First vague song lyric reference right there….
Never mind about it being a “hot minute” since I last posted, we’re talking a ridiculous amount of time. Last I checked, it was April since I wrote any sort of content on here, which is crazy. This little hobby of mine, which was ticking along fairly nicely not only stalled but stopped completely.
Well, in the words of His Great Purpleness, “this thing called life” got in the way. The copywriting course I started at the beginning of last year in the hope that it would spectacularly catapult me into a whole new career of writing for brands and companies did exactly that, to the point that I am still yet to finish the course itself because I’ve been so busy getting actual paid work! How’s that for irony?! I am honestly still pinching myself at the very idea of it all to be fair - getting paid to write and take photographs and call it my job is quite literally The Dream. Fact.
Aside from being incredibly busy on the work side of things, this year has very much been the year of “face your fears and do it anyway". Put it this way, if someone had told me this time last year that in 2019 I would have climbed Snowdon, taken part in a 26-mile hike and ran not only a 5k but a 13k fun run as well. (Side note - who the hell named these things “fun runs”??!) But yes, ‘tis true, I not only completed all these things but I absolutely loved every single one of them. Even with the inevitable sore feet, blisters and the slight whiff of regret, I would 100% do it all again. Heck, I’ve even marked the date in my diary for the fun run next year. What the??
You may be wondering what brought all this on. Anyone who knows me will 100% know I am not the most intrepid person by any stretch of even the stretchiest imagination. Well. You know when those weirdos say they read a book and it “changed their life”? I am now that weirdo. This year, I’ve read a LOT of books (which I plan to do a whole separate blog on, you lucky people) but one book in particular really struck a chord with me. “Jog On: How Running Saved My Life” by the utterly brilliant Bella Mackie explains how running helped her through her struggles with anxiety and depression, gave her the boost she needed and proved an amazing form of medicine for her. And it is brilliant.
Why am I telling you this? Well, to cut an incredibly long story short, I went through a period in the last year or so where pretty much, my head broke and I fell apart at the seams. To say self-doubt crept in, it didn’t simply tiptoe its way in, in the words of Miley herself, it came in like an absolute wrecking ball. And, it broke me. I lost all my confidence. I found it incredibly hard to leave the house, which is a challenge when you have to do the school run twice a day, let alone anything else. I couldn’t focus on anything. I couldn’t and didn’t want to do anything. But the main reason why I have had so much time off from personal blogging is I lost my writing mojo. Somehow, I managed to continue with outside work, I’m not sure how if I’m completely honest, but as for writing and blogging from an enjoyment point of view, I just couldn’t do it. Each and every time I attempted to sit down and write, it was as though there was a giant stumbling block that I just couldn’t get past no matter how hard I tried.
So what did I do? I did what I always tend to do in stressful situations. I gave up. Gave in. I had absolutely no self-belief in blogging any longer, I couldn’t fathom why anyone would want to read anything I wrote, let alone enjoy it. And the content? What content? I didn’t have a single idea in my mind. Everything had gone.
But, as you can probably guess, things got better. The combination of time, friends who understood what I was going through as well as focusing on other things - like running and going on crazy adventures like climbing mountains, all helped in getting my head back on track and refocusing on what was important. (The drugs helped enormously too, not going to lie.) Focusing on what was absolutely NOT important really helped me too, removing the negativity that I didn’t need in my life and eliminating other things completely.
I am incredibly thankful that there are so many people around me who “get it” who were, and continue to be there for me when I needed them. From people in my work environment who gave me much needed encouragement, to the people who when I recently asked on social media “shall I even bother continuing with this blogging lark” who gave me a resounding yes - it all gave me the kick up the backside that I needed, which I am so grateful for.
I’m also so grateful that thanks to increased coverage in the media, speaking up about mental health is becoming the norm. It really is “ok not to be ok”.
So here I am, back once again, still unable to write certain phrases without making vague old school lyric references but hopefully the blogs are on their way back. I can’t promise they will be weekly, fortnightly or even stick to any particular plan but what I can say is that my blogging mojo is back. And so am I.