Fall Back In Love With Yourself!

Silhouette of a woman doing yoga on the beach at sunset

It can be so easy for young people, especially young women to forget who they are and to stop feeding themselves the positive energy that they need to love themselves. I am a firm believer of ‘loving yourself first’ and I have experienced first hand how hard and upsetting it can be to lose yourself altogether and to fall out of love with you.

So a little bit of background on me before we jump in. Earlier this year I found myself extremely withdrawn, nervous and quite frankly feeling sick and exhausted every single day. Having gone through a similar situation some time ago, I knew I had to contact my doctor straight away as these feelings where having such a huge impact on my everyday life.

I was calling in to work sick at least twice a month taking countless days on end off to sit at home and do nothing. Every single time I looked at myself in the mirror I was getting frustrated at the person I had become and I just didn’t LOVE the person I saw staring back at me every morning. In turn, I had to leave work and as you can imagine, that made me feel less than useless and with a house to run and bills to pay I became more and more worried and uncertain about my future. That is when my doctor referred me to CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) for anxiety.

I completed CBT a few weeks ago now and although I am still not feeling 100% on top of my game, I was definitely given some great advise which has helped me a lot. Today I want to share my top 10 tips on how to fall back in love with yourself with the hopes that I can help even one person and to raise awareness so that young people do not have to feel like I did for so long.

  1. Exercise (No, I did not say extra fries!)

If there is one thing that I have learned from this experience, it is how important implementing some form of daily exercise in your routine can be. I know, I know, nobody actually enjoys exercising right? WRONG! A lot of people out there actually really love exercising. What I am NOT telling you is that you should be going to the gym for hours on end or preparing for a marathon every day, however, exercising for at least 1 hour every day has been scientifically proven to have a positive effect on your mood. This is because when you exercise, your body releases endorphin’s which in turn, triggers a positive feeling into your body. I started off walking along the beach for 1 hour every day and honestly, the improvement that I seen from this step alone was insane. Try it, I dare you!

2. Social (What?! But I Don’t Wanna Get Out of Bed?!)

How often do you ever return home from having a coffee with friends, or shopping with grandma and think to yourself ‘well, I’m never doing that again.’ While I am aware that this actually can be the reality for some people, the majority of people enjoy spending time with their loved ones. At the start of the year, I really didn’t want to spend any time with my friends or family as I felt like I was burdening them with my problems, but that is not the case at all. Cutting yourself off from the people that you love will only make you feel worse. Get up, dress up and show up no matter how you feel. Live by this motto. I promise you, after spending a few hours catching up with the girls over lunch (and possibly a cocktail or two!) you will be glad that you made the effort.

3. Achievement 

You know that overwhelming sense of pride that you get when you finally accomplish that one thing you have been working on for months? Yes, well prepare to feel like that every single day. Feeling accomplished about at least one thing that you have done every day is key in helping you to love yourself again. A lot of the time we only ponder on the negative things in our lives or the things that we haven’t managed to complete, but looking at the tiniest little every day tasks differently can actually make you feel really good about yourself. For example, you wake up tomorrow morning (after reading this awesome blog post of course!) and remember that you need to do the laundry. Do it! Do the laundry and when its done, praise yourself for finishing it. You manage to wake up early and complete your one hour of exercise by 10am? Feel accomplished by this and do not feel bad about praising yourself for minimal things.

4. Write Down Your Thoughts

So you wake up, have breakfast and get ready to leave for work when all of a sudden, you can’t go. Your brain is telling you that for some reason or other, you physically cannot go to work today. Write it down. You find yourself crying because you don’t feel good about yourself today? Write it down. Write down every negative thought that you have for a few weeks and then read over them. By writing down your thoughts you are allowing yourself to keep track of the situations in which you are feeling this way and also giving yourself another method of releasing the negative feeling. At the end of each day/week/month, whichever you find more beneficial, analyse your thoughts. Figure out the pattern and ask yourself at what point in the day or during which activity does this happen?

5. Rational Thinking

So, after writing down your negative thoughts and analysing them, it is important that you review them. Ask yourself why you feel that way? Is there a valid reason for you to feel that way? and Is there proof that what you are thinking about yourself is true? In my case, before I went into work every morning, I was panicking and my thought was ‘I just can’t do this.’ So I followed the process above. Why did I feel that way? Well, truthfully, I hated my job. That is why I felt like I couldn’t attend. Was there a valid reason for me to feel that way? Well, yes and no. The fact that I hated my job in my opinion was a valid enough reason for me to not want to go but the reasons why I hated my job where not valid at all. And the proof that what I was thinking was true? Simple, It wasn’t true. I had went into work every single day for over year before I started feeling this way so there was no proof at all that I couldn’t do it. It is so important to follow this step, especially when your negative thoughts are about you as a person as you may to start to believe things about yourself that are just simply untrue.

6. Push Yourself Out of Your Comfort Zone

If you continue to follow the same routine as you did when you got into this rut, you’re more than likely not going to start feeling any better. Try new things, put yourself into situations where you feel uncomfortable and force yourself to try things that give you the negative thoughts. Follow the same steps for each situation. I attended a Zumba class alone, this a few months ago would have been my worst nightmare however, I really enjoyed myself. Sure, before I left my house to go I felt awful but I actually met a lot of amazing new people and as I continue to go I feel more and more relaxed each time. Also, not to mention that attending a fitness class helped me with tip 1 and 2.

7. Breathing

Seems pretty simple right? Breathing. I was actually surprised to learn how controlled breathing can calm you down in a panicked or stressful situation. When you are feeling anxious or nervous about a task, breathe in through your nose for 5 seconds, hold it for 3 seconds and then breathe out through your mouth for 7 seconds. Continue to do this and practise this regularly as it can really help you to feel relaxed. When you feel relaxed you can then think rationally about the situation at hand.

