“Today I am thankful for”. The importance of gratitude for a healthier, happier life.

“Gratitude is when memory is stored in the heart and not in the mind.”

“Today I am grateful for… “

When was the last time you asked yourself that?

I like a lot of people can get lost in all of the things I want in life, whether it be career aspirations, material things or aesthetics. I then spend even more time on social media seeking out those who have all the things I want and convincing my self that once I get there I’ll be content. I’m not saying that I’m not already a happy person but I feel we sometimes place our happiness in that mythical time of “someday” and as we’ve all probably learnt, it’s not always as simple or straight forward as that. It’s funny how actually the closer you get to things you think you want the longer that road seems to become. I’m not saying it’s not right to strive for goals, be better, or do better, but I do think it is so important to appreciate what we do have today, instead of putting all our hope into tomorrow.

I wanted a life filled with pinch me moments, but when I truly reflected on it, it already was.

I’ve had a rough few years, when I really look back it was very hard losing my dad to suicide, not just the death itself but the grief , the depression, the anxiety, the breakdown in friendships, and the loss of faith in this world. But the hardship didn’t lesson on their own over time, it was my mindset that has got me to where I am today. I’ve always wanted a life filled with those pinch me moments and when I lost my Dad I felt as though I’d been robbed of that. But when I truly reflected on what I already had in my life, it was apparent that it was already filled with so many of them. I learnt that instead of yearning for what I’d lost I’d put my focus into gratitude and perspective and it not only got me through such a difficult time, it completely transformed my life.

That all being said, I don’t advocate being positive all of the time because I don’t believe as humans that it is possible. Life is hard, and we need the days where we want to scream, cry and sit on the sofa with ice cream and chocolate. Those lows help us appreciate the highs, but even in our worst days I do believe we can find one thing to be thankful for.

Everyday, I spend 10 minutes listing all the things I am thankful for. It’s usually on my drive to work, so I create mental lists but sometimes I feel it’s even more cathartic to write it down and stick it by my bed so that on the days I do feel sad (which I allow my self to be) it’s like a little list of hope that can really help me through.

So today, here are 10 things that I am grateful for…

  1. My mum. What a hero.
  2. My amazing family.
  3. My health, although I don’t openly talk about some health conditions that I suffer with I am generally pretty healthy, and my body allows me to do what I want it to.
  4. The years I had with my Dad, as some people have had even fewer with their own parents.
  5. My friends, who are my lifeline.
  6. The home I live in, one that’s warm, safe and has always been filled with love.
  7. My boyfriend who is just the most amazing, wonderful, caring person who came into my life at a time I didn’t even realise I needed him most.
  8. My job and the opportunities and friends it has brought with it.
  9. My ability to write and hopefully curate things that are meaningful to others.
  10. For you, I thankful for everyone to takes the time to read my blogs and reach out to me.

So how do we all incorporate a little more gratitude into our day to day life?

Here are a few of my top tips.

  • Start small. All habits start small, so on your daily commute to work, or the first thing you do when you get up in the morning, say to yourself one thing you are grateful for. If you find this difficult perhaps start every other day. It’s sometimes hard to look at our lives from the outside in, but I can assure you once you start finding the little things to be grateful for, you’ll notice your list growing.
  • Imagine life without. It’s easy to think about the things we don’t have in life but look around you at all the things you currently have, look at the people around you, the ones who you really couldn’t live without.
  • Look inside you. You’ve got some amazing qualities, we all do, it’s what makes us all unique. Spend some time listing those qualities, I mean someone’s got to big ourselves up.
  • Write it down. Make lists whether its mental or physical.
  • Pay it forward. Tell those around you that you’re grateful for them, show others how much you value them for being there for you and your life.

I truly believe that it is the simplest of habits that can lead to a happier life and for that I’m actually really grateful.

What are you thankful for?

Love always,

Laura xo

What my Dad’s suicide taught me about the importance of kindness.

I never knew how much my dad meant to people until he died. The number of people who reached out to me and attended his funeral made me realise how much of an impact he’d made in his 56 years. Perhaps if my dad knew how much he meant to people, things might be different but I leave that thought to the many ‘what ifs’ associated with losing someone to suicide.

