What I’d change, looking back
If I could go back in time and relive that period, I would make sure that better communication between both parties was facilitated, for example using platforms such as Slack and Asana, and that there was consistent project check-ins with our client.
Talking through project concerns and contingencies would have given us the chance to address ongoing issues and mistakes, some of which we weren’t even aware of until all was said and done. Additionally, I’d have focused on stringent project management and continuous documentation to evidence our day-to-day work, practices we take really seriously today.
There was also an element of stupidly putting all our eggs in one basket. In this sense, giving our all to this one project when, as a team, we could have split up, decreasing the organisational risk if something was to go wrong. What we did was the equivalent of viewing a potential property vs many, or putting all of one’s savings into a single investment scheme.
The value of time off
During my hiatus, I got a part-time job, finished an open university qualification and became more disciplined. Most importantly, it forced me to work on my emotional intelligence, self-awareness and self-care to avoid burnout.
I also discovered that I had moderate anxiety. It had affected me immensely, but I had no idea that a tight chest, crazy heart rate, sweating, having an uneasy stomach feeling and being afraid for nothing in ordinary life situations was a mental health disorder, until I had that space to really analyse myself.