This month, I've realised that no matter how much people try to change me, I am me and I am in control of where my life heads. Of course, if I want to mope about and eat my weight in chocolate then I can (and I do...), but what if I choose happiness? Every time I have had a negative thought brewing in the back of my head, I've somehow worked out how to control it and here's how.
1) Clean!Cleaning keeps you busy so you have no time to think about anything else other than what brand of bleach to use down the toilet or what side of the scourer to use in the oven. It makes 4 hours feel like 2 hours and there's two benefits to it too. You will feel like you have had a super productive day and you get a nice, clean house!
2) Remove yourself...So, think about what's making you so negative... Maybe even write it down so you believe it yourself.
You could be arguing with your partner, at your wits end with deadlines at work or maybe you're like me and finished university over a year ago and still remain a jobless graduate. In my case, it's been all three things. To prevent arguments with my boyfriend over the stupidest things or becoming accidentally blunt with people when they send me a text (I always forget to put kisses!); I've realised it's much easier to just switch my phone off. Technology these days means we are so accustomed to quickly picking up our phones at the sound of a new text message or tweet and a reply is sent straight away. Sometimes it's nice to just switch off and deal with it later.
In addition, I have taken a few breaks from social media this year. I say 'break' lightly because I'm a social media addict and every social platform of mine gets updated every single day; or 200 times if we're talking about Twitter. I found myself getting sucked into looking at what people I follow are up to in every day life. Whether it's a new job they've just tweeted about, a new house or even a brand that a blogger is working with; I couldn't help but be a little selfish and compare myself. Why have I not got a new job? Why haven't I managed to bag a 2 bedroom apartment in Brighton? WHY did that brand not email me about that campaign?
It's easy to get sucked into the following vicious cycle:
- Awww, I'm happy for them.
- Wait, why them and not me?
- WHY NOT ME?
- I hate my life.
- I GIVE UP WITH EVERYTHING.
Don't be afraid to take a few days off from tweeting, snapping photos on Instagram and watching people's vlogs. It will make you feel much better about yourself, trust me.
3) Have space!
I've touched lightly on this before, but I have never had any luck with friendships over the years. I completely 100% mean this when I say it but I don't have any friends. I don't want pity because I am happy. I have a small handful of people I am close with so why would I need anybody else? Of course, it's nice to have girlfriends to pop to a coffee shop with on a Sunday afternoon but I haven't done anything like this in years and I like it that way.
"Me time" is either Netflix in bed with lots of chocolate (told you I was telling the truth!) or getting up and ready and heading to the back of a well known coffee shop with a creamy hot chocolate and my macbook for some much needed blogging. It's important to make time for yourself. I spend the majority of my time on my own but sometimes it's nice to step away from being "blogger Ashleigh" and just be Ashleigh by relaxing in a bubbly bath or reading a book.
Have a break from people around you! Me and Josh realised we were starting to clash more because we were in each other's space most days. Therefore, it's working out better for us to have our space and days apart and we've started to realise the feeling of missing another person is coming back. Relationships don't have to be a mundane routine!
You could learn something new like a musical instrument or teach yourself how to code HTML (geeky me would choose this). Set yourself a challenge such as saving enough money to move out within the next 3 years or learn to drive by July 2016. Whatever it may be, it will keep you focused and keep those negative thoughts at bay.
Sometimes (and I hate to admit it), I think my life is rubbish and I wonder what my purpose in life is. However, I have recently started to watch motivational videos of inspiring people such as this youtube video "My Face: Waardenburg Syndrome". It really puts your life into perspective and made me realise that actually; even though my life is far from perfect and I am still living at home as a twenty something, I am actually alive and healthy and that is all that matters.
4) Find motivational content...
I've recently started listening to a lot of new music and have just found a song that totally relates to how I'm feeling with my life at the moment. Finding THAT song is some kind of reassurance for me that I'm not the only one who's going through a rough patch at the moment and most importantly; that it is possible to get out of the rut you are in and turn your life around for the better.
I'm also looking for a new self-help book at the moment to cosy up to in the evenings. I feel like I am constantly being kicked down in every aspect of my life. Personal relationships, job applications and interviews, deadlines for things, money issues etc. I can't help but be negative about everything in my life that just doesn't seem to be working out. If anyone can recommend a book, do let me know in the comments please!
5) Try and deal with it!
Easier said than done, I know. However, there's only so much negativity and low energy that we can live on. The biggest problem in my life right now is the fact I no longer enjoy the freelance side to blogging. I am really starting to hate how I have to budget with everything I do. They say money can't buy you happiness; however I say if money can buy you a whole new outfit from Topshop; then that's the same thing, right?
I could sit in my bedroom and cry about it every day but I still search job sites every day looking for the perfect digital marketing role. I've had meetings and interviews over the last 6 months but still no one has employed me. However, I understand that I am 22 and it's just not my time yet. I touched lightly on this in my 'Full Time Blogging: The Raw Truth' post but I am in control of my life. I get knocked down but I get back up and try again.
There are other aspects in my life that I'm very fed up with but I don't want to give up on them. It's easy for people to say close the door and walk away from the things that no longer make you happy and a better person, but sometimes it's easy to say these things until it's you going through exactly what you never expected to. I've come to a point in my life where I try and try and try with so many different things and like I said above; I get kicked down. However, I've now almost lost all motivation to try and work things out when it never does time after time again.
Being 22, there is so much I want to do by the time I reach 25. Being unhappy right now is not something I want and I am the only person who can change this. For now, I just want to keep working on my blog producing content for myself and you guys and just keep applying for those jobs until someone sees my determination and passion for what I do every single day. There's nothing else I will let bring me down anymore. I'm done trying to please people, trying to make deadlines for the sake of nothing and being made out to feel like when something goes wrong; it's my fault.
This will be fun to look back on when I'm 25, won't it?