The View From 3 A.M.

This year, my company invited me to do some cross-training on our overnight shifts for the month of March. I accepted, so I have been on a nocturnal sleeping schedule since March 4. It’s been an interesting experience. I’m writing this during the last night I’ll be at home and awake. Starting at 7:00 PM on Wednesday night, I work my last three overnight shifts. After that, I’ll need to transition back to normal so I can go back to day shifts starting on Wednesday, April 1.

Being on a nocturnal sleeping schedule has given me the luxury of lots of free time, every night that I’ve been off work. Of course, I work the same number of hours per week whether I’m working days or nights, and therefore, I have the same amount of free time either way. However, I’ve been experiencing and using my free time differently since I started working nights. When I’m off at night, I’m pretty much stuck at home. I can’t take my laptop and hang out in cafes or coffee shops, like I usually do on my days off, because they’re closed. This is a good thing for both my productivity and my bank account. Also, at night, there are no appointments or activities that I have to show up for at specific times, so I have eight or more uninterrupted hours to do whatever I want with. In short, having nights off forces me to stay at home (where all my sewing stuff is), and presents me with fewer distractions and interruptions than I had on my days off. Therefore, I’ve been able to stay on task more effectively and be more productive than I was when I was off during the day. I’m sorry to say that I don’t have much news on the personal creative front, though. I have made some progress on one of my sewing projects, but  most of what I’ve produced this month has been either schoolwork or freelance work. I’ve done a couple of interesting and challenging Japanese translation and voice-over projects in March, and I have another, English voice-over to do as soon as I finish this blog post.

I’m going to miss the peace and productivity of nights like this, but on the other hand, I missed out on a lot of social and community activities this past month, and I’d like to get those things back into my life. That’s why I’m looking forward to going back to the day shift.

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