I haven’t done any work today.
Since becoming self-employed, I can officially admit that, on this day, Wednesday 23 November… it has been the very first (no, really, the first) day that I have achieved absolutely nothing.
For some reason, I’ve had little motivation and even struggled to drag my arse out of bed this morning. Whilst the cold Winter evenings creeping in can be held somewhat responsible for my newfound laziness, there’s definitely been something else on my mind, in the last few days especially.
This month, I’ve released my first video blog on Inkluded’s new YouTube channel. It was really challenging filming myself, as I’ve always hidden behind the words on this website. But it was also hugely liberating – feeling my confidence grow as I began to feel more relaxed in front of a camera – something I’m most certainly not used to! So, why videos? It was something I felt Inkluded should be doing. There are hundreds of tattoo videos out there, some better than others, and I thought it was worth me giving it a shot. Hundreds of thousands of people have read the blogs on this website, so maybe just as many might be interested to hear words from my mouth and meet the face behind the brand. Interestingly, over the last couple of days, whilst browsing other successful vloggers, I found myself doing two things:
1) Spending an unnatural amount of time being drawn into their world. We’ve all been there, right? We click on an Instagram photo, blink, and all of sudden we’ve been staring at our phone for two hours (hence my lack of productivity today).
2) Comparing myself to these other beautiful, successful people, who had hundreds of thousands, some millions, of views on their videos. Whether it was analysing tattoos, make-up, hair colour or mannerisms, I found myself repeatedly thinking… I wish I was like that. I wish my videos were MORE like that.
I can’t do my make-up for shit. I’ve got a Boots own-brand eyeliner, and some cheap lipsticks. I don’t own foundation, highlighter, primer or… other stuff of this nature. I think the wonderful make-up vloggers of the world are filled with skill, knowledge and natural beauty… this is not intended to put down their profession, their art, in the slightest… it’s just me, I just can’t be bothered. But watching videos online, scrolling through other popular bloggers’ Instagram feeds, there IS a correlation buy generic sildenafil citrate between how popular the videos are, and how good those people look on camera. Unless I start to put a bit more effort into my appearance, who is seriously going to watch a clip of my face for 10 minutes?!
Mascara aside, I also started to question my own ink. As a voice in the tattoo industry, I was becoming worried about how my own tattoos would look on camera. Like many others, I’ve made tattoo mistakes, had cover-ups, and some parts of my body aren’t the Instagram-perfect images you’d imagine, the ones you’d see in the feeds of accomplished tattoo video bloggers. So I’ve been out today and bought new make-up. I’ve spent a sick amount of time sitting in front of the mirror. But most importantly, I’ve felt more and more anxious. It was only tonight, driving home in my car, that I realised… it was purely down to a subconscious worry that I needed to be someone people wanted to see.
I am sure many girls (and boys!) reading this, may familiarise with this sensation. Hell, anyone on ANY social media site must have felt it at some point. Oh, that person’s house / car / holiday / pet / face / tattoo is so much better than mine.The constant filtering and sharing of our lives does breed bubbles of anxiety (and you could say, jealousy) in the brains of many. Fast forward a few hours. In my car tonight, stuck in traffic on the M40, I was thinking about poetry I could write. Random words, sentences and images popped into my head.I got my phone out of my pocket and wrote down some phrases that were circling in my mind.
Suddenly, sitting there still on a motorway, I was reminded of that which I was, rather than that which I wasn’t. There are hundreds of things that I am not, and I will never be. And that’s OK. There are many tiny, disjointed building blocks that make me, me, and spontaneous poetic notions was just one of my own. None of us are perfect, and no one should ever make us feel that we should be. Our flaws, our blushing skin and our old grainy tattoos make us real. So, why have I written about today’s epiphany, rather than videoed it? Well, sometimes we just need our own isolated company in order to find ourselves again.