You changed me

The break wasn’t what I planned, but perhaps it’s all I needed…

But maybe that’s okay

Oh hey! It seems as though I took a little break from blogging. It wasn’t an intentional break… it just kind of happened and I guess that’s okay. With a two week holiday planned and lots of work building up before hand, I just didn’t have time to plan any blog posts. In my mind I tried to tell myself I’d just work on holiday but that didn’t really happen either. I took well to being on holiday and that’s how I know I needed it.

Having some time out does definitely do you some good. Usually I find it leaves me inspired and creative, ready to take on the world when I return. However, this time I found it just made me question everything I do. Infact, I felt a little deflated and I’m not going to lie – it’s taken me a week to kick my own butt back in to gear. First gear rather than fifth, hopefully.

I was sat on the train yesterday, thinking (mostly about how annoyed I was at forgetting my earphones…) about my blog and how it’s a career path I never knew even existed. Now I’m on it, walking slowly, sometimes confused but most of the time extremely grateful. It led me to evaluate my blog, how I felt about it when I started and how I feel about it now. Then of course, it came to me. After 3 weeks away, this would be my “hey I’m back” post, and I think it’s just what I need.

So before we get into my whole blog journey. The outfit, the real reason we’re here. Say hello to my cuddle in a coat – the perfect Winter warmer and in the most glorious shade of baby blue. This little beauty kept me toasty on holiday and I matched the sea. I paired it with a fancy printed smock dress (great for making room for lots of cream teas) and these specs. I dug these out of a drawer before holiday and I’m so glad I did. Read on for links..

Photography – Chris Bradshaw | Email

Then

The first time I posted to my blog, I treated it like a journal. A few outfit photos I snapped myself in the garden and a couple of paragraphs – straight to the point, why I’m wearing it, where I got it and why I like it. Over time people started reading and commenting – I’m still not sure how they found me, but they did. Apparently they liked my humour, which was new to me. Eventually I started to write more and spend more time planning outfits, perhaps I’d curl my hair a little better too. However one thing never changed – I never treated it like anything more than my journal.

YouTube was a similar affair. This was more than a journal but felt like a University project. Creating, editing, uploading… I enjoyed the process and to be honest, I don’t think I even bothered checking the views. I just enjoyed it and I didn’t really mind who watched.

Social media soon followed. Instagram was the place for me to upload selfies (aka, time waste at a boring job) and get a few compliments, which I liked. Twitter was a good place for me to rant.. and I didn’t even bother with a Facebook page.

Now

Hold up. This is my freakin’ JOB. My blog has become my virtual child. If I don’t upload, I feel like I am starving it. Yet, returning today – it’s still alive and well, a little neglected maybe, but it’s still here. I love creating blog posts but the effort is a whole lot more intense. I plan shoots rather than just outfits, I style to a theme, I freeze, I sweat and I probably swear. This journal has become a whole lot more than just a few paragraphs on why I like something. It’s personal and it’s all mine.

YouTube for me now is a world in itself. I check my views daily, my subscriber count and I have never missed an upload day. I watch a lot more videos and feel like I’m missing out if I don’t catch up with my daily vloggers. It’s a way of life – I watch more YouTube than I do TV. I sometimes feel like I’m drowning because I want to do it all myself – no fancy filming crews, no pro editors… just me, because that’s how it all started.

Social Media is now, my life. I still upload selfies for compliments though (ahahah) I check it constantly, I upload constantly and it’s basically my own little community. I laugh, I rant, I tell (bad) jokes and I love relevant gifs.

Love

I love blogging. I love it all. Writing a blog post is satisfying to me like nothing else, it even beats the sound of crunching leaves and bubble wrap. Then you guys read it and that bubble wrap becomes a whole HOUSE of the stuff, the leaves become even crunchier and my whole mind is full of happiness. I can try to inspire, educate or just make something pretty.

My love of photography did get put on the back burner after I graduated, but social media lets me experiment again. If I had filters when I was growing up I would have been insanely happy. I can also find social media inspiring, hair, clothes, even just a really good motivational quote can lift my spirits.

