Hey guys! It’s time for a personal post and a bit of a heart to heart. As always, I’ve gone far too long without writing one of these blog posts so today I’ve decided to make it my top priority. After recent trips to the Black Forest in Germany and Saalbach in Austria, I have a content list the length of my arm, but that can wait. I want to let you all know a bit about what’s been going on in my life both personal and blog-related. So here goes!
My 2018 Travels so Far
Let me kick off with a quick re-cap of my travels so far this year, just so you can catch up with any content you might have missed;
- In January I retraced my steps in Chiang Mai, Thailand and enjoyed a return stop over in Doha
- In February Scott and I went on the most epic winter road trip through the Canadian Rockies.
- In March I enjoyed a girly trip to Manchester.
- In May I went on my very first Cruise; a Scandinavian cruise which stopped at Tallinn, St Petersburg, Helsinki, Stockholm, Copenhagen and Oslo. I also returned to Edinburgh and visited Dundee for the first time
- In June I have been on a road trip around The Black Forest in Germany with my best friend Nam and took a solo trip to Austria to visit an eco-spa hotel in Saalbach.
Our 1 Year Homeowner Anniversary
This month Scott and I celebrated 1 full year of being in our home. We moved in last June, which I told you all about in my July 2017 life update. One year on and the house is finally complete. By complete I mean fully furnished and decorated to exactly our taste. You’d be surprised how long we went without a double bed in the spare room and a dining table in the kitchen, but we wanted to wait until we could afford good quality furniture that would last us for years to come. Our little home now has our own stamp on it and I’ve definitely found a new interest in the world of interiors (so much so that I experimented with my first interiors post). I’d way rather take a walk around the interiors department of John Lewis than do a haul in Topshop these days. Maybe that’s part of growing up but I am totally OK with it. Our home is my safe haven which I so look forward to returning to after a trip.
Finding Ways to Cope with the Loneliness of Working From Home
When we first moved into our house I really struggled with working from home. I finally had my dream home office, yet ironically I kept looking for ways to try and work elsewhere. I didn’t like the solitude and craved human interaction. It really worried me at one point as I wondered how much longer I could keep working from home, and thus, questioned my whole future as a full time blogger. I tried to speak to lots of people in a similar position to me (who work alone from home) and it was really refreshing to hear they also deal with loneliness and isolation. Since then I have a few rules to try and stick by if I have a full week of working at home. These include leaving the house at least once a day, going for a walk or a jog around lunch time and spending 1 day a week working from a different location e.g. a coffee shop or a cafe. I’ve also built friendships and relationships with some other other freelancers who work close by to me, and it’s so nice to meet up with them and share things in common. Working from home when you’re a sociable person isn’t easy, but with the right rules in place it’s definitely possible. I am so much happier with it now.
Saying YES to more UK Adventures
At the start of 2018, one of my goals was to do more UK travel and to feature more UK destinations on my blog. Until this year I have always overlooked opportunities to travel closer to home, but the thought of seeing a new destination without the whole airport process is actually really appealing now. I also think that featuring UK destinations makes my blog accessible to more people, as I appreciate not everyone can (or wants to) travel long haul. This summer I’ll be visiting 2 UK destinations that have been on my list for quite some time; St Andrews in Scotland and Cornwall, where I’ll be staying at the Fistral Beach Hotel and Spa. I’m excited to check out the beaches in both destinations and embrace the Great British Summer (come rain or shine!).
Making the Decision to Say NO to Solo Travel
Solo travel is something I experimented with for the first time last summer when I travelled to Graz, Innsbruck and Salzburg in Austria. I then went on to take a solo trip to Bern in Switzerland and recently I also went solo to Scotland and Austria again. There are a lot of elements of solo travel that I really do love. I think overall it makes me become more present and in the moment when I travel, and I am more observant to things around me. Asking for a table for 1 at dinner doesn’t bother me in the slightest, and I relish doing things on my own time. However, when you’re working at a professional level with a brand, there is a lot more to think about than just enjoying the moment. I put pressure on myself to create great content, and this is a lot harder when I am travelling alone. I realised that I was feeling more stressed and anxious before solo trips, because I was worried the content wouldn’t be as good as I’d like it to be. So for now, I’ve made the decision to say no to solo trip opportunities if they are part of a paid campaign as I find the pressure to just be too much. I need to pursue things that make me 100% happy so for the moment I’ll be parking the solo travel opportunities.
My Upcoming Trips for 2018
So where am I heading next? Here’s an overview of my upcoming travel plans
July – St Andrews
August – Cornwall
September – Almunecar and Florida
October – A Secret Destination for Scott’s 30th (all will be revealed in time!)
Thanks so much for taking the time to catch up with me. It’s always really therapeutic to write these posts so I am definitely going to try and do them more regularly. I’d love to know if you can relate to anything I’ve talked about or if you have any tips or advice for me? If so, please leave me a comment in the box below. Jess x