I am a self-confessed perfectionist. I always work as hard as I possibly can to the be the best at whatever I set my mind to. Whether it’s an exam or anything academically-related, working on improving my blog, or even striving to run faster or work harder in the gym, I’m always pushing myself to reach a new target. I wouldn’t say I’m a competitive person as such, but I am competitive with myself, and this can often result in me burning the candle at both ends and forgetting to put my wellbeing first.
I currently feel like I’m at a personal crossroads. As dramatic as this sounds, for the first time in my life I have no solid “plan” and this terrifies me. While September signifies the end of the year for many, for me it’s a time of new beginnings. It always meant a new year at school or university, and I’d get so excited to get back into routine and to tackle the year ahead. This year, however, I have absolutely no idea what I’m going to be doing a few weeks from now, and it’s absolutely petrifying. I need to start looking ahead at jobs and internships, but I’m currently bogged down in thesis hell and everything is starting to take its toll.
Juggling writing my thesis, blogging, working in retail, freelancing, training and having a social life, along with the stress about whether I’m going to find a job, where said job will be, and whether anyone will ever hire me in the first place is pretty exhausting. To top it all off, I’ve been struck down with a chest infection and have been suffering with gastritis, and I came to the realisation last week that it was time to start thinking of myself and my health. I’ve been working so hard to get my thesis in shape, working from early morning until gone midnight, and taking a break only to work out. My soul needed a little self-love.
Yesterday I stepped away from my laptop and headed West to the sea for the day with Dan, something we haven’t done for so long. I don’t know about you, but I find the sea instantly calming. As I breathe in the fresh salty air, and watch the waves crash against the shore, my mind is at ease. I’m a million miles away from the ball of stress I often become, and am relaxed and feel almost peaceful.
We went to a tiny village called Porthgain and walked along the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path for a few miles along the clifftops to the Blue Lagoon at Abereiddy. We watched cliff divers somersaulting into the water, took lots of photos of the beautiful landscape, and we sat outside and ate pub grub back at the village after our walk, overlooking the harbour in the sunshine. As we drove home we stopped off at Newgale and took photos of the sunset. It really was the most perfect day and I realised for the first time in ages I felt really completely happy.
From here on out I’m going to strive to put my wellbeing first. I’m going to try my best to stop getting so worried about the future, and I’m going to embrace the mantra “everything happens for a reason” and have faith in the hope that everything will work out eventually. Of course, I’ll never shake off the traits I have as a perfectionist, but accepting that perfectly laid out plans aren’t the be all and end all is surely a step in the right direction, right?
Lots of love,