Last week I decided to give myself a week off blogging, and spent the weekend with a friend. I’d had a stressful few months, I felt like work was getting on top of me, and my writing had lost focus. I’d lost sight of what I wanted my blog to be. I was unhappy with the way my content was coming out.. that it was always a mishmash of occasional outfit posts and sporadic content. I couldn’t order my thoughts and the frustration only further served to block my words. Ironically a key part of my job is creating brand strategy, mapping content and developing brand communications plans. So why was I failing so miserably to do it for myself?
I’ve been suffering from anxiety for a few months now. Maybe even longer if I’m honest. And the pointless worries and concern have clouded my head and left me doubting the reasons why I even bother sometimes. It makes me worry about stupid things like the pile of magazines building in my room that I never find the time to read. It makes me focus on the things that aren’t quite right, or working out the way I’d want, instead of looking at the bigger picture. It stops me appreciating the really great things that I have going on. And to be honest, that’s enough to make anyone feel pretty shitty. Of course it helps to have a group of amazing friends and family who can find a way to help you focus on the good stuff, and just be there to listen when you’re not feeling so sunny.
The thing about anxiety is that sometimes it’s triggered by something and sometimes it just pops up for no reason. I feel kind of grateful to know that mine has a pretty definite source (or two). I can pinpoint what it is that triggers my feelings and while it’s not pleasant, I feel like it’s a pretty normal reaction to the circumstances. While I’m not quite ready to talk about the reasons why, I have come to the realisation that it’s something I want to write about. It’s just the timing isn’t quite right yet.
I realised in the midst of all this negativity that I needed a new focus. Something positive. Luckily for me that came in the shape of photography classes. I’d signed up for the class with the guys from work a few months ago (before Christmas in fact), as part of an EU scheme for small businesses. I’d almost forgotten about it until we got the call about a month ago to say that the course was starting. So for the last few weeks I’ve been going back to basics with my new camera, learning more about its capabilities from a technical perspective. And while I know my photography isn’t going to change overnight, I do feel like having a focus and learning something new is helping me to get to a happier place. The same sort of applies to my blogging. There are changes I want to make, (like to my blog name, which feels like something I’ve outgrown and clung onto for want of a better option). I want to improve the content, get more frequent at posting, and take advantage of the opportunities that come my way. I’ve been blogging (albeit badly at first) since 2009, and I think it’s about time to put the effort in.