It’s been a while! Hello again, good to see you. I’ve been keeping in touch with the blogs I follow but have done very little with my own so far this year. This isn’t through any lack of interest, but more the product of a lack of clarity in my mind about where I want to take this. I could post a regular series of quotes, funny videos, or my favourite music just to have something new on here, but that feels like short-changing you, the reader. You probably followed this blog for something more than that, right? Or if this is your first visit, I guess you’d want to see something a bit more original than that (although those have been known to appear here!)
Something strange has happened here over the past week, and at occasional times in the past few months. Unsurprisingly, as I haven’t written anything new for quite some time, the number of visitors and pages viewed has dropped a lot. But there have been occasional spikes, during which ridiculously high numbers of page views occur – well, by my standards anyway. The most recent started last Friday and is still here today. At first, I felt flattered that someone was taking such an interest, but it became clear that, if this was just one person, they would be heroically depriving themselves of sleep as this is a 24/7 phenomenon. I have to accept that this is probably just some kind of electronic glitch – maybe a bot has latched onto me for reasons best known to itself. But it got me thinking.
What if this was just one person? Why would they be subjecting themselves to my humble offerings? I started this blog in autumn 2012, a few months after I had gone back to work after more than nine months off with depression. As part of the treatment I received, I had a course of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). Part of this involved me being set tasks by my counsellor, to put various thoughts down on paper for discussion in our sessions. This made me think more deeply about myself than I had ever done before, and from this came some longer written pieces. My counsellor suggested I turn these into blog posts, as he said they were ‘inspirational’ – his word, not mine – and he thought others might benefit from reading them, sharing in my experience, and relating it to their own. Despite my scepticism I gave it a go and to my surprise he was right. Many people who I knew in real life or through the interweb got in touch to tell me of their own experiences, and we became a kind of community. It helped me, too, to know that so many others felt like I did, and knew what I had been going through. Maybe these high page view figures were due to someone in a similar situation to the one I had been in? So in the unlikely event that there actually is someone out there creating these fantastic stats for me, I wish you all the best and hope that it helps you too. And if anyone reading this wants to know where I started with this, you can find it in the ‘My Story’ section in the menu at the top.
This thought process then went further. I had developed my attempts at being helpful into the ‘Dates To Note’ series, again to be found in the menu. But I feel these have run their course, and I don’t intend to do any more of these. I want to do something different, and am planning to revamp this whole site, as much as my limited abilities in using the WordPress system allow me to. I want this to be somewhere where people can come not just to read what I write, but also where they can find some useful resources to help them in more ways than I could ever hope to do. My main concern is with mental health – not only as a sufferer but also having worked on the business/projects side of service provision in this area for over twenty years. Bear with me as this is going to take some work, but I hope it will be worth it – for you!
The other main interest in my life now is aspects of retirement, since I myself retired just over two years ago. I was asked to join a new community, called Retiresavvy, to be an occasional contributor and to share views, knowledge and experience with anyone who might be interested. Take a look at the site – it caters for anyone, not just those who are already enjoying a life of leisure, and provides a lot of helpful information. But I’m sure they will forgive me for saying that this isn’t the only resource of its type, and I intend to share with you a range of other information sources. I’m not sure yet how I’ll be doing this, but I hope it works! There is also the obvious crossover point of mental health for older people, which I would be very remiss not to cover. And all this will come with my occasional ramblings on life to delight and entertain you (or to help cure your insomnia).
So, in short: expect some changes here, which will hopefully be an improvement! Any thoughts and ideas on what you might want to see here will be welcome. After all, I’m writing for you too, not just for myself! It feels good to be back with you again, and I promise not to be a stranger.