Do I want to be too much?

 I’ve always been a dreamer. I guess you could call me indecisive, spontaneous, a little unresolved but always a dreamer. Always keeping my options open. Always aspiring to be more than what I am. There comes a point in life where one has to ask themselves: am I wanting too much? Do I aspire to be more than I can actually be? Is this why I’m never content within myself? Who knows. I don’t. Do you?

From a young age, I wanted to be a writer, a storyteller. I seized every opportunity to write stories and get lost in a world that wasn’t my own. I would go on to win ‘star writer’ in school more than the average kid, I’d have 3 poems published before the age of 13, I’d keep a journal daily and pour my heart down on paper at the end of the day. I was adamant I was going to be a writer.

Then I started secondary school. I realised I had the profoundest passion for acting and drama. I’d attended drama clubs at a young age, and always enjoyed it, but secondary school was opening doors for me that I had never really considered. Plus, I could write scripts and explore my writing skills within this subject too. It was perfect. I would go on stage, perform, and revel in being someone else for a little while. I would lose myself in worlds that were unlike my own – again. I was in my element. At school, my 3 main subjects were English, Drama and Music. Let me take you with me through the next chapter in my life.

I left school. I decided to have a gap year. I wasn’t ready to go to college or university like my peers. No. I’d take a year out, find myself, and then I’d decide what path to take. I was in and out of jobs doing mainly sales and meanwhile I found a love for playing guitar, writing my own songs and being a musician with my free time. I started gigging around Glasgow in pubs and clubs making some easy money doing what I loved. I would busk in the bustling streets of the city centre. I’d write my own songs, share them on social media, and I’d sing like the world depended on it. I wanted to be a singer. A musician.

And then I lost my confidence. I crawled in to a shell. The big bad world threw obstacles at me that I couldn’t overcome. This resulted in me sequestering myself away from everyone and everything. Abandoning my hopes and dreams. I was good for nothing.

My battle with depression and anxiety lasted longer than anyone anticipated. I still struggle to this day. Fortunately, I was surrounded with the most marvellous people who saved me from my demons and I am perpetually indebted to them. They literally gave me life. Whilst battling depression, I decided to take my journal online, I started a blog. I just want to stress that this was one of the best things I ever did in my life to date. Inevitably, my passion for writing rekindled as I took to my online safe space and began sharing parts of my life through words. I became an open book. And then I decided to write one.

I wrote and published my first book at 20-years-old. Melancholy Mind. It is an anthology of poetry about my mental health journey with snippets from my blog and other musings. It was a difficult thing to share, a very trying time, but holding my book in my hands was the most surreal feeling in the world. Especially considering everything I had been through – never did I think I’d achieve this. I bagged myself an HNC in Professional Writing Skills in the Creative Industries at the City of Glasgow College and graduated after one year. I found myself getting 3 offers from various universities. I had the option to study Psychology, English, Creative Writing, Journalism – the world was my oyster. I still wasn’t sure which path to take.

At the age of 21 it is expected of you to have at least been to further education since secondary and so I bit the bullet and accepted an offer. I am currently a 1st year university student at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow – studying Creative Writing, Journalism, English & Law. I’m the lifestyle editor of the Strathclyde Telegraph and I’m still blogging away, after 2 years. My book sales are slow and steady and I’ve received an abundance of positive reviews and responses to which I am forever grateful for. I’m currently working on a little something but it’ll be a while before it forms in to a big something. I’m a busy girl, what can I say? I still try to sing from time to time, and do little snippets of me covering songs, and sharing them on social media but I haven’t picked up my guitar in years. Who knows what will happen with that.

I went through a phase, too, where I wanted to be a model. I was doing photoshoots and the like from the age of 16, building a port-folio. I’ve always been in front of a camera for photos for blog posts etc. too! In 2017 I was a finalist in the Miss Glasgow pageant and I walked the catwalk in a bikini(!) trying my very best to hold my head high. It was a nerve-wracking experience but I’m proud of myself for doing it.

So, I guess, what I’m trying to say to you guys here is do I want to be too much? Does anyone really know what they want to be or do in life? We leave school at 16/17/18 years old and are expected to enter the big bad world knowing what we want to become. If I’d have went to further education when I left school I would not have been a writer; I would not have published a book, so I guess the cliché saying is true – everything happens for a reason. Do what you think is right. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing.

I worried far too much, in my depressive state, about what everyone else was doing. It took me longer than most to get where I think I want to be but such is life. We all have battles, struggles and obstacles to face. We all change our minds, hearts and paths. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be too much. Why can’t you be everything?

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20 Comments

  1. March 7, 2018 / 9:36 am

    I think it’s good to have ambition – it’s essential, in my opinion. So many people seem to be comfortable with simply living, and I could never be content with that. When I was 18, I’d already tried uni, hated it, and was working my way up in a full-time job. I think it’s important to remember that there’s no reason why you can’t change your mind, or decide that you want to diversify. The skills that you learn in each area are transferable to other areas of employment or creativity. It’s just a case of doing what you love – and if you stop loving it, find something else that you love xx

  2. March 7, 2018 / 2:51 pm

    I believe in this day and age it’s normal for people to not know what they want to do with life, and baring that in-mind there’s nothing wrong with wanting too much or wanting to be too much. Hey, who’s to say or even authorize what is too much? Pushing yourself to be more than you are at that current time is what pushes us to achieve better things in life. I’d say you’re not wanting enough, as opposed to too much. Push for more. That’s something everyone should do.

