*Disclaimer: This post has nothing to do with running or food. Reader beware, I talk about feelings!!
It took me a year and half to finally get the confidence to start blogging. When most people meet me they probably wouldn’t think I would be one to lack confidence. I’m an extrovert, opinionated, and have an incredibly high competitive spirit. I think most people associate those qualities with someone who is confident. And superficially, I probably am. Don’t judge a book by it’s cover.
Healthy living blogs completely transformed my life when I started reading them a year and a half ago. I went from looking in the mirror everyday hating what I saw and feeling sorry for myself to actually doing something about it thanks to the ability to sit silently behind a computer screen and read about other people’s lives. My first thought when all these positive changes started to take hold was “I should start my own blog!” It would be a way for me to document the changes and start to interact with a community that was inspiring me to continue down this new path. But, confidence ate me alive. A million excuses would come up. “I don’t have time to blog, I work full-time. No one will read my blog. My family and friends will make fun of me (and I’m sure some probably do now<–whatever!). What will I talk about everyday?” And the list goes on and on…
The one recurring theme I see in all that looking back at it now though is lack of confidence. Of course, at the time I didn’t see that, I just saw valid excuses.
My mom likes to tell me how as a child, I wouldn’t even attempt to walk until I was sure I could do it perfectly. I did not want to fail. That fear of failing that started at 10-12 months old, continues to stick with me today at 29. It’s exactly what kept me staring at the computer day in, day out reading about other people’s lives, wanting to share my own life, and my own passions but, not actually taking the initiative to do so.
I don’t know what changed last month. Maybe it was a friend’s brilliant blog title or just being sick and tired of the fear and lack of confidence consuming me but I started this lovely little site and it’s been one of the best months in a long time for me.
Life has been interesting these past few years. Not at all what I expected it to be. I’m not going to dwell in the details but in the last 5 years we’ve gone through moving to FL, hating FL, giving up career changes, moving back to NY, living in my in-laws house, buying our own house, realizing I don’t really like NY and moved back for the wrong reasons, wanting to move back to FL, 3 job title changes in the past 1.5 yrs, not being truly “happy” anymore at work, and dealing with some pretty stressful business issues. I know many people deal with things like this (or even much, much worse) and I’m not trying to complain I’m just trying to illustrate how these past few years haven’t exactly been easy mentally. It has actually been a struggle to try and just be happy at times. I know there are plenty of bigger things to be happy about: health, family, jobs, etc. but the little things can sometimes be overwhelming.
It almost sounds so ridiculous to say that this past month of blogging has helped me to finally feel happy, but it has. It has allowed me an outlet to dabble in the things I love but couldn’t quite figure out how to incorporate in my life before (while still paying the bills! Because, as much as I’d like it to be going to culinary school just isn’t a reality for me right now ). It has allowed me to start to feel like I’m “getting to know” others out there with similar interests. I hope someday they turn into real friendships. It’s helped give me perspective and find balance in my job, interests and life. And most importantly, it’s given me something to look forward to each and every day. I embrace a good, sweaty workout. I want to capture the perfect picture of the food I cook to share it. And, I get down right excited when someone comments on something I’ve written!
Of course the whole competitive spirit kicks in too and now I want a better camera and a nicer website to be able to put forth my best effort with this. I’m not a patient person if you haven’t already guessed.
The confidence issue still lingers though. When I have to travel for 4 days straight and can’t blog about a meal I’ve made at home I worry about content and if anyone even cares about what I’m posting. If I have a blog about running but have no upcoming races will people still think I’m “legit” enough? If I have a day with fewer hits than the last I start to second guess myself and my abilities. But then I have to remember why I read other people’s blogs and it always comes down to the “realness” factor for me. I don’t want to read about someone’s life that is seemingly perfect where they are doing fun, exciting things each and everyday because that’s not realistic. I enjoy reading the daily happenings of people like me so I have to think that there are others out there thinking the same about my blog. I don’t think the confidence thing ever goes away but, you can get better at identifying it when it rears it’s ugly head and course correcting.
So, all this to say thank you. Thank you to my small, little group of readers who have supported me in this endeavor so far. Thank you for reading, thank you for commenting. Your support is what makes me excited to do this again tomorrow and happy I was able to get the confidence to start this thing in the first place! Shouldn’t have waited so long, it’s the best decision I’ve made in a long time.