The 12 Day Countdown to 24; What I’ve Learnt, Day 1

So in 12 days I am 24, March 12th. The fact I’m turning 24 is scary in itself. So to honour another year I’ve decided to write small blog posts on what I’ve learnt in my life before turning 24 years young, things that I feel are really important for me, and maybe for you too!

So for Day 1 of 12 I wanted to talk about Self Love and Self Care.

Self love and self care is something that can be really difficult for different people. As someone who is anxious as hell, I found that I spent a lot more time worrying about my friends, family and work than I did myself. I didn’t realise how much this can affect you if you don’t just sit down and take time for you.

I realised I needed to start taking time for myself half way through my final year of uni about 2 years ago. I was so overwhelmed with my dissertation, my girlfriends, living with 12 people, I also lived with my boyfriend and worked throughout, as well my friends from work. It was really full on and I didn’t realise until 7/12 flatmates moved out, this was due to being international students living with us for 3 months, that I hadn’t actually stopped since getting to uni in September. I started getting back from my morning shifts at work and lectures at university and spending the afternoon/some time on my own, watching TV, reading my book, just getting that me time. I felt like after this I enjoyed my time with my friends a whole lot more. I’d had that time to myself, time to relax and re-charge and you forget that you need that time. I also really felt that it helped my productivity in the library, at work and also generally as well.

It made me realise, ‘Hang about, I’m onto something here‘.

Then we moved out of uni and I still wanted to be able to keep this up and do this for myself. I really got into reading again, which I still am now if you’re a follower of my blog! I moved back in with my parents and with my boyfriend (we were only due to be there for a year before we moved to Australia, but COVID happed about halfway through our year. Goodbye flights to Australia). I wanted to make sure I still had my me time especially with a new lifestyle and job. A long shower, a quiet evening with my book, catching up on my favourite TV shows and taking time away from my phone was still an essential. I still to this day ensure that I do these things and it has been SO Beneficial to me.

I feel like it is so SO important to remember to do these things for yourself. Do things that help you switch off and wind down, at the end of the day, You are the biggest love of your life. My motto I say regularly. You NEED to listen to what your body is telling you, rest your mind if its running 100mph. Rest your body if you’re running literally everywhere. Say NO to going out if you aren’t feeling it, get in bed early, stay up late and binge watch your shows. Do what makes you feel happy and comfortable and recharged.

Write yourself a self care checklist and do it all in your own time. When you are enjoying your own time there is no pressure of everything around you, there’s just you. You only have to please yourself. For me my favourite things are to exercise or go for a walk, I love to sit and read my book and in doing so switching off from my phone at the same time. I LOVE a hot and long shower. I also every morning read positive affirmations! Positive affirmations hold a lot of importance for me. I read 4/5 every day and share the ones I feel I can apply in my day but also so others can see them and hopefully think the same!

Take the time for you, look after yourself physically and mentally. Like I said, you are the biggest love of your life and nothing can change that , no person you’re in a relationship with or your friends and family. You’ve only got one body, heart and brain in this life, cherish it and look after you. Be selfish, it’s absolutely fine to do so. You are a God/Goddess, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

The Peak District – Ladybower Reservoir Walk

The next day we went for a less mountainous walk but definitely a long one. Recommended by both my stepmum and my sister to myself and Maddie had also seen this walk online, we headed to the Lady Bower Reservoir! We parked up again in a lay-by on the side of the road and there was a lot of parking so it wasn’t hard to get a space. We unpacked, re packed and put on our boots and were ready to go!

The walk around the reservoir is at least an hour and a half to two hours and when we started the sun was shining. the walk itself is fairly flat except for once you reach the other end of the reservoir and there’s a slight including to then get you onto the next section of the walk, the walk back to where you started along the other side!

The views around the lake are gorgeous, you go from walking out in the open at the start and then walking in-between high fern trees, then out in between bracken as you walk beside the open water, then back into the thick trees again until we reached the opposite end of the reservoir. We decided as the heavens opened and there was a couple of benches shrouded by the trees we could stop for some lunch!

Once we were back on the walk we passed the information centre and as we kept walking along the path you could hear the water before we saw it. In between the trees you could see this huge waterfall ahead of us, although it wasn’t a waterfall, it was the Derwent Dam! Derwent Dam is in between the Derwent Reservoir and Lady Bower separating the two bodies of water. Lady bower being the final reservoir the water flows into out of the three (the first being Howden Reservoir, then Derwent and finally Lady Bower). It had rained so much that the dam was actually overflowing which was a really cool sight to see as not everyone is this lucky!

Once we had marvelled at the Dam and the sign post in front of the dam which was obviously well aged as if you swam in the water it was only a £5 fine, we decided to continue on our walk around the reservoir. Unfortunately we weren’t so lucky this time around and when we thought the rain had stopped over lunch the heavens opened again! The walk back in the rain was just as pleasant because we were all so kitted out and prepared for it. It was just as lovely with our hoods up and muddy boots. The best part about walks like that are that once you reach home and your cold and wet you can get all cosy with a cuppa tea by the fire and a book.

BUT it was way to soon once we had finished the walk to go back and chill by the fire so there was only one option for it, PUB! We headed across to the Lady Bower Pub which is just off the reservoir and it was perfect, well priced, big car park and only two minutes away. we had some pints, a cuppa tea and some hot food, NACHOS. Well deserved.

