Don’t lose faith in your passions

So, my very first post on my spontaneously-cobbled-together little blog. I’m excited. However, I’m going to keep putting full stops to leave the impression that I’m cool and unbothered by this new occurrence in my life.

Alright, we all know forced apathy isn’t actually very cool, in fact it verges on rather warm. So HELLO! 🙂

15219993_1211175795641958_7963134023194578741_nIt literally looks like I asked someone to come outside with me and take cheesy pictures for my first blog post but this was a few months ago (when we got excited about a pretty neat sunset)

Since last year was the year of realizing stuff (copyright Kylie Jenner 2016), I would like to coin 2017 as the year Beth sprinkles some positivity into her life by setting up a blog that reminds her of all the great things within it. This will be my cultivated garden of positivity and productivity. Smell my roses, please.

I’ve always enjoyed writing but I’ve not always been very confident. This has made me close off writing from my life, my subconscious telling me I’m not as good as I hope I am, and that I should pursue other things instead. But ever since starting my degree in English and Creative Writing, it’s just felt right that I’m writing again, and I’m frankly kicking myself for throwing away all those years since I was eight or nine – when I was last writing regularly – by not purging all those thoughts in my head into a Word document. This blog is just another piece in the puzzle to help me find my passion again, instead of being scared away by it.

This is going to be a bit of a downer post, but positivity is the aim in the end, I promise…

14199656_10210541603319140_1394346304720059324_nMy sister Mary: [Bethany] simply ignoring me when, walking across the campus, I suggested singing Blink 182’s ‘Going Away To College’ for the entire day to commemorate the occasion”

I’m at a weird time in my life. I say this, but almost every point of my teenage years has been ‘a weird time’, so I’ll elaborate. I’m in my second week of my second semester at university as I write this, and it’s at that stage in first year where you’re used to the weekly routine of going to lectures and seminars, but somehow it feels different. Because you’ve been away for four weeks over Christmas, when you come back you almost expect to meet a whole new bunch of people, have freshers all over again and be living in different halls. That’s what you’ve known as a fresher so far.

When you arrive back, though – despite the (hopefully) excitement about seeing your flatmates again, who you’ll have (again, hopefully) formed special ‘I’ve-seen-you-at-every-point-in-the-day’ bonds with – it’s most likely raining, and nothing feels new anymore. You’ll probably have new modules and new buildings to navigate, but nevertheless, the sameness of it all leaves more headspace to get anxious about what you’re doing with your years as you transition into an adult.

University is basically three plus years of identity crisis after identity crisis. You soon realise you must juggle these along with repetitive and mundane stresses, such as if it’s too late in the day to do your slowly growing piles of laundry and dirty dishes. How am I supposed to stop and think about whether I’m actually enjoying or getting anything out of my course, if I’ve also got to provide for myself and live?! It’s corrupt. (I do know this is what it’s like to be an adult but frankly, I’m having none of it.)

One thing I’m learning is that lack of confidence and motivation does not mean you haven’t made the right decisions. Sometimes, especially if you suffer from anxiety or depression, it doesn’t matter what you’re trying to get done, it just doesn’t happen. It’s the act of getting started on something other than sitting there and relaxing with my music that’s scary to me, because when I actually start I feel exposed to criticism and judgement on what I’m trying to achieve, even though I’m just sitting alone in the quiet of my room. This is especially true for the creative writing side of my course. Creative writing and its assignments is almost completely subjective to the student, which I’m only just getting to grips with. I’m currently writing a blog post, but I’m still not someone who is very comfortable with sharing my own thoughts and imagination! This is something I’m trying to get over.

I’ve realised that my worry about doing work isn’t necessarily that I don’t enjoy the subject matter; I just want to showcase the skills I know I have and feel I only have a limited chance to do so. From this I’m slowly learning the difference between lack of interest and simply a lack of confidence. I’m learning to start trusting my past self in her decisions, and not suddenly start thinking that what I’m feeling is something different to what I assumed. Sometimes you’ll be reluctant to do something because you feel like it’s not the coolest route to take in life, and no one else is doing it, and you’ll be crap at it either way… but do it anyway.

Even after going through learning curves like this, don’t put yourself down if you continue to worry about the decisions you’ve made in life. It happens to me, and probably will continue to happen, but try to recognise your strengths and hang onto them. With writing, even if you still feel like you’re shit, the great thing is that you can continue editing even after submitting it (if it’s an assignment) – and then you have it, still there, more polished than before. You’ve just forced yourself to ‘fail better’. Yeah, it took me a good few times of hearing it to figure that one out too.

p.s. Don’t literally force yourself – especially if you’re not okay mentally.

So I’m going to carry on attempting shitty prose and poetry, and maybe even screen/playwriting since I’ll be learning the ropes of those in the next few years, too.

For my next posts I’m going to talk about music and other things I’ve been getting into lately. My train of thought is usually a bit muddled, but thank you thank you if you got this far. I hope everyone got something out of this first post!

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