Friday, 28 March 2014

How to re-establish yourself

v. t.1.To establish anew; to fix or confirm again; to restore; as, to re√ęstablish health.
re-establish - bring back into original existence, use, function, or position

This isn't about re-inventing,
It is not about faking it either,
It's about reaffirming who you always were.

Do you remember when you felt slightly awkward within yourself at school, college or university, maybe even at work? 

You have friends that you get on with, maybe you are seeing a new boyfriend but there is a niggling feeling that you are not enough? That maybe you don't fit in because the friendship group you are part of have all known each other longer and you feel like it is a massive effort to make sure you do fit in, to like the same things or convey the same attitude. Maybe it is because your new partner is into different things then you and you want to be able to share those passions even if that means putting yours aside.

Perhaps you know that you are trying too hard, pushing ever so slightly to keep up with others, to come across a bit more laid back then you actually are. You have become afraid to differ in anyway.

All the while you are still showing up as yourself, just with a few added extras that don't need to be there. 

Do you know what that is?

It is part of self-development, it is the evolution of yourself and it is self-preservation.

For example, I'm often seen as the lone wolf kind of girl with a few great friends and have been lucky enough to move round a few social circles. For many reasons at University I found myself stuck in one social circle. It was full of the most energetic, enigmatic, charming funny people, who were supportive and accepting. That doesn't sound to bad does it?

What I found hard to keep up with, was that they partied hard a lot and were always up for a good time. I found it hard to get the balance right for myself and went along for the ride when I probably should have stayed at home,. I found that because I couldn't always keep up with the party and didn't have the same attitude as everyone else, it came across as if I wasn't as laid back, fun or part of the crowd.

I was not being myself and it showed.

These were all my insecurities and I'm sure I let them manifest way to much. I wasn't giving myself the chance to be myself in front of these people and let them get to know me completely.

Once I was out of  Uni, life got in the way as it does and I had a few years away from the party hard group.  Recently there have been more opportunities to reconnect with some of them.

I thought it would be hard. I thought that I would have to go back into the role I played in the past in order to get along with them.

The thing is, that role you played in the past is still part of you. It is still there and it's still works to a certain extent. The key thing to do when re-connecting with past friends, who may remember you differently, is to re-establish yourself. I'm not suggesting that you have to praise yourself in front of others by mentioning that you travel for work, you get paid this much and have a house etc. You don't need to go on about how great you are. That would just be awkward for everyone.

What I mean is, feel confident in yourself now. Find strength in the fact that you know you have grown so much.
You have grown as a person. You know you have changed in subtle ways. You may have the same mannerisms, you may tell the same jokes. How you put them across will be with new assurance and authority. You know yourself and who have become. It does not matter what you were like when they last saw you, that isn't you now.

If in conversation, someone brings something up about your past self that you do not like. Then you have to stick up for yourself.
Reply with something like "oh, I know that was a hard time, I've got through all that now and am feeling so much better. Thanks for asking" or "Yes, I was a bit crazy/ quiet back then, that was a long time ago". Then graciously move on to another topic.

Alternatively nip any conversation in the bud that over exaggerates how you were in the past. I'm not saying be ashamed of the past but if someone is talking about you in the wrong way, it is time to say "hang on, it wasn't quite like that was it".

I had to do that recently and it quite literally stopped someone in their tracks. They remembered me as the quiet one, that was good for a party but a bit of a push over. I'm still mild in temperament and love a party sometimes but nowadays if I hear something I don't like, I say so, I make sure my opinion is heard in a calm manner. I have learned that is okay to be different and that you do not have to agree with everyone else. Most of the time, if you are surround my good people, they will like you anyway.

My quiet confidence surprised some people and I felt so much better for it.

I had re-established myself. 

My true self. The person I know I am and always was.

Monday, 24 March 2014

Tea Time: Detox

I love tea, I love the different flavours and aromas available. I relish snuggling on the sofa with a warm cup in my hand. The wonderful thing about tea is that there is one for almost any occasion, whether your happy with a builder's tea, or seeking a calming camomile there is something out there for you. When I want a bit of extra goodness, I love these detoxing teas.

Green Tea:
Green Tea is most probably the healthiest drink on the planet. It is jam packed full of antioxidants and essential nutrients. Did you know that is contains polyphenols? It is a power antioxidant that can help to reduce the formation of free radicals in the body. Thus protecting the body's cells from damage and disease. The British Journal of nutrition has found that drinking three cups of the green stuff a day can help prevent cell deterioration.

Pukka Herbs: Detox
This is a lovely soothing tea for the digestive system. It contains detoxing fennel, aniseed and cardamon seed. Cardamon is a digestive add, it is also used as a treatment for mouth ulcers and depression in Ayurvedic Medicine. The flavour of this tea is much for herbal then plain peppermint.

Ayurvedic medicine
Ayurvedic medicineand Nourishing licorice root
Twinings: Detox
This has lovely flavour compared to other detoxing teas that I have found. The lemon peel is really uplifting and refreshing both in smell and taste. It also contains cleansing milk thistle and lemon myrtle which contains citral it it's leaves. Citral is full of antioxidants and is also anti-fungal. I think this tea is a great alternative if you have got bored of peppermint.

