Gratitude Journal

Gratitude journal

Earlier this year, we had an elusive day put in our diaries at work. When that day rolled around in July, we discovered we were having a whole day with Gavin from Mindspan. Mindspan is a training and coaching performance programme, so obviously everyone at first was like, so what does this mean in English? Basically the day was centered around a number of different theories & exercises, such as how our thoughts can effect our emotions and actions, how to be more grateful and, hardly groundbreaking, but reminding us that you actually have a choice in *everything* you do! Anyway, the point was to talk about the one that really resonated with me which is the gratitude journal.

A gratitude journal pretty much what it says on the tin – a notebook or diary where you keep a list of things that make you happy and are grateful for in life.  To start one, just complete the following steps:

  1. Buy a notepad (or join the 21st century and use an app – but I’m a sucker for new stationery)
  2. Write stuff that makes you do this >>> :)

It can be anything from something that made you crack a slight smile on the inside (one time, I sneezed in the street and a strange man said “bless you”, and for some reason that made me really happy) right through to something that really is taken for granted by a lot of us every day (like access to clean water).

The reason I thought this important for me is I am so bad at comparing my life to others, people I went to school with, friends of friends and even complete strangers. It’s so easy to forget when scrolling through snapshots of peoples fantastic lives on social media that yours is actually pretty great too.

I also having this bad habit of wishing my life away, waiting for the next milestone, famous examples include:

  • I’ll be happier when I’ve finished my dissertation
  • I’ll be happier when I go on holiday
  • I’ll be happier when the weekend gets here

Yes, those events were fantastic achievements and certainly a cause for celebration & happiness, but you end up not living in the moment and wishing your life away. Of course, it’s great to have goals and things to look forward to (hi every Friday), but it’s also important to appreciate all the things you have currently in life and taking the time to write them down really helped me do this.

Don’t get me wrong, I am seriously lucky that I have a lovely house, a tolerate boyfriend, supportive family, great friends and a naughty cat, but because that’s the ‘norm’ for me now, it’s so so SO easy to take it all for granted. This is why, when I’m having a particularly ridiculous spoilt brat day, I take a read through my journal and realise that things ain’t so bad :)

Getting to know you

Can we all just take a moment to realise that I *actually* stuck to my last resolution, to post every week for a month! I mean, no one really read them, but I’m okay with that as I sure did like sitting down on a Sunday to write about myself.

I know, I know – it’s been 4 months since, but it’s been Summer in the meantime (and a pretty darn good one at that) so I’ve kind of been enjoying that thing called the outside world rather than sitting at a computer.

Anyway, I was thinking that if you’re a stranger that stumbled upon my little corner of the internet  somehow rather than being a pity reader from Twitter (all 4 of them – hey you guys), then I realised you won’t really know anything about me or my interests, so I have compiled this fancy collage below to illustrate a few of the things I enjoy in life. If you don’t like at least one of these things, we probably can’t be friends.

Getting to know you1. I was always, ALWAYS a dog person having grown up with two cocker spaniels. That all changed on Christmas Day 2014 when I was thrust a cardboard box making strange noises followed by a little Albus jumping out. Albie is my 10 month old kitten / baby who I am obsessed with. It’s a shame the feeling isn’t mutual but what can I say, he’s one sassy, independent man about town. I’m basically that person who likes animals more than humans and will cross the road to cuddle / talk to a stranger dogs (just FYI, not all dog owners appreciate this).

2. Now this is a double whammy – this is my boyfriend & I at Magic Kingdom at Disneyword. Firstly, I like spending time with Seb (funny that) and also, I like to go on holiday or any trip away really!

3. Here comes the materialism! I like buying things, whether that’s another collared shirt, another lipstick, another losing scratch card or stationery for my job working in a paperless office… I basically specialise in things I don’t need. I also like green. We can also see my positivity journal which I keep with me to write in anytime I get a have a moment of gratitude. Sounds lame, but there’s nothing better than having a flick through this when you feel like the world is against you (maybe more on that in future!)

4. This is a bit of a new one – fitness. As you may have read in a previous post, I tried my hand at running which I actually really enjoyed. Through the winter months, it was harder to motivate myself because it was so darn dark & cold so I signed up to the gym. Fast forward 6 months and I’ve actually kept it up and discovered a love of spinning (and buying jazzy workout gear). I also ran 10k in August which is probably my biggest fitness achievement to date – GO ME.

5. Isn’t tea & cake one of EVERYONE’S favourite things?! Anyone else find it difficult to trust people that don’t drink hot drinks or is that just me? Like how do these people even stay awake in the mornings? What do they do when they’re feeling stressed, under the weather or cold? A glass of orange squash just doesn’t cut it for me in those situations. Anyway that’s a discussion for another time.

