Lifestyle | But, am I doing okay? Really?

15192616_10153957418182617_4700111268043211696_nI’m struggling lately. I’m not afraid to admit it. On the face of things, I have my shit together, I’m one of the most together people I know most of the time. Always sure of myself, always knowing my next step and what I want out of life. But these past few weeks, I’ve just found myself questioning everything. I don’t know what set it off, perhaps it was the exhaustion of the post-festival comedown and working over 50 hours a week that has left me an emotional mess, perhaps it’s just a mid-twenties crisis. But let’s be honest, sometimes all it takes is the news of how everyone else is progressing around you – in their relationships, careers, travels and lives – to make you really question everything you are doing and have achieved. I’m not one to compare myself to others, I know I’ve chosen a very different path to most people, but it’s easy to look at that without a heavy dose of perspective and think you’re not doing as well as you should be.

I said in a previous post how I was struggling to find the words to put on the page and I was taking a short break from writing until I regained my mojo. But it was only the last few days when it suddenly hit me that perhaps the reason I had lost my mojo was because I wasn’t writing as much. Spending so much time focusing on work, the gym, friends and enjoying Melbourne meant one of my biggest passions was pushed to the wayside and I was left with no real outlet for all those thoughts that swirl around in the back of my head. As a creative individual it’s easy to not realise the huge impact that has on you as a person, the challenge of being a creative is always finding new, and more satisfying ways to express yourself. But if that mode of expression is taken away, all that creative energy can just eat you up inside. I can see it even now as my fingers fly across the keyboard, just how much I have missed writing and sharing every facet of my life with you wonderful people.15203347_10153970687092617_759818856468780508_nSo what sparked this huge realisation? Well, last week at work (I’m working at a rooftop bar in Melbourne CBD) I had a visitor – a lovely girl who had travelled all the way from Germany, apparently a huge fan of this blog, and just had to meet me in person on her last night in the city. I can’t even begin to tell you what this meant to me, I’ve had a few real down days these last few weeks so to know that someone appreciated me and my work so much was an incredible boost. It hasn’t automatically fixed everything, but it has brought me back to writing and it has made me realise my priorities. I love exploring the world around me and living life to the max – I will always be a workaholic who struggles to maintain a work/life balance that doesn’t push my body to extreme exhaustion. But I also need to give myself time to reflect and enjoy, to appreciate the amazing experiences I have had rather than always surging ahead towards the next.

But, am I doing okay?

It’s the question we all ask ourselves all the time, whether we say it out loud or we let it eat us up inside as more friends announce new homes, huge career progression, engagements, marriage and babies. It’s so hard not to judge yourself by the standards of others, and it’s so easy to forget your own individual huge achievements that others just can’t compete with. Now several years down the line, I know that giving up my nine-year relationship to travel the world solo and build a freelance journalism and travel blogging career was the best decision I have ever made in my life. But I still can’t help but compare it to friends who have done the opposite and gave up everything for the one they love – putting aside their career and life plans. Likewise, giving up my working life at a newspaper was something that was long-overdue but going freelance and travelling long-term has also thrown me back into a life of temporary hospitality and casual work. I can’t help but both love the freedom and easiness of it while hating the transiency and the lack of progression. There is no future in it and it sometimes makes me crave the excitement of seizing career opportunities.15181360_10153970688762617_7809531450665387419_nI mean, technically I’m doing amazingly. I’m in a great job, earning good money, I’m complete independent, the fittest and physically happiest I’ve been for a long time. I have a great apartment, incredible friends and family on every side of the globe, and plans for the future. But right now, something just isn’t sitting right with me, I can’t put my finger on it but whether my life is missing something or I’m in need of something different, I know that something has to change. I’m not one of these people who mopes around and complains about the way things are, I prefer to be a little proactive and make things better. Being a solo traveller, you have to be willing to get off your arse and to do things for yourself instead of waiting for someone else to make you happy. I like to apply that attitude to every aspect of my life and so I always get impatient with myself when I’m having a few down days – I’m not a wallower, I’m a problem solver. So my next mission is getting myself out of this funk and finding my new happy, the change that will help me regain what I feel like I’ve lost lately.

So, how do I do this?

Well my first changes were pretty instantaneous, I cut a few toxic people out of my life in the last few weeks, people who were’t bringing anything positive into my world. I came back to writing, determined to let it heal me and to find my way back to this blogging world. I took some time for me, I went treated my body well and allowed it to recover, I indulged in my passions without stressing about doing things for other people. I planned a much-needed escape to nature with amazing friends and I refused to feel guilty for putting myself first. It hasn’t changed my world yet, but it has eased my mood and has given me hope for the upcoming weeks. Now all we can do is watch and wait.15179224_10153957417787617_6807561513212356488_n

Are you struggling at the moment – how do you cope with these feelings? Have you got any tips for getting back on track?

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6 thoughts on “Lifestyle | But, am I doing okay? Really?

  1. I think this is a great post and I feel I can totally relate to it right now… On the surface it sounds like you have everything and the complete freedom most people would envy. But you’re right that if something is missing and you’re not happy then something has to be done. I feel the same but the difference is I know it’s just a phase for some things and others needs a proactive change. I hate to complain too and not do anything about it so I just deal with it but behind doors I try and look for solutions or change things. For me it’s the work life balance plus fiancé plus wedding plans plus language study plus blog plus gym plus friends – it’s getting all too much and it’s mentally exhausting?! I think I have to prioritises in order to cope and I have to list things to get things done. I think time for yourself is key otherwise you just burn out. Can’t wait to see your next post and to see how things turn out for you, I’m sure you’ll do great xh

    1. Hey Heather, thanks so much <3 I'm so glad others can relate to this post, it really helps make me realise I'm not alone in feeling like this. I'm the same, I hate to complain about it so mostly I keep things bottled up and try to fix it alone - but sometimes doing that can be the hardest and loneliest thing - it's important for us to feel like we can turn to those close to us to help us figure things out. I feel you girl - so often trying to balance everything is so intimidating - I'm the same, working three jobs, trying to have an awesome travelling life, keep in touch with friends and family in a different time zone and find time for myself, and sleep - it gets ridiculous. Sometimes we need to just call it and sacrifice something so that we don't totally burn out. I'm the worst at realising this until it's almost too late. Thanks so much for your comment, it means the world. Hope you manage to figure things out too! xx

  2. Sometimes when I feel like this I really try and fight the feeling, but lately I just embrace it and try not to let it affect me. It’s good if you can think of how you’re feeling in a positive way too, it means you’re introspective and in tune with yourself which is really good! Some people just drift through their lives and never really question anything, so it’s pretty amazing that you can recognise how you’re feeling and you’re completely taken charge- props to you! Hopefully that makes you feel a bit better 🙂

    Julia // The Sunday Mode

    1. Hey Julia – thanks so much for this comment, it’s made me see my feelings in a totally different light 🙂 before I felt so out of control, like I had no impact on the way I was feeling, but now I’m feeling much more at peace with it. Things have already started getting so much better, I think writing about it and acknowledging my feelings really helped, but knowing others out there identified with my feelings made me realise I’m not alone 🙂 xxx

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