Hey, It’s Okay… To Be Anxious

I published my last Hey, It’s Okay… in July this year and if you’ve been a reader of my blog for a while you will remember it was a monthly series back in 2016. These posts are always raw and honest and this could perhaps be the most personal yet. I wanted to write it before the end of the year so you can understand where my head has been at and try to leave as much of these feelings in 2017 as I can.

If you asked me a couple of years ago what anxiety was I would have put it in the same category as other mental illnesses and understood it was very serious but I didn’t actually know what it was or how it affected people; not in a naive way but I didn’t know enough to form an explanation.

Honestly, I had a difficult time this year and I’m still getting over it. My mum was seriously ill and I was not only worried about her but things at my old job came to a head. I started to feel trapped and insular and I was just getting up each day because I had to. I was tired all the time, some days I would feel sick and I was just low. I vividly remember Mothers Day in May. I was working half a day from 9am-1pm and the whole morning I felt sick to my stomach, I was shaking and I had a strange feeling like I couldn’t breathe. The feeling of not being able to breathe became more regular. I suffer from asthma but it was a much tighter feeling and higher up my chest. I wondered if the breathlessness was a side effect of my contraceptive pill – I now know it wasn’t.

I’d been to my doctor about the tiredness and had blood tests done and my B12 levels were a bit low so I purchased some supplements which at the time I think did help. The stress and breathlessness weren’t going away and I returned to the doctor (in tears each time) and he said it sounds like I’d been having panic attacks. I knew that was a symptom of anxiety but I brushed it off because in my head I didn’t realise how bad things had got. I will state I have not been diagnosed with anxiety and I don’t take any medication for it but I did get help and I am thankful. I saw a counselor and the first session was so hard because it meant letting the thoughts in my head out and having to tell someone and have them listen. I had four sessions in total.

Now when I look back at myself during that time it feels like I was a completely different person. I was scared and I felt like I was going crazy but the panic and the angst were very real. It also made me realise that I am naturally an anxious person but during that period the anxiousness was out of control and it wasn’t ‘normal’. Everyone has a different idea of what normal is and what affects one person might not affect another but that’s why we should be so mindful, who are we to judge someone else’s pain.

At the time no one really knew what I was going through apart from my mum. My boyfriend kind of knew but I tried to be strong and I didn’t want my anxiety to get in the way of our time together. I didn’t purposely not tell people but I went through it by myself as there wasn’t really anyone to lean on for support. I know I am strong and going through this made me tougher. There is nothing more important than happiness and being happy. I was brave enough to step away from a toxic situation.

I am still getting over everything and still have days where I feel anxious or don’t have a lot of energy and feel tired. I now accept that I do get symptoms of anxiety but from now on I will be better equipped on how they present themselves and how to deal with them. I don’t want to ever go back to that place.

Do you or anyone you know get anxious? I hope this post can help someone who might be going through a tough time. Thank you for reading.


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Hey, It’s Okay… To Be Different

Hello! It’s been a while since my last Hey, It’s Okay… post. They are some of my favourite posts to share and some of the most read and most popular on the blog. I still have so many things I want to talk about in these posts but instead of committing to one every month, I tend to write them when I feel strongly about certain topics.

Most of my life I have felt different. It’s a hard feeling to describe but one of the easiest ways I can think of is a square peg in a round hole. It’s not so much a feeling of isolation but more to do with the way I think and how I perceive things. Right now I am super proud of the person I am! I don’t let being an individual define me as much as it once did.

I want to use this post to explain some of the ways I have felt different but at the same time I realise other people may deem these differences as ‘normal’.


At school I was the well behaved student, who always handed work in on time and always did her homework. I didn’t perceive myself as better than the other students, I’ve always had a strong work ethic and was worried what would happen if I didn’t get it done on time. I thought I would get a detention or get in trouble. I was never a big fan of the social element of school either, I didn’t party or drink alcohol. I never made drunken decisions I would later regret and did well academically. 

Blog Monetisation

I have spoken about this briefly before and in fact dedicated a whole post to it *HERE*. I never started blogging with the intention to make money from it. I don’t get paid to review products and I have never been sent anything to review. I don’t mind the fact I don’t do this because my readers know this blog is purely me and I talk about products I have purchased with my own money or won through giveaways. Having so many new products to review and write about would overwhelm me. I very much like comfort zones.

Dating & Relationships

Before I met my boyfriend I had no previous relationship experience and sometimes I felt like I was strange and that there was something wrong with me. I never felt like I had to have a boyfriend and it would happen when I was ready but now I don’t see what I was worried about. Even though I had never been in a relationship before I don’t feel awkward in any situations and feel like I have to act a certain way. I’m just me and I’m so thankful the person I met I can be myself around. I also feel like our relationship is ours. We’re not a showy couple, we don’t even have a picture together (yet) but we don’t mind. We don’t have rules, we just enjoy being with each other.