The one thing that I knew all too well about my Dad was he was a big joker. His desire to be the class clown and make people smile was one of my favourite qualities. His quick wit, uncanny impersonations, and annual Father Christmas appearances portrayed my dad to be a man full of life. A ‘no worries’ kind of guy. This was the side to my dad that everyone around him saw and one he wanted everyone to see. However, the side that people didn’t see was the sensitive one, the side that cared deeply for other’s feelings and what they thought of him (a trait I’ve inherited). The side of him that maybe a cruel joke or comment would actually hurt a lot more than some might think. 

We all have our struggles and down days. Sometimes there are times where our problems make us question the point of it all. However, even when we want to be authentic and show our true selves, it’s still hard to portray it without compromising the person we want to be seen as. This combined with the pressure of perfection that comes with social media is why I think it’s difficult to open up and be vulnerable and admit that sometimes we can feel defeated by this big ol’ journey called life.

As it marks almost 5 years since my dad took his own life, it gets me thinking about the importance of something that I think we all need a bit more of in our lives… Kindness.

While we may feel as though we’ve not got time to help others among our own problems, I know now to be more aware that everyone is likely to be dealing with their own too. As I’ve become more mindful into the way our actions will always have some form of a reaction, I think it’s so important for us all to live a little slower, become a little more present and take those 2 minutes out of our day to do something kind for someone else.

Whether it is holding a door for a stranger, asking a colleague about their day or just giving a compliment to a friend to let them know how amazing they are. It’s the littlest touches and thoughts that we remember and although we don’t always see the instant gratification of our good deeds, that one thoughtful gesture can make someone’s entire day, especially in the challenging times we are facing.

Now more than ever we need to be spreading kindness, a quote I read recently really sums the current challenges we are all facing…

“We may not be in the same boat, but we are in the same storm”

Here are a few ways to that you can spread kindness… (COVID friendly)

At home and in your community

  • Call a friend that you haven’t spoken to for a while
  • Send a letter to your nan and grandad
  • Send flowers to a friend out of the blue
  • Offer to pick up some groceries for your elderly neighbour
  • Send someone a handwritten thank you note
  • Walk your friend’s dog
  • Tell your family members how much you love and appreciate them
  • Help your mum with household chores
  • Check on someone you know who is going through a tough time
  • Help a friend get active

At work

  • Get to know the new staff member
  • Lend your ear – listen to your colleague who is having a bad day
  • Say good morning
  • Give praise to your colleague for something they’ve done well

In public places

  • Be patient with people in the supermarket, it’s so easy to get frustrated especially now we need to be 2 metres apart. However, a little bit of patience, and a smile will go a long way.
  • Let a fellow driver merge into your lane
  • Pick up some rubbish lying around in the street (use gloves and hand sanitiser)
  • Smile and say hello to people you may pass every day, but have never spoken to before

It’s very easy in life to think you don’t have an impact but because of you, that cup of coffee you bought for a friend made that crap day they were having a little brighter. That book you recommended to a colleague has them spending every night getting lost in the pages of it. And that stranger you smiled at in the supermarket, perhaps that smile made them feel like they’re not invisible to everyone. Never underestimate the impact of the smallest acts of kindness in life, because you never really know when someone needs it most.


Laura xo

Some honest truths. #WorldMentalHealthDay

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Hey, it’s been a while ey?

Where to begin. I’ve struggled to write this year but as vulnerable as opening up about my story and past has made me, I truly believe that sharing and talking is the most cathartic thing you can do for your mental health and well being.

So let’s go back to 2017, my life was great, I had everything together (so it seemed). I’d ‘soldiered’ on through my dads suicide abnormally OK, and for the first time in my life everything was going right. I was working hard in the gym, financially stable, had an amazing network of friends and family and had even made the life altering decision to move to New Zealand. Unfortunately as 2018 rolled around, a desperate, dark sadness hit me with zero warning. Depression. WTF. Why was I suddenly crying everyday, couldn’t find the motivation to go to the gym, go to work or be sociable? Where had this fun, outgoing, positive character I’d been for the last 18 months gone? I want her back now. I put it down to moving to the other side of the world. Perhaps I was homesick, perhaps it would take time for me to adjust, and maybe I just needed a job, new friends, a new gym and I’d be OK again. So that I could be the ‘old’ me again. So I found all of the above, and I again seemingly on the surface, had everything to live and be happy for. So, why was I so desperately unhappy and why was nothing bringing me joy anymore?

