There’s really no such thing as time off when you’re a reporter. The news never stops. There’s always something to report, whether it’s good or bad. And when you embed yourself in stories and communities, it can be hard to take a step back and breathe. When you miss an update or can’t cover all of the stories people send to you, guilt can set in.

It’s part of the job. And those feelings are what make for a good reporter.

But because of that, it’s so important for us as reporters to take time for ourselves. It’s a conversation that I had recently with one of our reporters who was starting to feel overwhelmed by the work and the load.

So we gave her the week off. And we told her to take a vacation this summer, and this fall and this winter!

Because we all need it to stay sane and healthy.

I’m taking two trips in the next two weeks! (Send suggestions for Sante Fe and Portland, Maine if you’ve got ’em.)

I also play tennis no fewer than four times a week, sometimes on weekday mornings if I have a match. I work flexible hours and my team knows that I don’t need to be on the clock 9-5 if I can get the work done. And it’s been one of the main things that has allowed me to do the work.

Because any day can bring another stressful wave of stories: human trafficking, labor issues, a police shooting.

We cover any and all of it. And if we’re not taking time to care for ourselves, we can’t care for our community, and that’s kind of the whole point.

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We believe that reporting can save the world.

The TCB First Amendment Society recognizes the vital role of a free, unfettered press with a bundling of local experiences designed to build community, and unique engagements with our newsroom that will help you understand, and shape, local journalism’s critical role in uplifting the people in our cities.

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