THEN it was time to go home and really curl up by the fire this time. Last stop on our trip is Bakewell! Stay tuned for our food adventures there.

The Global Quarantine Diaries – Sean

  • Where in the world are you located?

I’m in Houston, Texas in the United States

  • What are lockdown regulations like there?

Like some of the other bloggers, our restrictions vary wildly by what part of the country you live in. It has been very strange lately. Texas started out kind of okay and that devolved pretty quickly. For example, at the time of writing I think bars and restaurants and that type of thing can choose to open up to maybe 75% capacity. Masks are encouraged by the city and county government, but the state governor struck down ordinances at the city level saying masks were required. At this point it’s really up to the business whether they enforce any rules. The current city and state governments are polar opposites politically, so that’s made for some confusing directions.

It’s a bit unnerving to see tons of people without masks. Our medical center is estimating if the growth rate continues, we’ll be out of bed space in a matter of weeks, which is concerning. But at the same time, I appreciate that businesses are starting to open again so people can work and get paid. Right now, I’m wearing a mask when I go to shop, but not when I’m exercising. My wife and I are both back to work in shifts, and it just feels like many people are leaning towards “oh yeah COVID-19 is over” or thinking that the risk is worth being able to do whatever they’d like. 

  • How are you keeping busy?

So much, honestly! As of a few weeks ago, we’ve started back to work in shifts. I’m going into lab in the mornings for about four hours, then coming home and doing other work from there.

I’ve started up my leadership coaching services on the side, and have been leaning heavily into that, having picked up a few clients in the last two months. I’ve loved working with them so far. (If there’s a time to plug a service, I’ll take the opportunity here. I’m a trained leadership coach working on my next credential, so if you’re reading this and interested in building up your leadership skills, please reach out!) 

I’m also leaning very heavily into exercise; since about mid-March I’ve been working out for at least 30 minutes every single day, and I feel fantastic!

I did take a little break from my blog, and I’ve struggled with some motivation on that front, but I’m getting back into it soon. But I’m well on my way to completing my Duolingo Italian catalog!

Finally, we bought a house! We’ve been getting a lot of the paperwork and utilities and such squared away for that, as well as bingewatching Fixer Upper

  • What do you miss doing most?

Socializing, which sounds a little silly because we’re so busy that we don’t socialize every single opportunity. But my wife and I have largely interacted with just each other save for a few co-workers. It’s been great for our marriage to connect day-to-day, but it’s also nice to spend time with friends. We recently happened to see a couple friends of ours out and decided to grab a couple drinks with them, thinking we’d spend an hour or two maximum. We ended up spending over five hours with them without realizing it. 

  • What is the first thing you’re going to do once lockdown is over?

Plan a trip! My wife and I were each supposed to take trips this summer and another one together in the fall, and those obviously didn’t happen. We’re thinking Japan for the winter, although that although could fall through if we have another big wave. Other than trips, get ready for our new home! We’ll be moving, decorating, and getting furniture and all that fun stuff. 

  • Where can people find you?

Thanks for asking! Here are my socials:

www.Twitter.com/AuthenticAvg

www.Instagram.com/authenticallyaverage

www.Pinterest.com/authenticallyaverage

www.Authenticallyaverage.com 

The Global Quarantine Diaries – Amber

Hey everyone, my name is Amber and I run a lifestyle blog called The Unpredicted Page, where I give out my life advice, I talk about health and beauty and I also throw in my blogging tips that I have learnt along the way. I am so excited to get stuck into answering the questions given to me by Jessie! 

Where in the world are you located? 

I live In the UK in the Midlands. So, I am literally as far away from the sea and the beaches as possible. I am currently staying in lockdown with my parents, so I moved back to their home. 

What are the lockdown regulations like there? 

We are currently allowed to see up to 6 friends whilst staying two metres apart. I have been able to see my boyfriend for a walk after 10 weeks of not being able to see each other so that lifted my spirits. I only leave the house for exercise I try and go for a walk each day. My mum does the food shopping as only one person is allowed in the shop at a time for each household, so she is only leaving the house to do that. 

How are you keeping busy? 

So, I am someone who likes to keep busy. I actually started my blog at the beginning of lockdown as so I would have something, I could occupy myself with. I even decided to write a post about the positives of lockdown where I gathered people’s opinions on the situation. I am someone who always needs to be doing something, so starting a blog was the best thing I could have done I am absolutely loving it so far. 

I have also been getting back into reading which I have been loving. I am currently reading PS, I Love you – I recommend! Then last but not least, I have really gotten into paint by numbers. I bought one off amazon and it is taking a long time, but it is so relaxing. There are so many different designs so I will hopefully be getting more of them to try out. 

What do you miss doing the most?

I miss getting dressed up and putting my makeup on and feeling good. I have worn makeup once in the past 11 weeks on lockdown due to the fact I left all my makeup in my flat in a different city to where I am staying for lockdown. So, I had to borrow my sister’s makeup. So when this is over I cannot wait to stay dressing up again and having a reason to get dressed up. 

What is the first thing you are going to do once the lockdown is over? 

The first thing I want to do when lockdown is over is to move out to live with my boyfriend. I cannot wait to have my own space. Being able to spend time decorating the place will be so exciting. So that is something I am looking forwards to.

Head to Ambers socials below!  

Socials: Blog – https://theunpredictedpage.com/

IG – https://www.instagram.com/theunpredictedpage/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/unpredictedpage