The months moved past slow and my mood had not lifted and I had to be honest with my self and admit it was most likely depression. But how? I’d spent 18 months “dealing” with my dad’s death, doing all the the things the books had told me. I even wrote a blog on coping with grief!? Again, this inability to understand what was going on and why I couldn’t control it, consumed me in such a way I decided to come home and move back to the UK. The disappointment of something you’d wanted so badly fail and seeing others thrive in a lifestyle you’d always dreamed of felt like a punch in the stomach. Why is it everyone gets to be happy apart from me? After all I’d been through, surely I deserved a shot at happiness too? The victim in me came out and the “why me” cried louder than any other thoughts in my head for a few weeks after coming home. Although I desperately tried to cling on to the “it was the right decision”, the depression was still there. For the first time in my life, I felt zero control over it. This feeling was suffocating the joy out of everything I used to enjoy in life. I again tried desperately to cling onto the fact that I was ‘over’ my dad so it couldn’t possibly be that. I thought I was over it, I thought I’d got through it but unfortunately this couldn’t be further from the truth.

So I started counselling. I’m not ashamed to admit that I have it, when my dad died I always knew it was something that I’d need to do but it was more a matter of the right time. Although I could talk about my dad’s death without even a tear in my eye, I knew one day, I’d truly need to face up to a life without him. The new normal, the one that we all experience when a loved one dies. But even when you’ve read all the self help books, practise mindfulness, meditation and have ultimately accepted that  yes, “time is a healer”, that doesn’t eliminate the pain and sadness of grief. However, I’d also come to the abrupt realisation that avoiding it doesn’t either. It quickly dawned on me that all the “dealing” I’d done over the past 2 years had actually been a form of avoidance. A safety net that my own mind had given me to protect me from the sheer monstrosity that was my dad’s suicide. Even though I felt ‘fine’ in the passing months after my dad died, the reality of it all was actually, it had taken almost 2 years to really set in. and when it did… My god did it hurt.

Depression is horrible. But what’s more horrible is hiding it because it’s so isolating as it is. Am I ashamed to admit that I’ve struggled with it? No. Because even if it’s a part of me, it’s not me. Just like it’s not you.

Be brave, be strong, and know that you’ve got through 100% of the bad days so far, and that’s pretty awesome.

Take care of yourselves and remember, we’re all fighting battles that you don’t always see.

Laura xo


The Most Important ‘Hat’ We Will Ever Wear.

We juggle many hats throughout our life, always transitioning through different challenges and taking on our ever changing environment. Some people juggle hats that I am yet to experience for example being a mother or a wife. Others wear hats that I may never try for example being the CEO of a company (never say never but it’s unlikely). However the commonality that lies behind all of these hats is that we wear many of them from day to day.

If you were to analyse your typical day (not something you usually do but bare with me), you’d notice the various personas you take on. For example your professional one, the one you put on in front of your managers and colleagues. You have your family hat to which you probably wear more than one for example being a parent, sibling, child, husband or wife. Then there is your social one, the one that comes out when you’re sitting in a bar with your friends at 7pm and even this can vary depending on which social circle you’re with.

All of the various hats we posses we put on with ease, transitioning from one to another, with most of us seemingly not realizing. However, at the end of the day when we lie in bed stripped back of our daily duties, there is one hat that still remains fixed to us and one I think is the most vulnerable but most important. It’s the hat that defines the way we think of ourselves, includes our beliefs and our mindset. To me this hat is what makes up our mental health.  Made up of our thoughts on our life, the world and ourselves, this hat is unique to us, no one can put it on nor know what it’s like to wear it because its ours and it’s fixed. If you strip away all the other hats we dutifully put on, it’s really the only thing we have left. It’s the most important one and yet somehow we often neglect it because we are too concerned with when we need to put the others on. Something I’ve noticed throughout my life is that our mental health is something that is SO easy to mask because of the many other hats we can and in most cases have to put on.

So what am I getting at here?

I’m getting at self awareness. At the end of your day, despite the things you fill your life with, those things do not define you. Your success, your children, your family, your achievements are all wonderful parts of you and your life however the way you think and the thoughts you are left with are what defines you. Your mental health plays a huge role in how you see the world and in turn affects all the other hats you put on. Something I’ve quickly learnt in the last year is that if you are unhappy underneath all the exterior, you can only mask that for so long. Unhappiness will slowly manifests itself into the hats we put on as away of avoiding how we really feel.

