Self Care: Things we need to stop stressing over in 2020

It’s January and officially a brand new year! Self care is so important during this month in particular, as after the huge Christmas build up (which pretty much starts the moment Halloween is over) it’s a well known fact that people can feel a bit deflated and the January blues can kick in. I wrote a blog post about this last year HERE if you would like some tips on how to keep positive during January.

There are a few things that we need to stop stressing about and leave well and truly behind in 2019. We really shouldn’t be over-thinking or worrying about these sort of things and I’m sure you will be able to relate. 

Cosmetic procedures

Cosmetic procedures used to be a little secret and not something to really broadcast or talk about. However these days it seems that EVERYONE has had some sort of enhancement. Lip fillers are now a standard procedure and the majority of girls that I see on Instagram have had some kind of lip treatment and I have found myself starting to wonder if this is something I need to have done myself. I have never had any issues with my lips before, but it just goes to show that the images we see online on a daily basis, can really start to affect the way we think and how we look at ourselves, which is not a good thing. This has even led me onto looking at jaw fillers, nose fillers and an obsession with having the perfect straight, white teeth which I actually had done last year. I have nothing against anyone having a cosmetic procedure if it’s something they really want and if it makes them feel better, that’s amazing. But having procedures just for the sake of it, or because it’s seen as a trend is not healthy and we all need to learn to love ourselves as we are without comparing ourselves to how others look.

Also, our beauty regime these days is not a cheap process! We can’t just apply a quick layer of fake tan with a face of make up for a night out anymore. Now days there are so many things that us females feel the need to have done, from micro bladed brows, Russian lashes, hair extensions at £400 a session, nail extensions, tan, make up – the list goes on. To add to this,  new beauty trends pop up all the time and the pressure to be involved in these sort of trends are constantly looming in the background.

Baby Gate

“When are you having a baby then?

“You better get a move on now that you are in your 30’s” 

“You don’t want to be an old mum though do you?”

If only I had a pound for the amount of times I have been asked these sort of questions! It seems that when anyone has been in a relationship for any length of time, it becomes the question that everyone feels they have the right to ask you. Perhaps some of us are just happy being a couple and enjoying life together without children. A crazy thought right?

I’ve found myself starting to get annoyed with these sort of questions. They have started coming from friends that have had their own children and there’s nothing worse than your own friends ‘pregnancy shaming’ you. I have even been questioned by my boyfriend’s friends about this subject which really surprised me. I don’t know about you, but being told by a male that you are “running out of time” just seems bizarre to me. My womb is my own business thank you very much!

So, I feel that people really should avoid asking couples about this subject. You never know, they could be trying for a baby and not getting anywhere which could be distressing for them. For me personally, it starts to make me panic and makes me feel that I am falling behind others my age which is really silly and a classic example of peer pressure. I love my life at the moment – if I want to go on holiday or on a last minute night out, I can. I don’t have to try and find a baby sitter and I don’t have scary child care costs to worry about and that suits me just fine. But equally, I do want a family of my own and I do appreciate that there is a time restriction for females but we should be allowed to do things at our own pace without judgement and without feeling the pressure from others.

FOMO 

The fear of missing out. This is another modern day thing that I feel all of us suffer from which needs to stop. Social media is the biggest route cause of this and we all need to remember that these platforms are a showreel of someone’s life. No one ever posts the boring bits of their day or the part where they are sitting at home in their pyjamas looking like Hagrid. 

So, when you see everyone else on yet another luxurious holiday, or with yet another brand new outfit, dont let it make you feel that you are falling begind or that you are not in the same league as these people.

It’s easy to look at friends too and compare yourself to what they are doing. It’s normal to so this but it’s also important to stress that everyone has their own path in life and just because you know someone that is buying a house or getting a sparkly new kitchen and you aren’t at the moment – then that’s ok! Your time will come and if anything, it will encourage you to work towards your own goals more so enjoy the process of your own personal journey in your own time.

Lipstick – special Isabel Marant collection by Loreal

Is Instagram creating a new breed of social climbers?

A social Climber

A Social Climber is anyone that becomes friends with someone if they have something that they want. They become ‘friends’ with people in particular who ‘know people’ that can be of use/benefit to them. In turn, they become (or attempt to become) friends with that first person’s more ‘popular’ friends, then leaving the first person behind. They repeat this cycle to get to the ‘top’ as they see it.

This is something which has been playing on my mind a lot recently and I’ve been noticing the trend of this happening around me quite a lot. I know I can’t be the only one experiencing this so I wanted to write this blog post to put it out there that social media channels, particularly Instagram, is encouraging a new breed of social climbers. 

I love Instagram as it’s so visual and great for inspiration. I personally really enjoy using it for picking up on new emerging trends and seeing how other bloggers or Instagram models put together outfits, looking out for the latest bars or restaurants that are opening and also for home styling ideas. It’s great though for anyone, whatever their passion or interests might be. I wrote a blog post a year ago about my thoughts on Instagram HERE  which you also might like to take a look at.

