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.



Coping With Grief: The Things I’ve Learnt




Everyone at some point in their life will experience grief and loss, its an unfortunate, inevitability of life. The reason grief is so challenging is because it manifests itself physically, psychologically and even spiritually (when you start to doubt your beliefs as to why something so terrible could happen). I’ve learnt that grief is never a straight line or a series of stages like the ones proposed. Denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance, you may feel all of them at once or you may feel depression before denial, there is no set order and there is no set rule book to say you’ll experience them all either.

I’ve spent the last few months cowering away from this subject because I very much want to promote being positive however I feel that isn’t a very true representation of life and especially mine. Life isn’t always positive and quite frankly its pretty shit sometimes. Seven months ago my dad committed suicide. A death that not many people have to deal with nor a death that I thought I ever would and especially to someone so close to me. The day my dad died it was like I became two people, the person I was before he died and person I now was. I knew that day my life would never ever be the same again and at that point that was probably about the only thing I did know.

At some of my worst points of dealing with grief (not that i’m by any means completely out of them) especially in the first few months after my dad died I truly believed life would never go on again but here I am. Reflecting on the last seven months, I wanted to share some of the things i’ve learnt about coping with grief and to any one who’s going through a loss or similar experience, maybe some reassurance you’re not alone.


1.Your loss is completely unique to anyone else. Despite other people who have gone through a similar experience to you, it will never be the same. You will feel isolated in your grief because to you no one truly understands your loss, how could they? They didn’t know the relationship you had with the person or the experiences that you shared.

2.Grief will not and should not define you or the rest of your life. I remember in the weeks after my dad died. I said to my boyfriend “well that’s my life ruined”. I felt as though i’d never live a ‘normal’ life again. I’d never get that ‘normal’ experience of having my dad walk me down the aisle or that my children would grow up with only one Grandad as opposed to two. I became so consumed in the way in which my life had changed so negatively and so dramatically, I could only focus on the things that losing my dad meant I would never have. From this I became very bitter and resentful and after a few months I knew I had to make sure I wouldn’t let my dads death define me or my life. No matter what, i’m still here to live and to any one who’s lost someone through illness, accident or like me suicide, you should never let it define yours too. No matter how unfair, cruel you feel the world has been to you and justifiably you’ve lost someone you care about however remember you are the one still here to live. It is and will always be a natural feeling to mourn, miss and wish for the person to be back with you just so that you could have that one more conversation or just to give them one more hug. Unfortunately the harshest part about death is its unchangeable, finality and for that reason you need to live your life for them, for you but most importantly because you deserve too.

“Grief does not change you, it reveals you”

– John Green, The fault in our stars

3.Don’t just go through grief, grow through grief. No one ever asks to lose someone they care about but unfortunately It happens and normally when we are least expecting it or even less so prepared for it. Grief is one of the biggest challenges you will ever face in life. You’ll think at stages that you’ll never get through it, I still have those days now and I’m sure I will do for years to come. But as the months pass, when I look back I can’t believe how far I have come, even though if I have a bad day now I feel like i’m back at the beginning of the grieving process. Just like any obstacle in life you face, once you over come it that disbelief of “how the hell did I do that or get through that ” overwhelms you and it’s the same with getting through grief, there will come a time that you’ll see how far you’ve come. When that time comes you will be 1000% be stronger and know a strength that you never knew was there to begin with. Hold on to that strength, utilise it because you never know when you might need it again.

4.Grief is not linear nor time limited.Everyone is different, everyone has adapted and acquired different coping mechanisms throughout their lives which means that the time it takes for someone else to heal, is by no means a reflection of how you are doing. Imagine grief on a graph, the initial few months showing the graph dramatically curve up and down reflecting the several different emotions we experience after losing someone. This grief line will consume most of our waking thoughts, controls our moods and behaviours. However there comes a time when it starts to tail off, for some it could be after six weeks for others it could be six years, but have faith in that time coming. When it does come, it does not mean you are done with grief, for me I don’t know if I ever will be. However there will be a time that your life line (for example your passions, hobbies, work and interests) will simply coincide with your grief.  Don’t see this as a negative, I try not to instead I see it as being in control of my grief. It may always be there but one day know that life and grief will be two lines that can run parallel with each other.