A dose of reality I get daily is when I see photos of my Dad as a child. One that is smiling, innocent, knows no malice, anger or stress. What pains me the most is when I look at those photos, I know how that smiling, care free child’s life ends. That later on, that happiness was stripped away by the unavoidable pressures and stress that can reveal itself in this life.

On the outside we can perceive people to have absolutely everything to live for because of the many hats they wear. But perhaps whats left underneath all of those hats isn’t a nice or comfortable one to wear. Talking about our mental health can be an awkward, uncomfortable conversation to have because of our fear of judgement, discrimination or the pressure to have everything together. But if by me talking about it can engage one conversation, even if it’s people talking about their opinion of me writing these types of blog, then I’m willing to let that be.

We all sometimes feel low, anxious and hopeless for reasons we don’t understand, nor need reason to. It’s just so important we talk about it, not just find another hat to cover it. Find a friend, colleague, boss, family member, online support group (the list goes on) but find someone to talk and let it out to. Sometimes our minds tell us things that aren’t true or things we don’t want to admit are there but if we shut that voice out completely , then we really have no idea whats going on in there.

We’ll wear many hats in this life but we only have one mind. Take care of that one.


Laura xo

If You Do One Thing Today (‘World Suicide Prevention Day 2017’)

Wearing my suicide prevention bracelet for my Dad today and to all others who have been affected.

In amongst all the other crazy national days we see on social media. Today I stand with those whose lives have been affected by suicide and mental illness, to bring attention to ‘World Suicide Prevention Day’. A day that may not be presented in sparkly memes on Facebook but a day that is extremely real and hits hard to thousands of families, worldwide every day.

In line with this years theme “Take a minute, change a life” , I encourage you today, to take the time out to send a text or a phone call to a friend, loved one and let them know you are there to listen and it’s always OK to talk.

A minute of your life could indefinitely change someone Else’s and you may never even know it.

Mental illness and suicide does not discriminate and each year claims thousands of lives, of both men and women. So to anyone who is struggling with mental health, questioning their purpose or just generally feeling overwhelmed by this intense journey we call life, I am here for you and here to listen.

Lastly, to those who I have met throughout my own personal journey of losing a loved one to suicide, we may have been brought together by this experience but we are united by hope. A hope that one day, we will acknowledge the power and strength we all have inside of us, to fight and take action against mental illness and provide the support to DE-stigmatize mental health and one day prevent suicide for good.


Laura xo




‘Grandama Knows Best’: The Best Pieces Of Life Advice Ever Given To Me By My Grandparents.

Grandparents you gotta love them- Pockets filled with sweets, rich experienced lives and stories that usually start with “back in my day”, It’s no wonder we can learn a lot from them.

Every single one of my grandparents played a key role in my life while growing up (and still do). Now not all of them are still here to watch me grow up or give me any more advice, the abundance of stories, unconditional love and wisdom they passed down to me has provided me with a pretty solid foundation of how I want to live my life.

As I fast approach my mid- twenties, I’ve coming to realise some of the best, most true advice I was ever given was from my grandparents.

1.Face To face Will Always Be Better Than Social Media.

When I asked my grandparents how they made 40 years of marriage work, they told me “when we had problems we talked about it, not posted it on the internet like you kids do now”.

2.Keep Photo Albums (The Physical Ones)

Some of my fondest memories were looking through old photo albums of my parents with my grandparents. These days, we seem to keep a lot of photos online with Facebook and Instagram providing us with the opportunity to keep an online scrap book.  Although technology has allowed us to store more photos than ever, the chances are you won’t pass your laptop or Instagram account down to your grandkids, so lets keep scrapbooking alive.

3.The Sooner You Learn Patience The Happier You’ll Be 

My Grandad told me you’ll never be ahead, they’ll always be someone in front of you. Stop sweating the small stuff, take a breath and just take life as it comes. No one’s minute goes faster than yours, so there’s no point in rushing.

4.Keep Traditions Alive Throughout Generations 

Traditions bring families together, give a sense of belonging and create something for generations to reflect on. Every Sunday, we would sit down and have a big family lunch with my grandparents. Even though the amount of people at the table has gotten smaller with time, this is something that we still do and i hope to continue to do with my own family.

