I’ve changed a lot as a person over the years. I’m more confident, cooler-headed, organised, disciplined and resilient in tough times, with a more positive outlook on life.
All of which I’m proud of. However what I’m not proud of is, due to various circumstances and wrong choices, letting some of my bigger interests drift.
This in turn has created levels of self-doubt and questioning who I really was. Despite putting on a brave, "shut up and get on with it" face among family and friends.
Letting my serious hobbies (presenting, voiceovers, podcasting and blogging) [although I still aim to turn into serious careers eventually] drift apart, felt like a part of my soul was dying.
Not to mention real-life got in the way and once you have an independent life (amazing as it is) then you have to survive as well as live.
Of course, I have discovered many new hobbies and interests too in recent years. So it isn’t quite the "end of a happy life" post as you may think.
In recent months, rediscovering blogging and podcasting has felt like getting the good parts of the old Matthew back.
The most difficult step came recently while preparing July content for this blog.
I guess one flaw – of many – I have is being a perfectionist. Obsessed with creating that perfect blog post and even a slight flaw can transform my view of it from being fantastic to s***.
Which then bred the "waiting for the right moment" routine.
Classic case study of perfectionist procrastination.
Procrastination is the bogeyman of productivity and for someone who aspires to be a productive person it’s a source of inner frustration.
Interestingly, according to many articles and research on the subject, procrastination isn’t defined as laziness nor is it exclusively about perfectionism or being overwhelmed.
It can stem from overconfidence, fear of being successful, failing to convert from a dreamer to a doer; as well as having – what I like to call – the magpie effect. Easily distracted by literal and metaphorical shiny things.
Thankfully it can be tackled and there are many solutions out there which merit their own blog post.
For me, I think how I partly curbed it was reaching the "f*** it" stage and like switching on a diesel generator, I’m gravitating towards changing for the better.
It’s still work in progress. It will take time. No doubt there’ll be hurdles along the way.
But at least it’s a start.