5.You will have no choice over the times when grief overwhelms you but you can choose how you cope.I’ve had breakdowns in shopping centres because i’ve heard my dad’s favourite song or i’ve been out running and a thought comes into my head and thats enough to set me off. The main thing though is how you deal with these moments, accept them, embrace them and at no point think it’s a sign of weakness or lack of coping.

6.The world keeps going and so must you.After losing someone, your whole entire world and being comes to a halt. Nothing seems real or fair anymore. You watch the world around you and ask “how can they go on with their lives, when i’m going through this?”. It’s so natural to feel this way, I hated the world after my dad died, why did others get to be happy and not me? You may also feel like blaming and questioning yourself, “could I have done more?”, “should I have spent more time with them?”. This blame stems from our subconscious because by blaming ourselves it gives us some control over a situation in which we have very little.  No matter what type of death you’ve gone through know that blaming yourself is the longest road to healing.

To end this post, after binge watching Orange Is The New Black, I heard a quote that really resonated with me….

“Pain is inevitable because life is frickin’ painful, but suffering is a choice”.

You can’t let the weight of grief choke all the joy out of your life. Grief will come in waves throughout your life but even the worst ones will make you a stronger swimmer and in the words of Dory from Finding Nemo, sometimes all we can do is “just keep swimming”.



Laura xoxo


How To Beat The Holiday Blues (Or Never Get Them To Start With)

(Muri Beach, Cook Islands)

(Rarotonga, The Cook Islands)

So I recently just returned from what I can only describe as paradise. I spent two weeks in the Cook Islands, an island in the middle of the South Pacific just off New Zealand and then I headed over to New Zealand for a week to see if it lived up to the hype that most millennial travellers these days are rating about… FYI it did.

The holiday was nothing short of amazing ( blog post to come), however towards the end of the holiday, I was surprised that I wasn’t starting to get that Sunday evening kind of glumness.The feeling that makes you realise the weekend is over and Monday is coming around pretty quick.  I think similar to the Monday blues, holiday blues are the realisation that very soon your life will go back to the activities which to some may be mundane, monotonous and essentially just normal day life. Its also one of the most  prominent used hashtags on Instagram when someone has come back from their holiday I.e #holidayblues #takemeback. So the most baffling thing to me was, why am I not sad for this holiday to end? I mean I spent 90% of my time on white sand beaches, snorkelling on coral reefs,  drinking cocktails at 11 am and eating out every single night… who would want that to end?

(Aukland Central Business District, New Zealand)

(Mount Wellington, New Zealand)

So I started thinking why this time was different, why I wasn’t sad to be returning home to the UK to sub zero temperatures,grey skies and drizzle. I mean its not the most thrilling climate to return to after 35 degrees of heat and blue skies however none the less I still had a sense of contentment. After deliberating it for a few days and even after returning back to the UK with no signs of the post holiday blip, it came to me some of the reasons why and from my experience, here are some tips to not only beat the holiday blues but never get them again…


1.Set things to look forward to and not just holidays. I’ve seen it so many times, people do count downs to holidays which yes is great because it gives you that one thing to count down and look forward to. However like Christmas once it’s over there is this sense of “well what now?” The lead up to holidays are almost as much part of the excitement as the holiday itself and once its over #holidayblues sets in and you find your Instagram account filled with ‘TBT’ pictures which almost make you feel worse.

