Images by Hana Dallimore Photography

How many pieces of advice in your lifetime have you had and chosen not to take? I’m thinking everything from boyfriends and career paths to dinner options on the menu and a new dress your best friend tells you to definitely take back. We all get a lot of advice nowadays, and in fact we are all very good at giving it out. Social media seems to have very much turned into a place where everyone has an opinion on everything and there is a lot of pressure to always do things in a very specific way. I feel like I have been given so much advice in life, and often it has been for the benefit of someone else, which I am luckily always very quick to pick up on. It becomes apparent easily who you can trust and who you can take advice from, for example, my family I always a definite listen to, but someone you have known five minutes probably isn’t. It isn’t just about who has experiences similar stages in life, but also those who have you true best interests at heart.

Each stage in our life is an obstacle that we must overcome, as each experience is something new that we all have to learn to deal with on our own. It doesn’t matter how many people advise you on how to get through something, ultimately we all have to make our own choices and go with our gut instinct.

I don’t want to write this to tell others how to live their lives, but I want to write it to possible help people who may be going through similar experiences and need something to turn to in order to inspire their decisions on how to handle something. I thought I would simple separate it into the major experiences I have had in my life, so it can be picked apart in order to help others. I don’t claim to be amazing at everything in life, but I have definitely overcome some big obstacles and come out of everything a much stronger and wiser person.

Education, University & Career Paths

Honestly for me, my education and decision not to go to university is one of the biggest challenges I have ever had to get through in order to make sure I was doing the right thing for me. Through school I felt like I was always being pushed to do things that weren’t necessarily right for me, such as choosing subjects or extra activities. I always felt like teachers had more of their own interest at heart rather than mine, choosing me to do things just because I was organised and had pretty handwriting. So that was school – constantly feeling pushed into doing things that were never going to benefit me.

The next was university. My two years of sixth form were very much a battle with teachers pushing me to go to university when I had said 100 times that I didn’t want to go. I personally think university is great if you are very passionate about one subject and have a clear path in mind of where you want to get to. However, I don’t agree with going if you are just going for the life with no actual idea of where you want to be at the end. I had no idea at that stage in my life what I wanted to do, and I also had no interest whatsoever in the party/ student lifestyle. I had countless arguments in the end with people in school telling me I should be going, even on the very last day when getting my results. Instead of congratulating me on getting my A-levels, they still wanted to sit me down and discuss the next step and what I was going to do. As you can imagine, I was pretty angry at that point, and just walked out. Walking out, and choosing to ignore them all through those two years, was the best decision I made. University would have been an awful choice for me and I would be probably really unhappy in life. I chose in the end to work, recover properly from my surgery, and live a life I know I have enjoyed a lot more.

When it comes to education and work I honestly do believe that the most important thing in life is for us all to wake up every day and go to work knowing that  we love what we do. I want to live a life looking forward to waking up on a Monday morning and feeling excited about what I get to do every day.

Health Problems & Surgery

So, this part of my life is pretty much in the past now, however I learnt a lot from my previous health experiences and when I look back I am so grateful that I chose to do everything my way. So, if you didn’t know, when I was 15 I got told that I had a half functioning heart and that I needed open heart surgery to sort of fix the problem. As you can imagine, at a very young age with everything else going on in life, this was hard news to process. I got through it and I did it all my way. I decided that I wasn’t going to press pause on my education, and wanted to finish sixth form and my last two years of school with my friends at the same age as everyone else. So that is exactly what I did. Yes, it may not have been ideal having such a big thing hanging over me, but it was without a doubt the best decision. I also decided that I wanted a year off from everything after finishing sixth form, as I had spent quite a few years studying and doing exams. I just wanted to work, travel a little and spend lots of time with everyone I love.

So, I landed up having the operation almost four years after finding out, which was not the ideal situation in the eyes of my doctors, however was very doable. Something like this, that affects you a lot mentally, is something we all have to do in our own way. I wanted to wait, so I did, but I imagine some people would rather just get it all done and over with straight away.

Being Online & Social Media

So I remember when I first started my blogging journey I was still only 16 and felt quite vulnerable putting so much of myself online. In fact, not just me, but a lot of people were worried about the fact that I was going to be sharing personal parts of myself online with people I don’t know. This totally makes sense. However, in the last five years, I have gained so many opportunities from blogging and my Instagram. I have always worked hard trying to keep a lot of my life private and off the internet, whilst also remaining personal and open with my experiences. I definitely took peoples advice on this one, however I didn’t listen to those who told me not to do it at all. For that, I am extremely grateful. From the blog I have found a career path that I am loving, I have had so many great collaborations and opportunities, and I have got to meet and make friends with so many people that I otherwise would never have spoken to. Yes, it may have had its ups and downs, but blogging is an experience I would never change for the world and I am so glad that I listened to myself and went ahead and did it anyway.

Shop this post:

Coat – Zara

Belt – Gucci

Shoes – New Look

Jeans – Zara

Bag – Mulberry

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I have not been paid to feature any brands and all views and opinions are my own.

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