So, recently I slid into my favourite sweats and took a break from blogging (and it seems everything else but work) for a few months. It’s been a difficult few months for a number of reasons, but mainly because I lost track of myself and I really needed to take some time to switch off from absolutely everything and reboot. So I wanted to write a bit about why I took my break and how I took that time to practice my old school and basic self care.
First things first, I’m forever in anything comfy when I’m taking care of myself. Whether it’s my pj’s, womens joggers, mens joggers (sorry Steve), leggings, a nightie – whatever, I am in it. There’s something relaxing about being in pure comfort. I’m sure everyone can agree there is nothing better than getting home and taking off your work clothes and chilling the f out. I’ve been doing this a lot for the last few months, probably a bit too much…
Since starting my job in August last year, I have been travelling around the UK so much with work, that I haven’t really been able to get into a routine of any sort and I’ve kind of forgotten to take care of myself. The late nights, painfully early mornings and weeks at a time away from home have made me tired, lethargic and lazy. Even though I bloody love every aspect of my job, it has been challenging to maintain the life I had gotten used to in my nice nine to five desk job. No one ever tells you how hard it can actually be to get into a routine and figure out a good work – life balance. The past few months have felt like I have been hit by a steam train of adult responsibilities that I did not have the energy to cope with. So, to help me cope a little more I decided to take a little self care break from the things that seemed to be stressing me out… these ended up being the things I used to love and enjoy the most like blogging, exercising, eating healthily, going out with my friends and reading (it’s always the way, isn’t it?!). When I got home from a week away, the only thing I wanted to do was nothing. Boringly so I got into the habit of sitting on the sofa and watching Ru Paul’s drag race in my jim jams with a chinese takeaway a cuppa and a packet of hob knobs. Sounds like the dream. I know. And it still is occasionally. But after four months of this same routine, it got to be a bit damaging. Four months of it for me felt like a bloody rut.
I have felt so lost over the past few months that I made the conscious decision to sit down and fill out my little happy journal that my big sister got me for christmas. It asks you to put in things that you love doing, things that you want to learn, goals you have for the year, positive things in your life, things you’d like to change over the next year and so on… but as much as I usually am a negative nancy about these things it actually kicked me back into gear. I feel like I’ve caught a second wind of energy and I knew I needed to do something to get back to my old self and actually take an active interest in my own life.
I started with a little bit of basic self care, as you do. I’ve been actively trying to get up and out and about a little more and trying to relax more in my spare time instead of using it for wallowing. So instead of sitting and drowning in my misery and boredom, I’ve started using my down time to looking after myself and use it a bit more positively. The little things like taking baths, reading new books, finding new TV shows, phoning my family, trying new foods, painting my nails, getting my hair done and just generally trying to make the most of my time. By taking better care of myself and those around me I have avoided falling back into my rut, and it has really helped in the last few months. They are simple little things to slot into my day to day life (that for some reason have felt like a mountain to accomplish over the past few months).
Whilst doing all these little things has started to help, it felt like a much bigger problem and we needed a much bigger change. So…. we’re moving to a whole new city! I got a new job down in Edinburgh and we’re off to join all of our friends in the capital of bonny Scotland. Since I graduated in 2016, all of our friends have left Aberdeen in drips and drabs and we’ve felt a little bit left behind, and to be honest isolated. Aberdeen can feel like a million miles away sometimes, even though it’s only an hour flight or a couple of hours in the car from our families and friends. We needed a change, and it’s been bloody hard to get there but we are FINALLY moving to Edinburgh. In 2 weeks (lord help us). Obviously, this was a huge thing and a huge decision – but one that has already released so much stress and tension from our little lives, we couldn’t be more excited to start fresh in a new place.
I feel like I finally have my balance back. It’s taken a while, but a new job, a new city and some small, gentle reminders to look after myself and practice self care have edged me back over to the light side again. I’ve been going over my old rituals for self care and trying to be a little more aware of my own needs to avoid falling back into my rut.