Monday, 29 June 2015

MONDAY MOTIVATION


In light of the awful terrorist attacks in Tunisia last week, it couldn't go unsaid that we really should not take anything for granted, therefore I know I'm starting this week (day) feeling grateful to simply be alive. I was talking to a patient last night and we both were discussing how we always take the little things for granted and then BAM, something terrible happens and puts life into perspective. I know my own life events often leave me feeling grateful to be alive but also, grateful to have a great family, home, job, health and friends. What is it they say? It's the little things we look back on, and realise that they were actually big things.. 

Have a great week everyone!
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Wednesday, 24 June 2015

PIRATES OF PENZANCE

So, here's the thing.. before I went to uni I was massively into musical theatre and singing. I still am really, just in my shower instead of on stage. I used to be in amateur musicals and I was the county jazz singer for a jazz orchestra when I was in high school. I think after I've returned from Sri Lanka, I'll definitely get back up onto the stage because it's the most amazing feeling ever, but for now, I'll stick to watching other people and singing along to the radio in the car!

I'm quite lucky in that I've seen most musicals on stage locally, on the west end or on broadway but I've not really dabbled into the world of opera. I took music A-Level, and learned about it very briefly but I don't know that much about it, other than it can sounds absolutely beautiful. Anyway, I was recently offered the opportunity to provide coverage of the English National Opera (ENO)* and I jumped at the chance because I really do love music, and I know how hard it is to sell tickets to shows!



The ENO traces back to when Lilian Baylis established the Sadler’s Wells Opera Company in 1931, originally performing at the  Sadler’s Wells Theatre. However, now a strong award winning company, they now perform at the London Coliseum. At the moment, the ENO are performing The Pirates Of Penzance, famously written by Gilbert and Sullivan. Although I've not seen this, I did cover some of the songs in college and know that it is a comical, sharp witted opera with really lively songs - perhaps not what you've expect from an opera if you've never been to one. 

This opera has really great reviews from both The Stage and The Telegraph, so if I lived closer, I would definitely consider going to see it. Maybe if you do live in London and fancy something a little bit different, it would be a great show to go and see. It's only on until the beginning of July, so if this floats your boat, lame joke there, I know, I'd go get your tickets now!



Do you enjoy going to the theatre? Would you be interested in seeing an Opera?

*This post was written in collaboration with ENO
but all  opinions are my own and if I didn't
like it, I wouldn't write about it.

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Monday, 22 June 2015

MY NEW JOB


If you are a regular reader of my blog, you'll know that I recently started a new job as a health care assistant in my local town. I've only worked there for a week (and a bit) but I have learnt so much already, and think that it's an incredibly eye opening job to have.

I definitely now have a new found respect for nurses, carers and doctors (basically anyone who works long shifts in the health profession), because I didn't realise how tiring it can be working with people, putting on a smiley face, and running around with very short breaks. I have loved it - I love that I can help people and that I'm making their day a little easier, but it's definitely woken me up to how much work actually goes into providing health care for someone. Not only that, but the number of illnesses and limitations that come with growing older are sometimes heartbreaking, and it definitely makes you realise how lucky we are to be fully functioning and able.

I think the most eye opening thing I've been lucky enough to work with, is motor neurone disease. If you don't know what that is, it's a disorder involving the death of neurons, characterised by stiff muscles and muscle wastage (eventually leading to difficulty swallowing, talking and breathing). I think we've all seen The Theory of Everything or read a little bit about Stephen Hawking, but until you've seen it first hand, you really can't imagine how heartbreaking the illness is. You essentially become a prisoner in your own body, and it's just something we can't begin to understand. I say I'm lucky to work with this particular person, and I really am, because I have begun to appreciate life just that little bit more.

I really am learning so so much on this job, from medication administration, peg feeding to oxygen masks, and I am meeting some lovely people along the way. So, I think I can say that I'm going to really enjoy it and the experience it provides me with, which ultimately is what I'm doing it for.
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Thursday, 18 June 2015

BEING CONTENT

Source
You've seen Mean Girls, right? You know the scene..


Karen: God. My hips are huge! 
Gretchen: Oh please. I hate my calves. 
Regina: At least you guys can wear halters. I've got man shoulders. 
Gretchen: My hairline is so weird. 
Regina: My pores are huge. 
Karen: My nail beds suck. 
[pause. All look at Cady]
Cady: I have really bad breath in the morning.

This isn't exactly something new, but it really is sad that it seems to be a crime to love yourself and be content with who you are. This post is definitely inspired by the lovely Hayley, who previously wrote about why loving yourself should be 100% encouraged. 

By loving who you are and being content, I don't mean being arrogant, cocky or vain which is usually associated with 'loving yourself'. I mean being proud of who you are and what you believe in, being comfortable in your own skin, and embracing your imperfectly perfect body. Being content and confident isn't something that should be looked down upon, it's actually very empowering and inspiring. We should be able to believe in and be proud of ourselves  without feeling like we are being big headed or stuck up, and it really is a shame that we feel as though we have to put ourselves down a lot of the time (mostly to please others). 

