I posted an image on my Instagram stories last night of myself in Paris two years ago. From the outside it probably looks like I’m having a fabulous time but on the inside I was going through what I can say has been the worst part of my life so far. I captioned the image ‘Paris March 2017 – I quit my job, my relationship, my life and started all over again. Do you ever wish you could go back in time and tell yourself it’s all going to be fine?’
I remember being in such a sad place. I’m always a happy person so to find myself here was a feeling I didn’t know too well. I’d made a couple of bad decisions that had led me to this destination. You can never predict how people are going to treat you or the things that happen to you in life – it’s how you deal with them that is in your control.
My life since this date has been unbelievable and I’ve been happier than I ever have been. If only we knew this was just around the corner when we feel so miserable. The place I found myself in and the place I wanted to be seemed so far away that it was almost unachievable. I got there though, plus a little further, so I thought I’d share with you some of the process I went through that – not to sound whimsical but – turned my life around.
I found myself back at my parents house, I literally turned up one day on the doorstep with all my bags as my dad was celebrating his retirement – Suprise! I left home at twenty so retreating back was so hard, I felt like a failure. I had failed in many ways but I also hadn’t finished. That was lesson number one – it’s okay to go back to the beginning, it’s okay to start over. I have a little saying that goes a little something like this…
‘There’s a mountain with several routes to the top. If you’re going along a certain path and it comes to a dead end don’t try to keep on going. Simply go back to the bottom of the mountain and try a different route. One of them will lead you to the top if you don’t give up.’
Not giving up is the important thing.
I woke up in my parents house not wanting to open the blinds. As soon as I realised my reality I’d start to cry and wish I could just go back to sleep. Most relationships come to an end in your twenties – that’s just life. What I couldn’t get my head around was how I was treated. I wish I was being melodramatic but I reckon this three year relationship is up there with the most horrific breakups of all time.
I wasn’t miserable because the relationship had ended I was feeling this way because someone I was so close to for so long showed zero respect. It made me question why wasn’t I worthy of respect.
Here comes lesson number two – everybody can be cheated on. You can look like a goddess and be the most amazing person in the world and still be treated badly. Nobody is too good to be disrespected. You have to learn and what I definitely learnt is that the way someone else behaves is a reflection of them not you.
Be cheated on, be ghosted, be disrespected and cry about it. Put on some sad music and really go for it, cry it all out. You’re allowed to do that for a day. Crying is a release, I don’t think it’s a shameful thing. Me and my friends call it an ‘emotional shit’.
The next day as soon as you open your eyes get up, wake up, work out. If you’ve never worked out before and it seems like a horrific idea trust me it won’t – exercise releases happy endorphins. Really sweat and train until it hurts, channel the sadness into the workout, it’s the best therapy and you will also get a killer body at the same time! Go out, whether that’s on your own or with friends. When I’m feeling down I always take my laptop and make sure I’m out the house. The fresh air, the people, the bit of extra sunshine all works wonders for those gloomy days. You also never know who you might meet 😉
The third lesson is never work eight hours a day toward someone else’s dream without working on your own. One of the reasons I felt so low at this time was partly due to the fact I’d found myself working nine to five for somebody else. Each day I would get paid the same no matter how hard I worked, it was the most demotivating thing in the world. I felt stuck, I felt like there was no way out but I really didn’t want this life.
My whole entire wage went on rent and I had about fifty pounds left to spend which I spent travelling to go see said idiotic boyfriend in the previous paragraph. This was not going to be my life. I started saying no to plans after work and headed home to set up camp on my laptop every single night. I worked out I could fit in six hours every evening – with the weekends included I could clock up fifty plus hours working on my own thing in my spare time.
Don’t underestimate how much time you have spare. Whatever the circumstances we tend to make up excuses why we can’t do something, the thing is if you sacrifice a year or two of an insane (almost unrealistic) work ethic you will reap the rewards for the rest of your life. So in March 2017 I did just that. I was miserable anyway so instead of dwelling on my sadness I worked so hard I had no time to dwell.
Fast forward two years and I’m so thankful for that low period in my life. It taught me to get up and fight for what I want. It also taught me that if I feel like that again I can get through it to the other side. Emotions are subjective, your reasons for being sad can be however big or small. Emotions are also temporary – you will be happy again, you will be sad again but the happy times will make the sad times worthwhile.
It wouldn’t be a blog post of mine if we didn’t talk about clothes! This collection is from Novo London. Talking about spending time working on your own ideas and your own business this brand is run by a friend of mine. I shot the lookbook as I love helping people do their own thing and the clothes are right up my street – they are the epiphany of my favourite word ‘designer-esque’. This is the Summer collection and will be available to shop in August but definitely check out their most recent collection here.