Yelly Writes

Tiptoeing around the why

I’ve been asking myself existential blogging questions lately.

I haven’t blogged for a while. I actually thought that I hadn’t written anything for a year.

Although the last thing I actually wrote was the eulogy that I’d prepared for to celebrate the life of my dearest Tita (auntie in Filipino) Margie, who passed away on 27 May 2021. I’d forgotten about that. But just like everything that has happened in the last several months, everything feels like a lifetime ago. That’s another blog entry altogether!

A friend asked me if I still blogged (which is what actually brought about this existential reverie) and I answered and said I still had a blog but I hadn’t written in a very long time. They said they didn’t blog anymore because they felt that blogging was something that interesting people did. I truly wanted to splutter and object and say that we’re all interesting people! But of course, I didn’t.

That conversation does weigh heavily in my thoughts these days. Am I just fooling myself into thinking that I have something to say? Is anyone else interested in the mundane banality of my extraordinarily ordinary life?

I mean I have opinions. I have all these ideas of food to cook and bake. I’ve got all these things that I want to do. I have photographs to share. But is blogging still a relevant platform? I used to have a massive reach when I blogged on a different blog-hosting platform (which weirdly enough the name escapes me!). I had so many people read my blog entries, comment on my opinions and just interact.

I guess with the explosion of social media, blogging and microblogging platforms compete for the attention of the many people who consume content online. And if you’re someone so ordinary like me, you tend to get lost in the content posted by more prominent personalities.

Then it leads to the question – Why then do I post my prose online?

That question has made me think. I guess I still want to share my thoughts. I’m still of the opinion that if I share what I think, somehow, somewhere, someone else will read it and smile (or laugh) because they’ll think that they’re not alone, that someone else in the world is like them.

Why do you still blog?

Yelly Writes

Back to basics

I haven’t written anything in quite a while.

It’s been an odd 18 months, I’m sure you’ll all agree. But unlike other (wannabe) creatives, I’ve procrastinated and I’ve stayed away from blogging. I’m not quite sure why. I’ve been busy with my real-world job and just learning to navigate the new world of Covidlandia.

I have been crocheting a lot though. I finally managed to finish my 100 poppies for the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Royal British Legion. I’ve had a few people buy them from me already and I am so thankful! Please be assured that the poppies have come from a Covid-free environment (I test often as I travel to and from work regularly). If anyone wants one, please let me know and I can send you details of how you can help me raise funds to donate to the RBL!

I’m going to try to blog more often. Even if it is just to rant or share a random thing. This person’s writing muscle needs to be exercised!

How have you all been?

Yelly Writes

Girl on the train feels

If you follow me on Instgram (and if you don’t, please do! I’m @yellywelly), you’ll know that I more often than not story my trials and tribulations on the work commute that is the Greater Anglia service under the hashtag #girlonthetrainfeels.  

I’ve been using that hashtag for about 3 or so years now.  It’s has basically been my whinge board for all things related to my morning and evening commute on Greater Anglia.  Sometimes it’s just short videos of my train swooshing past pretty Essex fields, and sometimes (well, okay, most of the time) it’s me complaining about the delays on the service, but sometimes I share my thoughts on the passengers I share the train with.  Once, a lady got on the train from Stratford with the biggest Nemo balloon that I’d ever seen.  You can guess what my caption was (something about finding Nemo…of course!). 

I have an hourlong commute to work (I get on at Harwich and get off at Chelmsford) so it’s necessary to find ways to entertain myself.  I normally allow my mind to float away on flights of fancy.  I like to give nicknames to the people I come across on the train.  I wonder about their lives or why they behave the way they do on the train.  There are the train regulars like Colonel Mustard, Mr and Mrs Coughie, Lady Tosser, Cath (Kidston), Ichabod Crane…

These, of course, aren’t their real names.  I just call these names because of how they dress or behave.

I wonder if y’all want to hear about them?

Yelly Writes

Half the year’s gone!

Tomorrow is the First of July, which means, of course, that half of the year has been and gone.

I know at the beginning of the year I said that I wouldn’t write down goals this year. Because I always don’t finish. I’m horrible at follow through when it’s something I have to do for myself. I have trouble keeping on track on my work to-do lists most times. I always break that vow at the end of January and I always end up writing down the things I want to do for the year.