Friday, 21 March 2014

How do you know you are doing the right thing?

[photo source: Elephant Journal]

It’s an easy question to answer right? It's a question I often find myself asking, when want to pursue something new.

You have to trust that you will head in the right direction; the problem is that you don’t have a map and your moral compass is out of whack and you’ve asked for directions but you don’t know how good they are. The unknown is scary but we all need to stop worrying.

Head over to Disguised By Zebras and continue reading my guest post.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Animal Totem:The Antelope


The antelope is a symbol of decisive action. 
In many cultures the antelope teaches strong intuition, which allows you to use your own instincts to overcome life's challenges in a quick, kind manner.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

An infectious smile

 A contagious smile is a wonderful thing to catch. It feels great to receive one and amazing when you have made a fellow human being smile in return. You may know them or they may be a complete stranger, it doesn't matter.

That little acknowledging smile makes such a difference!

We say it all the time, that we hate our own smiles.  Either it's too goofy or you hate how much gum/teeth show. I used to say that I didn't like mine because when I smile, "my eyes disappear and my lips look uneven".

Stop it!

No one has ever noticed anything bad about your smile! No one would see that themselves, so stop pointing it out. All they see is a beautiful smile radiating happiness and kindness towards them.

Smile more and you will be made to more smile often, because once someone smiles back at you, it wont be easy to get that smile off your face!

Spread that smile around!

Smiling is infectious

Smiling is infectious
You catch it like the flu
When someone smiled at me today,
I started smiling too

I passed around the corner,
And someone saw my grin.
When he smiled I realised
I'd passed it on to him.

I thought about that smile
then I realised its worth
A single smile, just like mine
could travel round the earth.

So, if you feel a smile begin 
don't leave it undetected
Let's start an epidemic quick,
and get the world infected!

[Author Unknown]

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Project Pan: How Much Is Too Much?

To truly put it into perspective how many products I had collected over the years I thought I should put it in a list for all to see.

Make up Hoarding List:
Blusher 17
Eyebrows products 3
Lip liners 4
Single Eyeshadows 22
Small Eyeshadow palettes 9
Large Eye Shadow palettes 4
Concealer 8
Bronzer 8
Mascara 8
Setting Powder 2
Lip products 25
Eye Pencils 18/ 5 black
Liquid/Gel liners 3
Primers 2
Highlighters/Illuminaters 2
BB Cream/Foundations 3

That is 138 products!

I couldn't believe it, I was honestly astonished by the amount I had around me. Even though I felt guilty about it I tried to push that feeling aside and deal with what was at hand. I decided to give some away products that were still in good condition and I did throw out some that were old or broken beyond repair.

I'm now estimate that I have around 90 products (which is still a lot).

From now on I am going to work through the lot and use up as much as possible. I will only buy what I need during this time. For example I'm allowed to buy foundation if that runs out etc.

Wish me luck!

(if you want to read the first part of my Project Pan click here.)

Monday, 10 March 2014

Learn how to take a compliment

Recently I complimented someone I see regularly on their perfume, they smelt amazing. To which they applied straight away with "Thanks, at least that makes up for how fat I am".

This wasn't to make me feel awkward, it was just a flippant comment about themselves which shocked me. So I said "please don't think that way, you are lovely just the way you are".

What surprised me most about this reaction, is that it came  from a woman who works within the beauty industry, she is always well-presented, glamorous with her makeup and what I see the most in her, is her sunny disposition and that she always asks how I am when I see her. She owns her own beauty salon, is the employer of a large staff, helps women feel good about themselves and here she was being so derogatory about herself. Her excuse for being this way?, because it was one of those "womanly" days.

I can understand that, there will always be days where you don't feel on top of your game, you feel a bit crappy and think that you are not looking your best.

But if someone offers you a compliment, take it. Let it soak in for a minute, wait a few seconds before replying and then reply with "thank you, what a lovely think to say" or "thank you for noticing" (they can't see what you think are your faults). Own it, take it willingly. Don't throw it away with a downbeat reply. That may in turn make the giver of the compliment feel awkward. They may feel shut down from talking to you any further. They wont know how to a manage the situation, as you have already discounted their opinion. Remember that it can take a lot for someone to compliment another person, accept it and feel happy taking a compliment.

You deserve it.

Friday, 7 March 2014

Beauty Swap: Micellar Water

L'oreal Skin Perfection 3 in 1 Purifying Micellar Solution 200ml £4.99 . Used to dissolve make-up, unclog pores and remove impurities while toning and soothing the skin.

For functionality this water is great for removing makeup, especially heavy eye makeup. It's easy to use and very quick so its great after a night out. I use it to take off heavy make up before I cleanse so its not left on my eye anyway. What I did notice was that it left my eyes feeling tight and red which was a shame as its meant to be suitable for sensitive skin . I didn't love the pourer as it seems to release a lot of fluid at once so I felt that I was wasting a lot of product for each use.

