Why You Should Challenge Yourself More

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There’s a saying, “If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you”. This is a sound piece of advice to live by. As the world around you changes and develops, it is vital that you be a part of that changing process, and one of the only ways to do this is to challenge yourself every day, every week, every month.. Always. Continue reading →

Budget Nighttime Skincare Routine

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Since reading Caroline Hirons many posts on skincare routines, it has become a vital part of my daily life to make sure that every night I take my make up off and cleanse my skin. However, Caroline Hirons is very much about splashing out and and using the very best products for your skin. As a 20 something year old recent graduate it is not always possible to spend a lot of money on skincare, therefore I have come up with a daily routine that works perfectly for me using only budget friendly skincare. This routine is what I have been using all throughout the winter when my skin is at its driest and it has done wonders keeping my face hydrated and plumped. You don’t need to spend big to get quality skincare, you just need to find the products for your skin.

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The Ultimate Guide To Happiness

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Being happy is a life goal for everyone. However, to be happy it’s not about a goal or a destination, it’s about the journey throughout your whole life. I have fallen into the trap in the past of thinking that ‘I will be happy when I finish university, or when I I have a job that I love or when this and that happens’, but this can lead you into a deeper whole of negativity than when you started. I have begun to realise that being ‘congruent’, or ‘genuine’ within yourself can lead to a much more fulfilling and happy life. I have gone through the most part of my life not being myself, being someone who I think I should be in different situations, and now that I am beginning to change that I can feel something different happening inside of me. I long to be myself in all situations (something that is actually very difficult to do but very rewarding when it is done). It is difficult to let out your quirky, unique self and show everyone who you actually are but this can take you down a very gratifying and rewarding path.

So, without further ado, here is a list of things that I have found can lead to a happy lifestyle:

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Chill Out Playlist

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I love to listen to the different playlists on spotify, such as the 100 most uplifting songs, the 100 most motivational songs or the classic global top 50 playlists. However, sometimes these playlists just don’t cut it and I take it back old school to the classics that I listened to throughout my teenage years. Here are the best songs that I just love to chill out to and sing to at the top of my voice: Continue reading →

Living In A World Of Anxiety

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Anxiety. Something that everyone will go through at some point in their lives. But for some it is overwhelmingly the worst part of their daily life. That’s what it’s like for me. I think to start with I never really realised that it was anxiety that I experience, I always saw it as me being a ‘worrier’ or a ‘stress head’. I think it’s only been in the last couple of years that I’ve been able to pick out my anxieties and realise that this is what it is. Every day something can set me off, I get this deep feeling of doubt and panic, a sudden feeling of sickness and a lump in my throat. Continue reading →

Stella And Dot – A Beautiful Brand

stella and dotStella and Dot isn’t really a brand I have noticed until recently, but now I love the brand! They are an interesting company who have originated from an incredibly dedicated woman named Jessica Herrin in 2003 who started off designing jewellery on her evenings and weekends (I love these stories of people building a company from a little idea in their family home). She finally got an office (instead of her living room) in 2006 and the company got bigger from then on. They then first launched themselves in the UK in 2011. This is where I come into it!

My Stepmum’s mother passed away from breast cancer a few years ago and, following that, she has been on the lookout for companies that donate to cancer research and cancer awareness. Not long ago I was struggling with university work and stress from the pressure I put on myself and she gave me this necklace in order to give me hope for the future. I found out that 20% of the retail price from the sale of this necklace goes to Breakthrough breast cancer awareness. This means that for every necklace bought (£32), £6.40 of it goes to the charity which is a huge amount! So that means if 100 people buy this necklace then £640 will be donated to Breakthrough in order to raise more awareness. Amazing. It goes towards helping people like my stepmum’s mother.

I love that I own this beautiful necklace, and on the days that I wear it I just remember the struggle that a lot of families, including mine, have gone through and it shows me that there is hope. Hope not only for survival, but hope for a life worth living after cancer has taken a loved one from us.

You can visit the Stella and Dot website here to view their jewelry or to find out more about their charity donations click here.

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Let’s Talk About FOOD!

