Tag Archives: help

Hello 2019!

Ah, 2019. A brand new year. A fresh start. New year, new me and all of that. A new year is usually the time for people to start making their new year resolutions, writing any goals they hope to achieve in the new year and starting a clean slate. I do love thinking about a new year and all it can bring, however it can be a difficult time for us. In this blog post, I’m going to be discussing the pressures that the new year can bring and how I, personally, don’t particularly agree with resolutions.

The problem with resolutions is that you can automatically be setting yourself up for a fall. There’s no point in me making a resolution that says ‘I’m not going to drink as much wine’ for example, because I already know I won’t be able to keep up with that promise. I love wine too much.

New year resolutions can cause you to put so much pressure on yourself to complete the things that you’ve told yourself you need to do it the year ahead, that sometimes you don’t end up doing anything at all and find yourself in a rut. I never set myself resolutions, but I do think it’s great to have goals or a bit of a plan of what you hope to achieve in the next 12 months. Emphasis on the word hope! It’s perfectly OK if you don’t achieve your goals. And if you do, well done you! That’s fantastic. Here are the things that I’m hoping to do this year;

  • Complete University and graduate
  • Save, save, save
  • Buy a new car
  • Find a full time job that I love
  • Be accepted to do my Masters degree/ start my Masters degree
  • Be more dedicated to my blog
  • Start You Tube (if I can pluck up the confidence)
  • Finish my book
  • Get my book published
  • Find my self-confidence
  • Find belief in myself
  • Get fit and healthy
  • Make new friends
  • Go on a holiday

I know it seems like I have a lot of goals, and I do. But this is just a summary of everything I’d like to achieve, but I know it’s not all going to happen in the next year. By making sure I know this, it helps to keep things into perspective and to tell myself that I don’t need to pile the pressure on to achieve them. They will happen when they happen.

Take finding my self-confidence or believing in myself for example, that kind of thing takes years to accomplish, to truly have confidence in yourself. I know that this isn’t going to happen in one year, but my goal is to put more emphasis and effort into helping myself to feel this way in 2019.

It’s hard not to put pressure on yourself whenever a new year comes around, as quickly as it always does. You see other people starting the gym, eating well, glowing and pushing themselves to do the things they want by the 1st week of January, yet you still can’t find the motivation to do any of that for yourself. And this is perfectly OK. Just because we enter a new year, does not mean you’re a different person. We don’t enter a new life when the new year begins, we carry on being us but the time moves on and we have to try and keep up.

My friends Dad is turning 60 next month and she told me something that he said, that really stuck in my head. She told me that her Dad said he isn’t worried about turning 60, it’s just another number. He said that he’s just happy to still be waking up every day, so his 60th birthday is just another day to be happy about. And this is the idea that I want to take into 2019.

If you’re reading this, you’re still here. You made it into 2019. You’re here and you’re living and breathing. Without putting pressure on yourself in the new year, just be happy that you’ve made it into 2019 and think about how fantastic and positive it is that you’re waking up every day.

Second step, think about what’s going to make you the happiest this year. Slowly but surely, find the confidence to get rid of the things that aren’t making you happy anymore. Whether that be a person, a relationship, a friendship, a job, a habit, your diet, anything! If you need to stop doing things that you did last year because they don’t make you happy anymore, then make 2019 the year that you choose to do what makes you happy. Use the clean slate of a new year to make these decisions for yourself.

Also, think about where you were this time last year and think about how far you’ve come. I feel like I was a completely different person this time last year in comparison to who I am now. I’ve grown in so many different ways and I’ve learnt so many things. And that’s what a new year should be about; learning and growing naturally without pressure.

So, less of the pressure on yourself, find your happiness in whatever that may be, and don’t feel worried if you haven’t achieved everything on your list by the end of January. I’m telling you now, that’s not going to happen. Everything is a process, it’s the beginning that is the most important part.

After you’ve read this post, please, get a pen and paper and write what you hope to achieve in a list, just like I did up there ^.

Don’t put any time limits on, this adds pressure that we’re trying to avoid.

I hope January is working out in the best way possible for you, and if it’s not, don’t worry. We have a long year ahead of us and so many changes are going to happen and things are going to work out the way they should.

I’d love to hear some of your goals for the year ahead, so let me know!

Happy 2019.