I think that was is  important, is that being content doesn't have to mean loving every single body part, and every single thing about yourself either. We all have insecurities; things we don't like about ourselves. We all have 'imperfections', but it's those that make us unique from everyone else. Sometimes they tell stories and make us who we are today. For example, my skin is not as tip top as your average 21 year old, because that's what happens when you lose a sh*t tonne of weight and mess around with your body. However, is is a reminder that I survived an eating disorder, and I'd rather it be that way than the alternative. So, how great would it be if we could alter our attitudes and learned to accept ourselves as a whole? Mind and body together.

If I asked you if you were content with your own body and mind, what would you say?

It may seem controversial, but after a few years battling my own mind, I can now say that I am content and like who I am. I'm proud of who I've become.. and you know what? You should be too.





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Monday, 15 June 2015

MONDAY MOTIVATION


This is so relevant to me right now, so I thought I'd share it on here for you too. This week I'm starting my new job properly. I'm working as a health care assistant, driving around my town to patients houses, only now I'm doing it without another member of staff which is absolutely terrifying! Not only am I a terrible driver (although, I am getting better), going into someone's home without really knowing anything about them or what is wrong is really daunting but also exciting? It really is a classic case of feeling the fear and doing it anyway because sometimes there is nothing better than delving straight into the deep end and overcoming the anxiety. I think the more you over think and put things off, the worse it becomes and usually, the thing that you're scared of, isn't all that bad anyway.

Have an awesome week! 

I'm also going to do this fortnightly because otherwise my blog could just end up a big mash of motivational quotations! 
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Sunday, 14 June 2015

BOOKS // CREATURES OF A DAY


Creatures of a day by Irvin D. Yalom

'All of us are creatures of a day, rememberer and remembered alike' - Marcus Aurelius

These words are the words which from the basis of this book written by psychiatrist Irv Yalom, who shares a collection of stories which describe his patients therapy sessions and journeys, as well as his own challenges faced during his work. In the book, we are introduced to various people, from a nurse to dying cancer patient, all searching for the answer to the question: how do we have a meaningful life? 

This isn't a book I'd recommend to everyone, simply because if you're not interested in therapy, the human mind or practitioners, then this will probably bore you. However, as a soon to be Psychology graduate, I am interested in all of those things, so I did really enjoy this book. It's an incredibly insightful book, especially as you are essentially a fly on the wall in a psychotherapy session, listening in on some of the demons housed by the human mind. It's also really interesting to see how a Psychiatrist tackles some of the stories presented to him by each person. Overall, it's just an incredibly interesting and though provoking read!
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Wednesday, 10 June 2015

50 THINGS THAT MAKE ME HAPPY

Not going to lie, I usually really dislike tags however there's always an exception to the rule isn't there? And this is probably it because it's one in which you can pick out the little things which you are grateful for. So, thanks to Sophie for tagging me.. here goes!

1. Musical soundtracks, anything and everything. 
2. Extremely sweet and strong smelling candles.
3. My Dad.
4. Traveling, exploring and enjoying a new place.
5. The minions from Despicable Me.
6. The first coffee of the day.
7. Yoga with Adriene.
8. Receiving post, even if it's an online order.
9. Having time to read.
10. My Uni housemates, who always put a smile on my face despite no longer living with them.
11. Nut butters; peanut, almond & cashew.
12. Being content with myself.
13. Red lipstick and red nail polish.
14. Marc Jacobs Daisy perfume, otherwise known as the only perfume I'll wear.
15. Seeing the people I love, happy and achieving their dreams.
16. Sims 4, for helping me out when I'm slightly bored.
17. Grey's Anatomy.
18. Anchors, the sea, ships.. basically anything nautical.
19. A classic Jack Wills hoodie.
20. Getting a text message from my best friend every afternoon.
21. A new, quirky notebook.
22. Hot, sunny days in the garden.
23. And hot chocolate's by the fire in winter.
24. The Theory of Everything film and soundtrack.
25. My pandora bracelets, which essentially tell the story of my life.
26. The satisfaction of saving up for something expensive and buying it yourself.
27. A beautiful sunset.
28. Starting a new Netflix series and binge watching the whole thing.
29. Knowing you've worked extremely hard on an essay, and the hard work paying off.
30. De-cluttering.



31. The thought that goes into a personalised Birthday card.
32. Theme park rollercoasters.
33. Home made smoothies and juices.
34. No longer really caring about what others think.
35. Face masks.
36. When I manage to drive without stalling my car.
37. Finishing a book, then immediately starting a new one.
38. Going for a long walk or bike ride.
39. Seeing and spending time with my family (particularly those who are reading this!).
40. Singing along to 90's tunes.



