Merry Christmas 2016, readers!
Thank you for all your love and support this year. 2016 was NOT an easy one, not for many people. But having you to come to has always cheered me up.
Wherever you are, whoever you are, I hope that YOU have a wonderful holiday season (with lots of good food and company), and a Happy New Year.
I’m on the cusp of my second-year blogiversary too. Two years ago, I was quitting grad school, I was depressed, I had no hobbies, and I had no idea what to do with myself. This blog helped me to find my way; it helped me to find my niche and find my people.
But it’s also been really tough. During this time, behind the cheerful surface of my blog, I’ve battled periods of depression, a (recently-developed) anxiety disorder, PTSD, and health issues. During the worst times, I’ve experienced overwhelming suicidal idealization. During one month, I made the difficult (but healthy) decision to become estranged from half my family members.
But things have gotten better.
Now, two years after starting my blog, I’m working a full time 9-5 job. I’m also running a different small side-business, in addition to this blog. I’m wrapping up editing my first novel. And I’m volunteering for two agencies. I’m happier, healthier, and fitter than I’ve been in years. I live in a glorious part of the world with two cuddly cats and an amazing partner.
But I’m busy. I’m exhausted from trying to do everything I want to do. Suffice it to say, my 24 hour days aren’t long enough, and this autumn I’ve fallen increasingly behind in my reviews.
Around October, I stopped accepting new products for review, with the aim to quickly catch up on products I’d already accepted up until that point. I haven’t been so quick though! I still have a lot of products to review before my slate is clean.
And, I’ve recently decided that, once my review queue is cleared, I’m going to take an extended break from reviewing. I’m only expecting this to begin in Spring 2017 or so. While I will still be available on social media, I won’t be taking on new review opportunities until further notice. Everything here will remain — My blog will still be as accessible to readers as ever.
I’m doing this so that I don’t completely burn out and shut down my blog permanently. Right now I need less pressure, and running this quickly-expanding blog has become incredibly demanding. By taking care of myself (and by giving myself some time to regain some mental energy), I’m hoping to be able to get the energy and passion to spring back to blogging again in the future.
Take care, and Merry Christmas!
Update: Spring 2017 – So, spring has come (and has nearly gone). I finished up my review queue in early January which gave me the mental break I really needed. I’ve since started accepting more toys and reviewing more toys (without the mental fatigue/pressure). So, I think it’s safe to say that I’ve escaped needing a break! Will continue as normal. Reminder to self (and other bloggers): MODERATE yourself so that you don’t start feeling that burden/burn-out feeling. Reviewing is good, but moderate your incoming toys!