  3. March 7, 2018 / 8:15 pm

    I am honestly inspired! Thanks for sharing this. <3

  4. Zoe Jackson
    March 7, 2018 / 8:28 pm

    Omgoodness I really can not wait for you to read my letter. I touch on this in it and I thought I was alone. I can totally relate to your story and it inspires me to know I can do anything and everything if I want to, if I believed it. I love this ppst Charlene and you personal posts have always been a favourite of mine! ❤

  5. March 8, 2018 / 11:51 am

    What a brilliant post Charlene. Really inspiring and you are so right, you can be what ever you want to be! I’d still LOVE to be a theatre girl as well as a beauty artist, though right now the calling to be a conservation scientist is stronger! I honestly loved this post so much! YOU GO GIRL!

    Tabitha x
    http://www.whattabithaloves.co.uk/

  6. March 8, 2018 / 8:45 pm

    Love this. I’m the same — I switch between things SO much. I’ve done modelling and dancing and drama – the thing is blogging right now and I love it so I hope I keep at it! Xo

  7. March 8, 2018 / 9:03 pm

    This is such a lovely post, just sums up being 18-23 I think! I’ve changed my aspirations a few times, I’ve taken gap years and gone back into education and I still don’t know what I want to do! I think is good to have goals and aspirations but it’s also important to remember that it’s not the be all and end all if we don’t go to uni/don’t get our dream job straight away! Looking great in the photos too!

    Liz xx
    http://www.naturalhazardsandmore.wordpress.com

  8. March 8, 2018 / 9:15 pm

    I love this post! I’ve always wanted so much and so many people label you a dreamer, but if you never try you’ll never get there! Ambition is definitely a positive thing!- https://sophiehearts.net x

  9. March 8, 2018 / 9:19 pm

    i think its so brave of you to write such a personal post, and I am so glad that you’re feeling better! also, you look AMAZING in every single one of those pictures girl xx

  10. March 9, 2018 / 8:11 pm

    This is amazing! And it’s incredible that you have so many interests. It’s so much better to not know because you have too many choices than none at all. And you’ve already achieved so much!! Keep dreaming, you’re more than capable x

    Sophie
    http://www.glowsteady.co.uk

  11. March 9, 2018 / 8:23 pm

    This is such a wonderful post, thank you for being so honest. Some days I still have no idea what I want to do and others I can incredibly focussed. I think that is so normal when we have so many possibilities now and it always seems like people are doing more and more

  12. March 9, 2018 / 8:32 pm

    Your journey has been absolutely amazing and I can’t wait to see where it takes you next! I’m exactly the same – I have a lot of interests (some would say too many) and want to do it all! But ambition is great and it fuels us to be better versions of ourselves 😉 Great post!

    Jas xx

  13. March 9, 2018 / 8:49 pm

    I feel like I could’ve written this myself. I too was such an avid writer and actor but I swear you hit 18 and the world comes tumbling down on you. I’m pursuing acting and trying to do writing too (I’ve just taken up poetry as well weirdly enough) and I have confidence crises every week. Am I doing the right thing, where am I going, and like you, literally want to do everything. My biggest problem is trying to do what I love but still be able to afford to live but hopefully I’ll figure that out soon. Massive luck on your course and congrats on the book, that’s an amazing achievement!!

    my20staughtme.wordpress.com

  14. March 9, 2018 / 9:35 pm

    I think that there is no such thing as wanting too much (in terms of wondering what to do in life); however, there is when it comes to greed. You aren’t greedy; I think you just may need a little bit of help deciding what to do. But then again; you could inhabit all of the roles mentioned 😀 And I think you should add wonderful poetess to the list.

  15. March 9, 2018 / 9:47 pm

    I was reading this, and continued reading your journey, and you know what’s the funny part? I actually bought your book last year! I loved the poems you wrote in it. It was so lovely! It was so great to get the backstory to go with the poetry. I think there is no such think as doing too much. If you can handle it and it makes you happy, why not? Maybe others will try to knock you down, but at the end of the day, most of those people who try to knock you down are terribly jealous of the fact that you’re achieving what you want out of life, and are continuing to fight for your dreams. You are making your dreams a reality. Continue doing you booboo, you’re going to go places xx

    Melina | http://www.ivefoundwaldo.com

  16. March 10, 2018 / 1:44 am

    Very inspiring! You have done a lot in a short time!

  17. March 10, 2018 / 12:24 pm

    I can definitely relate to a lot of what you’ve said here. During school and sixth form, there was a bunch of things I wanted to do, changed my mind over and over again, didn’t want to go to university either and then anxiety hit me like a ton of bricks and all my previous dreams had been demolished, basically. But now I’m semi back on my feet, I’ve just found myself getting too ambitious and wanting to achieve too much in too short of a time. For me, everything has to be done yesterday. I actually wrote a blog post about this myself the other day as it’s something that affects me quite a bit! Anyway, great post! xxx

  18. Lisa's Notebook
    March 12, 2018 / 8:07 pm

    I don’t think you should ever worry about putting a lid on whatever you aspire to do. You are one talented lady and you’ve already achieved so much, far more than most of your school colleagues. I think you could do anything you set your mind to, in fact I’m sure of it. xx

    Lisa | http://www.lisasnotebook.com

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