6. I have a season ticket for Norwich City football club which occupies my Saturdays every couple of weeks, I go with my dad, so it’s a lovely little bonding exercise for us, but also genuinely really enjoy football. I used to play also as a youngster but now I mostly enjoy watching and seeing the look on men’s faces when I kind of know what I’m on about.

Hopefully that gives you a bit of an insight to me & my life! I realise it’s nothing groundbreaking, but nice to meet you :)

New Years resolutions (take 2).

So, I just remembered this little page existed (my bad). Looking back at my 2014 resolutions, I’d say I’ve done pretty good at sticking to my word (no fringe and I do currently have a book on the go….) however the one niggling item from the list is number 1: get a hobby.

Over the year, I feel like I’ve tried pretty damn hard to find a hobby, a project, something that I can be like “yep, that’s my thing” and after washing my brushes in white spirit and fumigating the house for what felt like the millionth time, I thought I would revisit the idea of a blog.

I spend so much time looking at a computer, iPad, iPhone, just all variations of blue light really, so I ideally wanted something to give my eyeballs a break, but here I am! I’m going to attempt to write something, once a week, for all of May and see how I get on (I think that’s achievable – let’s not get ahead of ourselves here).

But for now, here’s a photo of me cradling my cat Albie like a child…

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New Years resolutions

I drafted this post on the 3rd January with full intentions of sticking to all New Years resolutions for the full year and I’m happy to say I’m currently looking at a good 50% pass rate! Not too shabby. I usually end up with a huge list that I promise myself I’ll keep, and end up forgetting most of them. This year, I’ve gone with a concise 5 (and at least they’re written down so I have no excuse of forgetting…!)

1. Get a hobby

The end of last year was crazy – moving into a new house in November, Christmas preparations, festive season… Now I’m back at work and well & truly bogged down by January blues, I need something to look forward to. It sounds sad, but moving to a new city (albeit only one hour away from home & home friends) means that I don’t really have any Norwich based friends apart from those I have at work, so I thought getting a hobby would be a good way to meet new people. The thought of it is pretty terrifying, but we’ll see how I get on!

2. Be more experimental in the hair & beauty department

Lets face it, my ‘look’ is very basic and I’ve pretty much had the same hairstyle for as long as I can remember (huge forehead = constant need for fringe). Reading blogs has inspired me to be a little more experimental in the way I look, I have started wearing eyeshadow more in the day (only brown, nothing too crazy, but still!) and hoping to make a few more alterations throughout the year. Think slightly bolder lipsticks, darker / lighter highlights, you won’t see me sporting fushia pink hair any time soon…

3.  Be more positive / worry less

Despite lots of inspirations quotes always popping up on my Pintrest feed, I think I’m just one of those people that has worrying ingrained into their being. I just can’t help myself. Sometimes when life is going swimmingly, I will find something to worry about, which is CRAZY! It’s just that unnecessary worrying that I”m going to try and cut out.

4. Read more 

Back in the day, I used to be a massive book worm, reading before bed, when I woke up, and every given opportunity in-between. However at uni, reading was replaced with working socialising and I’ve just never really got back into it so this year, I’m determined to re-kindle (ha, get it?) my love for books. I am currently reading “The Fault in Our Stars”.

5. Keep all new years resolutions 

Pretty self explanatory…

A little introduction.

I have been reading lifestyle & beauty blogs for the last year or so, and had often toyed with the idea of writing my own – despite having no idea what I would write about!

I have very recently moved into my first ‘grown-up house’, but in order to do this, I needed to pack. Under the deepest depths of my bed, I came across a box of old diaries from high school, although it did prolong the packaging process considerably, it was lovely (and hilarious) to re-live the excitement & devastation I experienced over the silliest of things!

So this is when I thought, I should probably start another diary again to document the next stage of my life (completely missed out uni – ah well!) for reading in my 30’s. I mean, I’ll probably be really interested to know what happened on my food shop on Monday 2nd December in years to come – right? Okay, I’ll try to keep my posts from becoming THAT mundane. 

My job also influenced this decision. I work at a digital marketing agency, meaning I have become submerged in all things digital. More and more of my clients are opting for the WordPress platform, so I thought the best way to learn all about it was create my own!

I have no idea what my posts will include, probably a mix of recent purchases, my favourite things, pretty pictures, marketing campaigns and a general low down of what I’ve been busying myself with. I also love a good rant so I’m sure I will post my fair share of those too