What Taking a Break Has Taught Me

It's fairly hard to imagine me without the internet at my fingertips. I'm a woman of the internet. I blog, I vlog (I had the urge then to continue into 'I jam, I break' from High School Musical - just me? ok), I'm on every social media platform and I worked as a Digital Marketing Executive. But a month ago after quitting my job, I fled real life and into the open arms of my summer season job, a job I did last year, a job I love, and a job I knew I could immerse myself in without having to think too hard about the life I'd left in England.

So I got away, and decided to spend the time I was in France to take the opportunity to get my head a bit straighter because as most of you will know, the last few months have been CHAOS in my world. I quit my London job and moved back in with my parents and questioned everything about who I am and what the bloody hell I'm doing. But getting away and having some perspective helped a lot. 

Did it work? Well, yes it did in many ways. I made new friends, reconnected with old ones and drank a lot of gin (not necessarily recommended but also you do you). 

I learnt a few things about myself which I probably would never have learnt in any other scenario or space. For one, I am not a 9-5 office job girl. When I was working in London I was waiting for that 'I made it' feeling to hit me. I thought it might have been my salary, or my office dynamic, or the commute. I blamed it on something more materialistic and easy than the real reason I was unhappy. I think in the three years that was university, I got swept up in the whole white picket fence ideal. An ideal which had never been me until other people started talking about it, and I thought I wanted a slice of that pie, please. In reality, I am in my element running around in an organised mess. I love being outdoors, I don't mind shift work. I'm happy getting my hands dirty and enjoy being in charge and organising things. Weekends were great and everything, but they come at the price of sitting at a desk until my back started aching and my wrists got cramp. They came with routine and becoming a creature of habit. And whilst I'm comfortable with that lifestyle if it's a means to an end (i.e. travelling), it's not what I want to be doing in the long-term, and although I have a good idea of what I'd love to be doing, I don't want to show my cards just yet. In the meantime, I feel relieved that I've found what I don't enjoy, because it's a step closer to what I do. 

Getting offline for a little while, also gave me a happy discovery, and one which I don't think I've ever admitted myself before. But that, is that I am extremely happy with who I am. It's all very cliché to say I've never been self-confident, but my lack of self-confidence went far deeper than the mirror. Encompassing everything I was, every choice I made, I'd question if I should like something or whether it wasn't 'cool', and when I was younger, I would lie about the things I liked as a means to fit in. But, the last month has made me realise I am very comfortable with the 22 year old I've become. There was a point where I wouldn't admit I had a blog, and if someone bought up Harry Potter I'd stay silent, despite the fact I listen to the Harry Potter audiobooks all the time. I'd say I wanted to be a journalist (I don't), or I had my shit together (I definitely don't). I'd try and tailor myself to the people around me in a way which was not only untrue to them, but untrue to myself. It turns out, I am not as cool as I might have wanted to be at 16, but I still have 10/10 friends who like me Harry Potter-obsession included. 

Running away is not the answer, but taking some time for a step back, might just be. I didn't come back a new woman, and my life problems are not answered. I'm still an unemployed graduate (lol), but I definitely feel more comfortable with being in this position, and that's all I can ask for.

Sorry I've been away - but I've returned.

Love, Alice x

1 comment

  1. I related to this post so hard. I studied abroad and even though I was still going to school, I was discovering that I needed to be my own person and that I could actually do all of the things I was afraid of. Like getting on a flight by myself to Spain. What.
    So glad you're back Alice!
    x Kenzie // Kenzieblogslife.wordpress.com