Thursday, 17 May 2018

Spring 2018: What I've been doing lately

It was only two months ago that I wrote my 26 things I'd like to achieve in my 26th year post, although to me it feels much longer. When I wrote the post I was far from 'happy' with my life - I mean, why else would I be posting a list of things that I wanted to change about it? Although I never spoke about it to anybody other than those closest to me, I had reached a point that being so unhappy was having an impact on my physical and mental health, and my self confidence had sunk so low that every sentence I spoke began with me apologising for my own existence.  I had to make some serious changes. I set the goals in my post to give myself some direction, and so I set to work. 

Being a bit of a geek, my first step was to take to the self-help books. After a lot of page-turning and soul-searching I decided that I was going to start focusing on me and my happiness. And that I would stop giving energy to things that were bad for me, or things that quite frankly I couldn't give a f**k about. To be honest, it amazed me how much of my life I have either 'drifted' into things or spent doing things just because it was what was expected of me. I have never been good at making decisions, or standing up for myself, but before long I went from shaking at the idea of phoning to complain about my take-away, to feeling increasingly confident telling people where to go if they expected too much from me.

Then I thought I may have gone too far. I quit my job. 
My entire life transformed the day I decided to hand in my notice. 

It was in the middle of a particularly challenging 48-hour shift, and I was trying to pump myself up enough to be able to deal with the 24-hours ahead before I could go home and be with my bunnies. There was nothing that could motivate me other than the idea of walking out and never coming back, so I spent the next 24-hours drafting my notice in my head to keep myself sane, and slyly applying for jobs in my toilet breaks. It wasn't planned, I had just had enough and was exhausted. I had nothing else to go to.  

Having a month to sort your life out because you quit your job and have no savings is not fun. I'm not going to lie I spent the first three days I was off hiding in bed watching Wheel of Fortune re-runs on Challenge to avoid facing up to what I had done. I used the rest of the time I was off work trying to put some of my plans into action. I quite literally took my own advice and detoxed my lifestyle

Not to brag or anything, but it worked. As I said, the moment my notice was handed in, my whole life transformed the day I decided I'd had enough. Here's why:

  • I found a new job - It was actually one of the jobs that I had applied for whilst sneaking off to the loo at work for a little peace, and the first job I have ever been passionate enough about to prepare for the interview for. What's even more important for me, is that it gives me the flexibility that I need to be able to feel like I have a good work-life balance, while also paying the bills and giving me chances to progress.
  • I found Volunteer work - I have always seen volunteering as a bit of a chore if I'm honest, but I had an email pop through to my spam (yes, seriously) advertising an opportunity to volunteer with canal trips near me. This not only brings out my love for boats and being in nature, but also seems like something that is going to be really fun to do!
  • I (reluctantly) made friends - I started spending more time with my friends, and with people that I care about, and began to focus on developing friendships with people who build me up and encourage me (the one benefit of my situation being that its easy to identify these people when you're down as the fickle friends won't give you the time of day anyway). The more time I spent out of the house again the more my confidence was developing.
  • I planned an entire new series of blog posts - I have always wanted to be more frugal and find ways to continue living well, but also be thrifty and save money where possible. I am also well aware that i am shocking with money and that this holds me back from doing things I want to do. I have challenged myself to get out of debt in 12 months using only "saved or extra income", and obviously to document it warts-and-all for you guys to see.
  • I made my house a home - I deep-cleaned and re-organised the entire house, doing the chores I have been putting off since we moved in along the way. I threw out all of the things I had no use for and made every room in the house practical and usable - rather than it being mostly storage as it had been since moving in. 
The amount my mindset and my life has changed in the last two months has completely amazed me, This is the first time I have ever put myself, my health, and my happiness first in my decisions and it is making me feel more focused and passionate about my life than ever - Is a little self-esteem all I have needed my whole life? 


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