I’ve decided to write today’s post as a bit of an off the cuff one about the amount of pressure we put on ourselves as human beings.
I’m a huge advocate of life is too short and we should attempt to inject as much happiness into our day as possible, but at the same time, I also put a huge amount of pressure on myself to achieve in the different areas of my life, and when it doesn’t go to plan (which, let’s face it, is a lot of the time…) I feel a huge sense of guilt.
I got a notification from Facebook this morning (of all places) to say that the people who have ‘liked’ my blog page hadn’t heard from me for a while. My initial reaction was, oh yeah, I haven’t written a post all week, and I hadn’t even realised because I have been so wrapped up in the other areas of my life and planning for the fortnight ahead. I could have felt a huge amount of pressure from this reminder (and ironically, it led to me writing this post…) but I’ve come to the conclusion that once you remove the pressure from something, it because much more enjoyable.
I have the same problem when it comes to going to the gym. Back in summer I was really in the zone and had a proper routine that I stuck to; but as I’ve got busier in the last couple of months with work commitments, blogging events and general festivities, I’ve not found the time or motivation to go as much, and I’d been punishing myself for it. But in reality, I’m in charge of my own body – it’s up to me what I put into it, how much I exercise and how I chose to live my life, and in all honesty, I’d forgotten what it felt like to not stick to a strict exercise schedule.
Once I’d taken the pressure off myself to go to the gym, I’ve felt much better about my decision to not go, as strange as that sounds. It’s not the end of the world if I have a week off here and there, and if anything, it’s made me feel even more inspired to get back into it when I have the time. I also spoke to my friend, who is a personal trainer, about this, and she made me realise that if we start punishing ourselves for not going, then eventually it will feel like a chore, which is what I’ve been feeling this week.
The thing about my blog is that it is a hobby: I don’t earn the big bucks from it, and I only write about something when I’m really passionate about it and I’ve always stuck to that. I try to post three blogs a week, but sometimes other things get in the way and I fall behind, which is exactly what’s happened this week without me even realising.
Even just a couple of months ago, if I’d got this notification I would have been sent into a frenzy, cancelled all my weekend plans and not leave my office until I’d had at least 6 blog posts written and scheduled for the next couple of weeks; but recently, I’ve been blogging because I love it, not for anyone else, and it’s like a huge weight has been lifted from my shoulders: Blogging is something that I do that brings me joy, and that’s my number one priority.
About 3 months ago I wrote this post about the reasons I deleted Instagram, and I still believe that it was one of the best things I’ve done for my mental health. Before that, I was so obsessed with my insights, my blog’s page views and how I could drive more traffic, and it just wasn’t healthy. Now I’ve stopped being so obsessed when it comes to stats, I’ve found more motivation than I’ve felt in ages to blog, which is really refreshing.
Yes, there are some campaigns that rely on facts and figures to make sure you are a good fit and will do the job properly, but until I need to look at them, I’m happy in my own little bubble, creating content, and getting excited about where this blog is heading for the future.
In 2018 I want more of the same attitude: I want to continue to enjoy my time writing, attend events where I can and build the network of awesome bloggers that I know. I want goals that are achievable but also broad, that will take me down a number of different paths without me feeling pressured; I want to start loving my body for the way it is and not feel the need to look a certain way and really invest in my own self-care.
It’s fair to say that once you live life for you, it becomes a whole lot more enjoyable.
Because when you stop, and look around, this life is pretty amazing xx