Healthy Mind, Healthy Body, Healthy Life

If you switch on the news, go online, or read a newspaper in everyday life of today, you will see that this topic is the most talked about within our society at the moment. Mental health surrounding young people is a topic that is becoming much less of a taboo to talk about, and I feel more recently is most definitely being focused on.
According to research, 75% of mental illnesses start before a child reaches their 18thbirthday, while 50% of mental health problems in adult life take root before the age of 15.
Although this may be a difficult subject to discuss, suicide is the leading cause of death in young men and women aged 20-34 in the UK. The latest figures that have been published by the Office of National Statistics reveal that the number of young suicides each year is greater than it ever has been in the last 10 years.
Why are the stats so high?
I truly believe that the reason the statistics are so high for suicide is because young people feel they do not know where to turn when fighting a mental illness. Whether it be depression, anxiety or something even more severe such as alcohol or drug dependency, there are not enough resources available for young people to ask for help. Not only that, there is a stigma attached to ‘mental illness’.
Research has found that particularly in males, they may find it more difficult to speak about their emotions and feelings, which leads to an increase in male suicides. Males feel that they are going to be judged for not being ‘manly’ enough, or they face the fear that they will be told to ‘man up’ if they admit that they are feeling depressed, sad, lonely or anxious.
I have to admit, within the last couple of years I have noticed a huge change in focusing on mental health and young people, and the services and funding regarding the topic has most definitely improved. But we need to keep going.
The fight to eradicate the ‘taboo’
Statistics will tell us that 16 million people in the UK will experience a mental illness. One in four adults will experience a mental illness at some point each year. In fact, I like to think of it this way; we all have mental health. Every single person experiences mental health, and some days our mental health will be amazing, and other days our mental health will be poor.
My point is, everyone feels it. Everyone has been through times where they have felt depressed and lonely, and nobody should have to go through it alone. I want everyone to feel comfortable enough in society to be able to openly speak about the way they are feeling and feel okay about asking for help, because talking about it changes everything. We need to fight the stereotypical view that men should be ‘manly’ and shouldn’t be talking about their emotions; because they should. We need to fight the stereotypical view that women dramatize everything and should ‘get on with things’ because that isn’t healthy.
Mental health should be talked about and assessed every single day.
Just like the title says, ‘healthy mind, healthy body, healthy life’. Our mental health is fundamental in being able to achieve other things in our lives. If you are suffering with mental health issues, it is so easy to block out everything else. It feels like a downward spiral of not wanting to see family or friends, not wanting to go to work or education, and not wanting to do anything. I truly believe that our mental health should come before anything else, sometimes that includes physical health too.
What can we do to help ourselves?
Talk. Express your emotions. Cry as much as you need too!
 
I urge you to talk about the way you’re feeling. Find someone you trust and let everything out. Bottling your sadness, loneliness or any other bad feelings inside will only cause the issue to get worse. There are so many people that are able to help.
I have seen the rise of organisations and charities that are determined to help anyone who may be feeling suicidal or lonely and it’s so important that if you are feeling this way, to seek all the help you can get.
The most important thing to take from this article, is to never feel embarrassed. Never feel embarrassed to talk about the way you’re feeling no matter who you are, no matter what gender, age, race, ethnicity you are. We are all human beings who should never feel ashamed of feeling emotions.
I have linked just a few websites and organisations who are there for you to talk too, whenever and wherever you need it. Don’t bottle things up, mental health is nothing to be afraid or ashamed of and there is always someone there to help you.

 