8. Know What You Want, Set Goals

I was asked in one of my sessions what I wanted for myself in the short, mid and long term and to be brutally honest, I didn’t even know. I had let myself get to a point where I no longer knew what I wanted from my life and I can tell you, that is a very difficult place to be. My doctor had me go home and  write down 4 things that I wanted to achieve in the short term (1+ years), mid term (5+ years), and long term (10-20+ years) and after completing this, I already felt that my life was slowly putting itself back together. I urge you to write down and set goals for yourself either weekly, monthly or even yearly so that you are constantly working towards achieving something. If you don’t know what you want, how are you supposed to get it?

9. Pleasure

This one seems pretty obvious, do something that you love. Use all your senses, take a bubble bath with smelly candles, put on some fluffy pj’s and snuggle up on the sofa with your favourite blanket to watch your favourite movie and eat your favourite chocolate. Listen to your favourite music and dance around the kitchen. I cannot stress this enough DO THINGS THAT YOU LOVE! This tip in a sense is a way of rewarding yourself for exercising, socialising and accomplishing your goals. If you don’t reward yourself, your achievements become pointless so ensure that you are doing at least one thing that you love every single day!

10. Its Okay not to be Okay

Last but by no means least, please remember that it’s okay to have a bad day. Do not beat yourself up if you don’t make it for your walk that day or if you let your negative thoughts get the best of you. It is okay not to be okay sometimes. If you’re feeling emotional and you need to cry, cry. If all you want is a cuddle from your mum, go get a cuddle from your mum. If you want to spend some time alone, spend some time alone. Do whatever it takes and always always always remember that there is always an ear somewhere willing to listen. (Including me!)

 

I really hope that this post can benefit some of you and I would also encourage anyone who may be struggling with their mental health to talk to someone be it a parent, friend, sibling, doctor or complete stranger. My ‘contact me’ page is also available to everyone who visits this blog and if you ever need to talk please please please DO NOT HESITATE to use this tool. I am always willing to listen.

My Favourite Drugstore Make Up Bag Essentials

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As a make up obsessed 21 year old, I love my visits to Superdrug and Boots to stock up on the good stuff! What could possibly be better than affordable beauty products, right? I have decided to put a list of my favourites together so that you can get a look into products that I am loving right now and who knows, something might just catch your eye.

1. Maybelline Lash Sensational – £8.99

Maybelline-Lash-Sensational-Mascara

This product is the holy grail of mascaras. I am always on the lookout for a great mascara and I couldn’t believe that I had never tried this before. The brush is curved which gives my lashes a lot of volume and length making them look fuller. I would definitely recommend this mascara to anyone who is yet to find their perfect go to, and at £8.99, why not give it a try? I promise, you will not be disappointed. I always go for the ‘Intense Black’ shade however, they do have a black, brown and waterproof version available. Click on the product title to view the full range available on Superdrug.co.uk.

 

2. L’Oreal True Match Foundation – £9.99

True Match Use

I find that this foundation is the perfect formula for my combination skin. The foundation itself is very pigmented and can easily be built up to provide you with great coverage. I can use a number of shades from the True Match range but I mostly reach for shade 5.N. This foundation is available in 28 shades and L’Oreal have stated that they match 98% of skin tones in the UK. I apply this product with a damp beauty blender so that my skin looks natural and dewy and I can honestly say that I will more than likely not purchase any other drugstore foundation, I love this one too much! See the full range of True Match products by clicking on the product title above.

 

3. Maybelline Fit Me Concealer – £5.99

Maybelline-Fit-Me-Concealer-Light-10-498658

The Maybelline Fit Me concealer is absolutely fantastic. I have also been told that this concealer is a great dupe for the NARS Creamy Concealer. I like to use this under my eyes and to highlight my brows as it is so soft on my skin and so easy to blend out. I find that the formula is quite thick but it doesn’t have a sticky texture to it which I love. I would recommend this product again, to anyone who is yet to find their perfect go to. Let me know if you are loving or hating this in the ‘reply’ section below. To view the range of Fit Me concealers, click the product title!

 

4. Sleek Blush in Sahara – £4.99

50390663-1_4Ahh, Sleek! My all time guilty pleasure. I have so much love for Sleek products and I am yet to find anything from this brand that disappoints me (I also love Sleeks eyebrow kits so much). Their blushes are so so pigmented it is insane and with a variety of finishes available, they are the number 1 drugstore product to complete any make up look. I personally am a HUGE fan of the Sahara blush but to check out alternative colours, click on the product title above. Try out the Rose Gold shade too, SO. MUCH. LOVE! They are the perfect size to last long enough but small enough for you to chuck in your handbag or even your carry on if you are travelling.

 

5. Barry M Chisel Cheeks Contour Highlighting Creams – £7.99

Chisel Cheeks

Last but most definitely not least, I feel like I need to tell you all about the Barry M Chisel Cheeks Contour Creams. Since the launch of the KKW Cream Contour Kits, I have been dying to get my hands on one, especially because I love the design of these Barry M ones. I am not usually a huge fan of cream contours and these in noway are comparable to my Anastasia Beverly Hills Powder Contour Kit but, it is a great affordable product for anyone who loves to contour or anyone who may just be starting out. They are so creamy and easily glide across my face without removing any of the product underneath. Again, they are a great size for travelling and could be taken with you in your handbag saving you more space than you would if you took a full contour palette with you.

 

If any of you guys have any comments or suggestions, please let me know. Also, let me know what your top drugstore make up bag essentials are as I love to try out new products.