41. All of the lovely friends I've met through this blog.
42. Wearing floral kimonos in sunny weather.
43. Going to the theatre.
44. Pineapple home accessories.
45. Spending time in Manchester with one of my best friends.
46. No longer having to spend my winter's in a freezing cold student house.
47. Long phone calls.
48. Cadburys creme eggs.
49. The smell and feel of fresh bedding.
50. Writing this blog and have the best support/followers that I could never have imagined.

And if you got this far, I seriously applaud you! I now tag NicoleJosie and Isobel, as well as anyone else who wants to do this tag :)

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Sunday, 7 June 2015

WHAT YOUNG ADULTS SHOULD KNOW

Society has come a seriously long way over the last half century. Today, we are far more accepting than ever before with more opportunities available to us than in previous decades (if you go an seek them out!). I always thought that once uni was over, I'd need to have a life plan - probably because I thought that's what was expected of me, and everyone else seems to have one. How wrong was I? In fact, the more people I speak to, the more I realise that most of us are simply plodding along 'faking it until we make it'.  And you know what? Life is probably more fun that way. 

See, if we're honest, most 21 year old's aren't proper adults. We don't run our own homes, have husbands/wives or children to look after. We're a generation of teen-adults. Not quite adult but no longer a teenager. We sit comfortably in between! Some of us feel immense pressure to succeed and grow up as soon as possible, whilst others are enjoying every waking moment on the likes of League of Legends. Whichever group you fall into, here's some small reminders..

1. It's OK to not know what career you want or what you want to do with you life. For the past three years, I've been so focused on leaving uni and solely following my dream career path, however someone said to me 'you have your whole life to work, what's the rush?' and they are so right which is why I decided to go to Sri Lanka. I love traveling and traveling makes me happy so why not? Being a young adult is for figuring out what job you want and what makes you happy.

2. OR when you are going to get married and/or have children. Looooong gone are the days in which you need to be married with two kids and a house by the time you're 25. So, if you're single, chill! As corny as it sounds, loving yourself is what matters right now so enjoy your freedom.

3. You don't need to be doing what everyone else your age is doing. If you don't enjoy what the 'it' crowd is doing, then don't do it. No one changed the world by copying others anyway..

4. Friendships actually require effort.
 It was so easy to maintain a friendship when you were forced into a classroom with the same people every day, wasn't it? Unfortunately, things become a little trickier when you leave education because you have to actually make an effort. People move away, we get jobs and it becomes a lot harder to find a time that suits everyone. It's definitely more about quality than quantity, and those who you keep in touch with will be worth the effort.


5. Be nice to people, you don't know what they're going through. We're not selfish 13 year old's any more and no, the world does not revolve around us. Maya Angelou famously said "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." I don't think I need to expand any more..

6. Always dream. You may not know what job you want, where you want to live, who you want to marry.. but always hold onto your dream. It's definitely not childish, and even if you don't achieve it, you'll probably find a better, bigger dream along the way.



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Thursday, 4 June 2015

BOOKS // THE PACT


The Pact by Jodi Picoult

Chris Harte and Emily Gold are teenage lovers who are, quite simply, meant to be. Their families were best friends and neighbours, so Chris and Emily have known each other since birth, growing up as best friends with their relationship blossoming into much more. However, one night Emily's parents receive a phone call from the hospital with news that a gun shot has killed Emily. Chris was the only other person to be found there, with his fingerprints matching those on the gun. Chris is arrested for the murder, who then reveals that the two of them planned to kill themselves together in a suicide pact, but fainted before he managed to kill himself. However, nothing is ever that simple in a book written by Jodi Picoult, and the book follows Chris' trial to see whether he is responsible for Emily's death. It's only on the last page that you find out whether he is guilty or not...

Jodi Picoult is my all time favourite author, and for me this was a re-read, even though I didn't realise I'd read it years before! Luckily I'd forgotten what happened, which made it 100% better, as I raced to the end to find out what happened. I absolutely loved this book, it's such a page turner. There are so many little things going on, with the perspectives and feelings of the parents, lawyers and Chris being revealed. Personally, I think the only thing you'll regret by reading this book, is the fact you won't do much else until you've finished it! 
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Monday, 1 June 2015

MONDAY MOTIVATION

Hello June! 

Can you believe it's June already? Almost half of the year has disappeared, it's crazy. I'm fairly sure this means it's summer here in the UK now though, and that means sunshine, BBQ's and reading in the garden hopefully. 


A new month can only really mean a quote that is inspired by the idea of new, fresh starts. However, it doesn't always take a new day, month or year to start over or begin something new. There really is no time like present - why put something off until tomorrow, when you can do it today? Life is too short to wait until tomorrow because as we all know too well, time flies. So, go and start whatever it is that you're putting off.
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