January…you’ve been a crazy month! There’s been some amazing highs, a LOT of work and a fair few tears already.
In the post I published right at the end of December, I outlined some of the ‘starting points‘ I wanted to work on in 2019. In no particular order, I listed them and set myself the goal or ‘resolution’ to slowly but surely over the next 12 months have a go at each one of them. I was also really keen to write a post at the end of January to reflect on how I’d got started and the speed bumps along the way.
Honestly, now I’m sat here writing this post I’m kind of dreading it! January really hasn’t been all plain sailing. Don’t get me wrong, there have been lots of great moments in all sorts of different ways but I’ve had a couple of periods of really down days too. In my head, at the beginning of the month I had in my head that this post would be all sunshine and flowers and a long list of successes but realistically that wouldn’t be human and it definitely wouldn’t be honest for me to write that here.
Let’s start with the pile of dung…
We’ll get onto the happy, smiley points in a minute but there also have been some really shitty moments this month. I’ve been rejected from some projects, I’ve really had to fight for the support I need from my Uni and the NHS, I’ve had to say a temporary goodbye to a lot of my nearest and dearest again, I’ve had to learn how to freelance and juggle the stress of work with moving country, studying and trying to fit in catching up with friends and family and I’ve also had to confront some pretty awful body image issues. This really isn’t a cry for help or a need for the sympathy vote but I think it’s really important to be transparent. I don’t feel the need to completely air my dirty laundry or tell the world the grimy details but I know that January hasn’t been the perfect month and I wouldn’t want someone else thinking it had been. January has been a real reminder that 1. growing up is hard, 2. loving people sometimes really hurts and 3. that sometimes no one is going to make a situation better for you and you’ve just got to peel yourself off the floor, brush your hair and carry on.
Sounds like a party right?
Although those things are really important to remember and be honest about, January 2019 definitely wasn’t all doom and gloom so let’s get started with what I have achieved this month!
My aim for the year was 10 and I’m not there yet but I’m not doing to badly! My current book count is 1 and 2 halves! Sounds funny but I ready Stacey Dooley’s book called ‘Women on the Front Line’ and am now currently in the middle of two others, ‘The Little Black Book for Working Women’ and ‘The Elements of Journalism’ (gifted to me by a wonderful friend!). Stacey Dooley has been an inspo of mine for such a long time and her book didn’t disappoint even though I’d already watched most of her documentaries and the other 2 books currently have me gripped. I’ve really loved setting myself the challenge to make time to read more, and I’m sure I’ll definitely be keeping it up!
‘To continue building what I’m starting to set up!‘
Well, this is something that, in my eyes at least, is undoubtedly going in the right direction. I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again: the TIME TO TALK series is coming soon and this is something that I’m SO excited for and will really let me show another side of myself and another writing voice. I’m really keen to start writing about bigger issues that are important to me, obviously, this will open me up to a lot more criticism but I also feel that it could help me thrive and feel really fulfilled.
To be kinder to myself.
Surpriseeeee…I struggled with this one! But I’m taking steps to slowly get there and to make the journey easier in the process. I’ve invested in the paid version of the Headspace App, which I would recommend to anyone who has a really busy day-to-day life and needs the nudge to take some time out every now and then. I’ve also started to do some more Yoga, I find it really helps put y head in a good space and my body always feels so recharged after too. And also I’ve taken the month to open up to some of the people closest to me. It has felt really good to start conversations, let people in a little more and be constantly in my own head a little less. These three steps I took really showed to me that I’m making myself more important and higher up on the priority list which can only be a good thing.
To keep grounded and connected with people from home, Sheffield and Berlin.
This is a tricky one because I always feel like I could be doing better. I did go back to Berlin in January for 5 days and had the MOST wonderful time seeing both friends and work colleagues and then I also went back to my Uni town, Sheffield, to catch up with a lot of friends there. But I’m fully aware there are people I’ve missed off my list, not because I don’t care about them as much or because I couldn’t be bothered. But genuinely just because life got in the way a bit. I’m determined to message those people I didn’t get the chance to hug in person and hope that they’ll understand. But having said this, I really did make the effort to reach out more and keep up to date with what the really important people in my life are up to, wherever they are on the globe!
Half marathon update?
Well, I’m going to be doing some special, ‘how is training going?’ posts soon because It’s been a mixed journey so far but basically the first two and a bit weeks of January started really well, then between 2 trips away and a fuzzy head things started to stagnate. I’m working on it and not letting that little blip stop me from getting back up but I’m really looking forward to getting into my new flat, getting my Uni timetable and being able to be a little more strict with myself in this respect.
Steps for Summer?
Did someone say AUSTRALIA? I don’t want to speak too soon but I’m working hard and saving all I can to make a big trip happen this summer. Wait and see I guess!
Probably the biggest change this month has been switching from working full time to freelancing. It’s been a really big learning curve and a lot to get used to but I’m really happy about how things are going work-wise at the moment and really glad to be continuing with it. Onwards and upwards!
Despite the initial tone of this whole post, I’m feeling really upbeat about how January went and looking forward to February. A lot of things have been thrown my way this month and I think all in all I’ve dealt with them well. I can’t wait to move on the 1st to Utrecht, I’m looking forward to the new challenges, new friends and new opportunities.
And please- a note to everyone- remember everyone’s facing something behind closed doors, let’s be compassionate.