*typing this true story at 3:08 am in the night while sipping some tea ’cause late night vulnerable emotions and thoughts are the purest form of one’s self.
I started this blog in December, 2015. It was the outcome of a discussion I had with a friend on a troubled night. You know, the nights that begins somewhat like this, “What am I doing with my life?” I was in second year of college then, and knew that I could do better than just attending classes in the morning and partying at night.
“I want millions of dollars. Well, I think I can write well. It’ll be cool to be a published author one day.”
– my vague self
“Start a blog. See if people like what you write. If they do, good for you. If they don’t, you’ll know that you suck and need to improve. Win-Win situation both ways”
– my friend
^ True story.
I discovered my liking for writing in 11th grade. It was the only therapy I could afford on my own at that time. In a small town, you can’t really share personal (dark) info about family matters. Word spreads like forest fire. And I was scared that my friends or those-who-know will knock a pity party every time they see me. I never even invited anyone to my house for the same reason. So, I made my diary my best friend. All my feelings, beliefs and dreams were safely locked in it, away from everyone’s reach.
Okay…Back to the beginning now.
When I started the blog, I had 219 followers on Instagram. Most of my reach was through the re-shares done by my friends on Facebook. One day, I got a call from some PR company asking my costs for putting up a post on Instagram for them. This is of course after hitting a few thousand followers on Instagram. Honestly, after two blog posts, I genuinely started enjoying creating for an audience. Started feeling that creating in any of its forms is my true calling.
No one taught me how to blog, do photography, pose or edit. I learned all of it on my own ’cause I was super curious and had super fun while doing all of this. Well, YouTube tutorials, online blogs and photographer friends did gave me tips and tricks here and there.
About that PR call, well that didn’t go well. I thought it was a prank. So… I blocked them. Yup. It was absurd to me back then that someone would pay to create a picture and then post it on my feed. Turns out it wasn’t a prank. Jokes on me. *haha*
Even after the realisation that you can earn via blogging & social media, I never considered it as a career option. After second year, I got a sales internship that paid well. I started paying my bills on my own since then. It was a good feeling to be independent. (also, I had no option other than being independent fast).
In third year of college I started working even harder. I don’t know what it was but the hours I spent in college, all I could do was to think about ideas on what to create next. Mornings in college and the rest of the day was devoted to my blog. I hit 10k followers on Instagram by the end of 2016. I worked with some amazing brands, attended my first Lakme Fashion Week, started my online store and met amazing, creative people.
I started believing in my brand and wanted to take it to the next level. I was like: “Right now, I am doing so well with college and college stuff on my plate. If I have the whole day for my blog/brand, I will toh kill it.”
However, nothing went according to my plan.
My parents weren’t supportive about this and almost all my friends were tensed that I won’t get a good college/job if I spent all the time doing freelancing. And I guess seeking validation from loved ones put me in a position where I started doubting my own self.
Even though I was full of doubt and fear, I still returned back to Bombay to grow my blog/brand. You know why? ’cause something felt right about it in my heart. No one helped me in this journey. I did all of it on my own and thoroughly enjoyed it.
The day I returned to Bombay, I got a call from my father. It was to inform me that my beloved dog Snookie, passed away a few hours after my departure.
I am the only child of my parents. Snookie was not just a dog, she was like my sister.
This incident marked my downfall. Now you must be thinking, “oh come on. Bad things happen just learn to move on.” Well, at that time that I was already full of doubt and fear, and something like this to happen, it just broke me. On top of it, my relationship was sucking the happiness out of me, things at home were still a mess and all my friends were either working with a stable income or studying abroad. Hell, even studying further was out of question for me ’cause I already had a student loan to pay off for my Graduation.
This is how I felt on a daily basis, “Life sucks. Life has never been easy for me. It wasn’t easy in the past. The present is tougher than my past. For sure, future’s gonna suck too.” I felt like this for months. I would disappear off the world for days. Didn’t leave my house or answered any calls (be it parents, friends or work colleagues). Hence, I was so inconsistent with work and posting too.
Even though I was depressed, I still worked on some good days ’cause: A) I enjoyed creating B) I had bills to pay. However, I didn’t like any of my work. Deep down I knew I could do better and so much more. I don’t know how and why I still got work and followers then.
Mid 2017, I hit 31K followers. My feelings then? Still hated life.
My real life was nothing like my Instagram. I felt I like I was living a lie and distant myself from Instagram even more. Seeing people enjoy their lives, travelling and being millionaires at a young age, made me hate myself even more.