Follow/Un-follow culture

Instagram has always had a problem with the follow/un-follow process. If you are not aware of this, what happens is that the account will start following people to get them to follow them back. Once they follow back, they then hit the un-follow button. Usually they never notice that this person un-followed them and they have essentially got away with it. The reason they do this to boost their follower account and there are even companies that you can actually pay to do this for you as a ‘bot’ which is craziness!

Fake Instagram friendships

When I first joined Instagram there were girls that would comment and engage on my posts all of the time. I was happy to be networking with some really lovely people, (or so I thought) and I genuinely loved supporting them back with their posts. However, a while ago, two of them stopped leaving comments as regularly and then stopped following me all of a sudden. It made me slightly paranoid, making me wonder what had changed. Did they no longer like my content? Had I done something to offend them? Had I missed any of their posts lately and it had annoyed them? 

It really bugged me for a while and then I realised – they didn’t need me anymore and I was someone they could drop now that they were climbing up the ‘Instagram ladder’ with more and more followers and they had used me along the way to get there. After thinking about it, the whole thing is really quite stupid and just confirmed to me that these girls were not my ‘friends’ at all – I hadn’t even met them in the real world! I had to give myself a talking to and not to be so silly to even worry about such a thing. That’s what happens sometimes with Social Media though – it can be a funny old place and no wonder why so many people struggle with it. On the plus side, I still have a lot of interaction with some girls that have been there from the beginning and they are really lovely. 

Moving forward

This has really opened my eyes though. I’m seeing Social Climbing happening everywhere, not just on Instagram and it’s definitely something to be aware of.  I’m not saying that you need to be suspicions of everyone that you meet, wondering what it is that they want from you, but I will be a lot more conscious that this sadly is a thing now.

I think that this will also really make me pay more attention to how I interact with other people. My Instagram account has grown since I started blogging last year and I still love interacting with a lot of the same people that I did back in the very beginning as well as new people I have come across along the way. I would never want anyone to think that I didn’t have time for them and that the number of followers you have makes you more ‘important’ than anyone else – it’s a nasty way to behave and people will always see through it in the end. As they say, Karma will always find it’s way to those who deserve it.

Have you had experiences with this before?

Leave a comment below if you have!

How to beat the dreaded January Blues

January has always had a bad name for itself. There was a huge build up to Christmas and that is now sadly all over and done with. Your bank account is looking in a sorry state and you are feeling like an actual pig in blanket from over doing it over the holiday period. Is this sounding familiar right about now?

To avoid the January blues, here are some of my top tips and 5 simple ways to help boost your mood for the first month of the year.

1. Get out more

At Christmas we tend to spend most of the time relaxing at home and after a while you start to feel a bit lazy and restless. Now is the perfect time to get out of that sluggish vibe and get out exploring! Go to that new coffee shop that you have been wanting to try out, go out of town and have a mooch around a different one for a change. Plan something fun that you will look forward to such as a London west end show or go and watch a new movie that’s come out at the cinema. I want to go and watch the new Mary Poppins so I am excited for that this month.

I have also been to visit the beautiful new Elan branch that recently opened in London as you will see from the images in today’s post!

2. Meet up with family and friends

Arrange to go and have a coffee with a friend you haven’t seen recently,  spend a day shopping with your mum or sister and even plan a relaxing spa day with your boyfriend. Not only will it cheer you up, but it will help them out with the depressing side of January too! If both you and family/friends are trying to be healthy for the new year you could go to an exercise class together.

3. Have a Spring clean

There’s something about the start of the new year that makes me want to have a really good clean up of my home. I like to go through my cupboards and get rid of anything that I haven’t used for a while. I will start in the bathroom and go through old products and the medicine cabinet and get it all organised. I’ll then move onto other areas such as the kitchen (we all have one of those messy kitchen drawers) and work my way through the rest of the house.

A wardrobe spring clean is also really therapeutic and one of my favourite things to get in order. You can read about how I do this on a previous blog post HERE.

4. Dry January

Drinking has a huge impact with your mood and can make you feel fed up. We all like to indulge at Christmas and January is a great time to have a bit of a detox. Last year I only bothered for a couple of days and was annoyed with myself for not seeing it through. Not this year! I am one week in and feeling a lot fresher already.  Not only will your mood improve, but having a break from the alcohol is a great way to lose a few of those extra Christmas pounds.

5. Set yourself a goal

Now is a fab time to plan for the year ahead. Have you had your eye on a Gucci handbag or new piece of furniture but not had the funds to buy it? Set yourself a goal and save some money each month and when you finally have enough to buy it, it will feel like such a great achievement. Obviously don’t save more than you can realistically afford each month. Your bills will always need to come first!

Get planning a holiday. You might have always wanted to go to New York at Christmas time or for a couple of weeks somewhere in the Caribbean. If you start planning early on in the year you can work towards that end goal.