But this year, funnily, I stuck to my guns. I’ve resisted the urge to write down my goals. Even when the little voice in my head demanded that I do so to have direction (I’m a list writer. I need lists!). I think I need to see my goals to nudge me out of the inertia.

I used to write things down in my diary and have a mood board. I think I needed the visual prompts to keep me on track.

Do you write down your goals? What’s your goal setting style? Care to share success tips?

Yelly Writes

Hello there stranger!

Yes I am writing again. And no, I didn’t go on a writing sabbatical (as is my perennial excuse for being a lazy so and so).

I just haven’t been visited by the writing muses lately and real life adulting has been keeping me busy and most days absolutely shattered. By the time I get home, I’m more than ready to go to bed. But of course, there’s still dinner to be made and eaten and dishes to be washed. Some days, I really would just like to get in, lock the door behind me, take of my shoes, put down my bag, take a shower and go to bed. I’ve neglected all forms of creative pursuits – writing, crocheting, sewing. All my creative endeavours have been put on an extended pause until I find the motivation to start working with my hands again.

I’ve been feeling very down in the dumps lately. Maybe it’s the hay fever, but I feel like I have this blanket of general dissatisfaction about everything weighing me down. I try to busy myself and just keep my head down and just keep chugging along, ticking off one task after the other. If I keep myself busy, I stop noticing the little things that make me grind my teeth in annoyance. I try to smile through everything, be kind, be helpful, be pleasant and biddable, because that’s what’s expected (and I know that it’s not good for my mental health, all this tamping down of feelings). But there are days when I just want to shout in frustration and demand that people take care of me for a change. I keep wondering whether people would notice if I disappeared. I know…dark thoughts. I’m probably just feeling a bit neglected, taken for granted and a little invisible.

I do, however, want to write more. I have a hashtag that I use a lot on my Instagram stories (please follow me — I’m @yellywelly on Instagram and Twitter) – #girlonthetrainfeels. Yes, very, very inspired by Paula Hawkins’ book The Girl On The Train, which I loved and read several times over. Because, I am, for all intents and purposes a girl on the train. I commute to work on a train. I’ve been asked by people to write about my train journeys because my Instagram stories make them laugh.

I need to get writing. What I’m afraid if is that people will think I’m mean. Because I make up names for the people that get on the same train as me – the regulars. I also wonder about them, and have observations. I don’t think I’m being mean-spirited. It’s just a bit of fun on the train whilst I’m waiting for the train to roll onto my platform so I can get off and go to work.

I wonder if people will be interested in reading my stories and musings….

Yelly Writes

Painful wakefulness

I started writing this entry at 23:23.   

I am awake, sitting on my couch and in pain.  I just wanted to stop crying about the pain my back was putting me through.  So I climbed out of bed, walked gingerly out of the bedroom and walked to my front room.  And then sobbed.  

It currently hurts to breath.  But it only hurts on the left side of my body.  My muscles are punishing me for doing something.  I’m not sure what.

So instead of focusing on the pain, I started breathing exercises to push through the pain.  Then I started thinking “Ooooh maybe I can read something to take my mind of trying to forget the pain.”  Because I always think engaging my brain helps me deal with whatever hurts – whether it’s a physical pain or something else. 

So now, I’m blogging.  Which is quite the surprise.  I haven’t actually written anything spontaneously in a very long while.  So in a way, I am thankful for the muscle pain that prompted me to get up.  It doesn’t matter whether or not this post makes sense or is at all positive (I’m writing about pain, so I’m thinking that’s a negative).  What’s important is that I’m writing again.  

I’ve got a few catch up posts to write.  Posts that I started whilst I was at home in the Philippines or in the weeks after I came home.  I need to be a little more disciplined about writing.  It is really like a muscle (hellooooo pain reference!), that needs to be exercised.  The longer I leave writing, the harder it is to approach the writing inertia.

And funnily enough, the only way to fight the writing inertia is to fight against the writing inertia.  What a predicament, eh?

It’s 23:34.  Not bad for 11 minutes work, huh?  It’s not exactly groundbreaking or profound.  But at least I’ve started writing again!

Yelly Writes

Trying something new

I’m trying something different in the hope that I can emerge from this writing inertia.  I’ve always written my Instagram posts around a literary quote that fits my mood.  I’m hoping it helps lift this dark cloud over my writing muses.

It’s also very possible that life has become busier than ever.