In addition to this holidays are usually huge annual events therefore it’s so so important to have smaller events going on in the year, this will stop you going from hero to zero as soon as you step off the plane on your home soil and not sure when you’re going to get your next fix of vitamin D. Having things to look forward to in the weeks after a holiday is almost like the therapy you need to get out of the post holiday pit.  However unless your one of the fortunate ones, i’m not talking about booking another trip here because if your bank account looks anything like mine after a trip (usually in the 2 digit figures), a holiday is pretty much off the cards for the next few months. So the alternative is to set other less expensive things look forward to. A few things I have planned for the forth coming months are things like meeting up with friends from uni, day trips, nights out, meals and get togethers .   So even if it’s just the one thing, having something positive scheduled down in your diary after a holiday, will keep your mind occupied and your social media filled with new content.

2.Be grateful for the life you’re going back to. I completely get that this isn’t as easy as it may seem, however why not? I’m extremely grateful for what I have in my life,  England may not be where I want to live forever but i’m grateful to live somewhere thats renowned for it’s history and scenery. I’m grateful I have my health, a house, friends and family, things that again we take for granted. In addition to this the most important thing to be grateful for is that you’ve got the opportunity to have the holiday in the first place. Yes you may of had to work and save very hard for it but there are people out there who don’t even have that luxury.

A lot of us after being on holiday wish we were back there, wish we didn’t have to leave and want to stay there forever etc etc. However if you speak to the locals who live anywhere you go on holiday, that is their normal, their ‘take for granted’ environment. Try to remember that if you lived there permanently thats how you would get. This goes hand in hand with the saying “the grass isn’t always greener, you’re grass would be just as green if you spent the time watering it” rather than lusting for whats on the other side of the fence, appreciate your normal.

(The Cotswolds, United Kingdom)

(Avon Canal, Newbury)

3.ALWAYS have goals. I’m starting to see more articles talk about goal setting and the importance of it, especially in terms of keeping your mind stimulated,focused, motivated and even for concentration purposes. Now when people talk about goals it’s commonly related to fitness, yes if your into fitness having goals are essential but they are also alot more straightforward to set than say life goals. Examples of fitness goals… “run a 5km, weight lifting PB, join a sports team etc etc”.

However you might not be into fitness… So then what, what other goals could you be setting? Well firstly writing this blog is a part of one of my goals, I want to keep writing more frequent content and a long term goal for me is to write for Elite daily (a website specialising in articles written by “generation Y” i.e 1980 and 90’s babies). Another goal of mine is to do my Padi diving qualification and lastly a new goal of mine is to feel accomplished and positive in my new job,you kind of get the idea. Sometimes when goals don’t seem obvious to you, you have to start thinking outside the box. For example you could learn a language, learn an instrument, start a blog, re write your CV and apply for that job, do another qualification etc and the internet is filled with free resources, ideas and inspiration. Goals give us a purpose, something to strive for in the future instead of looking back at what we had in the past. As human beings its a necessity that we find purpose in the things we do, otherwise not only do we not progress, we become unmotivated and ultimately we become complacent and I can guarantee thats when you’ll start yearning for that holiday last month. So set goals because as the saying goes “you cant change the past, but you can change where you’re going”. 






2017 New Years Resolutions? Why You Should NEVER Set Them.

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New Years Eve a time for booze ups, resolutions and all round chaos . For most of us it’s about seeing off the year and seeing in the new year with hope and prosperity of it being better than the previous. While I love the optimism and quite frankly I think it’s great to want the New year to be better because no one exactly wants it to be worse do they? But it’s the way we go about it that we are doing wrong….

New Years Resolutions.

The typical new year new me mindset really plagues us all come January 1st but put your hands up if you’ve ever set a New Years resolution thats failed (my virtual and actual hands going up here). Some of the most common resolutions include to lose weight, eat healthier, BE healthier, stop smoking,take up a new hobby etc etc. The problem with these examples are although they can be communicated in very few words, they are actually very big and complex . It’s one of the main reasons that people don’t achieve their resolutions because they are too large to tackle and therefore either go hell for leather on them for 2 weeks and fall off the wagon because the extremities of them are not maintainable or just the sheer prospect of approaching them is enough for them to go running for the hills (I guess for those whose resolution is to run, they may be power walking to those hills ).

