Keeping it real with Feel Better Collective

Keeping it real with Feel Better Collective

I can feel a turning of the tide in the online world, and it’s funny because it feels like the very reason I started this blog is very soon going to be where it’s at in terms of online trends. That is, keeping it real – normal, accessible, realistic self-care. Imperfection embraced, and loving ourselves regardless (even if it’s only for five bloody minutes in a crazy day).

My mission

I started Feel Better Collective as a worn out new mum, fresh from a career still on the rise (that hadn’t been plain sailing, so many a lesson learnt there) and questioning my identity. I had spoken to so many women in various guises of me – finding themselves in a bit of a ‘what’s it all about?’ spiral (dare I say a third life crisis because THAT IS NOW A THING). Some of them single, some with kids and some without. But all just struggling with the challenges of modern life.

I felt like I wanted a place to talk to those women and say, there are small, incremental changes you can make on a daily basis to help this improve. It’s not about being perfect, it’s about feeling better every day in some small way. Whatever floats your boat. Go easy on yourself and allow yourself to catch a break, however you like to feel good.

A whole new (online) world

Entering into the blogging world of course means that you start to follow key influencers through their newsletters, Instagram feed and other social channels, to see what’s working, what gets engagement and what people are looking for, to ensure you can really deliver useful and interesting content that can make a difference to people’s daily lives.

There are huge numbers of ‘inspo’ sites out there today, but honestly as my time following them has gone by, they begin to seem thin, and at times insincere in their message. I don’t mean all by any means, there are some amazing women out there who have quite accidentally made a living from just being their true, aligned and beautiful selves and wanting to share that message and RIGHT ON to them. But there are sites that offer an impossible image of perfection that also appear to say you can have it ‘just like that’ and if you don’t have it you are somehow a less-whole person. They will us on to be willowy zen goddesses of gorgeousness and tell us to do it NOW, beautiful.

It got me thinking about the many women and girls who are not strong in their belief in themselves and look to these communities as a source of inspiration and truth.

“if I take up yoga I will be healthier”

“if I eat raw food I will be thinner”

“if I get up at 5.30 every day to meditate, no matter what, I will be happier”

In truth, for busy, frazzled women these are objectives we might actually try to set ourselves in a frenzy of great intentions needing to JUST DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT, but after a bad week it falls away and we end up feeling even worse about ourselves. What’s healthier or happier about that?

The intention and energy with which we do something is absolutely key to our success – no amount of yoga or raw food can change how we really want to feel if we don’t know what we are doing it for, other than the pursuit of perceived perfection.

The gremlin of self-doubt

I’ve doubted the validity of FBC a few times in the face of these online ‘giants’. I’ve wondered if my message is going to cut through that perfection. I’m not aspirational, I don’t spend hours laying out and editing my beautifully shot Instagram photos, in fact at the moment I still enjoy Instagram and Facebook being very much ‘in the moment’ and unplanned. This is VERY un-strategic for a comms person but it’s how I want to feel as I deliver my message – REAL. In the moment. Just like everybody else, trying to make it through the day, but using this platform to cheer you on from the sidelines and say YOU CAN DO IT!! Or TRY THIS FOR SHITS AND GIGGLES. (Special shout out to my friend Gemma who this week discovered Marmite soldiers for boiled eggs through one of my facebook posts. YOU ARE WELCOME).

Being genuine

I’m currently working with a coach and she asked me to name a few sites that I really liked and admired and why that was. After much gibbering, she pulled a word from me. Genuine. The sites I love are of women that just seem so genuinely themselves. Their message is about taking your own path, doing the best you can, with some helpful and supportive anecdotes or ideas to help people through it. She helped me see that what I have to say DOES matter and IS valuable to the women I want to speak to. She helped me to remember my WHY.

What is my why?

I have been really lucky over my life to meet some guides, coaches and mentors that have changed my mindset, my ability to grow and accept change in my life. While I was falling over on maternity leave with many MANY hours of thinking time, I thought about how I might be able to start to use my experience to help others.

If I was struggling, so were other women like me. If they found it hard to galvanise themselves into action, then maybe I could help. If I could use my experience to really understand the struggles that women face every bloody day just trying to get through life, alongside my boundless enthusiasm then maybe I could actually make a difference.

This blog was the start of that. A place to tell stories, share what works for me that’s manageable and doable in a busy life. Talk about falling off the wagon and getting back on again. Never proclaim perfection or a higher state. A place to have conversations (and thanks to those of you who comment or share, because that’s what really makes blabbering away every week worthwhile). I wanted to make anyone who read my blog go ‘ooooh my GOD that sounds like me!!!’. And that’s why i called it a collective, because I really want us to be in it together. Warts and all.

So thanks for being here, for sharing my stories and yours. I would LOVE to know what you’d like to hear about, the stories you need to hear or the tips you’d like to receive. Comment below or on facebook or Instagram or even drop me a little line. It would make my day.

10 Comments

  1. Hello Hannah,just wanted to say I love reading your FBC all of it rings oh so true my lovely..keep them coming.Hope you all are well and I think your not so little now Frankie is the image of you,enjoy your day xxxx

    • Thank you lovely Terri, I love that you are reading and enjoying, it means the world to me. And yes Frankie looks more like Janis but her facial expressions are ALL me hahaha lucky her!!! Big love xxx

  2. Hannah, such an important message you share here. So needed, and so unique. So many of us women do want real, achievable, actionable ways to make life better – and there is so much power in making incremental change – it spurs us on for more and allows us to feel great! Keep going with your great blog and work, I love reading your words!

    • Thank you so much for your comment Naomi. I’m glad you recognise the need for this message, it’s been bubbling away for a while! I like to think that us ‘normal’ gals can really help each other out with true hacks for getting through the day. There is SO much gold out there because we are all just living it and doing it every day. So thank you so much for your encouragement, it really spurs me on to continue. And if you ever have a great tip then please do share it! xx

  3. Thank you Hannah you’re messages are so inspirational thank you so kick and keep up rhe good work love your posts xxx

    • Thanks Natalie, that’s a lovely thing to say and I’m so glad you like my posts. xxx

  4. Yes to genuine! It reminds me of images for the media being airbrushed. If we write about our lives being perfect then it is airbrushing the truth of who we are. I do think though that in showing up as genuine what is created can be even more beautiful than what is deeply controlled and stylised as sometimes it is easy to spot what’s fake. Lovely writing, Hannah (from fellow blog heart)

    • Ooh yes that is a great analogy Deborah, love that. It’s JUST like airbrushing our lives. Or the old social media gloss that people put on, but for bloggers and coaches that is just fairly irresponsible to always project an image that might not be true. A hard thing for our clients and readers to live up to. I really dislike how the word authentic is bandied about these days and that’s why I was so delighted when genuine popped out of my mouth!! Actually in realising this I have put less pressure on myself to blog on the clock every week. Because if I’m not feeling it, why force it? So it’s been a great discovery and i am so glad it resonated with you too. Thank you so much for your kind words lovely fellow Blog Heart! xx

  5. Damn Girl! This is what I’m talking about! I wish you could see my ear to ear grin right now. This post is amazing. Your genuineness shines through! I love your tone of voice – it’s so you. And I don’t need to tell you how much I agree with everything you said here. Keep it coming x x

    • Haha thanks so much lovely lady! Many an inspiring chat inspired this post…

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