Well, it's officially time. Time to rebuild after a pretty epic fall.
And I say "fall", not "fail".
Falls are okay. Totally okay. We all have to crash and burn every now and then. As long as we don't wallow for too long and let it get inside our heads; we don't want to linger in self doubt. That would be foolish.
The last few weeks have undoubtedly been the hardest I've ever faced. I've been known to be dramatic at times, but there is nothing exaggerated about that statement. My character has been tested, my abilities questioned, my personal credibility put on the line and even had people screaming in my face (I cannot deal with conflict!)
But guess what? I survived. I made it through and now on the other side, standing still, nothing keeping me up at night, conflict over - I find myself a little lost.
After two weeks of non stop stress, lack of sleep, endless bread, wine and coffee... suddenly I don't know how to just relax, eat properly and realize I don't need to be stressed anymore. It's okay Hannah... it's over. you can sleep now. You can make a smoothie again. You can read your book. You can find zen again!
But, it's just not that simple, is it? When you've felt stressed for a while and questioned how you'll get out of it, it's not a simple as waving a magic wand and feeling okay again. Stress lingers.... it lingers in your joints, in your shoulders, in your sleep patterns, in your relationships, even in your sense memory. I still hear the "ding" of my emails and get panicked it may be an email I don't want to see. A published review? A question? A complaint?
Now it's back to the life I love: blogging, acting, writing, coffee shops, but it's going to take some time to adjust back into that life. That life I specifically designed to be my idea of heaven.
Because life should be heavenly, right? We make it. We choose it. We design it. You design your life and I have designed mine to be full of what makes me happy and weeks like the last two to be rare occasions, not the norm.
So, how am I rebuilding? Time for one of my favorite kinds of blogs: A LIST! I love lists.
Rebuilding 101. Hannah style.
Diet Back on Track! Detox!
Yep - detox o'clock! The gorgeous (and freshly vegan!) Jasmine and I are contemplating a full-on raw food cleanse. But before I even go there, I'm going to spend the next week at the very least:
- Cutting out alcohol. Yep ZERO! My skin will thank me.
- Back to high percentage WHOLE FOODS. The last few weeks there has been far too much "convenience eating". I'm an enormous advocate of fruit and veg being some of the fastest and easiest foods, but confess this week there's been a lot of bread, coffees, curries and packaged things. I love all these things, but I know the difference when the MAJORITY of my diet is good, wholesome stuff. Back to whole :)
- Cook again! Back to cooking the majority of my meals. I love it, so back to it. Therapy for multiple reasons :)
Writing for Fun, not Work
I love writing... always have and never took it too seriously.
But then, writing became something I "had to do" and guess what? I stopped wanting to do it! Aren't our brains weird?
So, now I'm happily commitment-free, I plan on getting back into writing for pleasure. The stuff I love. The play ideas that are gathering dust, the short stories, the dream film scripts... all that jazz!
Put Love Back into my Home
When you aren't home much... it's hard to inject "love" into it.
Washing piles up, dishes pile up, the fridge gets a weird smell.... I hate being this person! I love my "sanctuary".... so now I can finally rebuild it!
I am home again, cooking again and the first things I want to do are: (this may become a whole separate blog post...)
- Buy some fresh flowers....
- Buy some candles and put them EVERYWHERE. Nothing says "zen" like candles....right?
- Organize my closet (i.e. pick everything off the floor)
- Fill my cupboards with food and staples....
- Find a way to change the furniture around.
- Have a "zen" corner.... do do yoga stuff, read.... just pile a heap of cushions into one corner, I reckon.
Refocus my Energy
The great things about falls, is realizing what you really DON'T want. I have a very clear idea now about how NOT to do things in the future, or at the very least, avoid repeating mistakes! Now, I have a blank canvas and can really focus on what I want and put all my energy into whatever I choose.
I wrote in my last post that I'd been overloading my plate, so I know first off, not to do that anymore! It's better do do a few things brilliantly than be involved in absolutely everything and a wreck ;)
Time to focus my energy on what I really want: Acting.
Yeah - you heard me. It's lame and it's wanky, but it's NECESSARY.
Complement yourself. Say happy mantras.... call yourself amazing. You can't rebuild and heal without a bit of Self Love.
Do it. I dare you.
Focus on the People who make you feel GREAT!
Yeah! That's right! And spend as much bloody time with them as possible! Even if they live far, far away :)
Who make you feel amazing? Like a superhero? Who do you love so much it hurts?
Fill your life with these people :)
Savor Every Second
Yep, I'm going there...
Life is short. It's really bloody short, so even when it's hard and not-so-fun, still try and savor every moment. We are so lucky.... never forget it.
Remember what makes you happy - hold on to it, don't question it and be kind to yourself.
Love and Sweet Potatoes!