5.Get A Good Skin Regime And Start It Early

My Grandma told me that I needed to take care of my skin as soon as I hit twenty because that’s when it starts to age. She told me to “always take your make up off, put sun screen on and moisturise- your skin in 50 years time will thank you for it”.

6.Unplug And Be Present From Time To Time

It’s hard to imagine that our grandparents grew up in a generation where phones, IPad’s and laptops never even existed. However, they survived and so would we if we unplugged it once in a while.

7.Don’t Let Letter Writing Completely Fade Out

With the invention of emails and “DMs” (direct messages). Love letters are being replaced by emoji’s and limited to 140 characters. While these are the quick and convenient ways of communicating, there’s nothing more sentimental than a hand written letter.

8.Never Stop Learning

If you don’t use it, you will lose it.

9.Don’t Take Advantage Of The Body You Have

You have one body, this body will need carry you through life for hopefully decades to come. Don’t wreck it when you’re young.

10.Travel NOW

The opportunities as a generation and society that we have now are almost infinite. These opportunities to travel were not so readily available to our grandparents in their youth. So take every opportunity to see the world. Plus these memories will no doubt be the foundation of stories and advice you pass onto your grandchildren one day.






How My Dad’s Suicide Taught Me To Live More In The Moment.

Living In The Moment Blog

The image above is owned by https://traineracademy.org

The phrase  “live for the moment” is something most of you probably associate with hippies or spiritualists. I will openly admit that despite having heard a lot about the benefits of becoming more present and mindful, it wasn’t something I’d regularly practised before. For the majority of my life I’ve always been someone who seems to wish my life away.  I’d look ahead and decide that once I’d achieved certain goals or reached certain milestones in my life, it would be then I would start to truly live my life or be fully satisfied.

However, in July last year when my dad decided to take his own life, understandably my entire world and my families was destroyed. In a decision that to this day I will never understand but will hopefully one day learn to accept, it made me realise how quickly someone can be there one day and not the next.

After my dad’s death, I was pushed into a time where living in the past was too unbearable and focusing on the future brought on a great deal of anxiety.  Focusing on what I’d lost brought me to the harsh realisation that all memories we’d shared would be our last and focusing on the future meant thinking about a life without my dad. My inability to look backwards or forwards, forced me to focus on each day as they came and practise what I’ve referred to as ‘living in the moment’.

Although it took such a pivotal moment in my life for me to engage in this way of thinking, living in the present truly taught me how to accept moments for what they are and to enjoy the little things that happen day to day.

Here are some of the other lessons my dad’s suicide has taught me about living in the moment and perhaps some advice we could all use to help us become more present.

Take One Positive From Each Day

From the moment we wake up, one bad thought or moment can make us feel as though the whole day will follow suit. However, it’s as if this way of thinking will cause the day to go badly because we expect it to. So despite everything that could go wrong in your day, find one thing you can be grateful for.

Dream About The Future But Work On It Every Day

Its ok to find your self daydreaming about what you want in life and what you want to achieve and how happy you may be when you get there. However your goals, passions and dreams don’t work unless you do and the way you utilise your time daily is what will define your future.

Don’t Focus On Old Failures

What you didn’t achieve 10 years ago, should not define you now. In fact it has probably shaped the person and experiences you have today. If you were rejected for a job because you “weren’t experienced” enough or went through a breakdown of a serious relationship, it’s important for you to use these experiences as learning curves. However do not think that what didn’t go right for you in the past will necessarily go the same way now. Try, try and try again.

Conquer Your Addictions Now

Addictions we have developed in the past can cause us to also live in it. Junk food, smoking or alcohol addictions can cause us to live in a body, mind-set or lifestyle that perhaps we’ve wanted to part ways with for many years. Despite all of this, we still wait for the perfect moment or time to tackle our addictions and never end up starting because the perfect time doesn’t exist. There really is no better time than today to tackle them because even if you don’t, time is going to pass you by anyway.

Some days I wish I could have seen my dad’s death coming, so that I could of said more or done more. However there are few things in this life we can control and one of them is the way we deal with it. Learning to live in the present shifted my mind-set away from the anxiety of trying to control the future and the guilt of not being able to change the past, to one that instead questioned what I could to do today to make it a better one.

