Now, I’m not saying this is necessarily healthy, but as I click away at my keyboard on a Saturday afternoon, I realize that I might not be alone in how I am feeling.

Creating your own schedule in New York is awesome. Living your own life the way you want, being your own boss, the freedom to work from literally anywhere — these are the merits of a career as a content creator. But there is something many people don’t talk about. And it sounds a lot like guilt.

If you work a 9 to 5 job in New York, you likely put all thoughts of your job away when you clock out (or leave the office — wherever that office might be). Weekends are reserved for hobbies, family time, and lounging unless there is some sort of work emergency. It doesn’t work that way in the world of content creation.

There is no clock in, clock out, designated weekend, or limit to how much work you should do. No one is telling you to do more or take a break. And for those folks like me who are very driven (sometimes perhaps unhealthily so), it can be exhausting. Do we really need to move at the same breakneck speed of Times Square, the internet, and the ticker on the New York Stock Exchange? Or can we just take a moment and breathe, enjoy the coming summer, and begin to witness the world open back up for business and fun?

So, I’m not going to write you a story right now. I’m going to make a cup of coffee and do some gardening on my little balcony. Or, I might just take a nap. But what I won’t do is write a 12-minute well-researched article. I’m going to be a good boss to myself and give myself a day off.

I promise, it really does improve your productivity in the long run.

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Professional writer and journalist with concentration in data analysis. I specialize in interpreting data to give you unbiased, understandable information related to the state of California.

Los Angeles, CA

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