Friendship Interview with: Carpe Diem Emmie (UK culture, Lifestyle & Travel Blogger)
Since starting How To Make Friends I enjoy finding other bloggers online to follow. I love to see their creativity through their blog, follow their lives on social media and share ideas. I have been following Emmie for a little while now since writing a guest blog post for her blog ‘How female friendships change in your twenties’ which you can read here. As soon as I saw her recent very honest Instagram post about struggling with social anxiety and friendship, I knew I would love to interview her and that a lot of you readers would relate to her story. In this Friendship Interview Emmie reveals insider top tips for attending a networking event, advice for those that suffer with social anxiety and how a friendship ended because of a ‘copy cat’.
Hi Emmie, I love your blog Carpe Diem Emmie, when did you start it and how did you come up with the idea?
I started blogging at the start of my degree in 2011 but Carpe Diem Emmie was created in early 2014. I wanted to share a documentation of all the things I am interested in, particularly Theatre and Lifestyle. ‘Carpe Diem’ is one of my favourite quotes of all time and something I aspire to do everyday so I wanted to inject that into my blog’s content.
You run the East Midlands Blogger Network, do you think network groups are a good place for people to make new friends?
Yes I do – I’ve been running it since 2015 but there’s so much more I’d like to do with it now it’s the Summer. I think they’re fantastic and some of the members have made some incredible friendships since joining it. I love seeing those friendships blossom and making a nod to our network.
What advice would you give to someone attending a networking event alone?
I would definitely try and attend events alone because it’s good to do something out of your comfort zone. I struggle with social anxiety so networking events can be a challenge, my tips are to go with the mindset that you aren’t planning to stay too long (therefore you don’t feel a pressure to stay until the end). I make it my goal to introduce myself to 3 new people and I also wear an outfit that makes me feel comfortable and happy.
Recently you were really honest on your Instagram page that you suffer with social anxiety, how does this impact your friendships?
Oh massively! I think most of my friendships have been broken down by the fact that I struggle with social anxiety. You receive what you put in and I find it difficult to communicate my struggles, so in return friendships just don’t last. I wish I had the relationships I did 4 or 5 years ago but people don’t “get” the struggles of anxiety in order to see it’s not me being mean, I just can’t communicate the struggles I face.
Tell us about your current friend circle and how have your friendships formed and changed throughout your life?
I have quite an odd friend circle, they have been formed from different parts of my life and I don’t spend all of my time with the same circle. I didn’t have solid friendships through school so they only became better once I got to college and university, I am still friends with a handful of those now. I was lucky enough to go to dance lessons as a child so I made some great friends through that, of which I’m still very much in contact with now. I think they’ve changed quite frequently though! Blogging has offered me fantastic friendships too.
Have you been through a friend breakup and why did it happen?
Yeah who hasn’t. The one that really hurt me was back in Year 11. I had just finished my GCSE’s and was heading to college so it was inevitable I wouldn’t stay close to people, especially because I was doing a BTEC course rather than A-Levels. Anyway, to finish off the year I went on holiday with my parents and took my best friend of the time with me (great – I was finally going to do something that everyone seemed to be doing!) the week was tough, it was really difficult to be with someone you spent only a few hours with a day to spending 24 hours with for 7 days. When we got back we decided to have some time to do our own thing, it resulted in us falling out and she decided we couldn’t be friends anymore. We haven’t spoken since, only when she decided to spread rumours and be spiteful all over MSN/bebo etc. I couldn’t even tell you where or what she is doing these days, I just remember it being such a hurtful and challenging time for me.
When was the last time you made a new friend and how?
Just recently I began working at a SEN school temporarily until I found something for the next term. When you go into employment making friends happens naturally. I managed to fall into the team dynamic pretty quick and get on with them. It makes working so much easier.
What is your best piece of advice when it comes to friendship especially for those that suffer with social anxiety?
I would say be honest. Be honest that it’s challenging for you and suggest that when you meet up you do it in an environment which is safe and comfortable for you. It may mean that just 2 of you meet up but that’s fine and you can build it up and meet in different places until you feel better. Also if someone isn’t making the effort, even if they know you struggle then it’s probably best that you don’t bother with that person. I’d get rid!
Tell a friendship story…
I have had quite the share of toxic friendships and one which is very clear to me is that of someone who attempted to copy my life and be quite jealous of me. I found it hard to be around other people when we were friends, she didn’t like me spending with people other than her. When I got my first boyfriend whilst being friends with her she was adamant I had “changed”, even though I hadn’t. I decided enough was enough and when I left for university, I decided we should go our separate ways. She used to copy my dress sense and when I started a blog, she copied a lot of the content. I think it’s great she idolised me but it became too much and we haven’t been friends for 2 years now.
Thank you so much Emmie for your honesty and sharing your friendship story. Where can readers find you online?
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