In all of this, the most important lesson I’ve learnt is that life is hard and it doesn’t always give us reasons to be happy but dwelling on the past and worrying about the future won’t give us one either.

Laura xo

The Main Things Holding You Back From Reaching Your Goals And How To Overcome Them.


I used to think that procrastination was just inbuilt into my personality. At school I’d always put homework off, at university I’d put deadlines off and in adult life I would defer ‘adulting’ tasks until next week or next month. Now I know I’m not alone in this behaviour, I feel as though us millennials are some of the biggest procrastinators because in the age of social media, it’s by far easier to scroll through Instagram than face up to life’s daily tasks.

I guess some things we can forgive for putting off such as house chores, clearing out your emails or making that tricky phone call. But one thing we shouldn’t be putting off is our dreams. It seems as though these days, it’s easier to put our dreams on hold and come up with excuses instead of pursuing them . We seem to convince ourselves that we will start that goal next month or plan that dream for next year. However making those promises to ourselves doesn’t make time go any slower. Next month will soon become tomorrow and next year will creep up on us and yet our dreams will still be left unopened and unexplored.

So why is it we seem to put our dreams off? I think we all have this fear, a fear that when we reach them they won’t be as good as we imagined or hoped they would be. So instead of being hit with disappointment, we avoid ever finding out. Personally, I’d rather live knowing that I tried than living with the unknown and what- ifs.

So here are some of the things that are holding you back and why they shouldn’t be…

1. Self Doubt Will Kill Your Dreams Before Failure Does

Self doubt can be really inhibiting and the same goes for fear. As humans, when we are faced with times of fear our bodies are designed to either fight or flight. For many of us the option to run seems like the safe one but by doing so we then avoid facing up and fighting through the things that scare us. In addition to this, when we experience one failure in life, it makes us think we can’t do it and give up. However the the only time you do fail is when you give up.

2.You Fear The Unknown 

Going for your dreams and goals will include sacrifices but the things you may need to sacrifice are usually what are holding you back and preventing you from reaching them. So you need to lose the familiarity and start to get comfortable with the uncomfortable because the greatest things will grow from there.

Vincent Van Gough- “Normality is walking a paved road: It’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it”.

3.Your Motivation Is Lacking.

If I said to you that I would pay you a million pounds to be up and in the gym at 5 am everyday for the next 3 weeks, would you do it? Of course you would.  However money and external influences may be enough to motivate you for 6 months but I believe that the drive from inside us is by far more powerful because you’re in charge of it and don’t need to rely on any one else for it . So how do we get motivated and where can we find it? I believe when it comes to motivation your why is key, it’s the fundamental purpose and reasoning behind what you’re doing. With most goals you need to establish your why because this is what will get you started. Once you’ve established it, determination, consistency and resilience is what you will need to keep you going.

4,You Don’t Know Where to start.

Who does? But you’ve got to start somewhere, so make a plan, break down your goals into smaller ones and take one baby step at a time. Big dreams are daunting because although we know what we want, we can’t see the definitive path to getting there. Remember you may not always be able to see the finish line but your inability to see it, does not mean you won’t get there.

5. You Don’t Make The Time/ You Think You Don’t Have It.

Do you think any CEO of a company or any Olympic athlete had more than 24 hours in the day? No, but the difference is they utilize their time better. Everyone is given 24 hours in their day, so spending 30 minutes a day on your dream is only 2% of it. So there’s no need to worry, you’ll still have 98% left for ‘Netflix and chill’.
So stop putting your dreams off, embrace the unknown and start making them happen because wasted time is time we can never get back.



Laura xoxo

What to do when life doesn’t go to plan/ preparing for the ‘unprepareable’…



I recently watched the film “Wild” starring Reese Witherspoon, a grieving young girl on a quest for self discovery by trekking the Pacific Crest Trail after the sudden death of her mother. Although I don’t want to spoil the plot, the film finished with a quote that I think perfectly describes life and how a lot of the time it doesn’t go to plan.

“we are never prepared for what we expect”- James Michiner

It made me realise that we spend so much time preparing for things in life but what do we do when the ‘unpreparable’ happens?

