Hi, how you doing? Don’t mind me – I’m just trying to casually (but pleasantly) appear out of nowhere like the new vegan sausage roll from Greggs… I’m finally back after what feels like forever because (1) it has been and (2) a lot has been happening in the background of this blog, otherwise known as my actual IRL.
To put it bluntly, 2018 was a bit of a shit show. I had numerous family members in the hospital, and I was also suffering from really bad mental health. I also made the decision to cut some people out of my life. Although it was needed, it didn’t make the process any easier. Essentially, it was a year of life lessons that were a long-time coming.
But in reflection – it was also a year of personal progression. It was a year of realising that I need to make more time for said family members. I also realised that I had to finally confront my poor mental health. It was a year of laying important foundations – boring and unpleasant but essential for the future.
What 2018 Taught Me About:
In 2018, I realised that my university degree means nothing in the world of work. After graduating with a First, I spent the first six months of graduate life working in retail. I then finally secured a job and naively thought – that’s it, I’m on the careers ladder.
What I didn’t realise that the transition from a job to a career is a lot harder than expected. I’ve spent my whole adult life working in the creme de la creme of customer service. It’s an easy job, with many benefits, but I wanted to feel more satisfied so I threw myself into the deep end. I applied for a job that I didn’t know existed prior to applying. To sum up the first 6 months of 2018, I was awful at my job and fell very out of my depth.
However, without realising I was learning valuable life lessons – in life, you sometimes have to just stand in the wind and take all of the hits as they come. These metaphorical hits are in fact lessons, which in turn, will eventually pay off as one day, you’ll find yourself getting on with a task only to realise that actually, just a few months ago, you didn’t know this task (or if you really were as clueless as me – the actual job) didn’t exist. And suddenly it just clicks – you realise you’ve come so far without even realising.
2018 will forever be known as the year that I started to take my mental health seriously. After suffering from depressive periods since my teenage years, last year was different, as I was in a relationship, and therefore subconsciously had to think about another person.
At first, I was so scared of opening up about my depressive thoughts for many reasons. I didn’t want him to think I was weird, or to put my anxiety onto someone else. I also didn’t want to come across as hard work. But mostly, I didn’t want to accept those thoughts.
It actually feels weird typing those pessimistic feelings about my early 2018 approach to mental health, as well, now I’m so open about it all. After receiving nothing but love, support and patience, I’ve realised that actually, people are good, and will want to help.
Fast-forward to today, and I’ve come so far. My ‘down days’ are so few and far between but when they do happen, I’ve found that being open is the best solution to the problem. In fact being open has been the biggest help as I no longer feel like I’m carrying this weighted, dark secret around with me. Combining this with being more compassionate to myself, and also writing things down to see if there were any themes, I have far many more up days than down days which was never the case.
Then there’s my favourite development of them all – my relationship. 2018 was that my relationship with the boy really blossomed. After meeting at the back end of 2017 after a cheeky swipe to the right, we started 2018 as (1) a fairly-new couple and (2) drunk out of our arses.
2018 was the year that we really got to know each other, and where I personally discovered what a Real Relationship consists of. I learnt that it’s about being a team, and respecting each other. It’s about surprising that person with the little things, and spontaneously telling them “I love you” as you can’t hold it in anymore. It’s about loving their idiocies and being excited about the future – your future together.
So although was a bit of a shit-show on some parts, it wasn’t all bad. In fact, all of the realisations and reflections made 2018 feel like an interlude of a book. It was more about understanding and processing the past. But now it’s 2019, and the gritty first chapter of the book is where it really begins.
Personal Goals for 2019
And thankfully it’s already starting to! Last week I found out that I’ve passed my probation at work, which was the best possible start to 2019. I’m now incredibly excited for the future – both professionally, and on a personal level. Having a permanent contract means that I can start to think about moving in with my friend. And when I say think, I mean justify all of the home stuff I’ve been buying recently.
Another personal goal of mine is to start blogging again. I’ve always found writing to be therapeutic, and extremely rewarding, but my inner perfectionism holds me back. If I didn’t have the time to write a blog post that was both witty and valuable, then I didn’t bother. If I did write the blog post but didn’t have the time to plan a mini photo shoot for the blog post, then it would never be published. And that folks is why there weren’t many blog posts in 2018.
But instead, I’m trying to put my perfectionism aside and be more transparent. If thoughts arise that I want to share, then I’m going to use the Acer Chromebook I was kindly gifted by AO.com, and bash out a blog post, and press send in the same writing session. I no longer want to write drafts or plan photoshoots. I want my writing to be authentic, and more spontaneous. Not only will there be more blog posts but I’m really hoping it’ll help improve my writing!
Anyway here’s to 2019 – the year where hopefully the hard work starts to pay off. It’ll also be the year that I start to document it all – shit shows and all.