Happy New Year!

Well, it’s been a long time, hasn’t it? I haven’t actually posted since June last year… that’s 7 months ago! There are a few reasons why I took a break from blogging; all of which I will go into as I restart my writing seriously. It’s a new year and the perfect time to start as I mean to go on.

A lot happened in the second half of 2013; the majority of it good. Very good! The majority of my time from May to November was taken up by my then-new job at Lipsy in Central London. I absolutely loved the job – the location, the people and the variety of design work I did. But I paid a great price for this role; I had to be up extremely early every morning and I often got home very late. I didn’t see my friends for over 4 months straight and I got very little family time. The travel also contributed to the chronic pain I suffer due to my brain and spinal condition.

Boyfriend, Partner, Happy, Love, Smile, Hope

Benn and I :)

This daily pain and the aching – plus my lack of ‘me’ time – played a big role in my decision to leave London. I met a wonderful man back in October, who I’m so happy to still be with. Spending time with and getting to know him also had a huge impact on my life. I realised that having a job is just one part of life and by far one of the least important. I felt I needed to put my focus back to myself; my happiness and in doing so, change my priorities.

I’m now working closer to home, which is easier on my health, my finances (rail fare increases, anyone?) and better for seeing those that matter to me most. Don’t get me wrong, I’d still love to work in London if I was closer and could do so whilst earning what I’m worth. I’m actually still trying to work out what I want to do. I’ve always known I wanted to do design; but a part of me has been wondering whether I should try something new. I miss doing the social side of Marketing, which is what I did at Benefit Cosmetics. I also wish photography was a larger part of my day. These are all things I’m going to think about as I continue to shape my career. Life really is too short to not do what you enjoy. I plan on getting some training in web design so that I can improve my skills and take on more freelance work.

2014 will be the year of bettering myself.

Now, onto my New Years ‘goals’. That’s right, goals. That way I have the whole year to achieve them and I’m not putting any undue pressure on myself to do them immediately; instead, I’ll wait until the opportune moment and whenever feels right. Here we go:

1. Learn self defence – Just before Christmas, a young man approached me on my way to work and was very inappropriate. He said things I won’t repeat and tried to grab my hand. I reacted in such fear that I was ill for 2 days straight. I’ve taken the bull by the horns and have signed up for Krav Maga, which is a defensive martial arts. It’ll help build my confidence in public and will help me protect myself and those I care about. Plus, I’ll get to meet new people – added bonus! I’ll keep you updated.

2. Learn to drive – I know I put this last year, but this year I mean it. My boyfriend lives in Chingford and I want to be able to visit him whenever I can. That and I finally feel ready to try. Due to my condition I will learn in an Automatic, which I hope takes less time. I’m hoping to book a lesson by the end of January; I just need to pick up the phone…

3. Better myself – I want this year to be the year that I learn and try as much as I can. I want to become a certified First Aider, train in web design, try archery and take up the piano again. I want to get to the end of the year and feel more intelligent and fulfilled mentally.

4. Go on holiday – I haven’t left the UK in over 5 years. I’ve been waiting for someone to travel with; but unfortunately due to my other half’s profession, it isn’t as simple as that. We can go for weekends away but not a proper trip. That being said, I’m 24 years old and more than capable of going away by myself. I was thinking Paris or maybe even somewhere in Turkey. I love culture and experiencing new things and I crave to get away for a while.

5. Volunteer Abroad – Similar to the above, I’ve wanted to work abroad for such a long time. My dream would be to work with wild cats in Africa, but I am willing to try and experience many things. I’m hoping that this is the year I finally do it, but if not, I will plan it for the next. I’m desperate for an adventure, but that doesn’t mean I’ll rush into anything prematurely.

6. Make new friends – I never really believed my mother when she said it gets harder to make friends as you get older. But she’s right. I only have one or two female friends, and a number of male. I am very particular with who I choose to get close to. I’d rather have a few very close, trustworthy friends than a big group of acquaintances. I do however want to meet some more people and start building some real and meaningful relationships.

7. Run for charity – I’ve joined the Brain and Spine Foundation, a charity that, as it suggests, deals with a variety of rare neurological diseases, conditions and injuries. I spoke to a nurse there late last year when I was worried and feeling low and she was incredible. I have a rare condition and she made me feel not so alone. I want to repay the wonderful work done by the charity by doing a run they are organising in August/September this year. It’ll be a first for me but the cause is too wonderful to say no (Off to the gym I go…). My next post will actually be about my health. I want people to know that if they suffer chronic pain or a rare problem that they are not alone. Raising awareness is a wonderful thing.

So those are my targets for 2014. I think they’ll keep me busy and help me become the person I know I can be. From pushing me out of my comfort zone to fulfilling a goal that’s been a dream for so many years, I’m looking forward to what this year will bring. It’s already started very well and I’m glad to say that I’m the happiest I’ve been in years. Love does that, apparently!

What are you New Years goals?

It’s good to be back :) x

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