Work is kind of like school for me. I follow the rules, do what my boss tells me to do and I always turn up on time. I’ve never taken a sick day in my current job and have only not turned up to work once because my mum was ill. I go to work to do my work, I’m focused on the task at hand and take pride in my abilities. I would be scared to take the day off work for no reason, I couldn’t bring myself to do it because I’m so honest. I’m not saying other people don’t have this approach to work but I always see and hear people talking about the younger generation’s work ethic and whilst there are some people who do slack off and don’t want to learn, I’m the opposite.

My Mind

There is one link tying this whole post together; my mind and the way I think. The way I think is very considerate and 95% of the time tends to favour other people and their feelings rather than my own. I think about things in an abstract way and present options that aren’t what would be considered the norm. I’m calculated in how I act and what I say and like to think I have a high emotional intelligence (EQ). I am smart and focused and I know what I want. I have morals and standards but I don’t try to impose those on anyone else. I understand that everyone is an individual and they make their own choices and decisions. At times I feel like my mind is wise beyond my years but I am sensible and organised and that has always taken me far. Your mindset is important, it determines how you think and how you act.

I am proud of the person I am and I don’t see these things as differences anymore. It’s all about perception and how you choose to deal with them that matters. It’s okay if you didn’t like school but turned up everyday because you wanted to do well in exams, it’s okay if you’ve only had one relationship at age 22 and most of all it’s okay if you think outside of the box and not like everyone else. Being different is what makes you special!


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Hey, It’s Okay… If People Don’t Read Your Blog

Hey It's OkayBefore I get into the post, let me start by saying this isn’t aimed at anyone and is intended as a generalisation.

I’m sure one thought that crosses a lot of people’s minds before they start a blog is, “Will anyone read it?” It’s a valid point because I had that thought myself and it’s ironic how that becomes irrelevant. When you’re starting out, it seems like numbers are important, and while it’s nice to have people reading and commenting, that happens naturally over time. The main reason I have stuck with blogging is because I genuinely enjoy it (and I hope that shows). There are people who start a blog and try anything to get followers and see how many ‘likes’ they can get but you can tell those people apart. After a couple of months they burn out because they don’t have genuine passion for what they’re talking about and they disappear.

The aim of this month’s Hey, It’s Okay… is to tell you that it’s fine if you don’t have instant success and if you do enjoy blogging to stick with it. When I started blogging, I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t have a posting schedule, I didn’t know what I wanted to talk about and I certainly didn’t know much about themes and behind the scenes, techie stuff. I think one of the reasons I enjoy blogging so much is because there’s lots to learn and opportunity to grow and improve photography skills, writing skills and more.

I’m certainly not saying, be like me or do this and do that because there’s no certain way to blog. I can however, offer my advice and try to help by sharing what works for me. I mentioned that when I started, I barely knew what I was doing and in some ways, that’s a good way to be. You don’t take anything for granted and you set little milestones for yourself and you’re even more excited when you achieve them. It is definitely true that as time goes on, you worry less about the numbers. While they are nice, it’s more about connecting with people and being able to talk and share things with them. I see a lot of bloggers as friends and while we’ve never met and we may not know every single thing about each other, I know they’re there to support me and they’re never far away with a kind word.

Having a small number of people who enjoy reading your blog posts and interact is better than having thousands of followers who you never speak too and are just faces behind a screen. One of the best pieces of advice is to write a blog you’d love to read. There are certain brands and topics everyone seems to talk about but if you don’t have something new to offer or think a different way, things become generic. Instead of rushing out to buy the new Jaclyn Hill highlighter and swatching it, why not try finding other alternatives to suit everyone’s budget or come up with other ways to use the highlighter. I always label myself a beauty novice because I know there are people with greater beauty knowledge and tips and tricks than me but I don’t let that stop me from running a beauty blog. I love to learn and discover new products and I adapt beauty to suit me. You won’t find me posting about “high end” products because I don’t own any and the truth is a lot of products in New Zealand are overpriced, 80 something dollars for a Clinique moisturiser, I don’t think so!

I have always posted what I want and I try to put my own spin on things and not just follow what other bloggers do. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with what other bloggers post but similar to the Jaclyn Hill point, I don’t want my reader to be 20 different posts about one lipstick or one eyeshadow palette. I try to come up with series and posts that are unique and a bit different and while my blog may not be the most successful or most followed, I DON’T CARE. I want to be able to look back on this blog in five years time or when I’m older and be proud that I stayed true to myself and talked about things that mattered to ME. Often I say how much I enjoy writing and sharing these personal posts because the thoughts are entirely mine and it’s just raw honesty.

The whole point of this post is to reiterate that you don’t have to be a superstar blogger to enjoy it and have fun. Write about the things you want to write about. Naturally as time goes on you will develop your own niche and style and people that truly want to read your words will find you. Don’t worry if you only have 10 followers after one week, don’t worry if you don’t have any. Blogging is a ride and it goes wherever you want to take it. If you’re passionate and determined to stick with it, please do! It’ll probably be one of the best decisions of your life!

As always, thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this post! How do you stay motivated when it comes to blogging?