Why Are We Ashamed of Taking a Break?

It’s been two weeks since I last posted on my blog. The date stamp of my last post sits there accusingly, silently judging me for my absence, for my laziness. I’m not narcissistic enough to think that anybody is affected by, or even notices, the inactivity in my little corner of the internet, but I usually like to post a couple of times a week; there’s a therapy in putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard), and the feeling of being productive in an area that isn’t linked to my job gives me a certain satisfaction.

But what happens when you don’t feel that sense of wellbeing? What happens when the thing that’s supposed to be your hobby just feels like a drain?

I’ve always loved writing. I started my current blog to protect that love. After university I managed to land a social media marketing role that quickly led into content writing for a travel brand, and while I’m so lucky to have found a job that fits so well with my strengths and interests, I knew that I needed a place to write for myself in my own voice. My blog has now been that place for a year and a half, and has not only provided me with a breath of fresh air from my professional writing, but also helped me develop other skills and meet some fantastic fellow bloggers.

Lately though, I’ve been feeling a little…deflated. The colder weather and darker evenings have taken their toll on my motivation, work feels draining, and I’m struggling with creative block. The ideas aren’t coming and even when they do I struggle to articulate them, the spark of inspiration dying out even as I reach for a pen to scribble some notes. I’ve planned post ideas, put off writing them until the last day and then accepted last minute drinks or dinner invites, pretending to myself that I’m disappointed but secretly relieved that I’ve been saved from doing the work. Even when I’m at home alone, Netflix seems much more appealing than my blank WordPress screen.

So what’s a girl to do? I’ve decided I’m done with the guilt. Bianca Bass once wrote an amazing post about why we don’t always have to be hustling, and I think it applies to pretty much every non-essential thing in our lives. We all feel pressure from external sources, and when those burdens are weighing particularly heavily on us it makes no sense to put additional pressure on ourselves. Over the last few weeks I’ve neglected my blog but I’ve had a long weekend away with a friend, started to undertake an amazing new progression at work, re-read some of my favourite books and enjoyed some lovely quality time with my friends, family and boyfriend.

I’m done feeling guilty for stepping back from things that aren’t bringing me joy. I needed to take a break, but after a few weeks away I’ve got a bunch of new ideas and my motivation is slowly reappearing. Taking a break doesn’t mean we’ve stopped and it doesn’t mean we’ve given up, so why do we act like it does?

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5 thoughts on “Why Are We Ashamed of Taking a Break?

  1. Hey at least you went two weeks it has been months since I had posted anything and in the back of my mind I knew that I need to write but the inspiration was just not coming . I listed topics in my journal and I even drafted out a couple but I just didn’t have the energy to get onto the computer and put those words into a post.. thank you for sharing and here’s to hope that taking time away in the New Year will get better for some and easier for most..

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  2. It’s good to step away every now and then. Life is hard enough as it is. Don’t put undue pressure on yourself to always be “producing.” It is always nice to come back after a layoff with a fresh perspective and clearer head. I related to your comment about no one noticing. I sometimes wonder why I blog when it sometimes seems no one notices but me.

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    • Totally – taking time out is so essential sometimes! And even if you have a hugely successful blog it’s not actually going to impact anybody if you don’t post for a while, and they’ll still be there when you come back!
      ~ Kate

      Liked by 1 person

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