23 February 2017

36 THINGS AT 36

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This Sunday coming up I turn 36 years old. Woo-hoo, and also...how?!

Inevitably, I have recently been thinking about the things I do differently, the things (I think) I have learnt and the things I give more focus to now, compared to 10-15 years ago. I thought I would do a fun post about these things because, well, why not!

(Side note: I have popped my latest vlog at the bottom of this post too!)

1 :: I have been bigger and smaller, heavier and lighter,  not toned at all and more toned but, what I have learnt through all these transitions, is that I am never fully happy with my body (how stupid is that?). I have been thinking about this more and more recently and, because of the great education I got from training with Olly Foster last year, I am finally at a stage where I can let myself have treats, and I really feel that I have gained a better (healthier) understanding of balance. I am finally recognising that my body is pretty awesome; it can lift heavy things, walk up huge hills, survive emotional pain and come out the other side smiling and strong (but maybe a bit tired!). 

2 :: Do not stress about the small things. Worrying about a situation will not change the situation. Bloody hell, it has taken me years to figure that one out!

3 :: Positivity breeds positivity. It really does.

4 :: Dream big, then reverse engineer the plan. I am still working on this but it has forced me to make some brave moves.

5 :: You can't ever do 'all the things'. I learnt this pretty fast over the last couple of years. When I was younger I didn't have as much on my plate as I do these days, but working with Olly last year meant that I had to step back slightly from building and launching Leaf Lane Studio. I went into panic about this but then Gemma (you guys know about Gemma!) said to me 'that's fine, you were focusing on your health' and I thought... doh! Of course it is fine to shuffle things about. It would have been counter productive to go full out on all the things at once.

6 :: Sometimes crappy life-happenings can open amazing friendship doors.

7 :: Always tell people how you are feeling, without fear. 

8 :: If you are feeling rubbish; get up, brush your hair and put some lipstick on.

9 :: Lift heavy weights. This is the best fitness tip I have for women. You won't end up big and bulky, believe me. Just get your butt to the gym, learn how to lift and go crush it!

10 :: Don't glance back over your shoulder once you are committed to doing something. The path is forward. 

11 :: Whatever you do, don't let someones negative opinion on something you want to do stop you from doing it.

12 :: When you have spare time, spend it feeding your soul. For me, this is reading books that 'light me up', taking a long walk or even slowing down and chucking on a meditation app. Life is so damn fast paced that it is important to nourish your soul.

13 :: Journal. You guys know I love bullet journalling, but use whatever works for you; it may be stream of consciousness writing or writing three things you are grateful for everyday. Emptying your head of thoughts really helps.

14 :: Comparison is unhealthy. This is a big one. I wish I had realised this when I was younger. Accept that you are where you are on your journey and that other people may be further on, and that's okay.

15 :: When things get a bit much, remember your place in the universe. We are so teeny tiny. Just look up at night and watch the stars... that does it for me in an instant.

16 :: Appreciating nature aids calmness. Go for a walk, cuddle your pet, be kind to living things and you will feel so much better.

17 :: Sleep when you need it. Obviously I realise that you cannot sleep in the middle of a work day (unless you have a super-star of a boss of course!) but I have learnt how valuable sleep is when it comes to repairing my body from training or healing my mind, when my mental health has taken a dip. Naps=happiness!

18 :: Sometimes you have to just accept a situation for what it is because there is nothing more you can say or do to heal it. 

19 :: It's alright to cry in front of people. I think this comes with being older and not caring as much about looking a bit of an idiot. 

20 :: Percy Pigs are not just for children (seriously... those chewy little piggies are life!).

21 :: Be a big cheerleader for other people, their ideas and their achievements (especially other women).

22 :: No amount of planning can force things to go the exact way you had originally set out. When they roll the opposite way, just got with it; there is clearly a reason why, you just may not know it yet.

23 :: Stop buying things 'just because you like them'. The older I have got, the more I realise that I prefer a more simplified version of life. Don't get me wrong, I like nice things. For example, I wish I owned pretty much every shade of Mac lipstick that existed and I can never have enough stationary, but I have a serious word with myself whenever I think I want something. I usually fool myself when shopping on-line by throwing everything and its cat into the basket, then I return over the course of a week and, nine times out of ten, I have lost interest within a few days. It really works!

24 :: Tackle the harder parts of the day first. Get the tough stuff nailed first and the rest of the day just feels so much better!

25 :: Don't be afraid to stand up for yourself. If you think something that has happened is out of line, do something about it.

26 :: Sometimes you need to embrace the days where you just feel like sh*t. This may mean you stay in your pj's, eat ice-cream and cry to The Lion King, but just let it be.

27 :: Talk about mental health with no shame, most of the time people we react in an amazing way to it and if they don't, then they don't matter.

28 :: Take time to look after your skin. I cannot stress how different my skin has been since I have taken the time to double-cleanse at night and use a nice oil. My mum looks amazing for her age and I strive to make sure that can look that good when I am her age! 

29 :: Smile and chat to anyone. People are really closed up these days, but if you take the time to catch someones eye and smile it can make all the difference.

30 :: Don't be afraid to live a slightly different life to 'the norm'. If you are not meant for marriage and babies, don't sweat it! If you are meant for travel and tattoos and shaving your head whilst dancing about with feathers, bloody go for it.

31 :: Boring, I know, but drink at least 2 litres of water per day and you will have so much more energy.

32 :: Always ask for help when you need it. It took me years to understand that asking for help was not a weakness.

33 :: Sometimes in life you just need to thrust your head into a bag of sweet and salty pop corn and eat your way out. 

34 :: No matter what mood you are in always show up to that days situation and be present in your own life, not just walking through it in a daze. It is somewhat trendy to say this at the moment, but it doesn't make it any less important.

35 :: If you think you should do something just go ahead and do it. If it fails, you have learned something. Nothing is a waste of time.

36 :: This is something I learned big time last year, and have been grateful for it happening ever since... when someone you care about shows you they are vulnerable or lets you in to a side of them you have never seen before, this is such a wonderful thing. It means they trust you and that they care enough about your friendship for them to 'let you in'. Never abuse this or take it lightly.

There you have it. I know there was a whole lot of cheesy stuff there but I feel that is what is needed sometimes (plus a Percy Pig of course*).

*If you are not familiar with Percy Pigs, they are only chewy sweets from a UK shop, but I love them!

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