Just your average Jo

Over the last 2 weeks I’ve been getting involved with #freeupmyinsta which is an Instagram (obviously!) movement led by the wonderful Allison Sadler. I don’t want to put words into Allison’s mouth, but basically she is a huge advocate for being yourself, and just sharing what makes you happy online. It just so happens that the theme of the latest “The Fringe of It” podcast is “Fitting In and Belonging”, and I’ve spotted a couple of popular “instagrammers” posting on a similar theme. I have to admit, it’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot recently, and these campaigns, posts and podcasts have just brought it to the forefront of my mind. Where do I fit in, both on the internet and “in real life”?   

When I started my blog in April 2017 it was mostly just for me. I guess I hoped others might read it and find it helpful, or interesting, but that was it really. Although I enjoyed writing from the off, it still took me about 3 months to share with anyone other than my husband. What was I scared of? That other people would think it was crap? Maybe. But so what if they did? I think my style of writing is ok, my grammatical skills are acceptable,  and although my photography skills leave something to be desired, that’s not what my blog is about. Yes, it’s nice to have something visual within a post, but I’m not particularly interested in that side of things. The words are far more important to me. So why worry? Why not share my blog further afield? If people like it, excellent. If they don’t, well, they don’t have to read it. 

I guess a lot of it is down to confidence, but I think my biggest downfall is comparison. There are a lot of blogs out there on the World Wide Web, hosted on extremely polished websites, with incredible beautifully styled photos, created by people who are showcasing their fabulous wardrobes and the fantastic events they have attended. You might that sounds a bit bitter, it’s not, it’s just that it couldn’t be further from my life. And when those are the kind of blogs that seem to do so well in such a saturated market, it’s easy to start thinking that you should be tweaking what you’re doing in order to fit in. 

#freeupmyinsta has made me stop and think. It has made me stop worrying about what I’m not. I am allowed to NOT spend my days eating avocado on toast, drinking green juice, and frolicking amongst the peonies and wisteria whilst wearing an outfit that’s jumped off the pages of Vogue, yet still post on Instagram and my blog.  I may not have thousands of readers, but my blog is read, so it must speak to some people. 

So if I’m not those thing, who am I? I’m a mum, wife, daughter, sister and a friend. I like reading, binge watching box sets, going for walks in the woods, listening to music and going to the theatre. I like Harry Potter, colouring in, writing, hanging around the house in my pyjamas and drinking coffee. And you know what? That’s ok.