Friday, 10 May 2019

Hello 💖.

It's been a while since I've posted.. yet again! 

A life update: This year I will be running the Swansea Bay 10k with my boyfriend in aid of Spinal Research and Brain Tumour Research!

I hope you can take some time to read my post and consider donating to these wonderful causes! 

lovelove xo

Thursday, 22 November 2018

Coping with anxiety

Worry is an important part of life. It can even be helpful as it can protect us from certain situations – such as stepping out into the road. However, excessive and irrational worries could be a sign that you are suffering with an anxiety disorder. There are a number of strategies that can be put in place to cope with anxiety. We have listed a few examples below, which should be helpful.

Ø  Method 1
Ø  4-7-8 Breathing
This technique is based on science. When we are anxious our breathing rate increases, and this causes our brain to respond via the parasympathetic nervous system. This means that “fight or flight mode” is activated. We respond as if there is a threat that we must defend ourselves against.

The basis of 4-7-8 breathing is that by increasing the levels of carbon dioxide and decreasing the levels of oxygen in the brain. This can be equated to using a paper bag to breathe into. The higher the levels of carbon dioxide are, the calmer you become.

This technique is very simple. Breathe in through your nose for 4 seconds, then hold your breath for 7 seconds. Finally breathe out through your mouth for 8 seconds. Repeat this for around 5 minutes until you feel calm. It is important to practise this technique regularly, even when you are not feeling anxious.
Ø  Method 2
Ø   Autogenic Relaxation
Follow along with this video on YouTube: Autogenic relaxation has been recommended by the NHS for pain relief, however it also shows benefits with anxieties.
Ø  Method 3
Ø   Object-Focused Meditation
This can be very useful if you find yourself focused on a negative thought or feeling/emotion. The basis of this technique is to choose an object that is near you and focus on it. Study everything about this object. Study the size of it, its colour, the way the light reflects off it. How does this object interact with the space around it? Is it touching anything else? You will find the more that you focus on this, the less you are focusing on your previous negative thoughts.

This is a useful website to help guide you through this technique:
Ø  Method 4
Ø   Exercise
Exercise has been shown to release endorphins (a chemical within the brain), which contributes to a higher mood. It is also useful as a distraction, because when you are exercising you are focused on the activity. It is recommended that we each have 30 minutes of exercise a day.
Ø  Method 5
Ø  Write it down
It can be very useful to help clarify what you are feeling by writing it down. You could keep a diary of different activities and whether they made you feel good or bad. It can be positive to keep a list of activities that make you feel good, so that you can do these more often!

You could also scale how certain situations will make you feel in terms of anxiety (scale this from 1-10, with 1 being the calmest). You might see that over time, certain situations make you less anxious than they used to.

Monday, 23 January 2017

Some changes

Soooo, it's been a long while since I've blogged. I would love to say that it's because I've been so busy with life - which is definitely partly true - however I mostly have had no idea what to talk about.

Since I last posted a lot has happened. Firstly, I graduated! After I graduated I went to Hong Kong, Thailand and Malaysia with my bestie. Since getting back to the UK I've been feeling a little lost. I can say that I definitely did not find myself in Asia. If anything, I lost myself. And, of course, the first question everyone has asked me since being back is: "So what are you going to do now?".... Gooooood question.

A major change in my life since my last post is that I have made the decision to become vegan. This started as a 30 day challenge I set myself to eat a plant-based diet, then 4 days in I watched "101 reasons to go vegan" on YouTube and decided I could never go back to my old ways! Whilst I wouldn't like to come across as preachy, I would recommend this video to everyone, no matter what your diet is. You can watch it here:

What I love the most about this video is how James explains the standard Western diet from a different perspective and suddenly it doesn't seem so standard or normal anymore. Does that make sense? What I'm trying to say is that I never realised how weird it is that we, as humans, drink the milk of another animal. Milk that is not intended for us, as humans. I dunno, just something to think about maybe.. 😇

Also, before anyone asks:
1. NO I am not lacking in protein now that I avoid animal products. ✌
2. YES I still eat a varied diet full of delicious junk food.. 😂
3. A plant-based diet is not bland or boring - proved by a vegan cake which my entire non-vegan family proclaimed was "delicious and didn't even taste vegan" 😂 (actually I think this point was pretty much the same as point 3, but it's something no one seems to believe so maybe saying it twice will stop the "but what do vegans even eat?!" comments).

This new lifestyle means I've been looking into new recipes (check out Bosh's facebook page!), new clothing brands and most excitingly new makeup!

I can't stress enough how important I believe it is that everyone makes the switch to cruelty-free brands! Controversially, when I was an undergraduate I saw animal research laboratories first hand. This was the most heartbreaking experience - even if it was for lifesaving medicines (why is it acceptable to risk the life of an alternate species in order to save our own?! Maybe a discussion for another day.. I know there are many reasons for animal research).

My new cruelty-free brand bible is Cruelty Free Kitty! This gal has an amazing blog - please go check it out and immerse yourselves in the world of cruelty-free beauty!

If you're in Swansea by any chance, there's a new store that is 100% vegan which has opened in the market - Brontosaurus (23b). If they don't sell something you really want to get your hands on they will try and order it in!

Well, that's all I've got to say for now.


P.S. Sorry for my terrible grammar, it's been a while since I had to write coherently.

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