To get myself out of the house, I took up a work opportunity with Vogue India; which I miserably failed at. Again, all the time I spent their; all I could think was about ideas for my blog/brand.
I became frustrated with myself. Can’t work for myself or anyone else. I am useless.
In November 2017, I hit an all time low. I googled ‘easy ways to kill yourself’.
You know, I saved someone very close to me from committing suicide. I guess that incident saved me in November. I recalled how I saved them and how terrible my life would’ve been if…if I lost her. I didn’t commit suicide. I didn’t even harm myself.
I seek help. Attended a Life Summit that saved my life. I learned so much about Life and how we humans function. I am sorry, I wouldn’t be able to include all of that in this blog but I promise that I will do a separate post for it.
I wrote off my past in the blog post,” A Biography” and swore to myself that I won’t go down there ever again. However, I still get flashbacks from my bad past in the mornings which make it harder to look forward. I still get scared to go out on my own. Thoughts, that I’ll be attacked again bugs me. To know more about it: CLICK HERE
But… I still live. I know what is life about.
It has both bitter and sweet turns. We are here to experience and live it to the fullest. We are all in this game together.
Accepting this one thing really lifted off a lot of stress in life that – No one is entitled to me. Not my parents, not my lover, nor my friends. Everyone is an individual of their own, dealing with their own devils. You really can’t take any one so personally that your happiness depends on it.
And yes, world is a scary and beautiful place. Things, literature, music — the world is so rich, simply throbbing with invaluable treasures, beautiful souls and interesting people. Reach out for it. However, Make yourself a priority. At the end of the day, you’re your longest commitment.
I don’t blame anyone for my depression. I am the sole culprit for it. I sabotaged myself.
Self-sabotage is knowing exactly what you need to do to improve but not doing it. It’s procrastinating doing the very things that you know will make you happier. It’s waiting till things are 100% perfect till you do them, but that of course never happens. It’s remaining in the comfort zone because of the fear of failure or uneasiness of change. It’s a mindset that you may be completely unaware of, until you really think about it. So think about it. “Am I a prisoner of my own thoughts?” If you are, take responsibility and acknowledge that you put yourself in that prison. But know that you have the power to free yourself.
About comparing yourself to others on social media or in general, please just remember this quote:
I know people who graduated college at 21 and didn’t get a salary job until they were 27. I know people who graduated at 25 and already had a salary job. I know people who have children and are single, I know people who are married and had to wait 8-10 years to be parents. I know people who are in a relationship and love someone else, I know people who love each other and aren’t together, there are people waiting to love and be loved. My point is, everything in life happens according to our time, our clock. You may look at your friends and some may seem to be ahead or behind you, but they are not, they are living according to the pace of their clock, so be patient.
You are not falling behind, it’s just not your time.
Take my advice, from a girl who hid herself from the world for months.
Please trust yourself and get out of that bed. Nothing happens, if you don’t. We humans are not made to live alone forever. It is tempting to be disconnected; and with time, this isolation can get addicting ’cause it is comfortable. But sooner or later it gets depressing. You get much worse. You need the people to give you the happy moments that make life great AND the sad moments ’cause that is how you learn and get strong.
Imagine this, if I never took up writing as therapy in school (which led to my passion etc etc), I wouldn’t be writing this article for you right now! A tough life teaches you to grow and to survive. If I did, so can you!
Like I said before, it still is a struggle to love myself every day but now that I know the fundamentals truths of life or whatever. I try.
I will try everyday to live my life the fullest. To not complain. To be content with what I have while working for the things that I want.
Life can get lonely and scary from time to time. If you are in this situation: Firstly, take this BIG VIRTUAL HUG FROM ME. Secondly, take a deep breath, step back and relax. Everything will get better. Trust me.
I am sorry for being inactive lately. I was figuring out some things. This inconsistensy lost me a lot of followers. Today, I have 30.4K followers on Instagram. And I am the happiest I’ve ever been in a really long time.
I love Instagram. The platform gave me so many opportunities. I met some amazing people and ended up making many friends because of it.
I love that we are in this digital age where achieving your dreams is just a few clicks away. I love watching people and their creations. Something to learn from everyone here. Ofc, it has it’s own downsides but everything has two sides: a good and a bad. It’s upto us how we choose to see things. Be it Social media or Life.
Stay strong! We are in this together.