It’s okay to put your dreams on hold -

You don’t always have to do too much all at once.

The saying “follow your dreams” has a lot going for it. Of course we’d like to think through following our dreams and desires, we can finally reach that level of happiness and success we want and anything which isn’t the path towards those dreams is a distraction.

But sometimes we have a lot of dreams and a lot of other responsibilities so prioritisation becomes important. You could be the lucky ones who are already en route towards achieving what they want and they can get that by working hard at whatever they’re doing now. If you’re doing an internship with a company you hope to run some day, you know you just have to keep climbing that ladder until you get to the position you want.

Unfortunately, there’s the rest of us who have dreams which are not directly related to where we are now and where we are now is more pressing.

I’m a English Literature student going into my third year then possibly doing a Masters after that.

I want to be a published poet; I want to work on my photography and make something of it; I have a part-time job; I need to write a kickass dissertation; I need to do well for my final year at university.

On top of that, I have personal development goals such as being a good partner, a better friend, and growing better habits.

That’s a lot going on.

Oh and I have debilitating mental illnesses.

My therapist and I discussed why I sometimes feel overwhelmed and she suggested I look at my responsibilities and see which ones I can put aside for now so I can control my workload and have more time.

Looking at that list, everything felt so important to me that I couldn’t part with any of it. I wanted to continue trying to juggle everything in hope it’ll all work out, never mind the inevitable mental breakdown.

But now I’m hearing my therapist and understanding that it’s not giving up on any of the things I put aside, it’s recognising how much I can realistically handle without losing my shit.

I’ve thought about what I need to prioritise first. Even if I’m not thrilled about it, I do have to think about my degree, before I can concentrate on becoming a published poet and a professional photographer.

My dream is to be a poet but I’m shelving that right now to allow myself room to breathe through my other responsibilities.

I’ll still write poems whenever inspiration hits, but I won’t put pressure on myself to produce the kind of work I want to get published.

(Percy Bysshe Shelley is my favourite poet #writinggoals)

I’ll still work on my photography, but I won’t feel guilty if I go weeks without shooting or editing any photos.

I’m placing my mental health at the forefront and recognising that to do way too much would be bad for me.

Thank your reading,

Laurel May x