Have you ever felt overwhelmed by the weight of change and loss? Maybe you’ve experienced a major life transition, the loss of a loved one, or even the end of a significant relationship. It’s during these times that taking a break becomes essential, allowing us to step back, heal, and regain our sense of self. In this blog, I will share my personal journey of why I took a break, how I dealt with change and loss, and the invaluable lessons I learned along the way. Join me as we explore the power of reflection, self-care, and finding strength in the midst of adversity.
Why I Took a Break (Dealing with Change and Loss)
This video isn’t an easy one to make, but about a month ago, I put up on Instagram that I was taking a break for a little while because I was going through something tough. In this video, I want to let you in on what’s been going on, what I’m learning through this whole process, and what’s coming up for me in terms of changes. This video won’t be anything to do with photography really and will be quite personal, so if that’s not what you’re here for, I completely understand, and I’ll catch you in the next one. Let me first say how amazing this community is and how grateful I am for your support. When I put that post up on Instagram, I just had a flood of people coming in and wishing me well, and it really meant the world. I mean, normally on a post on Instagram, I might get 300 comments, which is a fairly high number. But on that particular post, 1700 of you commented wishing me well. And when I woke up the next morning, my inbox was rammed. It just said 99 plus, and I spent a good few hours just reading through your texts, messages, comments, and well wishes, and it really meant the world to me. So thank you so much.
The Reason for the Video
I’m not making this video because I feel like I owe you an explanation or owe you the details of my life, but I’m choosing to. I want to make this video because this does feel like a community for me, and I do want to share what’s going on with me, at least as much as it’s fair to share with you. And when I started this channel right at the beginning, I made a deal with myself that I would always be honest about what was going on, not just the good stuff but the bad stuff as well because I don’t think we help anyone when we just pretend like everything’s fine all the time and everything’s going brilliantly. I think we also have to share our setbacks. So here it is.
The Breakthrough (Dealing with Change)
Back in January, my wife left very suddenly, and I still don’t understand it. I mean, don’t get me wrong, we had problems in our relationship like many couples do, and we were talking about it and trying to work through it. But honestly, through lockdown, it was some of our best times, and we really seemed to be doing a lot better. So it came as no small shock when she went to work one morning, and then I got a text from her on her lunch break, telling me that she didn’t want to work on our marriage anymore and that she was never coming home. Thirteen years of a relationship and five years of marriage ended over a single text, and I don’t understand what changed so suddenly. But I do need to respect her decision, however painful that might be for me. And I’m not going to pretend this whole thing hasn’t left me reeling and hurting and confused, especially because I have no answers and no closure. And that’s why I needed to take that break, just to sit and think and process things and work out how I’m going to move on with my life.
I wish this didn’t need to be said, and I know for the vast majority of you, this would never ever be a consideration. But I also know the internet can be a crazy place sometimes, so I’m going to say this as strongly as I possibly can: leave her alone. Don’t attempt to reach out to her online. You are no follower of mine if you attempt to insert yourself in this situation in any way, even if you think you mean well. I have absolutely no hate in my heart for her, and I genuinely wish her the very best.
Changes and Uncertainty
All this obviously means a lot of changes and uncertainty coming up for me. And there’s this guy on YouTube who might be me, who talks a good game about things like using protecting your highlights and embracing your shadows, not just as photography techniques, but life philosophies to put into place when you go through tough stuff. So it’s really time to put my money where my mouth is and do that work.
Let me start with embracing my shadows. I mean, this is obviously a very dark and difficult period in my life. But I’ve told you before that I think if we can stay present to those dark periods and look them in the face, even though that’s painful, and stay present to that pain, I think it can forge us into better human beings. So I’m trying to practice what I preach. That means I’ve been alternating my time between sitting and trying to process everything and mourn it, and then trying to do other things that just distract me and lift my mood for a little while, but keep returning to that stuff and trying to stay present to it.
Taking Breaks and Seeking Support
One thing that’s really helped is taking long walks. Some days, I go for walks of 10-20 kilometers just so I’ve got time to be active and have fresh air flowing through my lungs, but also be thinking about what’s gone on in the past and also what my future will look like because obviously now it’s going to be very different. It’s also been good to sit and grieve and cry over this. I’ve tried not to avoid that because I think situations like this insist on being grieved. It’s always tempting to just do other stuff, anything that would just distract me just so I don’t feel the pain of this as keenly. But I think if I do that, I just prolong the inevitable because this will pop up again demanding to be faced in quiet moments down the road. It will surface again. So I’d rather find the courage to face it and grieve it well now if I can manage it.
I’ve also been trying to take breaks because I don’t think it’s healthy just to wallow in the pain that we’re experiencing. I think we do need to disconnect at points and then come back to it later. So I’ve been doing things like connecting with friends over Zoom and Skype and just sitting and having long conversations because it really helps to talk stuff out. And then I’ve been plunging myself into work here and there and focusing on some projects that I’ve got coming up. I’ve been taking some time just to organize my life, throw out old things from the house, and really start to pare stuff down, which just felt good as well. And then just taking an afternoon to watch a mindless movie and just zone out for a little bit so that I can return to stuff later and face it well.
The Therapeutic Power of Photography
Feeling a little bit refreshed when I go on those long walks, I obviously take a camera with me as well and take photographs. And that’s been really helpful. Once again, photography has become very real therapy for me because at the moment, it helps my flagging self-esteem just to have something small to do, even if it’s tiny acts of creation like that that just remind me that this rejection doesn’t suddenly make me useless. I’m still the same me, and I still have things to offer the world.
And then there’s the protecting your highlights part of this because as difficult as this situation is, there are good things happening as well. It’s so tempting when we go through something really difficult like this just to get washed away by the pain of the one terrible thing that happened. But I’m trying to inject perspective back into the situation the whole time for myself so that I can guard hope. For example, I’m moving out of London in the next…
Frequently Asked Questions
Why did you take a break?
There were several factors that led me to take a break. Firstly, I experienced a significant change in my life that required my full attention and adjustment. Additionally, I faced a significant loss that deeply affected me emotionally and mentally. In order to heal and process these changes, it was necessary for me to take a break from my regular activities.
How did the change and loss impact you?
The change and loss I experienced had a profound effect on my overall well-being. It caused significant emotional distress, which affected my ability to concentrate, be productive, and maintain a healthy work-life balance. It was important for me to prioritize my mental health and take the necessary time off to cope with these challenges.
Did the break help you in dealing with the change and loss?
Yes, the break was immensely helpful in allowing me to process the change and loss I faced. Taking time away from my regular responsibilities provided me with the space and solitude needed to reflect, heal, and develop strategies to cope with the challenges. It allowed me to regain mental clarity and resilience, ultimately assisting me in moving forward positively.
When will you be back?
While I am unable to provide an exact date, I am committed to returning as soon as I feel ready and capable of resuming my regular activities. I am actively working on my personal healing and growth, and once I feel confident in handling my commitments effectively, I will make a comeback.
Will your content change after the break?
It is possible that my content may undergo some changes after the break. Dealing with significant change and loss often leads to personal introspection and growth, which could influence the subjects and themes I discuss. Rest assured, I will continue to provide valuable and engaging content, albeit with a potentially fresh perspective.
I hope you find useful my article Why I took a Break (Dealing with Change and Loss), I also recommend you to read my other posts in my blog at this link.
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Best of luck! and follow your passion.
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