On Success


I’m naturally a very competitive person. I am addicted to winning.

I’m not even ashamed of the fact that I’ve been known to have tantrums over games of pictionary, pub quizzes and school sports games when they haven’t gone my way. (Seriously, Ollie. How could you not see that I’d drawn a cricket bat…?) I’m not a sore loser and I will accept defeat gracefully – I just can’t handle people doing stupid things and ruining it for everyone else (me).

In truth, I’m not used to failing. I work hard, have a certain amount of natural talent, and pick and choose the things I know I can excel at. I create situations for myself where I can’t do anything but win. I am always in control of a situation, always know what is going on and always have a little internal risk assessment ticking away in my head, just in case.

It’s perfectionism to a whole new level.

But success is one of those weird things.

We all have our own versions of what success means to us. We look at others and say yes, you are successful. We want to be them and know what it feels like to be so damn together.

It’s so strange, then, that while we have our own versions of success mapped out, when we judge ourselves we use completely opposite measures. I can eat a whole tub of ice cream and smash out a new ice cream eating PB, and then hate myself because while I totally own ice cream eating, someone else is at the gym.

If I’m lucky in my life to come, I will be successful. I say lucky but really I mean ‘if I work really damn hard and put myself in risky situations that boast excellent pay offs’ then I’ll be successful. I’ll have a gorgeous home (and then some…), someone to share it with and all the friends and holidays in the world. I’ll be happy.

My issue is simple: I love to win and ONLY love to win.

I pick and choose the things that I know I’ll completely own. I enjoy them and reap a massive sense of reward from them. I don’t enjoy struggling through. Unless I am the best at something, or there’s the very real possibility that I could be the best, I hate doing things. (Seriously, Ollie. It was so obviously a bloody cricket bat!)

So this is the issue I’ve been having with n&b lately. I’m just not winning enough. The silly standards I’ve created for myself are just a little too high and I’m starting to hate it because of them. I am not completely and utterly in control and its killing me.

The last few months of this year have seen me really struggle with control. I had no control for a long time in Paris, simply swishing about day after day doing everything and nothing. My life ran away from me and took my blog with it.

So, if its alright with you, I’m going to go back to winning.

I mean, it’s what I’m best at.

I want to win in a whole different way, though. I want to win by taking back control of my life and my blog. I want to be able to enjoy creating content, taking and editing photos and even scheduling those pesky tweets!

I think its time to start figuring out a new way to win. All the success, none of the ultimate burn out.

Here’s what you can expect from n&b in the near future:

  • Much better content. Seriously. My content standard was just so poor and lazy so I’m going to make a massive effort to kick my arse out of this slump and really step it up a gear. I’m still not 100% on what this content is going to be about (lololol) but it will be better (and probably a little less frequent).
  • A clearer brand. I’m rubbish at branding, apparently. I’ve come to realise that realistically I’m really bad at creating an image for n&b and sticking to it. I’ve had a little bit of a makeover and its going to stay, at least for a while. n&b will look the same tomorrow as it did yesterday and have the same high quality content and the same vibes.
  • A greater social presence. I’m crap at scheduling tweets, promoting anything to do with n&b and and basically being active on social media in any way other than photos of grey buildings and angry tweets. I’m going to get my head back into the game, get my views up to where they used to be and get my mojo back!

What about you?
How do you define your own success and what do you do if you fall short of your own expectations? I’d love to know!



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  • B Shannon says:

    Aw I love this, you really have a knack for writing! I absolutely love your blog, I think it’s stunning and the content is always fab with gorgeous photos, it’s one of my faves. So even tho you may feel unhappy at times with your blog, to me it is a success! Xxx
    Becky Shannon xx – Life-by-Becky

  • Martha Jane says:

    You’re definitely being way too hard on yourself! I think your blog growth has been amazing and I definitely envy it! But I’m glad you’ve got a purpose and a goal and wish you the best of luck! x

    Martha Jane | http://www.marthajanemusic.com

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