You know I can't lie to you guys.... this week has been stressful. And as I've signaled above.... vegan cake is helping.
Sleep hasn't been easy... being healthy hasn't been easy.... smiling has even been tough on occasion. It's all because of one simple fact that I know we are all guilty of sometimes... overloading.
I have completely overloaded my plate, because I love being busy. But, as much as we may love feeling hectic and important, you really do have to stop and think: "what's the point in being crazy busy when I can't do anything brilliantly? Isn't it better to be amazing at a few things than average at a million?"
So, blogging has taken a back seat, as you may have noticed. This doesn't make me happy. Today I wanted to get back to it a little and at least share some thoughts/inspirations from this week of madness.
Don't let others decide your worth
If you've ever been bullied - you'll know what I"m talking about here. Some people have a very strong, natural presence and they make themselves the most important person in the room. Not because they naturally have the status, but because they shove everyone else down around them.
Do not let anyone do this to you.
Hold your head high and just focus on what YOU are doing. Get your worth from your work, your relationships and people you love and respect. Not people who make you feel like crap.
Which jobs are the effortless ones?
It's not revolutionary I know.... but I have to remind myself of this everyday.
What makes me happy? What is WORTH the stress? Which jobs have a reward at the end? Even if they aren't jobs... even if it's just cooking, walking, exercise, seeing friends for coffee.... look at your commitments and honor the ones that make sense.
Do what makes you happy and what feels worth it. Remove things off your plate that don't offer a pay off.
Hard work doesn't equal "Bad"
Even if you are following a creative passion - it's still bloody hard work. Hard work that hopefully makes you feel so exhausted and accomplished at the end of the day.
It's a total myth to think that creative people (actors, writers, models) must just love their life 24:7. If only! It's still hard and draining and there are low points, but hopefully, the good outweighs the bad. The highs outweigh the lows. And the passion outweighs the business :)
Insist on Down Time!
Mine is simply an hour or two in a cafe.... simple and effective. I need downtime if I'm to smile and be surrounded by people all day. No matter how busy I am - I NEED TO MAKE TIME for myself.
You must stay sane.
Don't Beat Yourself Up
These are the kinds of weeks you aren't going to be at your shiniest or skinniest (at least if you're a stress-eater like me!)
These are the weeks for bread and red wine. Commit to it.
Wear a loose shirt and get on with your giant "To Do" list and don't get bogged down with trying to be perfect. Be kind to yourself... don't beat yourself up!
Instead of thinking: "God, I feel like crap today", I'm trying to think "wow, I'm at the theatre every day and night this week and am a total ninja."
Next week - we can be green goddesses again.
Having said that... Commit to your Healthy Routines
It is indeed the week for bread and wine... and I'd be lying if I said a glass of red post-show isn't helping me relax (let's examine THAT later) but at the same time, I know I am far more capable and professional when looking after myself.
I'm keeping good routines in place :) If I wasn't, I'd have definitely collapsed by now. Vegan superpowers for the win! Even just hot water and lemon a few times a day helps.
And because I'm healthy 90% of the time, I know that a week of some wine and not much sleep I can recover from!
You Have Complete Control
Oh, that's right... I'm doing this to myself.
Got to keep remembering you are in the drivers seat :) When things are getting stressful, make an action plan to pave an easier road in the immediate future.
Here's to a manic week nearly being over and a more relaxing time ahead.
I'm sure soon I'll be complaining that I'm bored. Hopefully not though ;)
Below are my opening night flowers :) How lucky am I, seriously?
It's no lie when I call this blog my "happy place". It really is.
I love nothing more than sitting down to write, so it pains me that I've been too busy to even LOOK at my blog for what feels like the longest time.
The truth is: life is insane at the moment. It's both a good and bad thing. I'm popping between a million rehearsals, taking on a bit more at work and getting more active in performing.
So, I'm "going fishing" for a little bit, guys (vegan fishing, naturally!) My Mum has always brilliantly said that when you're feeling stressed you just need to "take something off your plate". For a little bit, I may need to shove my creative energy 100% into my performances and obviously keep up my work with Vilda Magazine and Chic Vegan.
My happy little blog here is so loved and I will continue to post as often as I can, but sadly it will be no where near as regular as it has been.... And as soon as my show has closed, I'll be back in full swing!
Here are some pretty pictures to say "sorry".
Back soon! Love and Sweet Potatoes!
Managing to maintain a healthy cake and coffee habit.... ;)
Balanced with green smoothies whenever possible..... of course.
I'm spending lots of time with my laptop staring at rain lately.... but I love it.
Also - I'm working on (usually around 3am....) a vegan guide to Manchester at the moment, so keep your eyes peeled for that.
How To Spread The Vegan Word Without Being a Preachy A***hole
10 Reasons to F**king LOVE Ricky Gervais