When I was a child I used to plan my life, I was convinced i’d be a cool mum at 22, married and have a family. By the age of 16 it was very apparent that I was thinking way beyond my years and now at 24 i’m neither of the things i had prepared or planned for as a child. Same goes with my job, I was convinced i’d become a marine biologist but life took me on a different course. Instead I studied psychology at university and for the best part of the last 4 years i’ve dabbled in numerous areas of work none of which included Marine biology (apart from the volunteering I did in South Africa).

Now I guess to a certain degree I have had some of my control over the way my life has gone the past 10 years. I decided to go to University and study Psychology for example. I also decided not to become a mum at 22 and for the most part i’ve chosen the types of job that i’ve applied for .

So what about the things that are out of our control? For example losing a loved one, having your heart broken, getting divorced or losing your job. The things in life we don’t prepare for because unless we are extremely cynical or pessimistic, we don’t expect or plan them to happen to us in our lives.

So what do we do? How we do we cope? And can we ever prepare?

Here are my thoughts…

“You may not control all the events that happen to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them.” – Maya Angelou

Be trusting

Sometimes when things don’t go the way we planned we become hostile. We feel as though life just doesn’t ‘go right’ for us whilst others just seem to have it all with no worries. In these moments of doubt sometimes all we can do is trust that what we are going through has a purpose. I guess maybe that’s why people turn to religion in times of turmoil, to gain the answers to why life goes the way it does or even just have faith that theres a higher power and this is it’s path for them. Religious or not, the saying ‘whats meant to be will be’ in times of chaos is sometimes all we can really put our trust in.

Be open minded

Sometimes the worst things can reduce our thoughts to one narrow channel.We can’t see any way out, any way forward or in some cases any way to go on. But have you ever realised that sometimes out of the worst things in life, some of the best things are born. Be open minded to new experiences and opportunities, keep hold of the fact that things will get better and most importantly “there are far better things ahead than any we leave behind”-C.S Lewis .

Life is about how you tackle plan B

Imagine if life was all written out for you and you knew every single detail of how it was going to pan out. How much would you enjoy it then? Now imagine a life with no surprises both good and bad? What would be the need for all of our emotions then?

Too many of us we fear the unknown and we ponder on the unrevealed uncertainties in life. However we cannot predict the future, nor should we fear it. One thing we can do is plan but plans are not set in stone, they’re guidance tools, not definitive statements of how our life should or will go. Because what happens when it doesn’t go to plan ,how do we tackle plan B? or firstly what the hell is plan B?

Well plan b is the unknown. This is why we mustn’t fear it, because some of the best things in life come from plan b. Some of the best things in life are unexpected because in those moments we had no expectations.

Let it go

Now i’m not saying if you lose a loved one, get divorced or go through any other traumatic period in your life you should simply move on and get over it, far from it actually. However, all i’m saying is the negativity surrounding it, the feelings that consume you, you need to learn to try and dissociate those from the experience itself. But first, let yourself feel all the emotions you need to. Allow yourself to feel anger, grief, pain but eventually you need let them go because the experience may stay with you forever but the heavy feelings that come with it, those don’t have to.

Its not your fault

I’ve spoken about blaming your self when your life is in turmoil in my post on grief . Sometimes bad things happen and we blame ourselves and question ourselves or the world.  Have you ever wondered why bad things happen to good people? I think we all have, well the answer is there is absolutely no reasoning for it whats so ever, it just happens. It’s not your fault, so turn the pain, the anger, the suffering into a way of fighting these tough times that life throws at you. Because in life you may never learn the answer as to why bad things happen to good people but you will learn the strength to fight them.



Laura xoxo

5 Life Lessons We Can Learn About Self Love From “Scars To Your Beautiful” By Alessia Cara

Women can learn a lot from Alessia Cara’s song “scars to your beautiful”, but I guess the first question you ask is, “who is Alessia Cara?”

Fairly recent on the scene, 20 year old, Canadian singer/song writer Alessia is known for her single “Here” and debut album “Know it all” (2015). Last year she released her video for “scars to your beautiful” within which both women and men talk openly about their struggles with self acceptance and the harsh reality of living with the societal pressures surrounding the way we look and act.

As a woman growing up with social media influencers, tabloid media and supermodels etc, Alessia’s song perfectly depicts the societal pressures and scrutiny women put them selves under to fit into the norm. The lyrics of her song not only illustrate examples of this but they also provide ways to promote how to accept ourselves for just the way we are.

