Adventures of a Digitabulist's review of 'A Little Pick Me Up'

Courtesy of ‘Adventures of a Digitabulist’ (www.adventuresofadigitabulist.wordpress.com)


“I was scrolling through Instagram last week when I came across a post from blogger Katie Portman (@poutinginheels) in which she said that her book, A Little Pick Me Up: Shining a light on your darkest emotions, was available from Amazon, free of charge, for a few hours so I decided to give it a go.


Since the beginning of time, women have been made to feel bad about themselves. From our dress sizes to our careers, from our parenting skills to simply having an opinion, modern women come under immense, relentless pressure to look and behave in certain ways.

If I’m honest, A Little Pick Me Up isn’t the kind of book I would usually read but, inspired by my 2019 Reading Challenge and my want to expand my literary horizons, I decided to download it and give it a go.


I started the book right before bed on Saturday night and was hooked right away, making my way through the introduction and first chapter, Jealousy, before calling it a night.

I found that I was able to relate to Katie’s experience – the first line “Ever since I was a young girl, all I’ve ever wanted to do is write, and for my words to have the power to change the world”, could have been written by me.


When I was younger, all I wanted to be was a journalist. I used to interview members of my family and write newspaper reports about anything and everything. I started writing for my local newspaper at the age of 13 and have written for various publications over the years. While I’m not a journalist, writing is a big part of my job and, of course, I have my blog.


Back to the book…


The book has seven chapters, jealously, fear, guilt, dread, powerlessness, regret, and hate/love. Katie uses honesty, experience and wit to address the biggest failings of women. I could relate to pretty much everything that Katie wrote about.


We cannot allow our lives to merely pass us by. We must craft them into lives that we love and which we’re proud of. We must create our own stories to ensure they’re ones worth telling.


There have been several occasions in my life that I have been unhappy. I have worked a number of jobs that I haven’t enjoyed and I’ve let the unhappiness take over and change who I am. I now have a job I love (and miss very much with the current situation!) and I am keen to make the most of every opportunity. Silver bangle making, glass bauble blowing and pottery are just a few recent examples of this!


Other people’s opinions of you should not matter to you more than your own, so please don’t allow them to. How other people react to us. How other people treat us. How other people see us… is to do with their issues.


I am guilty of listening to the negative things that people say to me rather than the positive. A number of years ago, I received some criticism for my photography. In order to tell this story, I should say that, as well as my degree in journalism, I studied and received an MA in photography (with a merit). I have had a number of individual and group photography exhibitions in the North East and North West and I had my own photography business.

Portraiture is not my area of expertise but it is something that I have done on a number of occasions with mostly positive feedback. I don’t know how many people I’ve taken photographs of but the one that sticks in my mind is the one that gave me negative feedback. It knocked my confidence completely and I still think about it a lot more than I should!


Back to the book again…


A Little Pick Me Up really made me think about the way I see myself. Each chapter ends with a useful list of ‘Pick Ups to Take Away’. The tips are inspirational and empowering, suggesting little steps you can take to be your best self.


I really didn’t expect to enjoy or take as much away from A Little Pick Me Up as as I did. I read the book in a couple of hours and it has really given me a lot to think about – no doubt, I will dip back into it when I am feeling as though I need another pick me up!


I would highly recommend that all women read this book – I honestly think that everyone could learn something from it.”

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