Melvita Fresh Micellar Water 200ml £15.00. Also a 3 in 1 formula used to dissolve make-up whilst cleansing and toning the skin.

It contains Wild Rose Petal Extract and Rose Floral Water to moisturise and prevent drying of the skin. Functionality is the same, this is great to remove make-up before washing your face. This might not be what it is used for but I jut use it to remove heavy eye make up and I don't use it every day so I feel it would last. I've been using this for about 3 weeks and really like it. It has a light floral scent and leaves my eyes feeling refreshed and I don't have to rub my eyes to get the majority of my make up off. The fluid doesn't spill out as easily either so you can control how much you want to use. The price is a tough one though, for £15 that doesn't make it an easy instant purchase, you would have to think about just purchasing that and not use face wipes as well etc.

Of course this is just what I have ended up preferring and it may not work out for you. I do use Sweet Almond Oil for light eye make up removal so there are plenty of other alternatives out there.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Hold On

Hold on when there is a fear of falling
Hold on when it's tough
Hold on when you feel alone
Hold on to what you know
Hold on to your dreams
Hold on to love
Hold on when the tears are heavy
Hold on to the journey ahead
Hold on to the excitement
Hold on to experience
Hold on to the ups and downs
Hold on to the roller-coaster
Hold on to life

I have to constantly tell myself to hold on to what ever I can when I'm having a tough day. It can be so hard to see past the days that are filled with doubt and worry, stress and tears but it will get better one day. That day may come sooner then you think or it might take awhile. When I start to think indulgently about how crap life is at present, I really try to manage my feelings and remind myself of what I've got. And I've got a lot.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Project Pan: Recovering Make Up Hoarder

In a moment of pure cleaning craziness I set my sights on my make up drawer. I quickly became overwhelmed with the amount of products I had amassed over the years. This is coming from someone who only properly got into buying multiple products at University and has a Mother who only owns about five items of make-up. To top it off I don't even wear makeup when I am at work (because I like my sleep in the mornings more than my face apparently). So all this make-up is pretty much reserved for nights out and weekends.

 "After the initial rush of consumerist glee the product that I had so desperately needed got put in a drawer and forgotten about"

I love make-up and thanks to having a make-up artist as a friend, I've gotten pretty good at applying it (even if I do say so myself!) and have cultivated a heavy addiction to eye-shadows and eyeliner along the way. When I first discovered  beauty videos on YouTube, I was so excited to have found a way of finding out about new products and get tips on how to use different things. My buying soon escalated and if I am really honest I know that when I was unhappy or bored on a lunch break I would go into Boots and see what the make-up isles had to offer as a pick me up. After the initial rush of consumerist glee the product that I had so desperately needed got put in a drawer and forgotten about.

I have had a major clear out of unwanted or out of date makeup and I am now left with a huge stash that is still in good condition, most of it I have purchased myself but some items in there where gifts. When the Boyfriend discovered me sat on the bedroom floor surrounded by my sorting efforts, he didn't seem too bothered about the amount I had around me. I told him that I felt really bad about being so wasteful (with my money) to which he replied "but you love make-up, it's like a hobby for you".

It was so lovely that he understood but he then said "I guess that's where all your money goes though". I had already been thinking it and the fact it is that it is true. I hardly buy clothes because I have a uniform for work and my only other expenditures are food and amenities, eating out and the occasional cinema trips.

 "I need to become less attached to inanimate objects!"

This year I want to save as much as possible for when we start looking for a house and I also want to get my spending habits in check. As I am starting to swap natural products for my commercial counterparts I came to a dilemma. Do I throw this make-up away or carry on using it? I can definitely gift some items but I've decided to I keep my Mac, Urban Decay etc, with the aim of making it a lifestyle change and not chore, I have chosen to not be too hard on myself as I do still enjoy using it and have not had a reaction with what I'm using at the moment. I am not going to simply throw it away because I would see that as chucking my money down the drain.

When I heard of product pan I thought it was great idea. I can be really precious about "saving" things for best and although it is nice to keep things, I also know that I need to become less attached to inanimate objects!

So my Project Pan will go something like this. I will assess all my make up and sort out what seriously needs to go and what I can use up. I am then going to use up my conventional products and in their place look for natural, cruelty free alternatives. In a perfect world I would have a skincare and make up stash that is completely natural and cruelty free. At the moment my emphasis is going to be getting a natural skincare regime going. With make-up, I will look for natural products but if I feel a cruelty free item (that isn't as natural) performs better or catches my eye then I will use that as well.

I already know that a lot of my items are not cruelty free and will carry on using the items I have but will not repurchase. The hardest part of it all is that I love my Urban Decay palettes and I really don't want to give them up. I just don't see them as cruelty free anymore since they are know owned by L'oreal.

We will see how it goes. I'd like to state that I don't class myself as a beauty blogger, I just want to become more minimalist with a beauty and make-up collection, hopefully made up of good quality products.