Finding Joy in
The Small Things
I guess the alternative and ironic title of this post could perhaps be finding joy in the small things offline? I've sometimes found it seems so contradictory to share my thoughts about stepping away from social media as it seems the opposite of what I should be doing for my career.
If you're like me and you struggle with the expectations placed on you online and/or you find some of your joy intrinsically linked with social media posting and scrolling, you'll know it feels hard to take a step back, put your phone down at the right time and enjoy the small things.
I recently shared about my personal experience of boundaries online and how that's changed for me as my following has grown. Similarly being able to protect my mental health online has become a much harder task for me, as I've seen growth on my channels.
I think I'll always be an advocate for all the wonderful things that social media has brought us and continues to do as it connects so many of us, but there will always be more joy to be found in the small things away from the online space too.
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There are so many things that I simply can't control online and when that penny dropped quite loudly and suddenly for me, a lot of my worries linked with my social spaces, started to get a little easier to deal with. It almost feels like the equivalent of when you're a teenager and you feel like you need to say yes to every opportunity offered to you and suddenly you realise that infact there are only so many days in a week. And you know what? There are still only so many days in a week and still only so many hours in a day - making it completely my choice and privilege as to how I spend them. If there is one thing I've found I can control when things feel noisy, overwhelming or heavy though, it's the amount of time I spend online, even if it's sometimes difficult to spearate my online self from my offline self. The more I purposefully reduce that everyday, ensuring the time I do spend online is spent well and for the benefit of myself and anyone who chooses to be a part of this community, the more I start to find the joy again in the small things. The dog walks, the days 'off', the cooking with Alex, the chats with friends, standing barefoot in the garden with my coffee, even the weekly food shop - things that always bring me some bursts of joy but they bring me more joy when I realise I can sit in them for a while and appreciate them, without also being online.
One of the traits I have that's seemingly very common as a Cancer (I'm an 18th July baby if you believe in the star signs) is being an empath to quite an extreme. If someone shares with me, shouts at me or celebrates me - I feel it so very deeply that it stays with me endlessly. Creating boundaries, searching for the positives of social media, finding the joy in the small things, these are all the ways I feel I can take a deep breath, relax my shoulders and not let my empathetic nature overwhelm me. If you have a problem and you share it with me, I don't just want to help you to carry the load when it gets too heavy for you, it's now become my problem too. I guess it's one of those traits that feels equally warm and equally overwhelming all at the same time. Over the years though I've learned that all the things I do for myself and for the protection of my mental health, especially online, are the things that should be prioritised for so many of us in the 21st century. It's those small things, the dog walks, the 'days off', the cooking with Alex - all so small but so integral to filling my cup and feeling joy when I need them the most. We always say with a deep sigh that it's the small things that mean the most, well who knew how true that really was? The importance of finding joy in the small things isn't lost on me me anymore, even if those small things are offline and don't always coincide with my social media loving self.
Love you guys, hope you find some joy when you need it today, even if it's in a small thing x
PS - England where has the sunshine gone?! Please come back - I'd like to sit in the garden with a gin & tonic and not get soaked on every dog walk anymore haha