Balancing the Grind with Grace Gill, Football Commentator & Analyst

Grace Gill is a former Australian footballer who is now an expert commentator, football analyst and MC who will be providing expert commentary on all Matildas matches played during the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023, and will call the Final of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023.

Let’s start with your background! Can you share with us your career journey and what you’re currently up to?

I’m a former footballer turned commentator. I work on the A-League men and women’s competitions, the Matildas and the upcoming Women’s World Cup. During my playing career I also worked full time in the public service in Canberra – it wasn’t until fairly recently that I took leave from that role to launch myself full-time into commentary and punditry. 

We’d love to know what a typical day is like for you. Could you describe a recent workday?

My day tends to start in the morning with a walk – if I’m in Canberra it’s with my golden retriever, Kevin. If I’m in Sydney where I split my time, I’ll set out for a run or by a CrossFit gym for a drop in. There’ll be a good coffee in there too (long black with a dash or a piccolo, thanks).

If it’s a game day, I’ll have largely finished my prep so the day will be keeping across any last minute news, team updates, and refreshing my notes. Call time ahead of the game is generally a few hours for hair and makeup, into production meetings and then the part we’re all eagerly anticipating – kick off. If it’s not a game day, I’ll be prepping with reading, watching footage, phone calls, listening to podcasts and working on my notes. 

Can you define work-life balance for yourself and share with us your approach in maintaining it?

This has been a bit of an adjustment for me recently. I definitely didn’t have the balance right when I was still working full time in the office and trying to manage work across football as well. I now make sure I have at least one day when my world isn’t consumed by football – catching up with friends and family, not consuming any football related content and just getting outdoors. This has been really important to me in recent months. 

Change is constant, and it’s essential for growth. Have you made any lifestyle changes in the past year to improve your work-life balance?

Yes! The decision to take leave from my full-time office job was to do exactly that – find a better balance. I’ve been able to commit fully to my commentary and punditry work and give myself the best opportunity to make the most of this time.

In doing so I also wanted to spend more time outdoors, with my family and to do the things that seem to escape you. I also am slowly getting better at saying no – asking myself if I really want to do something, or if I feel obliged to – a work in progress. 

We’re always on the lookout for new resources! Can you recommend any books, podcasts, or newsletters that have helped you in your journey towards balance?

For my work a lot of my podcast listening is football related – but when I tune out from football, a couple of podcasts I listen to are The Diary of a CEO, Desert Island Discs and Jill Scott’s Coffee Club – technically the last is still football related, but it’s always a good listen and the type of podcast that leaves you smiling as you drive or walk along. I also try to read a book that will completely disengage me from my day to day – most recently I really enjoyed Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus

Before we wrap up, do you have any final words of wisdom or insights on work, life, or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

Be kind to yourself as you figure out what works best for you – one person’s balance is another person’s chaos – and knowing that will continually change, which is okay too. 

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.