Think of any given Instagram page and you’ll likely imagine some perfectly curated spread of photos that make the life of the person running it look unobtainable in some way. It might be a barrage of travel photos, make up, outfits, restaurant meals, whatever it is you’re into and using to cram up your feed. Recently, between binge-watching the YouTube channel “The Financial Diet” and speed-reading pretty much the entire finance and business section of Dymocks, I’ve been looking at my own Instagram feed with a critical eye. Blogging makes acquiring these kinds of lifestyles look easy and obtainable, but the simple truth is that they aren’t for most people. If you’re what I would call a “business blogger”, that is to say a savvy individual whose blog is run as a business who is consequently receiving either PR or sponsorships regularly, then living this way probably isn’t driving you into financial ruin because you’ve been clever and monetised appropriately. If, however, you’re more of a “hobbyist”, your situation might look very different. With that in mind, I wanted to share some lessons I’ve learned about the financial truth of “keeping up with the Joneses” on Instagram over the past few years.
I have a theory that New Year’s resolutions happen not because of the idea of a fresh start, but rather because many people get time off around this time of year and so actually have half a second to reflect and decide where their lives need a readjustment (usually in that few days between Christmas and New Years where you’re not even sure what year it actually is any more). I’m someone who frequently freely admits her life is looking rather like a Picasso painting. The difference is that mine isn’t so much artful creativity/a masterpiece as it is just a mess of things happening at once. In saying that, this year has involved a lot of careful thinking and restructuring. This has been out of necessity rather than want, but it has given me some ideas about the coming year and which areas of my life need retuning. A lot of these affect the content I’m going to be bringing to you for 2019, so with that in mind I hope you’ll join me on a deep dive into the attitudes I’m planning to readjust in the coming year.
So it’s been a while since I’ve done these monthly roundups… whoops. Truth be told, there were a few things I wanted to cover in this post which hadn’t been made public yet so I’ve been biding my time (insert evil cackle here). Now that said things have been announced (see the ever-so-creatively titled section called “Announcement” below), I’m ready to post the roundup. Not only that, but unfortunately my health took a bit of a dive so I wasn’t really in a great position to be blogging. Nevertheless, read on for what April to July brought to the table… apart from a lot of chocolate.
I wish I had a snappy and entertaining introductory line for you all today, but alas I’m currently suffering from a cold that’s making me feel like my head is 99% fluid so I’m afraid my brain power is somewhat limited. If you haven’t already seen my review series on Sukha Life (or have no idea what the heck Sukha Life actually is), then firstly I’d recommend you go check out my first post here detailing the business and why I chose to try it, then check out my post here reviewing the first couple of days’ meals. Today I’m going to take you through the last three days’ worth of food and sum up my overall thoughts about the process. It’s a long one so let’s get straight to it!
So you know those times where you have an awesome plan of attack in your head and it all rapidly goes to heck to such a degree that you can’t remember what your plan actually was in the first place? Were you going to elope to Ecuador? Or did you just need to pick up milk from the shops? Could be either. Well that was the kind of week I started having – d’oh! In saying that, having my first few days of Sukha Life delivered definitely made it easier. If you haven’t heard of Sukha Life before, click here to read my introduction to this review series which contains general information about the brand and why I gave them a try. If you already read that, then read on to learn about the foods I’ve been stuffing my face with the past couple of days!
Let me paint you a picture: it’s 8:30pm on a Thursday night. I’m sitting in Macdonald’s with a Big Mac and two serves of fries in front of me. I’ve already picked out the second meat patty and half the cheese from the burger and tossed over half the fries in a pile in the corner of my tray, never to be consumed. On the ground next to me is a shopping bag full of fruit loops, kool fruits, rice crackers, sherbies and tic toc biscuits. My parents, who I currently live with while saving to buy a house, have been away overseas for just over 24 hours and already I’m taking the opportunity to indulge in all the things I can’t eat when my mother is present to hound me about the shit I put into my body (which is not a complaint by the way – her nagging is an essential part of my path to health… clearly, given what happens the moment she’s not around). I have not cooked one meal in that time. I frown, scoop up the tray, toss its contents into the bin and walk back to my car.
“This isn’t going to work.” I think as I toss the shopping bag haphazardly into the back seat and drive home.
Suffice to say, I don’t eat this poorly every day of my life, but frankly it’s all just lesser degrees of the same.
It’s fair to say then that I probably don’t seem like the target demographic for local Adelaide business Sukha Life, whose marketing seems far more appropriate for women who spend half their life in yoga pants and the other half campaigning to have organic fair trade goods available in all local supermarkets. And yet, after staring at the contents of my cupboard, I found myself going ahead and spending two weeks’ worth of food budget on five days’ worth of meals. So why, and how’d it go?
Okay so I totally missed the Christmas post train didn’t I? Actually, I feel like I’ve missed the holiday season in general. The lead up to Christmas is always an insane time of year for me right up until the week before. In saying that, I’ve somehow managed to finish all my Christmas shopping barring the last few pieces (which I need to wait until I get paid to purchase oops) so I’m starting to focus on what needs to be done. In doing that, I decided it was time for a holiday challenge!
The new year is going to be a huge time for me. A lot of changes once again and a lot of prep work that needs to go into my new job. In thinking about what I need to do, I’ve also been reflecting on what I’ve done this year and there’s one big red flag that hovers over my head feeling unfinished.
Does the idea of sitting alone at a restaurant cause you to break out in hives? Have you ever missed out on a cool event because no one would come with you? Are you always late because you never want to be the first one to arrive? If any of these apply to you, sit down guys. We need to talk.
Once upon a time, I was like you. Once upon a time, I couldn’t go out to eat by myself without feeling like everyone was staring me down and wondering what dysfunction I had that meant no one wanted to hang out with me. Did I smell funny? Perhaps I spat when I spoke? Or maybe my insistence on discussing the intricacies of the breakfast I ate that morning had become annoying to others? The possibilities were endless. The first time I ever ate a meal at a restaurant alone, I honestly felt like I was walking around with a flashing sign on my head advertising “LONER” complete with bullhorn siren.
Food addiction. Do those words sound like absolute bollocks invented by the media to you? Fair enough. Sit down my friends and allow me to introduce you to my world.
I have a shocking announcement for you – I’m a fat person. I know, I know, try to hold back your incredulity. It’s a fact. I am in excess of 30+ kilos overweight and it’s literally killing me.
When you look at me, you will know that I am a fat person, but you may not think it’s that big of a deal.
“But Steph,” people so often exclaim, “you don’t look that big!”
While I thank you for your flattering observation, the fact remains that I am marching myself towards death by Type 2 Diabetes at a really rapid pace.
“Well!” I hear you huff behind your computer screens. “Do something about it then!” I couldn’t agree more. And here, dear reader, is where I need you to understand a few things.
So how-to-girls, I think we need to have a chat. Namely, I think we need to have a chat about how we chat about birth control.
Picture this: you’re a virgin, but you decide you’re ready for the next step. Although you intend to use condoms, you’ve done your research and you know there’s a possibility that they could tear or fall off, so you decide you’d better protect yourself a little more. So who do you turn to for advice?
We may spend hours googling the different options as our brains slowly explode from information overload, but ultimately we’re probably going to end up turning to the ladies around us and say “So, what do you find is good for you?”