From a personal explanation I find difficult to find the right words to explain the pressure women are under these days because I’m part of the generation of women who are under it. We are told never to be happy with ourselves, and if we don’t like what we see well it can be fixed. The media subliminally tells us that having the perfect body or face is more important than having a beautiful mind. However, then goes on to contradict itself as we are then told “it’s what is inside that counts”, but deep down we know they don’t truly believe that. The media seems to protect itself by trying to promote a healthy body image and yet will still considers a size 12 plus size? These contradictions not only distort our views but give us no direction with what is right or wrong. When quite frankly there is no right or wrong. So, maybe this is why we need songs like this, to show us that learning self love and acceptance may be the only way to break away from societies distorted mirror.

Here are five lessons we can all learn from Alessia as told through her lyrics…

“There’s a hope that’s waiting for you in the dark.
You should know you’re beautiful just the way you are”

Self acceptance, something us women struggle with so much because there’s only so much of ourselves we can change. The cosmetic industry is worth billions because it feeds off our insecurities. However, although I do not condemn surgery, for some people if something is plaguing  your mind so much that your life would significantly be improved by changing it, then I guess go for it. But if it’s because you think the world will love you more for a smaller nose or bigger boobs then we will never beat this industry. Especially If we keep feeding their pockets and eating right out of their hands.

“Beauty goes deeper than the surface”

I don’t want to harp on about the waif like models that we see in magazines like Vogue, because quite frankly ‘body’ trends change more than fashion. I’ve even seen in the past year a dramatic increase in women who compete in body building competitions promoting unmaintainable body fat % and muscle definition. Whilst these individuals may have transformed their body for a body building goal, it doesn’t stop the rest of the world using a photo of that individual as an unrealistic figure to aspire to.

The norms and the ideals will continuously change and no one will ever be able to keep up with them. Your body composition is pretty much pre-determined and things like your bone structure, whether it be wide hips or broad shoulders, can’t be changed no matter what you do. So, why are we hating on our bodies so much? It does a bloody good job keeping us alive, who cares if it’s got a bit of jiggle in your bikini, try to work with it not against it. The same goes with hair styles ,beauty procedures and make up trends, they will always be one step ahead of you and really you cannot beat the system (if we could the industries would be out of business). Unfortunately these industries can make you feel bad about your face. However, they can’t make you feel bad about your passion, so choose very carefully  which one is more important to you.

“No better you than the you that you are”

Have you ever looked at someone’s life and thought I want that or I want to be her, look like her or have her body? Imagine if you could collect all that time you’ve spent thinking about wanting to be like another person and invested that time working towards bettering yourself, your life, highlighting your strengths and strengthening your weaknesses?  If you spent this time striving towards your goals, imagine how great your life could also be?  One of my favourite sayings is “the grass isn’t always greener, if you watered yours as much it would be just as green”. 

Remember ultimately you were brought into this world an individual, your weirdness and ‘qwerkyness’ is what makes you unique, and at the end of the day in my opinion it’s better to be a bit weird than the same as everyone else.

“No better life than the life we’re living”

The saying goes and until proven otherwise, we are only given one life. One chance, one shot to make the one we’ve got the absolute best. There is no better time to do things than now. Even when your having of what seems like the worst of days, I can guarantee you that writing off the day and giving in will make it seem like a whole lot worse. A tip I was taught in my Psychology degree is that smiling to yourself in the mirror actually releases dopamine because the muscles used in smiling send signals to your brain. Sounds a bit silly  right? But who cares, it’s a free, effective way of bringing some joy into the days that aren’t so great.

“You don’t have to change a thing, the world can change its heart”

No matter what you do in life, someone is going to say it’s wrong or not good enough. People will always disagree but if it means something to you, if it pleases you then stick with it, accomplish it and be proud of who you are. Too many times when we put an idea out there, there is someone there to bash sit down. We then quickly retract the idea and feel disheartened. A Life lesson I’ve learnt is, someone will always want to see you fail and think you’re ideas are stupid because they couldn’t think them up themselves. However, there are millionaires sitting out there, on their private yachts in the Caribbean who invented “doggles” goggles for bloody dogs, so please don’t think twice before sharing your ideas.