Learning how to edit the layout myself.
In the beginning, my best-friend Chelsea did the layouts and it meant that every time I wanted even the smallest of changes made to it, I had to go ask her and then she could only do it when she got a chance. I obviously really appreciated her help in those first months but as I enjoyed blogging more and as Chelsea’s discharge from hospital was being discussed, I realised it needed to be something I could do myself. Before Chelsea left hospital, I made sure that the layout and design of I'm NOT Disordered was good so that I had time to learn how to do it all before I fancied a change. When I did want a change, I realised that some of it was common sense and the trickier bits, I learnt from How-To videos on YouTube. It’s reassuring that I don’t have to rely on someone to make me happy with my blog’s appearance. It’s rewarding too; when I do it myself and people compliment it!
Zoella and all of her achievements and successful blog.
I can’t even remember how I discovered Zoella but it was very recent; hence my sudden obsession! As I read her blog and watched her vlogs and YouTube videos, and she’s such a likeable person. Then, when I discovered she had difficulty with anxiety I became more interested in learning about her. And it seemed that her world was taking off! She released her Zoella Beauty line and then her book 'Girl Online' and that was when I realised she was my inspiration. I've always wanted to have a book about my life and to get ‘out there’ in the media about my recovery. From Zoella, I learnt to use the success of my blog to get opportunities for myself; such as guest posts from important mental health professionals and the front page of my local paper.
Receiving positive feedback from readers/viewers.
With me blogging about things that are often incredibly personal, it’s encouraging to get compliments and support from people. Especially absolute strangers. I guess it feels as though I'm giving so much of myself away and positive feedback makes it all seem worth it. If I share a story of when I've had hallucinations that’ve commanded me to self-harm and tell people how I resisted and then I get a comment from a stranger telling me I've given them hope or that they tried the same coping mechanism and it worked, it is the biggest reward. It’s the best motivation to continue blogging. When life throws up challenges or I begin to doubt myself; I keep going. Because people rely on me to help them. To make them feel that there’s a chance. That if someone like me can be in recovery, then there’s a chance for them too. At first, this seemed like a massive pressure, especially when I realised that being in recovery didn't mean you no longer self-harm. And when I got sectioned, I was so scared that it’d take hope away from people that I debated telling anyone but I soon realised that people should know the full story. ‘Recovery’ was painted out to me as though it were a bed of roses and so when I had the old thoughts and feelings, I was devastated. And I realised that blogging this, meant I could help stop the same fear from happening to others.