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Growing Up

Growing up… Becoming more mature… These phrases always leave me with a subtle sense of dread lingering in the back of my mind.

I’ve never liked the idea of being sensible, grown up, mature for my age or anything else. I love the idealistic image of me being young, crazy, wild, full of energy and still being the young version of myself at heart.

But, you know what? Being mature doesn’t have to be a bad thing. I think that as long as one doesn’t allow their fun, idealistic self to become too sensible and realistic, as long as one doesn’t allow their young, spirited self to die and fade away, then I think being wise and mature is a brilliant thing. It allows for an easier life – one where individuals are able to provide for their own wants and needs independently and with little-to-no mental anguish.

I wouldn’t want to be less mature than I am, that’s for certain. Any sense of maturity and wisdom I have is something I prize when it comes to sharing my ideas in conversation. It’s a part of me that helps me to be kind and open-minded, to think logically and objectively in tricky or tense situations. With any less maturity than what I already have, I think I’d be a lot less happy.

In fact, I think I’m not quite mature enough. I do despise that word though – mature. It conjures up the image of an unhappy old woman, boxed in by her own thoughts of what’s considered to be sensible, normal, conventional. And THAT’S not somebody I ever intend on being!

But… I wouldn’t mind my partner knowing that, should he feel tired after work, he can rely on me to be happy to cook a healthy, tasty, fast dinner for the both of us.

I wouldn’t mind for Richard to feel at ease with the knowledge that my financial health isn’t dependent on him working at a good job – that I can financially support myself and even him if he were ever to want a break from working.

I wouldn’t mind Richard not having to worry about keeping a close eye on my mental health, not having to help me keep myself physically healthy, and not having to make sure I’m on top of my Uni work.

I wouldn’t mind finding it easy to take out the recycling, to clean and tidy the flat, and to achieve some general chores (like making important phone calls,) all by myself.

I wouldn’t mind not having to feel guilty and stupid after saying something hurtful to someone I love, and for my partner to trust that his emotional wellbeing, happiness, dreams and freedom are 100% safe in my hands.

I wouldn’t mind being less scared of the world, and to be able to just get on with doing things by myself.

I wouldn’t mind my partner feeling that our roles are equal – that neither of us are a burden in any way, shape or form to one another, that we are both strong, healthy, happy and complete individuals.

I wouldn’t mind being able to make my ideas a reality, without having all this doubt and anxiety holding me back.

I have made it my mission to have achieved my desired level of maturity by around a years time!

I never want to be boring. I always want to be a cute, strange, quirky, unique and adventurous person who’s always unapologetically me. I just want to be a more strong, confident, skilled, fearless, dependable and reliable version of that person.

Basically, I want to be a cute princess and a badass superhero.

Becoming more mature, grown up, intelligent and wise does NOT mean you have lose anything positive that your young self possesses. It doesn’t have to mean that at all. It means retaining your youthful spirit whilst honing some of your weaker life skills, until those skills are strong and complete.

If being mature means to be cute, strong, strange, confident, skilled, quirky, fearless, unique, dependable and reliable, then it’s something I want to be.

– Storm

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Depression Tip #4

Depression Tip #4:

If you’re not on any medication for your depression, you should be taking supplements! I personally decided to not opt for medication when my doctor offered – SSRIs just really don’t agree with me at all. Instead, after a lot of research, I decided to begin taking Tryptophan supplements. Tryptophan is a natural amino acid that your brain needs to produce serotonin – an important brain chemical that helps regulate mood, sleeping patterns, focus, appetite, energy levels etc. The purpose of prescribed SSRI medication is to increase the levels of serotonin in your brain – taking Tryptophan supplements effectively do the same thing!

You should always consult with your doctor before taking any supplements – particularly if you are already on medication. Do NOT take Tryptophan if you are already on prescribed medication related to your mental health – too much serotonin in your system can do a lot more harm than good! 

There are other healthy ways to self-medicate from home – such as taking vitamin D supplements, taking vitamin B complex supplements, using a SAD light or using SAD alarm clock.

Taking supplements really helps me. Just knowing that you’re actively doing something to help yourself feel better feels really good!

