The end of the year is always great for reflection which is why I always look forward to putting together these style of blog posts. There’s just something about being able to look back on the year and being able to review the year you’ve had from the achievements and good moments to the not so good and improvements you hope to make coming into a new one.
So how was my 2019?
I set up my own business
One of my biggest anxiety fears was getting a job. It probably sound’s ridiculous to most people as a job is something everyone has at least once in their life, right? My anxiety made me believe that I was never good enough for a job and that if I ever got one I would make a fool out of myself and be a failure which resulted in years and years of being unemployed.
Plus at some points, I was far too unwell to even leave the house let alone hold down a job.
As I began to feel better at the end of 2018 and coming into 2019, I knew I wanted to finally pluck up the courage and start working. So I set up my freelancing business doing social media management for small businesses and I was so happy when in April 2019 I landed my first client.
It’s been the best decision I could have ever made for myself. My confidence and belief in my abilities have grown massively. I’ve learnt so much and feel like I actually have a purpose. It’s so nice being able to do what I love and helping someone else out along their business journey.
This has definitely been my biggest achievement of 2019 maybe even the decade!
For me to go from being unemployed and full of job anxiety to having my own business is just crazy.
I booked my first holiday abroad
This is probably something you won’t hear me stop talking about for the next few months but another one of my anxieties is about flying. I’ve never flown before and whilst I don’t have huge fears about the plane crashing or anything like that, I’m more scared about how I’ll feel on the plane and my emetophobia convinces me something awful will happen to me.
In 2019 I finally plucked up the courage and got a passport, which then resulted in me booking my first holiday abroad. The night we booked the holiday, I went into the shower and just cried. I didn’t cry because I was scared but because I couldn’t quite believe that the anxious girl I once knew who spent every single day having panic attacks and could barely leaving the house was now opening up her whole world to a new adventure. They were definitely happy tears.
So in June 2020, I am going to be flying on a plane for the first time. As you can imagine, I’m incredibly nervous but I’m also excited and interested to see how I get on. It will be a real test on my anxiety.
A journey of mental health
After 2018 was a bad year for my mental health, I came into 2019 with no pressure to be anything other than what I was feeling. For the first few months of 2019, I felt in a pretty good place. I was doing a lot better than the year before and I think being in that good place really helped me to start my own business in the first place.
In June I did dip slightly with my mental health and ended up having my first panic attack of 8 months because Matt ended up being in an accident. The hospital trip, not eating properly that night, being worried and everything just got to me.
Although despite this happening, I never beat myself up for it and unlike most years where I would have anxiety for days, weeks and month after, it passed very quickly and I felt as normal as I could be which was when I first realised that I can actually bounce back from these feelings so much better these days because I have the resources, belief and experience to do so.
Throughout the year I have definitely tried to accept my anxiety and my mental health rather than fighting it and pushing it out which has helped massively. I’ve actually faced a lot of anxiety triggering situations in 2019 like eating out in restaurants, trying new medications, getting a job, going to London for a few days and working on my social anxiety.
However, I have been struggling a bit since October 2018.
I always do at the end of the year because of different triggers, but my depression seems to be shouting a lot louder coming in 2020 than ever before which has been hard to deal with. I spent so much time being anxious and everything feeling like it was going a hundred miles per hour but now everything is the complete opposite. It’s so slow and draining. It’s been hard to get used to feeling something different!
Enjoying blogging and working with amazing brands
I’ve actually really loved blogging and creating content this year. Although since running my own business, it has been hard to find the time to do it as often as I would like, I still really enjoy it and I hope that I will continue to love it throughout 2020.
There’s just something about being able to be creative, getting the words out of my head and expanding skills that I just love. And of course, being able to talk to so many amazing people who are in the blogging and Instagram community. I have met some incredible people from having this online space and I will always be thankful for that.
I also was lucky enough to work with some amazing brands this year. Any time a brand gets in touch and wants to send me products it’s always a pinch-me-moment that I am in this position. Hard work definitely does pay off and I worked with some brands I could have only dreamed about working with.
So what is my plan for 2020?
In all honesty, I’m coming into the new year again with the same kind of approach I had in 2019 to not put the pressure on, not set ridiculous big goals and to just kind of go with it. Because my depression isn’t all that great, I’m feeling quite on edge at the moment and like something awful is going to happen.
So my main priority is to just look after myself as much as I possibly can because sometimes that’s all you can do or all you can work on without feeling like you’ve got the whole world on your shoulders.
I obviously have the holiday coming up in the summer which will be a massive anxiety situation to face so I guess I’ll be spending the new few months trying to take care of me the best way that I can so that I can continue to do the same when I’m on my holiday.
In terms of my business, I’m not really sure where to go next with it. I launched all-new services a few months back which didn’t go down well so I’m spending my time nurturing the client relationships that I do have and figuring out what direction I want to go next whether that will be to relaunch the services that failed or to approach new clients to work with on a longer-term basis.
And with regards to my blog, I’ve got a blog post about my approach to blogging in 2020 coming very soon so keep an eye out for that!
How was your 2019? Are you looking forward to 2020?