Before we wrap up for the year, I thought I’d let you in on what’s been happening lately because I’ve been promising an update for awhile and hey, sharing is caring right? 😉
(fair warning – this post comes with a good deal of reflection and plenty of unanswered questions!)
Before we get into the tough stuff, let’s start with some of the good things shall we? And yes, for better or for worse much of this is blog related (I know, I’m totally a one-track record; I’ll touch on some life stuff too, I promise).
So. The Blog. Over the last 12 months, it’s grown from being teeny tiny ‘just a hobby’ site to something far more substantial. I wrote my first sponsored posts this year, got a couple of regular paid contributor roles and you, dear readers, have kept coming back, which has meant my pageviews and other stats have increased tenfold. I owe you all so much for giving me the opportunity to do what I love and earn at least a part of my income from it.
I wish I could stop there and just focus on how wonderful these opportunities have been, but lately my weeks have been shrouded by stress that’s been overwhelming. What lurks behind the scenes of this blog that I don’t often share are the 16 hour days, many sacrificed weekends, time I’ve missed out with family and friends, sleepless nights, meltdowns and neglected relationships.
And to add to the craziness of my already hectic schedule, my day job has undergone some dramatic changes. The company I work for got acquired and that’s meant an increased workload, longer hours and big adjustments to people and processes; all things that I can’t really afford to factor in when I’ve also got pressing demands outside of work hours.
They say that good things come to those who hustle and I think that’s true to a point, but this year I’ve learnt that certain types of hustle aren’t sustainable and really, the saying should be ‘good things come to those who hustle smart’. If I’m being completely honest with myself, the hard yards I’ve been putting into my work haven’t always been smart; they’ve often just been hard without necessarily moving me towards my goals. In fact, in some ways, they’ve moved me away from my biggest goal of all which is growing this site. With so many commitments elsewhere and little-to-no time leftover, I haven’t had the energy or hours to devote to sharing things here with you… which is partly why this post (and other posts I’ve been meaning to write) are so long overdue!
While I’d love to wrap things up neatly like I do with my DIY projects, and tell you I’ve found the perfect solution to my problems, sadly all I’ve got are questions and big unknowns for the days ahead. I just wanted to share what’s been on my mind, if for no other reason than to emphasise that although my life might look well put together from the outside, often it’s anything but. In fact, usually I feel like I have it much less together than others my age who’ve built solid careers, started families and are generally moving in an upwards trajectory. My path is more like a yo-yo, going up and down, up and down until I’m not sure whether I’m coming or going anymore!
It’s not all doom and gloom though – this blog is still my greatest passion and joy, and through it amazing opportunities have arisen that I would otherwise never have dreamt of. If I stop to think about all that’s happened so far and how much more I could accomplish in the future, it makes me smile, and that, my friends, is why I keep on keeping on. Whether that’s wise or not, I guess only time will tell!
I truly hope that you’ve experienced a less tumultuous end to the year than I have, but if you find yourself with questions and uncertainty as we head towards 2016, know that you’re not alone. And most of all, thank you for being the one constant source of joy for me throughout my otherwise hectic year – I appreciate your support so much and I’m truly grateful that you keep coming back to read my ramblings. Merry Christmas guys, I’ll see you in 2016!