069: Balancing the Soul and Schedule of a Creative Life: Interview with Emily Freeman [Podcast]

A strong sense of community is diluted when we hide our true faces behind a screen. What if there was a way to create space for deep connection online and offline?


People used to sit on their front porches and talk for hours with friends and neighbors. Now, we rely too heavily on social media to stay connected, but we’re not often experiencing community.

We get caught up in the hustle of a busy life when what we really need is a break before we breakdown.

This week on The Portfolio Life, Emily Freeman and I talk about how she learned to create physical places to rest and how it changed her marriage, her neighborhood, and her writing career.

Listen in as we discuss building a bench for your readers and connecting your art with an audience.

Listen to the podcast

To listen to the show, click the player below (If you are reading this via email, please click here).

You can also listen via iTunes or on Stitcher.

Speak the language of your loved ones

Creatives often struggle with winning over those closest too them. Spouses, family, and friends don’t always “get it”. Usually the problem is staring at the artist in the mirror. It was for me.

For about the first year I’d wake up early to write and stay up late to publish posts, and my wife didn’t completely “get it.” I wanted to blame her, but I wasn’t communicating well that the next season of our lives would look a little different as I worked on this dream.

If you feel like no one supports you, owning it and clearly communicating makes a difference and provides room in your life. Not everyone will “get it”, but some will.

There will be somebody who can share this with you and encourage you. You’ll start hearing people say, “Oh! That makes sense.”

The first step is admitting it.

Show highlights

In this episode, Emily and I discuss:

  • Blending the lines between creating and marketing
  • How to react if you’re held hostage by hustle
  • Disciplining yourself to create margin
  • Focusing on your craft and caring for your audience
  • Remembering you are more than your work
  • Deciding which emails to respond to
  • Why Tuesday is the most accurate picture of your life
  • Doing more in less time and finding focus in less than ideal situations
  • The value of face-to-face community
  • What to do if your loved ones don’t “get” your creative self
  • A daily practice to make good writing easier

Quotes and Takeaways

  • When you show up like a hostess and someone who wants to serve, there’s a lot more freedom.” —Emily Freeman
  • Fight for margin. Leave room for your soul to breathe.
  • Writing seeps into you. You can’t separate the work from the person.” —Emily Freeman
  • Competition is the enemy of connection.” —Emily Freeman


Do you have a place to rest? Where’s your bench? Share in the comments