Balancing the Grind with Maddy Constantine, Media Sales Executive at Domain

Maddy Constantine is a Media Sales Executive at Domain, one of Australia’s leading property destinations, and the Editor for her personal blog Athena.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

I’ve had a short but extremely varied career so far, I learn new lessons every single day.

My career began in advertising as a digital coordinator at GroupM, one of the largest media buying agency groups in the world. Our client was Westpac Group and it was my job to set up all the digital media advertising campaigns for the bank with a really small team.

This was my first job out of uni and I loved how fast-paced it was, and how much I learned about marketing during the process. I made some great friends but it was extremely long hours and the office was located far from home so my work/life balance was a little out of whack.

About a year into that role I was approached by Unilever, one of the largest FMCG companies and biggest advertising spenders in the country to join their in-house media team.

I took on the challenge and was able to learn a lot about traditional advertising and marketing, but a year into that role I still didn’t feel I had hit the right balance.

So in comes Domain. I had kept tabs on opportunities at Domain since University as I enjoyed their content, and I was fortunate enough to land a role in their media team as a sales executive, meeting with media agencies and advertisers to sell our advertising and content solutions.

I am still in this role and loving it! I feel really supported by my team and I am close to content production which is where my real passion lies.

Soon I will be going back to Uni to complete a Masters of Journalism with the aim of moving into an editorial, content-based role in the future.

I have also started a blog called Athena which aims to elevate women by keeping them informed. I love writing and I am using my marketing background to help grow the following for Athena.

2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

It’s fair to say a day in my life looks completely different now compared to pre-COVID times. A typical day for me would look something like this:

8am – Wake up and get in a half-hour workout of some kind. Generally, it’s low impact HIIT or Pilates. I have space in my room to lay out the yoga mat and work up a sweat.

After my workout I will have a quick shower and take 5 minutes for my AM skincare routine – a mask, moisturiser and SPF, this is my version of meditation.

9am – I will grab some breakfast, most mornings I will drink a cinnamon tea and eat Greek yoghurt with nuts and honey. A healthy gut equals a healthy mind. After this I log on for the day.

Until noon – I spend the first few hours clearing through emails and setting my priorities for the day. I have a coffee before 11am because if I don’t I will get a serious headache for the rest of the day.

This is the time I take to perform all my daily checks, make sure everything is going smoothly for my clients. I take this time to catch up on the news via podcasts and the web. I have anxiety about being up to date with everything going on.

12-1 – Lunch time. Generally I will make a salad to keep it light. My salads are really getting fancy during Covid I must admit. I make sure to take at least a half hour break during this time – my go to activity is to venture outside and play with the dogs.

From 1-5 – This is the time I take to complete all the big tasks for the day – reports, campaign setups, briefing other teams on upcoming pitches. I will get up and walk around here and there to stretch my legs.

5pm – I usually clock off around or just after 5 and take some time to really unwind and switch off. Netflix and Youtube are usually the way I like to do this.

6pm – I will help out with dinner. I try and eat before 7pm.

7pm – I usually will spend time with my partner, friends or family during this time but on a night I get to myself I use this time to rsearch and write articles for my blog.

10:30pm – To end the day I will do my night skincare regime – Cleanse, tone, serums, moisturiser. If I am lucky enough to be in bed by this time I will read a book for about an hour before I get some sleep.

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?

Yes it does. My company was really flexible before COVID hit but now even more so. They have no issue with us working from home as long as the output from us is the same.

I am absolutely loving it because I get so many hours back to focus on my health – work out, eat healthy and spend time with my family. These are all invaluable to me, and it motivates me to work a lot harder.

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

I truly didn’t know what that meant until COVID hit. Now I know that it means breaking the cycle of a repetitive daily routine and really taking time for yourself to focus on your goals and your health.

The daily commute to the office and the late nights spent away from home were really sending me into a rut and having a negative impact on my health. I spend lots of time now investing in my physical and mental wellbeing and by doing so I have achieved so many goals I had for myself that I never got around to hitting.

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

Yes! The big ones would be cutting down on drinking too much, adding a workout to my daily routine and forcing myself to write as often as I can. Writing is really therapeutic for me and it helps me unload a lot of stress that accumulates.

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

Way too many so I will narrow it down to what I am into right now.

Books – I am really into the memoirs lately, especially about strong women. Becoming by Michelle Obama, I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai and Education of an Idealist by Samantha Power are all fantastic.

Podcasts – I was a huge Casefile true crime fan but I am really interested in current affairs at the moment. My favourite podcasts are “The Daily” by the New York Times, “SuperSoul Conversations” with Oprah, “Australian Politics Live” by the Guardian Australia and “Tiddas4Tiddas” by Mamamia.

News – As a media student I was trained to read news from many sources. I use apps like Ground News to aggregate news sources from all over the world. It’s great because it actually tells you whether the source is left-wing or right-wing to help outline any potential bias upfront.

Aside from that my go-to’s are the Sydney Morning Herald, Al-Jazeera English and the New York Times.

7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?

Yep! I couldn’t live without my iPhone which is obvious but in terms of apps I would say I rely most on Canva for graphic design, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram for socials.

8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?

Ariana Huffington – she is someone who has shaped my opinions about work-life balance greatly. Her book Thrive is a really helpful guide to achieving work-life balance.

9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

I would say that a big part of getting close to perfect work-life balance is to accept that you won’t always be able to get it right, 100% of the time.

Stressing about work-life balance is a really quick way to tip the scales out of your favour. When things are chaotic, ride the wave until it’s over because it will pass. Also, play an active role in your life, not a passive one.

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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.