May Reflections

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I usually start these posts by remarking how quickly the month has gone, but the truth is, May has felt like quite a long month to me. Maybe it’s the double bank holidays, or maybe it’s the fact that I’ve had more weekends at home in Leeds than usual - whatever it is, it’s been nice to feel the month moving along at a more leisurely pace.

Anyway, I’m excited to dive into my May reflections today. These posts always give me the opportunity to take pause and re-evaluate, and I’m excited to see what comes up for me today.

WHAT WENT WELL THIS MONTH?

I made something I’m really proud of

This month I finally launched Joy School! It’s something I’ve been actively working on for a couple of months now, but it’s honestly a culmination of everything I’ve been writing about and working on for years now.

I am honestly so proud of how it’s all come together. I’ve spent many, many hours researching studies, reading books, and writing through my own personal experience to reach the finished product - it’s been a real labour of love, but I really do believe in what I’ve created (even if that feels a bit icky to type!), and I can’t wait to see my students get stuck in next week.

I kept time in my schedule just for me

After a busy April, I was very conscious that I needed some down time in May, and I’m glad to say that I stuck to my plan and did exactly that. It felt like I struck a good balance of time spent at home and time spent doing fun things with friends and family, and as a result I had enough time and energy for the things I really love - writing, reading, cooking, pottering about.

June is already looking a little busier, but as we move through the rest of 2019, I want to cling on to how good it feels to give myself permission to keep my diary clear of plans and simply potter about at home instead.

I got to the annoying things on my to do list

Having a bit of extra time and space this month meant that I finally got to some of the annoying things on my to do list. We deep cleaned our house and did several charity shop/tip runs. We dug up our garden ready for new flags to be laid (a task that has been on our to do list for the last 3 summers!). And I even filed my tax return, a casual 8 months before the deadline.

It always amazes me how fantastic it can feel to tick those niggly things off your to do list. It’s only once they’re done that I realise how much time and energy it zaps to have them hanging over your head, and I’m feeling very glad that they’re done!

WHAT DIDN’T GO SO WELL THIS MONTH?

I put a lot of pressure on myself

While I was pretty good at making space and time for myself and the things that bring me joy this month, I still piled on a bit too much pressure mentally. I often compare my output to people who are running their businesses full time, and forget that I’m trying to build something on the side while also working 40 hours a week at a busy and high pressured day job.

This month I want to ease up the amount of pressure and expectation I put on myself, and approach my to do list with a little more kindness and ease.

I let too much noise in

I’m an avid content consumer - I love listening to podcasts, I love reading newsletters and podcasts, I love interacting on Instagram. But what I’m finding recently is that when I’m consuming too much, all of that brilliant content can become noise in my head that clouds my judgement and makes me doubt my intuition.

I think that I need to rethink my listening and reading habits, and perhaps cut down for a couple of weeks. It’s a hard balance to find, but one that I hope will help me to stay connected to my own judgement.

WHAT DO I WANT JUNE TO BRING?

Some much needed downtime

I love writing these reflections posts because they help me realise SO MUCH. One of the big realisations for me this month is that I haven’t really been taking any downtime recently. I’m creating Instagram posts while I watch TV, I’m writing blog posts while I’m on the train, I’m scribbling down podcast ideas while I’m out with friends. I very rarely get the opportunity to just completely switch off and enjoy doing nothing.

So in June, I’m gonna give myself permission to do exactly that. I’m gonna ease up the pressure a little bit, and give myself the time and space to relax and refocus. I’m going to enjoy the trips that I have booked completely, and I’m going to allow myself to spend hours watching Netflix if that’s what I’m craving. It might mean that content is a little bit light for the next few weeks, but I think it’s what my frazzled brain needs right now.

A return to creating just for fun

I’m hoping that by easing up the pressure a little, I’ll be able to go back to creating just for fun. I’ve put so much energy this year into pivoting my business and creating as much useful content as possible. And that’s because it’s my dream to be able to run this business full time one day, to be able to pour as much energy as possible into making a positive impact.

But that isn’t my reality just yet, and I need to make sure I’m having some fun along the way too. So throughout June, I’m going to give myself permission to go back to creating just for fun. To writing the words that resonate most with me, to taking the pictures I feel compelled to make. Some of that might make it to my blog or Instagram feed, and some of it might just be for me - regardless, I’m hoping that it will help me reconnect with my own creativity a little.

How has this month been for you? Did you learn anything new about yourself?