WHAT’S NEW?

I’m tired. Not of life, but from work. (What’s new with my life? :/)

Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do. But perhaps, I am a little too invested in it. (Again, what’s new? *cries*)

That, and the need for efficiency.

See, I was thinking – how can I feel drained when I only work a 7-8 hours shift (sometimes less)? And I start at noon. With the news team as well, we rotate and repeat some of the bulletins so it’s technically not all-round-the-clock work.

It then dawned on me – it’s because I try to accomplish my everything, and more, in perhaps… 5 hours? I can’t seem to sit idle doing nothing! It’s a problem.

Each free minute I have is spent ticking off my daily to-do lists (I wished I didn’t have any in one day to come), which ranges from adding new business bulletins, preparing market wrap pointers for the day or days ahead, making analyst calls, transcribing and editing clips, as well as researching and coming up with questions for my current affairs story. Yes, three in one.

Also, with covering the business news bulletins, I am usually desk-bound as I have to update the numbers every half an hour. Which also means my heart (and mind) is always on the lookout five minutes before the clock hits 6 or 12.

Alas, above all, I suppose, it’s the effort I put into everything that I do.

For example with the evening market wrap segment. Yes, it’s only a 5 minutes segment, but there’s a whole lot of preparation behind it. I mean, I can get the script done in an hour, sometimes less, sometimes more, it depends.

Besides identifying a worthy enough topic to talk about on the day, there’s the thought-process of:

  • How I lead the story (it’s not print no more)
  • How do I ensure that all only relevant points are mentioned (while keeping it simple)
  • How can I use other news pieces and research reports I’ve read to add perspective and weight to the story
  • How do I ensure the story and script flows nicely

…all while crafting it into a conversation between two parties.

I’m okay with the content, but what I’ve been struggling with is the lead-in, of how to address it to the man on the street.

But yes, these days, I find myself always thinking how can I continuously add strength to my stories. Like I could be buying coffee, or having lunch, or driving in the car, and come across points that I feel should be included in my story.

Because ultimately, I owe it to the listeners and myself – to do a good job. Or at least, to the best of my ability.

See, I always wished I could give a better script. But I have since told myself that this is a daily rolling production, and I’m managing this ON TOP of my core news writing role while also my CA (sometimes), so I’ve to manage my own workflow also lah.

Also, when writing out scripts, I don’t always just copy and paste the numbers that news portals have carried. I usually cross-check the percentage changes, timelines, with charts from the Bloomberg terminal and stock exchange filings – when I have to. When I use different benchmarks and comparisons, or to just shed better light for me on the situation. It’s a trait I think I’ve inherited, coming from a print background.

Though one thing good about market wrap is, I’m given control of what topics to cover, and how I can approach the story. Am so, so grateful I can do this while also able to present now. A special shout-out here to Caroline, Ezra, Uma and Keith for having faith in me, encouraging me, and correcting my phrases/ pronunciations 🙂

Now, thinking back, at several points in my previous two jobs, I felt the same way. Where I would question myself, if this is worth it? I mean, I hope, know, it’s worth it. BUT provided only if I learn to approach it (i.e. work) in a more calm and composed manner.

I want to learn to strike a balance better – between giving my best and not stress unnecessarily. It all boils down to managing my own expectations, not be so hard on myself, and sometimes learning to let go. The last thing I’d want is to lose my health (and my ability to work fast). I’ll always, always remember that health is the greatest wealth.

Sigh, always easy to say. But practicing it? This is to me REALLY putting it to action.

P/S: The past few weeks have been extra tiring because I’m also re-editing from scratch my three infomercial interviews. (Thank you Lawrence for being so patient with me!) Not too late to start re-learning how to use Audition rather than Wavepad (a software I’ve been using from the get-go). Also, I had three back to back contributing articles to write, but as with freelance, I’ll never let that get in the way of my core job.

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