But if I want to allow my creativity to flow, I need to make time for it!

Yelly Writes

On a break

“When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.” ― Ansel Adams

 

I haven’t really written anything lately.  I went to Edinburgh and I’ve come back with loads of amazing photos, and yet I’ve not done anything with them.  I’ve been feeling a bit out of sorts lately.  I’m not feeling a connection with my writing.  I’ve been struggling creatively and I feel like I need a massive kick up the backside to get me out of this non-writing loop!

Oh help!

Yelly Writes

So, what’s new?

“In this ever-changing society, the most powerful and enduring brands are built from the heart. They are real and sustainable. Their foundations are stronger because they are built with the strength of the human spirit, not an ad campaign. The companies that are lasting are those that are authentic.” ― Howard Schultz, Pour Your Heart Into It: How Starbucks Built a Company One Cup at a Time

So I’m getting my act together and seriously considering my blogging direction (for the nth time!).  But I love the energy the thought of reinvention injects in my lethargic creativity veins.  I’ve changed my blog categories because this time it makes better sense to me.

I love that I am evolving and the blog is growing with me.

I’ve also changed the blog’s header image.  I’ve added spring daffodils because, well, frankly, I am desperate for springtime weather!  England has not been blessed with warmth and sunny days lately.  I’m hoping that Mother Nature nudges Spring into action so that we can have warmer days, more sunshine and better looking plants (so I can photograph them!).

I have several things planned in the next few months, so please watch this space!❤

 

Yelly Writes

Writing it out

Emma Gannon is my favourite millenial (let me just say that I’m not entirely sure I am using this term correctly, I think I am but if you disagree leave a comment and let’s discuss!).  Mostly because she has done what I’ve always wanted to do.  She has taken a passion for writing and communicating on all possible media (print and social media and now she has this killer podcast and amazing book!) and has turned that passion into a career.

emmagannon-ctrlaltdeleteShe is one of a handful of superwomen that I follow on social media, mostly because they inspire me.  I mean hello, they’ve accomplished what I wanted to do ages ago (when I was bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and less disappointed with the world) and they are so much younger than me!  I know people always say 40 is the new 30, and I am right there, just over the threshold (I turned 40 this year) but there are days when I think about what I need to learn, what I have to do and I wonder if I’ll ever get this particular ship out of this harbour.  I know the inertia that I’m feeling is something that only I can overcome.  I’ve got to light that firecracker under my backside and I’ve got to start moving (literally and figuratively!) if I want to get to where I want to get to.  I have a plan in my head but a plan isn’t really worth anything if I don’t attach any things to do and action points to it.

First thing to do is to create an environment where I am doing things that will get me to where I want to be.  I have to create a positive go-getter frame of mind.  I know that the day job is important at the moment because the day job will help me fund the activities that I need to participate in to get to where I want to get to.  I am reminded of Emma Gannon’s podcast episode with Paulette Perhach who talked about the importance of the side-hustle and how important it is to keep hustling.  I have allowed myself to wallow in the wishing stage of this whole endeavor so really, I haven’t been hustling as yet.  But hustle I will and hustle I should!

I have been wondering about my blog, why it hasn’t really taken off in the way my previous blog did.  I had people reading my blog, commenting on my blog, actually following my blog.  I lost that when I moved into a different blog hosting platform (Blogdrive did have a community and people actually read other people in Blogdrive) – this is not to throw shade on all the people following my blog; to you lovely lot, I am forever grateful.  I’m not assigning blame.  I just think my blog was stuck in a particular kind of blog theme where people shared their feelings to try and find validation.  We all want that all important thing: validation.  But it’s also important to know that people also want to read inspirational stuff, aspirational stuff.  Because if you boohoo and rant all the time, you bring your readers down with you.  It’s okay to vent, but I think it’s also important not to overshare your emotional and psychological baggage.  I think the audience isn’t as receptive to that anymore.  There has to be a balance between saying it like it is and depressing the heck out of your readers!

The quote below is a screen grab from Emma’s blog entry about Sharing Less.  It resonated so much.  And yes, I am going to write because I have something to say and I have a great story to share, not because I need validation.

emma-gannon-quoteOh and I know that I’ve started to view my writing differently because every time Alan asks me “are you sure you want to blog about that?” these days, I no longer feel like I am being attacked.  I stop and think about what I really want to say.  I don’t say this enough but thanks Alan♥

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