University Life

If you’re thinking of going to University and do not have a clue what to expect, then keep reading! I feel as though I have been through it all over the past two years that I’ve been at University – the ups and downs, the indecisiveness of not knowing which path I want to take, going out, getting drunk and forgetting my own name, fall-outs, friendships, everything! I’m here to give you the best advice I can to try and prepare you.
I understand the difficulty and pressure that we are all made to feel when deciding what we want to do with our lives. Especially in high school, it’s completely impossible to know which subjects you should take in order to help you build your future career. Quite often, we’re told by our teachers how much the subjects we study for GCSE’s will impact the job we want to have, but this isn’t entirely true. Let’s just say, I’ve never once been asked about my Art or Spanish GCSE so far in my educational journey.
MY EXPERIENCE
When studying A-levels for two years, I thought I had literally failed. I really struggled with handling the transition from GCSE’s at high school to the full-on, difficult and stressful studying of balancing 4 A-levels all at once. With the thought of failure already embedded into my head, I had to start thinking of a back-up plan of what I could do once I didn’t get into University. But luckily, and very surprisingly, when results day came, I had passed all of my exams and gotten offers from all of my University choices! I couldn’t believe it!
I had decided to do English because I enjoyed the subject and it was something that I knew I was good at. I also didn’t have a clue what I actually wanted to do so I picked this subject as an easy way through University.
THE REALITY
As the months went by of my first year at university, I became miserable. I hated my course and I wasn’t enjoying the university experience. I’d made good friends and I was having fun in that aspect, but when it came to the academic side I absolutely hated it. I have to admit, I gave up. I stopped going to my lectures, I stopped doing my work, I stopped submitting assignments and I didn’t even turn up for presentations or exams. I absolutely hated it. I was 18 years old, and halfway through my first year of university and I was completely stuck about what to do and all I could think of was to quit.
I was so lucky to have my parents to speak too about what to do. They told me how important University is for my future, and they were not bothered about what I did as long as I was happy. I ended up staying at the same University but changing my course and it was the best decision I have ever made. I wasn’t ready to give up education completely and I knew deep down how beneficial having a degree really is for my future career, whatever that may be.
A MESSAGE FOR YOU
The first message that I wanted to get across was that even if unfortunately, for whatever reason, you do not have a support system behind you to help you decide the best options for yourself, it’s completely normal for you to not know what career you would like and you are most certainly not the only one. Some people go through their entire lives not knowing what they would love to do, and get to 50 years old and decide to have a career change. Do not let the pressures of high school force you into studying for subjects that you feel will change your future because the reality is – they don’t! Whether you decide to study A-levels, a BTEC, or take another route and do an apprenticeship, start your own business, the choice is yours, and more importantly, the choices are endless. When it comes to university, if like me you start a course which turns out to not be everything you thought it was going to be, you have the ability to change your mind and whichever university you are at should guide you through this process and make you feel at ease. It’s never too late to change your mind! The best advice I can give is please do not ever continue through University if you’re unhappy with your studies. From my own experience, it will affect everything!
EMBRACING UNI LIFE
Once you have decided what you would like to do and are sticking at a course for the duration of it, you need to embrace University life! One of the biggest regrets I had in my first two years was that I did not put myself in the middle of University life. I should have joined societies for anything I was interested in, in order to meet new people and learn new things, and also to keep my week busy. It’s easy for things to get on top of you at University, especially if you’re living far away from home and can get homesick, so socialising and doing different activities is the best way to take your mind off anything you may be struggling with and keeping yourself extra busy but focused. I’ve put together a list of general (but random) tips that I think everyone should know;
TIP 1: SLEEP IS IMPORTANT – when you’ve got deadlines up to your eyeballs, you’ve been partying every night and surviving off pot noodles, sleep is the only thing you need. Always give yourself enough sleep, and try your best to stick to a routine.
TIP 2: DON’T WASTE YOUR MONEY ON EXPENSIVE ALCOHOL – at every single pre drinks I survived on the cheapest wine from my local supermarket, mixed with lemonade and it did the job of getting me happy drunk every time and I always had the best nights. Although student prices in clubs are a dream, don’t waste your money on buying drinks in a club which will probably get knocked out of your hands anyway.
TIP 3: APPRECIATE LIVING IN STUDENT HALLS (IF THIS APPLIES TO YOU) – the transition from living in university halls on campus to a student house was a difficult one. So make the most of every mom
ent in halls! Everything is done for you, whenever there’s a problem, for example, your lightbulb has broken, or your TV won’t turn on, there is always someone on campus to help fix it for you. Make the most of this, because moving into a shared house and having to deal with bills and greedy landlords is very stressful. Living together with a group of people you hardly know has to be a team effort. Work together to keep things clean, tidy, and enjoyable for everyone. Halls was the best experience of my life!
TIP 4: MAKE AS MANY FRIENDS AS POSSIBLE – like I’ve mentioned earlier, it’s important to socialise with as many people as you can and try to be involved in as little drama as possible. But remember, not all of the people you meet will be your friends for life. Form a small but trustworthy circle, and enjoy every minute with them because you will remember your entire university experience with them being a part of it.
TIP 5: MAKE THE MOST OF STUDENT BENEFITS – there have been so many things that I realised I missed out on as a student. Most of them being money off deals with my student card – including money off or free pizza! So do your research and every time you go shopping, make sure you check whether you can use your student discount or not. Don’t miss out! Every penny counts. Similarly, in freshers week sign up for as many student perks as you can, and make sure you take home all the free pens you’re offered – you’ll need them!
TIP 6: MANAGE YOUR MONEY – this is so important. I know it’s the last thing you’ll be thinking about when you’re buying 10 jägerbombs for all your friends, but it helps so much. Figure out how much you need to pay for rent, food and general living and then how much you’ll have left over each week or each month whether that be from your student loan or a part time job. It’s a life saver – then you’ll know how much you can spend on going out and having fun!
TIP 7: STAY SAFE – even when you have Dutch courage inside of you and think you’re invincible when walking back from the nightclub at 4am – you’re not. Never walk back alone, manage your alcohol and make sure that you stick with your friends. The amount of accidents involving students is immense and scary, so make sure you are always safe. You can always have fun without putting yourself in danger.
TIP 8: APPRECIATE EVERYTHING – the people you meet, the environments, the student perks, will all be missed as soon as you graduate. Appreciate everything and everyone you meet. University will be the best experience of your life as long as you make it that way yourself. Enjoy every moment!

 

If you’re getting ready to go to University and are feeling nervous or apprehensive, just know that there are a million other students all over the world who will be feeling the exact same way as you are. Everyone is in the same boat, and this thought should put you at ease.
I hope University is everything you hope and that you all achieve everything you’re capable of – it really is the greatest few years of your life. Enjoy!