Lifestyle, me, personal

New job, new mindset, new blogging habits: a life update

Hi there. Maybe it’s been a while since you read one of my blog posts. Maybe you’ve never read one before. Maybe you’ve already stopped reading and left (well, thanks for reading the first line at least?).

In any case, if you’re still reading, this blog post is going to be a quick update on my life, which has changed quite a bit over the last year. I’m going to keep it brief and vague on some of the details, but I wanted to talk a little bit about where I’ve been, where I’m at now, and how I’m hoping to get back into blogging again – so here goes!

Where have I been since February?

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Long story short, since February, I’ve been struggling to blog, maybe managing about a blog post a month (if I was lucky). This boils down to a whole bunch of reasons that I’ll only summarise, some positives, and others not so positive:

The negatives

1. I’d been losing motivation to blog for a little while, and around February, that came to a peak, and I just felt like my writing wasn’t good enough and that I wasn’t contributing anything meaningful or different (see this post here to see the start of that train of thought).

2. In honesty, for a while there, I wasn’t feeling too great, and I wasn’t really in a place for blogging. I’ve had to dial a few things back to focus on what matters and get back to basics. Maybe more on that some other time.

The positives

1. In more happy news, I started writing more fiction, which has been super fun, but there’s only so much writing a girl can do, so this took away from blogging.

2. Quite simply, I’ve just been busy. I’ve been programming in my spare time (more on this later), I’ve been working full-time, making a lot of changes, and focusing on other areas of my life, so blogging had to take the backseat.

Between these different reasons, blogging slipped off my radar, and as any blogger will know, once you get out of the habit, it’s really hard to get back into it. Then, we get to the last few months, when there have been some pretty major changes.

Time for a career change

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I’ve mentioned that I started doing more programming in my spare time. At some point over the last 6 months or so, I realised that the job I was doing wasn’t quite pushing all the right buttons for me. I missed making things, working on creative projects, and the kind of problem solving that comes with programming. Along with that, the environment and work culture started to feel like they weren’t quite right for me, as I wanted more autonomy in my schedule, and a healthier, more supportive work culture.

Around this same period, I stopped feeling so much like myself. I’d rather not go into the full story just now, but as a part of this I was feeling de-motivated and permanently tired, I’d lost some of my confidence, and I had no desire to write blog posts. It was a low period for me, and I knew that a part of getting out of that would be finding something I really loved doing, and a healthy and supportive environment to do it in.

So I found the missing creativity and problem solving by learning a new language and working on small projects to make webpages in my spare time(if you’re curious, you can find a couple of my designs here). And this helped a lot, and I loved that I was making things with code again. I’d missed it so much.

Then, after building my skills this way for a while, I decided it was time to take the leap. I wanted to do this full time. So I started looking for a new role.

An exciting new job

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And I found one that sounded like exactly the kind of thing that I was looking for.

Skip forward a couple of months, and here I am, and I’m happy to say that this month, I started in my new role as a junior software engineer at Geckoboard! At this point, I’ve only been in the office for a couple of days, but I’m already a big fan of the environment and culture, the team have been so supportive and welcoming, and I’m excited to get stuck in.

It’s still early days, but I’m already feeling so much happier now that I’m in a supportive and flexible environment, and I’m doing something I really love. I’m part of a small, tight-knit team, I’ve got a really cool project I’m about to start working on, and there’s so much for me to learn. Things are definitely looking up.

A change of mindset

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Over the last month or so, I’ve not only had a change of job, but a change of mindset. I’ve mentioned how I wasn’t feeling great for a while, and I’m glad to say I’m coming out the other side of that. The new hobbies and new job have definitely helped, and I’ve just come back from effectively a month’s holiday, which gave me some much-needed time to recharge and unwind.

I’m still working on it, but I feel like I’ve regained some of my confidence, I’ve managed to pick up my fiction writing (which I also lost for a little while back then), and things are definitely looking up. If you’re interested in hearing more about this side of things, you can read a little more about my journey to regaining my confidence and learning how to be myself here.

What about the blog?

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The next question is, what happens to the blog now? With so few blog posts, I’ve effectively been on a hiatus since February, and now I face the challenge of getting back into blogging. I still want to work on my fiction and my programming projects, and with a new job, I know I’m not going to be able to be able to blog as much as I used to.

But I do want to get back into it, and I’m going to try my best. I also think I’m going to change up my content a little (as I do every year or so anyway). I’m still going to write the occasional book/film/TV review, but I’m going to focus a little more on more personal content (like this!), and maybe even some stories of my journey into software engineering and some of the things I’ve learnt (and am learning) along the way.

So let’s see how that goes. Wish me luck!

(P.S. It would be great to hear your thoughts on this style of blog post and the changes I’m talking about making, so feel free to leave a comment or chat to me on Twitter.)

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