– Storm

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It’s Time To Beat The Winter Blues.

Sorry guys, this is a pretty depressing post, but this stuff is REAL.

So many of us have to struggle through and deal with mental health problems. Being open with eachother helps to lighten the load!


Ugh… Winter…

If anybody knows me, they know that I absolutely despise this time of the year. I just absolutely hate it. Yeah, there’s Christmas, big deal! Lucky old me happens to live in England, meaning Winter sort of overrules the majority of the other seasons, leaving just a couple of weeks in the Summertime when it is actually warm outside.

I hate the cold, I hate the loss of hours of daylight, I hate how all life outside seems to just DIE. I hate how difficult the Winter makes it for me to go outside and just sit on the grass in a park. I hate how difficult the Winter makes it for me to feel good about how I look – it’s pretty difficult to feel beautiful when you’re wearing 100 layers of clothing! I hate how I always become physically unwell with a disgusting 1-month long flu every Winter. I hate how the hardest work I have to do at College or Uni is always when it’s coldest. I hate how expensive it is to heat a home during the winter, and how waking up is made that much more difficult because who wants to get out of their warm bed to shower when the flat is 10 degrees Celsius in the morning?

But, you know what I hate most about the Winter? How much more difficult it makes it for me to manage my mental health. I Unfortunately, come sunshine or snow, seem to always struggle with mental health problems. Winter just further complicates everything!

The primary source of it all for me I think is depression, so I’m going to actively try to fight it. My intentions are not to cure myself of any mental health problems – that would be fairly unrealistic. I do think that I’m able to manage my mental health better though, and to live a much happier life as a result. I don’t really know what to expect, I just know that I am tired of dealing with this much difficulty in my day to day life, and that I have to at least try to make things better for myself.

If anything I try helps, I’ll do my best to post about it. Maybe it will help someone else too.


– Storm

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New Health Goals.

Hey guys!

I’ve successfully managed to maintain my weight (127.8 lbs) since my diet ended in the Summer, although it has been more difficult than I anticipated it would be! I’m definitely a girl who naturally tends toward gaining weight and it’s something I really have to keep a close eye on to prevent it from happening.

I also have managed to keep my water intake up to a healthy amount every day, which I’m really proud of! I’ve never been somebody who naturally goes to water when thirsty. When I was a kid, I’d only drink squash! I do definitely feel much healthier for it, and am happy to have achieved my second health goal 🙂

So, now I’m onto my third health goal. I’ve been feeling pretty lazy, so deciding what to make my next health goal has been slightly challenging. I feel that every health goal I’ve made so far has been at the right time, if that makes any sense!

I decided to get to my ideal weight at the right time because it is something I had been struggling with for so long, and it was just the right time to finally do something for myself that would make me feel really good, healthy and happy.

I decided to bring my water intake up to my ideal amount at the right time because I had been feeling so fatigued and unwell since starting at Uni, and drinking more water has definitely helped with that side of things.

I think I’m going to be brave, and make my next health goal be fitness. I have become EXTREMELY unfit, and have definitely lost some muscle mass since my weight loss. I’m very weak and get absolutely exhausted from walking up just a single flight of stairs, no joke. Now, because of being so unfit, I’m genuinely terrified for this health goal. I also know that although keeping my water intake up will be easy, maintaining my weight will be even more of a hassle to do alongside trying to stay fit. Whenever I exercise, I get really, really hungry – more hungry than the amount of calories I’ve burned! It is something I really just need to work on.

So, I am going to begin working out. I’m probably just going to jog nearby my home, because it’s free and I don’t know… Jogging just feels like a really healthy thing for people to do! My goal will be 450 minutes of aerobic exercise per week, or rounded up to 1 hour and 4 minutes and 18 seconds… 7 days a week. It sounds like a lot, but I think split up into chunks it will definitely be doable (considering how much time a day I waste just procrastinating on my laptop…) Apparently this is the “sweet spot” in terms of aerobic exercise.

All the while maintaining my water intake and my weight!

I’m not going to begin this health goal straight away – I need to obtain some work-out clothing, recover from the gross cold I have and finish up at Uni for the Christmas holidays first! I’ll probably be starting around Friday 15th December.