I Love Food. I felt like, because food is such a big part of my life, that I just had to write a post about my relationship with it (yes, that does sound a little bit silly but I do have a relationship with food). To put it into words, I tend to go through each day with a plan on what my next meal or snack is going to be. Believe it or not, when I go on holiday the first thing I research is the restaurants that are around and I look at the menu to choose my food before I’ve even booked the holiday! This may seem extreme, but I think this is because of my choice to be a vegetarian. For those of you who are also vegetarian, and there are a lot of us out there, it isn’t always easy to choose a meal at a restaurant especially because the choice can be very limited at so many places. I am so pleased that vegetarianism is becoming increasingly popular as menus are now starting to increase their amount of vegetarian dishes (it’s not just cous cous in peppers anymore!). Although, saying that, I did see a menu that had a fish dish with a V beside it. Fish is NOT vegetarian!!!

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Now, just because food is never far from my thoughts doesn’t mean I eat unhealthily all the time. I enjoy cooking meals, even if I’m just cooking for myself, so I will plan in my head what my meal for the evening or lunch is going to be and how I can get the maximum amount of iron or protein in it. I LOVE vegetables so most of my meals have them in (my boyfriend gets so fed up of roasted veggies but they are just so delicious with a bit of paprika sprinkled over them) and I try to mix up my variety of food so I get all the nutrients I need. For example, a quick meal for me that ticks all the right health boxes is a stir fry. I use either Quorn pieces, veggie sausages or tofu for the protein and adding some nuts to the vegetables adds iron to the meal. If I’m wanting lots of carbs I tend to go for noodles with the stir fry or cous cous if I’m trying to be a bit more healthy.

So having a relationship with food can be a great, healthy thing! Even though it is on my mind ninety percent of the time, it is a positive and healthy relationship (most of the time, I do like a Cadburys cream egg or home made cookies every now and again).

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Climbing The Tallest Mountain In The UK!

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Climbing Ben Nevis was something that I wanted to do for a long time but I always felt that I wouldn’t be fit enough, or resilient enough to do it. For some reason I always thought it was beyond my capabilities, even though I have been climbing mountains (admittedly smaller ones) for years and years! However, when my boyfriend and I decided to book a holiday in Scotland last summer, we felt that if the weather was nice and the opportunity was there then it would be the perfect time to challenge ourselves and climb Ben Nevis. We ended up booking a holiday cottage just minutes drive from the foot of the mountain and after a few days of rain (typical for Scotland) the sun came out and we set off early in the morning. When I climb mountains I always start off thinking ‘why am I doing this?’ with my legs aching, my heart pumping and my throat sore from breathing so heavily. However, since there were a lot of people climbing the mountain that morning, we overtook many and soon we were halfway up. We even saw a man dressed as a storm trooper climbing up, although he looked like he was struggling with the big suit on! We were soon halfway up and the views were absolutely spectacular when the clouds lifted (although most of the way up we couldn’t see much because of the clouds). We stopped for about half an hour and had our lunch on a rock whilst chatting to people passing us on their way up, and then set off again. As we got nearer the top it started to get colder and colder so we put our coats and gloves and scarf’s on as it started to get more and more snowy around us.

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This picture shows the sheer drop to the side as we were walking up the mountain. Scary!!

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Getting to the top was a massive achievement and, although we were in complete cloud and fog so couldn’t see the view, it took my breath away knowing that we were the tallest people in the UK at that moment. Although it was absolutely freezing at the top in thick snow, we sat and refueled our bodies with food and water with a big grin on our face whilst watching as everyone around us were lively and taking photos. It was a lovely place to be. I am slightly disappointed that the clouds didn’t clear at the top so we never got to see the views around us, but I am willing to climb Ben Nevis again on a clearer day. The next day all of my muscles were sore and aching from the climb (and the journey back down the mountain) but I felt proud that we had managed to do it, and do it in good time (2 and a half hours up, 2 hours down). Walking up mountains gives me such a euphoric feeling and climbing Ben Nevis with the large number of people that walked it on the same day gave me a sense of belonging and freedom.

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