In that limbo between Christmas and New Year, I made the conscious decision to step back this January. A chance to re-evaluate things after feeling completely lost in 2017, especially with my blog, its content and its direction. Coming close to packing it all in, I promised myself that I wouldn’t post in January, and instead of spending my time picking away at what I wasn’t happy with, I’d spend my time looking at the content I want to create, and the posts I want to write. So I did just that, and here we are, feeling like I’m on the road to finding my focus again. And for the first time in a while, I’m genuinely looking forward to seeing what happens with my blog over the coming months. Here are some of the discoveries that came to light over the last few weeks.
– Creating a focus board on Pinterest is life-changing.
I’ve always been quite a visual type of person, and growing up I was always that person cutting and sticking from magazines. It’s still something I do time to time. Pinterest has been one of my favourite platforms for a long time now, but I’ve always spent my time pinning photographs of dreamy interiors and designer style that certainly aren’t achievable for me right now – which yes is something to strive for, but is also something that I used to tear myself down as everything I wanted felt so out of reach. So I chose to use Pinterest a little differently, and create myself a vision board; filled with blog posts I’ve really admired in the past, styles of photography I’d like to put my own spin on, colour schemes I like, fonts to download, basically – if I were to read a blog, the sort of content and aesthetics I’d like to see on it. And by being quite picky (as it can be all too easy to like everything), I’ve really felt like I could focus on where I want to take my blog and what I want to do with it.
– Not happy with my blog? I’m the only one who has the power to change that.
For the longest time, I’ve been sitting around expecting my blog to change itself. For new photography styles to introduce themselves, for blog posts to spring into mind without a second thought, for my content to look like many of those blogs I admire. And then it hit me that I would have to be the one to change things. By doing the same things day in and day out isn’t going to bring about any change. Nothing changes if nothing changes. I don’t have to create content like what I may see on my favourite blogs, as long as I’m happy with it, that’s all that should matter. As cliche as it is, I need to be me.
– I can take good photographs, even if I don’t always see it.
Before this blog post, I hadn’t picked up my beloved camera in quite a few months. Sat in the corner of my room, one thing I really struggled with in 2017 is my confidence where photography is concerned. It’s always been one of the hobbies I loved the most, but somewhere along the way I lost all confidence in the skill. Too scared to make a mistake or not take a photograph exactly how I wanted it totally stumped me, and instead of preserving, I just gave up. I’d be lying if I said I’m miraculously feeling confident behind the camera again, but it’s a work in progress, and I know that whilst I may feel down about my photographs, many other people disagree and I need to remember that.
– There’s still plenty of lovely bloggers out there.
I think we all can agree that blogging has changed over the years, and in my negative ways, believed it was the end of blogging. Logging into social media to see arguments all over my feeds got me down, and paired with some personal going-ons, I began to lost my faith within the community. When I first started to blog, interacting with others was always one of the highlights, and that’s something I’ll admit I got lazy with myself. However this January, I really feel as though I’m finding my feet again and finding the bloggers I want to surround myself again. I logged into Twitter the other day to find my feed filled with bloggers supporting each other and offering advice where needed, and you know what, it was lovely to see.
– Perfect doesn’t exist and that is a-ok.
I’m planning on doing a bigger post about this as it’s one of the most important lessons, but I realised just how self-destructive I’d let my perfectionist traits become. I’ve mentioned it briefly in regards to my photography, but at the latter half of 2017 especially, I found myself so terrified nothing I created would be how I wanted it (i.e. how I compared it to others) that I just didn’t try. If I didn’t give it a go, I wouldn’t fail, and that’s a win-win right? WRONG. It’s something I really need to work on this year, as I know it’s something that needs nipping in the bud sooner rather than later. I need to make mistakes this year, learn that it’s ok if things don’t turn out how they expect. Realise that mistakes are a good thing and that they come with lessons.