Wish me luck guys, this lazy ass girl is going to need all the luck she can get!

– Storm

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Health and Maintaining Weight Loss

Hey guys!

Just wanted to write a post to update you all on how maintaining my weight loss has been going, and how I’m going to proceed from here in terms of health goals.

If any of you didn’t know, last year I began my own little weight loss journey, and completed it a few months ago. I say little weight loss journey because I only wanted to lose 15 lbs (from 142.8 to 127.8 lbs,) so the visual transformation in my body isn’t super noticeable! Regardless, I feel much happier and healthier now 🙂

I have successfully kept the weight off (exactly 127.8 lbs when I weighed myself this morning!) Below I will give 5 tips on how to lose weight based on how I managed it (I’m not a health professional by any means,) and then 5 tips on how to maintain weight.

Here are some quick before and after photos. All the before ones will be on the left and are from August 30th – September 6th 2016. All the after pictures will be on the right and are from June 17th – September 6th 2017. (Sorry they’re not clear, I can’t be bothered to edit them right now…)

I at least can see the changes! Before I looked a lot less happy and my body looked disproportionately large in comparison to my head! After I look more happy, much more shapely, healthier, everything looks proportionate and I look a hell of a lot younger in my opinion!


Tips on how to lose weight through diet:

  • Try to only eat until you feel content, do your BEST to not eat until you feel FULL!
  • Drink plenty of water – 2-3 litres a day. This is a perfectly healthy amount to drink in a day, and doing so really helps with weight loss. When we are dehydrated, we easily put on water weight because our body is scared to let any water go! Also, often when we feel hungry we are actually just thirsty or bored. Drinking water gives you something to do without causing you to gain weight, and keeps you hydrated. You’ll also feel a lot more hungry if you’re not drinking enough because your stomach will be more empty than it should be. On top of all of that, water helps a LOT with digestion, which in turn helps with weight loss and bloating. Water helps you to feel more energetic. Having the energy to move around helps with weight loss! Basically, water is amazing. Drink lots of it!
  • Try to avoid unhealthy, carby foods with low nutrient-density. Try to limit your intake of sweets, cakes, chocolate, crisps, noodles, pasta, bread, biscuits etc, and find lower calorie options where able to. Since I began my diet, I only drank unsweetened almond milk because of how low in calories it is, and now that’s the only milk I actually enjoy drinking! This change reduced my calories from 39 per 100ml of milk to 13 per 100ml of milk – that’s a third of the calories! I also really try to go for healthier options when I eat, and tend to steer toward vegetable based meals with tons of greens like kale in them. Use low calorie carbohydrates like couscous and cereal. The more nutrient dense your food is, the more satisfying and filling it will be.
  • DON’T GIVE UP! It took me a REALLY long time to lose 15lbs, and I became disheartened a lot during the process. It’s really easy to give up, but just pick yourself back up and keep going. You’ll get there in the end and trust me, it will be 100% worth it once you do 🙂
  • This might be a really obvious one, but count your calories! This is real stressful but, honestly, if you REALLY want to lose that weight then the most direct route to doing that is by counting your calories. Use a calorie calculator to see how many calories you should be eating a day to lose a maximum of 2lbs a week and do your best to stick to your chosen amount of calories everyday. This is how I lost weight and the only times I didn’t lose weight consistently was when I got lazy with my calorie counting. This method isn’t fun, but it does work!

Tips on how to maintain weight through diet:

