emma copland
leeds blogger
yorkshire reservoir

I've grown up with this nature park practically on our doorstep, I love it and it's filled with so many memories; from primary school trips to look at the tadpoles (and see a friend get pushed in!) to family walks on sunny weekends and splashing in the summer with friends. But my strongest memories are of taking myself down very regularly in the summer after University when I was feeling most lost and unsure of myself. So although the car park has been closed because of drug deals, dogging and debauchery (yes, really!), it's still a place that I treasure! And when I pulled up at home on a sunny Friday evening for the last Bank Holiday weekend of the summer, I knew it was the perfect spot for an evening stroll with mum. We got the golden hour sunshine and it was BLISS.

It also seemed like the perfect location to take photos for a post talking all about me.

blue skies and clear water
vintage balenciaga bag

I'm 26 now and am getting to the point where I care less and less what people think. I'd love to say I don't care at all, but there's a small part of me that is still affected by certain thoughts/behaviours/people. I'm getting there though! And let me tell you, it is freeing. When you stop trying to please other people, start focusing on yourself, wonderful things will happen. I've always been shy, like painfully shy, and struggled to make friends. But now, send me off to an event where I know nobody and yeah I'll struggle, but I WILL mingle my way through that place. When I step back and look at some of the things I'm achieving, which will be so minuscule to most people, I almost don't recognise myself. I have gained SO much confidence in the past 2 years, whether that be through blogging, shooting photos in busy streets and meeting new people at events; or through work, having the confidence to speak up in meetings and make decisions; or even just in driving and taking myself off to new places. Slowly but surely I am getting to where I want to be, being the person who I want to be.

nature park
M&S cropped trousers

One thing that's given me so much confidence is getting out and doing things on my own. I like to think I'm quite an independent person; I've always enjoyed a lot of alone time at home and going shopping by myself, but I've expanded on that to going to cafes and the cinema alone too! I just think being comfortable in your own company is so so important! I don't want to be reliant on anybody else for my happiness and I don't want to be waiting for other people to do things that I want to. I've taken myself on day trips and it's great just being able to do whatever you want without considering anyone else. Next stop: solo travel! (I think I'm still too anxious for that but maybe soon?)

But now, when people who I know ~irl~ are judging me for choices that I make, I'm able to just rise above it now instead of incessantly thinking about it and getting upset for days. Come up to me at a party laughing and telling me I post more on Instagram than 'anyone you know', that only tells me that you need to diversify your following list, thank you! But don't feel the need to comment on my outfit or bring up my blog if you've not got anything nice to say. Because I've learnt to value myself and my time and won't give you an inch of it!

swan reflection
zebra trousers
wild flowers

I watched the (heartbreaking) Jesy Nelson documentary on BBC last week about the effect trolling has had on her life, and I've since seen online creators sharing their own journeys too, whether that be with trolls online or bullies in real life. I'm very lucky to say that I've never had bad experiences with bullying to have to share my own story; the worst I would get at school was boys telling me to smile more or catty comments about me not talking. And I think I've simply not had enough ~attention online to receive nasty comments (at least not that I've seen). And I recognise that that makes me highly privileged, I do, but it doesn't mean that I haven't suffered. I've battled with disordered eating, I've got self-harm scars on various parts of my body and I've spent months of my life in therapy. I broke down and walked out of one of my final year University exams because I was struggling so bad with my mental health. But although I can have horrible bouts of anxiety now, I'm still so far from that girl. And I'm really at peace with who I am as a person now. 

golden hour glow
swan on the water
black birkenstocks
yorkshire blogger
golden hour on the water

Loves. Emma.