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Here are my five top tips for new years resolutions…

1.DON’T SET THEM:  New Years Eve is like an over dramatic Sunday. To elaborate, in the year when we are starting new diet, gym regime etc etc,  we always tend to hide behind the trusty “i’ll start on Monday” excuse and thats similar to the New Years mentality in December “i’ll start in the New Year”. It dosen’t help that Christmas starts in November and Christmas themed cake and chocolates are flowing from office cupboards and supermarket aisles, so it’s no wonder that we don’t want to start the diet until the ‘new year’. I feel we wait for the new year like it’s a Monday ‘the magical day where every thing will start and happen’, but all that does is put it off, creates this excuse and everyone knows nothing grows from avoidance and excuses. Instead of waiting for the New Year where no doubt by one AM New Years day, your in the kebab shop inhaling cheesy chips and potentially puffing on that cheeky cigarette (there goes those two resolutions you set) look at the new year as a fresh start, don’t put all your hopes in one days worth of resolutions, because like Monday when the new year comes around and you may have already messed up on those resolutions, you don’t want to be waiting for a whole year to start them again.

2.Why wait for the new year?  To elaborate on the last point, why are we waiting for Mondays and New Year’s to make a change? February 1st is as good as January 1st, just like starting your diet on a Wednesday is JUST as effective as starting on a Monday. Stop waiting, start DOING.

3.Set GOALS not resolutions: according to the dictionary a resolution is defined as: a firm decision to do or not to do something. Now compare it to the definition of goal:the object of a person’s ambition or effort; an aim or desired result. See theres a huge difference, resolutions tend to be things your NOT going to do, where as goals are things you ARE going to do and want. Goals relate to desires and achievements and to me even the word sounds more appealing than resolutions and more importantly the definition behind goals are about adding to your life and resolutions most of the time seem to be about taking things away.



4.Make goals SMART: Specific/small, measurable, achievable, realistic, time based.

Specific, it’s SO  important to be specific about your goals but also sometimes when they are big ones like lose weight, you need to break them down into smaller more manageable goals such as, go the the gym 3 times a week (or find an exercise you enjoy… check out my “5 things Exercising Consistently Taught Me“).

Measurable, take weight for example it’s easy to measure weight isn’t it?  You can use the scale number or clothes size etc but how do you measure for example “to be more confident”. First things first that type of goal needs to be broken down into smaller more specific goals such as, doing a presentation at work or start reading more self development books. When the goals are specific and small enough it’s easy to measure it, even if you have to get creative.

Achievable and Realistic, now I truly believe if you set your mind to it you can achieve anything, however setting a goal for example to run the London marathon on two weeks training and you’ve not run for 5 years just ‘ain’t gonna happen is it?’. Being realistic is more for your benefit than anything else, because by being realistic your more likely the reach that goal instead of being disappointed when your striving towards something that’s not.

Time based, now i’m not a big believer in time scales and saying the end goal should be achieved in 2 months or 6 months, especially if they are big ones. I do think though in order to keep on top of your goal and tracking it, once you’ve broken your goals down into micro goals A,B,C these I feel should be time based. So for example a main goal may be to learn a new language, first step in achieving that goal (micro goal A) is to pick a language, now this may take some time doing some research in terms of class availability and proximity, but if you give your self the time scale of 6 weeks to establish the language you want to learn, then that way you are keeping on track to achieving the goal.

5.Goals are for life, not just for New Years:  Never stop setting goals, as humans goals keep us focused, keep us inspired and driven. Without goals we simply can become autonomous. When ever you reach your goal never just stop there, each goal you set and achieve you will grow from. Therefore big or small always have at least three goals in your head, it doesn’t matter if at that specific time you’re not striving towards all three, but it’s so important to our mental well being to have that passion to achieve something. Keep in mind that not all goals can be achieved in a year, for example if you’ve got a goal to buy a house, then likely hood is that goal will take you longer than a year, therefore if you’ve broken down that goal into micro goals for example micro goal A setting up a bank account to START saving into, you can achieve lots of micro goals in the one year but the main goal may take you two.  In addition to this goals such as to ‘get fit’ and ‘stop smoking’, these are life style changes although the initial goal is to get your fitness up or stop smoking cigarettes, maintaining that for the rest of your life is the ultimate one.