  • Don’t go absolutely nuts with junk food just because you reached your weight loss goal! It’s really easy to feel like you are allowed to reward yourself with a good old binge on your favourite snacks and food items, but really, don’t. I mean, it’s okay to overeat every now and then but you just have to remember that for every day you over-eat during the week, a day will need to be spend under-eating in order to balance your calorie intake and outake and to maintain your weight. It’s all about balance guys!
  • Don’t get lazy and stop drinking so much water when you finish your weight loss journey. Just because you feel more full because you’re able to eat more food now, it doesn’t mean water becomes any less important! You’ll gain weight pretty quickly if you slack on your water intake!
  • Don’t change the good, nutrient dense food that you’re eating. I still eat loads of kale, tomatoes, broccoli etc, it’s just that I’m more able to also eat other foods like carby noodles, rice and bread with my meals too now. If you switch over to less healthy foods once your diet ends then again, you’ll gain the weight back very quickly.
  • Don’t stop checking your weight! It’s scary how quickly you can gain / lose weight when you’re not keeping an eye on it. I’d make sure to quickly weigh myself at least every 2 weeks or so (preferably once a day) just to keep an eye on the direction that things are going. It’s much easier to nip a weight gain of 2lbs in the bud than it is to have to lose 7lbs all over again!
  • If you do notice you’ve gained a little weight, don’t feel disheartened – weight fluctuations are normal! 1-2 lbs of weight gain will only take 1-7 days of drinking lots of water and eating nutrient dense, low calorie meals for your weight to spring back to normal.

Now that i weigh a healthy amount, it’s time to move onto a different health goal. Being the best weight you can be for your height does generally improve your health, but it definitely isn’t the only important aspect of being healthy! I’m still incredibly unfit, have a high fat to muscle ratio, have pretty poor waist to height measurements, still eat somewhat crappy foods, still don’t drink enough water and so on and so fourth. There’s an infinite amount of ways that you can improve your health, and it’s something I intend to keep trying to do until I can’t any longer.

I chose becoming my ideal weight (ideal BMI of 21.75)  to be my first health goal because I was just so sick of not being a healthy weight. Absolutely everything about it made me miserable, and it was a no-brainer for it to be the first health goal I try to achieve.

I’m going to make my second health goal to be to bring my water intake up to my ideal amount everyday. Hopefully this should be a very quick health goal to complete, and is fairly crucial in order for me to achieve other future health goals (such as fitness!) I’ll begin working on this tomorrow! The idea is to put my full focus into whatever health goal I’m currently working on, meaning I won’t be putting any focus on maintaining my weight while I try to get my water intake up. Instead, I’ll make sure that my weight has been maintained once I have finished my current goal, and if it hasn’t then I’ll quickly sort it out! I find it much easier to work on one thing at a time!

You can work out how much water you should be drinking based on your weight. A good guide for a healthy adult is 35ml of water per kg of weight, which is around 2 litres for me (2028.91868ml apparently,) or around 680ml (24oz) of water with every meal. With water, it is important to remember that too much isn’t healthy – it’s important to be getting in the right amount of fluids for your body and your levels of fitness!

That’s all from me for today 🙂

Love you all!

– Storm x

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Minimalism – Decluttering Wardrobe

I’m someone who is very, very sentimental toward my belongings. I even find it difficult to get rid of my nasty, cheap, old, stained, discoloured, holey T-shirt that does not fit me anymore, isn’t my style and that definitely does not make me feel confident when I wear it! Why? Because maybe I’ll find myself neglecting doing my laundry for a couple of weeks and find myself in need of an emergency back-up T-shirt. I mean, it’s not THAT nasty, and it’s still a functional T-shirt at the end of the day. Surely getting rid of that T-shirt would bring me sadness, regret and worry, right?

Do you relate to any degree… (Or is this just me?!?)

Well, consider yourself mind-blown, because getting rid of that T-shirt / (insert sentimental unneeded item here) will not make you sad. It will lighten a load off of your mind, and  make you feel a WHOLE lot better.

Why?

 

When you remove the crappy pieces from your wardrobe, you allow your amazing items to shine and in turn, allow yourself to shine. You deserve to always be wearing clothes that make you feel confident.

I’ve decided to practice what I preach, and take my first step to decluttering. I find that out of everything I own, old clothing items bring me the most stress and take away the most from my overall happiness, confidence and peace of mind – so I’ll be decluttering my clothes first. This will be an EXTREMELY difficult, stressful and time-consuming mission. I’ve hoarded so many clothing items just in case. But, you know what? I’m going to feel much more amazing, happy and peaceful afterwards, I just know it 🙂


5 STEPS TO DECLUTTER WARDROBE:

1. Begin by getting all clothing items and putting them in a pile. I just included items I’d try on in a changing room for this step, and will go through my jackets/shoes etc another time. I also have a lot of clothes in my dirty laundry pile, hanging up outside, some in the washing machine, new clothes bagged up that I haven’t blogged about yet etc that I have not included in this pile .

