Sunday, 31 December 2017

2017 in Review - Kindness

Hello everyone,
It's come to the time when I write my end of year blog. It really doesn't feel like two minutes since I wrote my end of year blog last year.

I decided to write this blog about kindness as I know the value of the little things. Everyone is different, lives different lives, and has different family circumstances. We all, and our loved ones, live through different challenges. You never know from looking at someone, from their social media or in general what that person might be facing. So many people face challenges which are invisible to the eye and struggle with mental health and/or invisible disabilities or difficulties. Kindness can go a long way in helping others alongside a little bit of time, compassion, empathy and patience and access to the right help and support.

On a personal level it's been a very mixed year for me. I've had ups and downs. I've struggled quite a bit with my anxiety and finding the right help for it. I saw my lovely boyfriend badly injure himself after training for the 10k events he had planned. I am so  proud of him for completing them in the end and battling through, but to see him feeling low was hard. As someone who finds social situations hard and lacks confidence in himself at times, I know going to Parkrun and having "banter" with my dad over which dog they get overtaken by has meant a lot to him. I really hope for Matt's mental health and confidence running is an easier ride for him.

 We both come from quite private families. It can take a bit of time to get to know us and for us to come out of our shell and open up as we both have issues with social anxiety and have never found making and maintaining friends easy.  I'm grateful to loved ones who have supported and believed in me and for being there through the ups and downs. I hope you know how much your support is valued. 

This next year I hope to manage my anxiety/low mood better, to be able to try a lot of new things and experiences in my day to day life, to understand anxiety better. I hope to live in the moment more, not worry as much and start to enjoy life.  I feel like I need to learn to believe in myself and be kind to myself as much as I do to others. I also want to stop apologising as much as I do.

That support and encouragement from others  helped me walking around Parallel London 10k, my mum completed her first 10k walk too. The experience was eye opening seeing so many people from so many walks of life wearing t-shirts with charities close to their hearts. Beforehand my anxiety made me think every worse case scenario possible, but I  got there at the end

I also had the opportunity to go to Parliament to talk for a a couple of minutes about some of my experiences. It was terrifying but an honour. I also stepped from behind my blog to do a short speech on blogging with anxiety and dyspraxia at the Dyspraxia Foundation AGM. It was lovely to meet others and I’m grateful to the ladies who work for the charity for always being there for a reassuring hug especially as any kind of speaking is a challenge for me with my social anxiety.

 On the topic of blogs I am ending the year with my blog reaching 250,000 views. Something which still seems surreal to me. Thank you so much if you've taken the time to read my blogs. It means a lot to me. Blogging helps to give me a voice, a voice which I can sometimes struggle to find in my day to life. I'm not the most confident in my writing and I hope to find the confidence to expand my blog  and open up about myself a bit more. I just hope in any way my words can help others not feel alone in their journeys.

This year my childhood idols Steps came back onto the music scene and after all of these years I got the opportunity to meet them. Their music helps me a lot.  I am very grateful for the kind words Mollie King has given me this year, they give me strength in difficult times. She always is so understanding, has time to listen and finds time to find out more. She inspires me to not give up.

I hope the year ahead is kind to you,
Take care of yourselves
Until Next time.......

Lots of Love

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