No matter what you do in 2017 keep setting goals and keep smashing them, the only one who can do that is you.


Laura xo




What Social Media Dosen’t Show You: 2016 The Best and Worst Year Of My Life.

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In another post i’ve talked about what 2016 has done for me fitness wise. 2016 has been the best year for me physically, i’ve become physically stronger than I could have ever imagine, i’ve been dedicated, consistent to fitness this year and it’s paid off in ways I couldn’t have imagined both physically and mentally. I’ve fallen in love with weight lifting and the ideation of being strong, I’ve developed a serious love for pushing my body to it’s limits and this will be tested next year when I run 26 miles in the London marathon. Other highlights this year are I finally got into a volunteering programme in the UK working in zoo’s and aquariums doing exactly what for the last 2 years what i’ve known I always wanted to do. I’ve no idea why it was this year, why this year it all seemed to come together and I developed this drive and determination to succeed and better my self, i’ve grown more this year than any other year of my life, so on the surface this year to be something of celebration, it seems like a pretty great year right?  For the rest of my time on this planet I will never forget this year and not because of why you think or the reasons laid out in this paragraph. I’ll never understand why some of the best things and the absolute worst things happened to me this year but they did.

On a Friday afternoon In July this year my dad took his own life. To some suicide doesn’t make sense, people can never understand why and I can understand peoples mindset regarding that however I knew the reasons why and i’ll not go into the detail about them because quite frankly it’s completely irrelevant. The bottom line is this year I lost my dad, one of the most influential, fundamental people in my life, some one who I always looked up to and I can see so much of my self in the man he was. Whenever I got my self into trouble my dad was there, bailing me out, he taught me to how to laugh at my self, to be patient and to be kind.  He drove me up and down the country for sport, he heard me out when no one else would listen and he was just always there my biggest supporter, who’d do anything for his daughter. Most of all my dad was my best friend, imagine that losing your parent and best friend all at once.



See my life on social media very much shows the highlights of this year, i’ve posted a few things about my dad on social media, but not many, my Facebook timeline and my Instagram feed really only shows the good bits. I guess what i’m trying to say and admit is that’s what social media is, you don’t see peoples full battles, struggles and background. Everyones fighting battles that we hide behind filters and this is mine, but i’m a firm believer in honesty, integrity and transparency. I’m not lying in the posts of me smiling because in those few moments I am happy but thats not always, I have days where it’s a struggle to stop crying or get out of bed. But I try everyday no matter my circumstances to be the best person I can be because thats what my dad would have wanted and no matter what you’re battle is, you have control to mould the person who’s fighting it and be a better, stronger person when you come through it because bad times always pass. I’ll never forget my dad for the rest of my life and i’ll never forget this year but i’ll get through it.

I’m a firm believer that every negative has a positive and vice versa. But it’s up to you to seek that out, don’t question the whys and answer the how, how your going to get through the bad and how your going to grow from it. But what I really want to get across from this post is also don’t believe everything you see on social media, no one wants you to see the bad, but remember to always be kind because you never know what battles people are facing and I can guarantee you’ll never know from looking at their social media.

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Laura xo




Am I doing my 20’s right? Plus 5 things I’ve learnt.



I’ve recently read somewhere that your 20’s are you selfish years, your 20’s are your ‘f*** it’ years and I guess its true. I’ve heard people describe their twenties as being young enough to make mistakes and blame your age but old enough to take on responsibility. Young enough to take risks but old enough to make life investments. I get that your twenties are about finding your purpose (in work and in life), but no one really talks about the journey to finding it or just how frustrating that journey really is.