2. Next, separate everthing by its function. (E.g. bottoms, bras, swimming bottoms, dresses/playsuits, tops etc.)

3. Tackle each pile, one at a time. Sort each pile into 2 further piles – things you want / things you don’t want. If you’re having difficulty letting go, ask yourself “How does this item make me unhappy?” Doing that helped me to realize that a lot of my clothes cause me stress! Put all the “want” piles back in your closet.

4. Combine your ‘don’t want’ piles together – or you’ll end up with about 20 different piles! Sort your new ‘don’t want’ pile into clothes to chuck, clothes to sell and clothes to take to your local charity shop. If you have a textiles recycling bank nearby, replace your ‘clothes to chuck’ pile with a ‘clothes to recycle’ pile.

5. Bin anything that isn’t in good enough condition to take to the charity shop (or bag up to take to a textiles recycling bank.) Bag the stuff to be taken to the charity shop and be sure to take everything down there in the morning. Set the ‘clothes to be sold’ to the side so that they can be listed on ebay for people to purchase in the morning, when photos can be taken with natural daylight!


I personally have 52 items in my ‘clothes to be sold’ pile after decluttering!:

– 8 bras (1 sports bra, 2 bikini tops 5 bras)
– 1 swimwear bottoms (swimming trunks)
– 13 one-pieces (12 dresses, one playsuit)
– 12 tops (2 sweatshirts, 1 pajama top, 2 button-ups, 3 crop tops, 1 T-shirt, 3 tank tops)
– 18 bottoms (5 shorts, 1 skirt, 5 jeans, 4 leggings, 2 trousers, 1 dungaree shorts)

I know a lot of this stuff is more suitable to be sold during the summer but honestly, I just want them gone. If they don’t sell then I’ll keep relisting them at lower prices until they do!

Here’s how much I’d make from these items if sold for an average of…:

– £1 per item = £52
– £2 per item = £104
– £3 per item = £156
– £4 per item= £208
– £5 per item = £260

Not bad for just getting rid of some clutter if you ask me! I think I’ll probably try to sell everything on ebay as one bundle, and list it as ‘Collection Only’. Anyway, that’s to be done tomorrow!

I already feel a bit less stressed now from going through my clothes, and I’m sure after I’ve taken some bits to the charity shop and have listed everything on ebay tomorrow I’ll feel even happier 🙂


Are you in need of decluttering or have you decluttered recently? Feel free to leave any tips you have for hoarders like myself below! 

– Storm 

 

 

 

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Completing My Weight Loss Journey!

15 lbs

Hey guys!

So, as some of you know, I have been trying to lose weight! This started on the 20th December 2016, and my mission was to go from an “overweight” BMI to the most ideal BMI (21.75.) For me (a 163cm girl,) that meant going from 142.8lbs to 127.8lbs – which I have just achieved! 🙂 I didn’t exactly achieve this weight loss quickly, but it’s finished now which is all that matters (and in time for my trip to Mallorca!) That’s a total weight loss of 15lbs!


Now I know, I know. BMI isn’t the most accurate way to measure one’s health, is more of a guideline, and that studies have shown that an overweight BMI is actually healthier etc. My goal was simply to be the healthiest I could be according to ONE method of measuring one’s health, and to purely follow their official methods of measuring health. I would find it impossible to work on maintaining an ideal weight as well as work on building up muscle for example, so I decided to become healthy one step at a time and to just focus on my weight first. I just used the BMI healthy weight calculator on the NHS site!

bmi2.png

I feel a LOT better after losing this weight, so it definitely has proven a helpful thing to do! I feel smaller, and like my body fits me better. I feel more comfortable and more confident, and am not self conscious anymore if my partner wants to pick me up! Now that I’m done I’m going to do my best to not eat more or less than I need to, so that I can maintain this weight for as long as possible.

I can proudly say that I am healthy according to that BMI calculator, and if anyone (including myself) ever tries to put me down about my weight, well, I shouldn’t listen to them because being healthy is most important!

– Storm