The Many Faced Woman


First off, this is a painfully bad photo. The irony that it contains a book on photography is not lost on me. Good, glad we’ve cleared that up. On with the wittering.

By day I am corporate, largely professional, I sometimes whip out the odd shoulder pad; by night I am here (less often now than before) sharing nonsense, pith and whimsy with you over t’interwebs.

As I learn more by day and my career leaps forwards I find my voice dampened here at night. I question and second guess and reconsider. I write, re-write, delete, write the thing I wrote first all over again. I wonder constantly how someone stumbling across this little spot might view me (what has Google ever done for us? Beyond perpetuating a planets’ hypochondria).  I lie awake agonising over the impression the universe might form about me as a result of the hyperbole and occasionally expletive laced opinions it might find here.

I don’t believe that my day face and my night face are mutually exclusive (or actually that different; by day I am frequently described as fiery and with abundant spirit – code for fiery/scary?) but I can’t help feeling that there’s something of a choice I need to make around about now. About how that fieriness comes across online and how that might impact my daily life, my aspirations, my future.  It’s all me, me, me eh?

I don’t want to write with inhibition and I absolutely don’t want a blog full of banal recipes and reviews. I also cannot do without this little webby escape in my world. So… where am I going with this? How do I continue to wear both of these faces in one little life?

I imagine the answer lies in being a better wordsmith, in finding ever more creative and witty ways to share things with you that don’t require all the ‘effing and jeffing’ as my nan might say.  Of finding slightly less inflammatory ways of making the same points. Of championing my own cause and continuing to harp on about equality and women’s rights in a way that is inclusive, clear and persuasive rather than ranty, sweary and angry.  The answer might also lie in donning a mask and a cape by night. Who knows?

What I’m really saying is please bear with while I spend some time learning a few better words than those in my current vocabulary; whilst I figure out where I go from here. I anticipate a few weeks not unlike when Ross tries to phase out his English accent.

Disclaimer: there might be more recipes. I don’t think anyone could get form a naff opinion of me from a recipe. Perhaps the opinion that I’m verging on an insulin issue, yes. But undesirable? Not so much.

I’m open to any tips you might have on balancing blogging with your day life.

Help. Me.

The Shed
I Need a Little Time...
  • I know what you mean, I’ve had this pretty much since I started blogging, right before I started my corp job. I really try not to censor myself, but yes I don’t talk about work and I do think about it a little more before I say anything controversial, but if it helps I’ve read your blog for however many months and it would not impact my professional view of you at all. We all have hobbies and you should be able to express yourself freely! x

  • Nicola

    I hope you don’t change too much – there are too many blogs out there that are so politically correct they are just plain boring. My attitude to criticism is that no one has to look, you can’t please all of the people all of the time etc…

    I know when your blog pops up in my feed that I’m going to laugh, feel uplifted and possibly learn something. So thanks for that, and I hope you keep on doing what you are doing.

  • Jo

    I adore your writing! Seriously I read your posts with a massive grin on my face. Your personality comes across in your writing so well, please don’t feel you need to change. I would be incredibly proud if this were my blog, I don’t think you need to dampen your voice for fear over the impression you give. The impression I personally get is of someone really fun, intelligent, very witty who is not afraid to voice her opinions. All of these traits are surely positives in your professional life too. I think just continue to be you and you can’t go wrong. x

  • It really is such a hard thing to work out! I sometimes worry that my personal life and work life and who I am in all aspects is too tied up, like if something went wrong in one area of my life I wouldn’t be able to isolate it. Of course part of me loves that it all feels like one, because I guess that’s some sort of balance, where work doesn’t always feel like work but still…

    I was mentoring a Young Person the other week, and she found my blog on my email signature, and I found that a bit unnerving. In many ways she is the exact type of young woman I want to read my blog and feel inspired to go and get what she wants and stand up for herself, but on the other hand is that crossing a line that I know her? Like I have to block young people from my social media etc for safe guarding, so what do I do about my blog?

    So. Confusing! And I haven’t actually offered any advice there but maybe we all need to work this thing out, like some sort of guideline!

    Stephie xx

  • I’m trying to think of something useful and constructive to comment, but all my mind says is this: if it was me, the question I’d be asking myself was “how much do I care”, like truly care. Do I want people to perceive me a certain way, will I be bothered if people don’t like the person I put out there already, will I lose sleep over it? For me, if I care, I’d change it. If I didn’t care, I’d carry on the way I’d been going until I wanted to change or decided I did care.

    If it’s important to you to change the way you blog, because you believe it’s important to how people see you as a person or even if you think it’ll make people send you more free dog treats (or any…), then do it. Do it because it’ll make you happy and it’s what you want.

    If it’s not, then screw it, make your own dog treats.

    Do what makes you happy, what makes you want to continue blogging, because you’re allowed to.

  • Michelle! Don’t change! I love your wit and humour and the language is what makes you stand out – in a good way, promise. Your uninhibited approach is what often makes me spit out my lunch in laughter. If people don’t like it then that’s their call. Miserable sods, if you ask me!

  • Such an interesting post Michelle, particularly as I am perhaps at the other extreme. I often think that my decision to keep my blog relatively anonymous can be quite limiting. It means that I don’t write about work at all, don’t photograph anything that would be too identifiable (like my face) and I increasingly wonder if it would really be such a great disaster if I did, what exactly it is I’m worried about, and whether my blogging would feel more natural, more like me, if I was a little more open. I guess whichever route we go down there are risks/negatives, it’s about navigating what works for you, but if it’s of any reassurance your approach definitely works from my perspective!! xx

  • Katie

    What Jo says! I’m struggling with the words myself today (moving house excitement = failing at sleep. I don’t do well on no sleep). I think your blog is a ruddy marvel (although, of course, we all know how much I love a bloody good swear!) xxx