I’m 23, a psychology graduate and in the space of graduating 2 years ago I’ve worked in finance, digital research and volunteered sharks in South Africa. You could say I don’t quite know what I want to do with my life… Actually you could describe me as a “millennial job hopper” as a recruitment agent once did.

My first job was in finance (I’ve no idea how I was employed to work in finance when I had zero background), I worked there for 9 months and decided that wasn’t quite for me. I then thought I wanted to use my degree and found a UX (user experience) consultant position, which was looking for psychology graduates for its digital research role. I thought this would be perfect for me, however i lasted all of three months. Although I thoroughly enjoyed the job I fell back into this sense of “is this really what I want to do?” So I handed my notice in and told my line manager “I’m off to work with sharks”. I think it was the up there with one of the best most random reason for leaving he’d ever heard.

When I look around at people my age, I see people doing a range of different things. Some people have found their feet after uni and are successfully pursuing their careers. Others have jetted off abroad travelling and have started their lives again in a warmer climate and some I’ve seen focus on settling down getting married and having children.

Then there is me, still absolutely clueless as to what I should be doing, should I buy a house? Should I be 2 years into my career? Should I get travelling out my system then start a career? Should I sit on the sofa and just watch The Kardashians (probably the least sensible of my pending questions). I think the list of questions and uncertainties in your twenties are endless. But here is what think I’ve learnt in the first third of mine…


1.There’s no such thing as ‘adulting’: When I was younger I was so exciting to be in my twenties because I thought I’d be an adult and I’d have my sh** together (I really don’t FYI). Adulting is a myth; you don’t become an adult you just grow up. You start to realise that Nutella or last nights take away pizza for dinner just ain’t cutting it anymore.

2.Not everyone likes you and it will have nothing to do with you (unless your mean then it might be you… so stop doing that). Stop trying to please everyone and make everyone like you. You won’t gel with everyone and the sooner you accept that the happier you’ll be. You’re not defined by your Instagram likes or Facebook friends (I’m pretty sure I’m due a Facebook cull soon). Just be kind to yourself, be the best person you can be and screw the rest.

3.You’ll get declined for jobs because you have no work experience. The entire education system says: “you need to go to university, it will get you a job”, Employer says: “so what relevant work experience do you have”. I don’t have an answer for this, but its pretty damn annoying.

4.ALWAYS stick up for yourself and your ideas (life lesson in general). No matter what youre doing with your life in your early twenties, just be certain (or wing it if you’re not) that it is what you should be doing. Because people won’t always agree that the voluntary work your doing will get you that job or they won’t see the point in spending all your life savings travelling the world. People will always have their opinions on your life, the crucial thing is they are not living it.

5.Don’t be forced to get a job in your degree if you don’t want to. Common responses to this are… “Why did you just get into £30000 of debt if you’re not going to use it”. My response to this “ I had a bloody good time, I met amazing people, I learnt stuff, I learnt how to live on my own, to cook for myself, to budget (albeit badly), I learnt independence and I pretty much just learnt life” and to me £30000 is a pretty good price tag for that. Unless your degree is so specialised in every way, that there is not a single transferable skill you can apply to another field (which I highly doubt), then your degree will always be of benefit to you.





Are you exercising your mind?

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This week on social media i’ve seen a lot of posts discussing “mental health awareness” and the fight to change the stigma attached to mental health disorders. I’ve seen a lot of posts reinforcing that it is ok to talk about mental health struggles and to come forward if you are struggling because you certainly are not alone. All of this I completely agree with and truly believe that the more we talk about our mental health, the more normalised it will become to talk about it, when like our physical health it becomes unwell.

However something I think that isn’t talked about as much is ways to strengthen our mental health, how to cope with daily stresses and how to fight the pressures of life. I think when we hear the word mental health, a lot of people associate it with depression, anxiety and eating disorders. However when we talk about our physical health we don’t quickly associate it with diseases such as cancer, we tend to associate it with fitness and the absence of illness. The question that really stumps me is, why do we perceive mental health and physical health so differently? Arn’t they both just two different types of health?

