I've often wondered how life would roll out if I were to hold myself accountable and accept that force and flow require a hint of stillness with a little action and participation to create a balanced result.

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Last year was an interesting year and the autumnal months proved to be eye-opening because I was putting myself out there in the world. I’ve had so much autonomy in the last decade, doing what I want to do for myself, and nurturing my children; the world outside, it seemed pretty bleak by comparison. Choosing to lock myself away on the periphery had been quite pleasant.

Sadly, isolating myself has had an affect on my social-psyche. My tolerance levels are no longer at a resilient level and I’ve noticed whilst attending the Leisure Centre, group events and a couple of courses, I have come to enjoy the term: Ignorance is bliss. The truth is, if I don’t subject myself to daily politics, connections and communications, I delicately walk around like a fragile flower, innocent and pure, without concerns. . . bla. . . bla. . .fa la la. 

I don’t categorise myself as neither the introvert or the extrovert, I’m simply out of practice in my social skills, if I don’t use them, they get rusty. It happens. If you were to ask my family if this was true, they would say not, because they see me as the effervescent confident mum that does her best to keep a happy home.

I did have a chat with my husband over the festive period, we resigned to the fact that neither of us are content with the mundanity of the routine anymore.

I remember someone once saying in my peer circle that people over-react and feel overwhelmed when they are not used to their environments or changes, they struggle with the new experiences and become stressed.

Personally, I’ve grown to realise I welcome changes. However, I also know that I am not a fan of vague structures. I prefer to have a plan and stick to it.  If there is a need for deviation, I like for all of the participants to be fully informed to progress and offer choices, rather than be seen as a hindrance.

Although, when I worked for one employer, I asked the Management, “Why are you avoiding telling the team about these changes, they can help.” To which they replied, “this can create scaremongering and stress, which will delay progress on the strategy”.

The news, media and journalism today, it often remind me of this Manager.

Isn’t life so very complicated. Whoever we choose to work for or surround ourselves with, they will have their own set of guidance, rules, needs, wants and experiences which reflect in decision making.

Oliver Burkeman, author of ‘The Antidote: Happiness for people who can’t stand positive thinking’, mentions in the December 2018 issue of Psychologies Magazine, that people should attempt to fix what you can to avoid stress. For example listen for squeaky doors, and fix that hinge if it annoys the individual. This sounds like a simple practice. What if someone will choose not to fix the hinge? Some people see character in squeaky hinges.

I recognise today, I am quite the positive thinker, but my right is certainly not the right way for everyone, sometimes I don’t even get it right for me. I can handle and tolerate a lot, but sometimes I have avoided situations so that I don’t have to think about fixing anything.

The irony is, I rarely see frustrations, and I’m now aware that I generally see opportunities and adventures in what many consider hindrances, or annoyances. In avoiding these situations my own life-script has become stagnant.

Here's to more adventures in 2019. This year I have a few targets, and goals, one of which is decluttering and clearing out the writing and actually finding a Literary Agent. It’s time. I no longer wish to do this all alone.

I’ve enjoyed the last few years researching and self-analysing within an ignorant peripheral bliss. I have a few options: I can remain static and watch life unfold in ignorant bliss, or I can take action and be accountable for my choices.

I will let you know how I get on, because I do believe that even in the tolerances of rejection there will be a story to tell.

Julie Spencer

Ambassador and Learning Support Assistant, Psychologies Magazine

Proud Ambassador for Psychologies Magazine. The magazine encapsulates many of my core values: being kind, have compassion, look after your health and wellbeing, be professional and be supportive of others. A little self belief can go a long way. I have studied as a mature student. I went into a writing frenzy and spent 3 years writing in solitude. I was a stay at home mum, too. What I learned: being alone for long periods of time is bad for your health and wellbeing. Thanks to a little nudge from Psychologies Magazine I am reconnecting and rebuilding my C.V. I'm a creative. I have lots of ideas and I need to constantly realign my focus onto one project at a time. Until recently I had a real fear for public speaking, but after reading a book that suggested I acknowledge my fears and challenge them anyway; with the support of the Psychologies community and more I'm working through my fears one blog at a time.