When I think back beyond the days of blogs and YouTube, I never imagined I would be here. I had hoped, wished… but me? My own business? Nah. Not silly old Laura. And then I have to remind myself, oh my god I AM DOING THIS. Sometimes it scares me, but most of the time it fills me with so much joy and love. Sometimes it’s overwhelming, and sometimes it’s just fine.

Goodness, I’m lucky.

Hate

There’s always a downside and whilst I’m all for positivity, I’m all for realness too. Running a blog is tough – it’s a lot of work, planning and motivation. It’s come a long way since the days of shooting on self timer in my garden and I’ve had to move along with it. Luckily enough, Chris is a photographer and that does make it so much easier. However we spend all of our time together working, taking photos. And sometimes, I’d just like to order a latte and not have to take a photo of it, ‘just incase’ I need it.

Social media can be a right pain in the hooter. I could be having a really good day, and BAM, some hot girl pops up on my feed and I’m back to being a 1/10. I have to remind myself every day that it’s okay to have a bum and hips, I can’t cut them off.

My job relies on people enjoying my content. I have to make sure it’s the best I can do, but… it’s tough to be the best and sometimes, I just want to post a photo of my shoes on a really bad floor, just because.

Goodness, I’m drowning.

CHANGE

So here we are, back to my journal. This is me, my blog, and you guys are wonderful for reading it, so thank you. As a blogger I feel I have a job of making sure you guys know that we’re all human – but I have to believe that too.

It’s so easy to forget what we once loved about something and it’s easy to get caught up in it all. It doesn’t mean the love is gone, you just need to dig a little deeper and pull it back up to the surface.

Having some time off definitely let me evaluate a lot of things and one of those was that I’m always going to be me – I can’t be anything else and we all need to celebrate that. When you look at social media next or feel like you’re drowning in your own work, life, whatever it might be. Just take a few steps back, remember what you love about the world, about yourself and go back to being you. Not the social media version. Social media, blogging, youtube, views, subscribers – it doesn’t define us and if you guys are up for it, I don’t think we should let it try to, ever again.

Shop the post…

Do it with passion, or not at all.

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  • taking time out is important i agree and never feel discouraged with you blog because it’s amazing! i always come here when i’m wanting to read something deep and reflective or looking for inspiration. that coat looks so cozy! perfect for the winter

    http://www.thewhimsicalwildling.com/

  • Rachel

    I first came upon your blog probably 2 years ago while YouTubing short hair tutorials to learn how to curl my (then) very short hair. I LOVED your video and thought you were so personable and pretty, and I found you and followed you, and I am so happy I did! I really relate to you and your posts are so fun, and I look forward to reading your posts and watching the videos and snapchats everyday. It’s entertainment and it’s great info and it’s fun, and I know I sure as heck couldn’t do what you do. I love your style, and you are so good at all of this. One day, I swear I’ll make it to England to have a latte with you! And whatever a cream tea is, they look delicious and I want one…. Keep it up, and keep it real. You are my fav! (and these photos are simply to DIE for)

  • Your posts are set out so beautifully! Lovely images!xx

    http://www.jessicatonge.co.uk

  • Great post! It’s important to take time out and I can so relate to the train thing- why do we always seem to have these existential thoughts on trains! hehe! x
    http://www.flareaforte.com

  • Loved this blog post, thank so much for sharing and being real!

    Patricia / Patricia Stelmach

  • Your photos are absolutely stunning!

  • Louise Francesca

    Amazing post, your photos are always so beautiful! XX

    The Fashion Road.com
    Instagram @louisefrancescaa

  • I ADORE this post <3
    Not only the pictures & outfit (which are stunning as usual), but the realness and thought and love that are put into your words <3
    It's so inspiring to see you go from strength to strength over the years!

    xx
    https://oliviaemily.com

  • FABruwer

    I love your posts; the amazing and stunning photos with the relaxing and inspirational words, tips etc…. Thank you for sharing and have a blessed day!!

  • These photos are beautiful x

  • Where did you shoot these photos? The location is gorgeous.