We seem to exercise our bodies to keep physically healthy but how about exercising our minds to keep them mentally healthy. Here are a few things I do to keep positive and exercise my mind each day….

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1.Meditate. Most people associate meditation with the yogi hippy crowd (two things i’m not because I suck at yoga and I don’t have the skin tone for colourful clothing), but it’s one of the best habits i’ve ever chosen to get into. Although some people can meditate for hours on end,  I tend to do just 10 minutes when I wake up and 10 minutes before I go to bed. For me it’s simply a way to start the day with a clear mind and end the day with one too. I feel a lot of us carry daily stresses from one day to the next, or the last thought of the day is related to what you’ve been scrolling through on Facebook and Instagram. Meditation  essentially teaches you to breathe and clear your mind but mostly it just teaches you to stop, take a break and focus on the present. Just a few of the benefits of mediation include reduced stress and anxiety levels, improved sleep and increased energy levels. So if you’ve got 10 minutes each day to stalk through Instagram or watch compilation videos of animal fails (which I must admit do improve my mood too) then you’ve got 10 minutes to meditate.

Tip: there are heaps of guided and non guided meditation videos on youtube!

2.Gratitude. We live in a world where even with the quickest technology and most up to date phones are still not quick enough or new enough. There will always be bigger and better and you’ll never catch up with ‘the Joneses’. So everyday I write down 5 things each day that i’m grateful for. Trust me it will start to change your perspective of the day and eventually you’ll become more content and grateful for what you do have rather than focusing on the things you don’t.

3.Read! I’m the first to admit I used to HATE reading, for example when I was a child i’d say to my mum “i’m bored”and she’d tell me to read a book and i’d be like “hello is that some kind of joke?”. But i’ve recently found an appreciation for sitting down and reading a book, even if its just for 30 minutes a day. I find reading trains you to use your imagination, something that watching TV tends to strip away.

4.‘It’s ok not to be ok’. Any one who says that everyday they are 100% at the peak of their happiness and never have a down day, are in the minority if not the nonexistent. I believe everyone has days where they feel like life’s not going right for them or are just in a crappy mood for no good reason. My advice is to just accept these days, embrace them and don’t fight them because you won’t feel like that forever and tomorrow is a new day. Just like we cherish the good days, we should embrace the bad ones too because if we didn’t have them, we’d never be able to establish the good ones. When I have days where everything becomes too overwhelming and I just want to curl my self into a duvet shaped  burrito and eat a burrito, I do it because at that moment that is what makes me feel better. Don’t be so hard on yourself, no ones perfect and the sooner we realise that, the more accepting we become of the days when we just are not at our best.

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UK’s Little Treasures (and a place close to my heart)


Whether your from England or not, there is a time in all of our lives where we wish to explore the rest of the world. Sometimes we feel that the beauty in whats around us suddenly becomes not enough or maybe we just become so accustomed to it that we no longer see it for what others across the world may see it for. So I want to explore my country and so i’ve decided to start exploring some of the UK’s little treasures, with the mindset of appreciating whats right in front of me.

First on the list was Westonbirt Aboretum in Gloucestershire. With 2500 different species of trees from across the world, i’d say it’s pretty much the UK’s real life version of Narnia.



Even if you’re not into walking, you can walk round the park in no more than 30 minutes or if you are a walker then there are various routes which can take up to an hour or longer. For me it was just nice to get out and see some good old english heritage and it was fairly impressive to see some of the largest trees in England.




England’s version of the Newyork Skyline- TreeTop Walkway

Another pretty special reason for visiting here is it was one of my dads favourite places. My dad passed away earlier this year and for me I find comfort in visiting places that he enjoyed because for me its like I can re live out his experiences.

Trees are not a major passion of mine just a FYI but getting out and appreciating whats on your doorstop is and this place was pretty beautiful.