I have a few goals in mind for myself this year which I plan to stick to and will continue to work towards. I have been using the MiGoals planner which I featured in one of my Christmas gift guides HERE and I am loving it so far! It is a great way to keep track of your goals.

What do you usually do to combat the January Blues?

Let me know if you try any of my tips and if they work for you!

Thanks for reading xx

4 topics I wish I’d been taught properly at school

This is a subject which comes up a lot between myself and friends and I have been thinking about this recently so thought it would be a good one to share with you all.

I didn’t mind secondary school so much. I had a group of friends which I had fun with at the time (although I lost touch with all of them in the end), I was happy in a relationship with my boyfriend (who I am still very happy with to this day), and I never really struggled with the work academically, even though I didn’t always pay attention as much as I should have. All of that aside, I feel that there were a few things which could have really helped with the future if we had of been supported better on certain topics.

I don’t know about you, but I have never used algebra since school and unless you want a career in science or mathematics I really cannot see the point in ever learning this thing. If they had of taught us about the below issues instead this would have been a lot more beneficial to a lot of us.

Money

I admit it, I am not the best person with money. I have always liked to spend it rather than save it, although that has improved over the last few years and I have realised how important it is to have a savings pot behind me for emergencies.  My parents have always tried to encourage me to be more sensible with my money which I am grateful for, but this would have been such a good topic to have been covered at school for a lot of people that didn’t have the same level of support and advice.

When you are young you don’t appreciate the value of things and when you start to earn money it all goes out the window on nights out, drinking and clothes. However, when you move out of the family home and have to pay your own bills, it can be a bit of a shock to the system and you realise you have to budget and plan how you spend your money.

A lot of people when they leave school go onto university, which is something I personally didn’t do, and I’m pleased about this as it meant that I avoided owing anyone a huge debt at the end of it. Debt is something that can quickly build up and when you are younger the temptation is always there to take on credit cards and store cards. This would have been such a good subject to have covered at school to get you thinking early on about managing your money the best way possible.

Pinterest

Mortgages and property

Similar to the money topic above, mortgages are a complex subject that take time to get your head around. I have a mortgage and they still confuse the hell out of me. Obviously there are not many people leaving school that are going to be able to afford a mortgage straight away. However, learning about the basic points of how they work and the process around buying a property would be really beneficial. Even learning about renting a property, the type of documents and deposits that would be involved and the expected bills that you would be looking to pay each month would give people the confidence to go out there when they are ready and make it feel a lot less daunting.

Pinterest

Career guidance

We supposedly had a career guidance module for us at school. They booked us all a one to one appointment with an advisor, but when I went along to my appointment the advisor didn’t turn up and it was never re-arranged. The whole thing felt like a waste of time and that no one really cared about what we wanted to do as a long term career. It was more just about them ticking a box to say they had covered this with us (or not at all in my case!)

I had no idea what I wanted to do when I left school. I decided that university was not for me but I really enjoyed art and design so I wanted something potentially creative. However, I didn’t know about what kind of jobs were out there, or how much I could have expected to earn as an adult. I was literally clueless about this and wish we had been supported so much more with what options were available.

My career path

I worked in a book shop while I was studying at school, which I loved but that wasn’t something I intended to do forever. So, I ended up leaving school and enrolling in a beauty therapy course in Brighton. I realised that wasn’t really for me after all and moved into office work. I decided to move to London when I was 20 and started working in the fashion industry which was a perfect choice for me. A couple of years later I enrolled into London college of Fashion and gained a diploma which was great and taught me a lot. This helped to move me forward in my career and I have since worked for some of the biggest luxury fashion brands in the world.

It goes to show that you don’t always have to go to University as on the job experience counts for a lot. If you are at a point where you are not sure what you want to do as a career, don’t worry as it will all work out eventually.

Pinterest

Drugs and mental health

Unfortunately I have witnessed quite a few people from my home town that have suffered with mental health issues to the point that they have been moved into permanent institutions, where they will likely to remain for the rest of their lives. It’s sad to see and quite scary.

Brighton is an amazing place but it has it’s dark side. There is a huge homeless issue in the City which is getting worse and drugs are treated as the norm from a young age. I cannot help but wonder if we had better a education on mental health and drug related issues that it would have really helped a lot of people before it was too late. I feel that we need to do more for the next generation to protect them and teach them that mental health is important as well as how they look after themselves and others around them that might need their help.

Education and support

If there was a greater support network for young people and they knew exactly who they could talk to if they are struggling or need some kind of professional help that would make such a difference. If their problems could be shared easily, these could potentially be resolved earlier on, rather than escalating and end up changing the whole path that their lives move into. Drug education classes also need to be taught in a different way. I feel the shock factor would be a better route to go down and have actual drug users or ex-users to share their experiences with them.

Mental health seems to be a huge issue that is growing in this country which is in need of addressing somehow in a better way.

 

Are there any topics that I have missed from this list that you feel should have been taught better at school? I would love to hear your thoughts!

Thanks for reading xx

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