blogging · Lifestyle · Uncategorised

Blogging

So a few blogs back i said i was going to attempt to blog every day for the month of June. You have probably noticed that this has not really happened. This is not because i couldn’t think of content or have the time to write. It was more to do with the fact that it felt like i was blogging for the sake of blogging and that’s not really what i am about.

I wanted this to be a record of my rise from the ashes. I have always wanted to avoid it being a me, me , me type personal blog (That’s what i use Instagram for) and keep it more informative for my readers in the hope you may find something useful or inspiring along the way. By setting myself this challenge i was kind of loosing track of this goal and i was just blogging for the sake of blogging and the content was quite frankly rushed, boring and irrelevant to both my project LilBlu’s Thankyou and my journey as a blogger. If that makes sense.

So i am going to go back to a one a week blogging structure and maybe chuck in an extra one if im feeling inspired. I do have a few lined up, continuing on from my importance of me time theme so watch this space.

 

Anyway thankyou for reading.

Stay humble

LilBlu xxx

Lifestyle · Self motivation · Uncategorised

Life Hack : Hand towels

Moving house is a great time. It gives you time to start a fresh, refocus and declutter yourself and feel more organised.  For me most things have gone well and i have found workable solutions to other problems. One of the silly house hold things i have struggled with is the hand towel for my bath room.

When i first moved in i bought some temp hangers and popped it up and hey presto i had a hand towel in my bathroom and the endless battle of keeping the towel off the floor began. If it wasn’t falling off the hook by itself it was taking the hook off the wall all together. It was driving me potty and then i came to me while sorting through a bag of stuff. Baby Towels!

Baby Towels usually come with built in hoods to help keep our little ones warm and dry. It was when i realised this that i had my light bulb moment . Use your baby towels as your hand towels. So basically the hack is to just suggest using a baby towel because the hood of the towel provides you with an easy way to hang up the towel. I did this and i now have no more towels on the bath room floor. It always amazes me that something so small and insignificant in the long scheme of things can have such a satisfying impact on a personal life.

 

Thankyou for your time

LilBlu xx

Lifestyle · Self motivation · Uncategorised

10 things you can do to get fit for free.

Our fitness is something that really needs more care and attention than a lot of us give it. It is so easy to sit and moan about wanting to be fitter but knowing it will cost an arm and a leg to join a gym, class and the like. I have been there but in my years of moaning i have found that there are actually a lot of ways you can still keep fit without spending a penny.

Here are 10 free things i have tried in the past to keep fit while having little money.

Walking

So simple and so easy for most of us. Make sure you walk (non stop) for at least 20 mins every day. Not only does it have great physical benefits but by being outside improves your mental health and happiness too. It is something you can do with your kids and dogs who will also benefit greatly from it but it is 100% free.

Cycling

You just need to grab your bike and go. If you have a bike that is. I don’t at present but i did recently see one up for grabs on a local freecycle type Facebook page. The other option is ask a buddy if you can borrow one they don’t use. My mum had one that just sat in the shed for years and years. So one day i asked to borrow it and i got some really good use out of it. If you are a little worried about cycling on the road just look up your local cycle paths and stick to them. That’s what i did anyway.

Running

Just like walking and cycling running is another activity you can jut get up and do. If you are like i was and have never run for fitness in your life you can download some really great free running apps. They will play the music from your phone as you run and give you a heads up about when to start and stop running. As the programme goes on week by week you start to improve and before you know it you can run 10, 15 even 30 mins without stopping.

Home workout

This is something i have just started doing again now i have my own place and space to do it. Its so simple too. Look up exercises for the areas you want to work on and then every morning spend a good 30 mins or so doing them and ALWAYS include your stretches. Make sure you keep at it and find ways to make it harder as your fitness improves. So introduce a new exercise or increase your sit ups by 20 ect..

You Tube

There are loads of fitness tutorials and classes on You Tube that could really help you and it is one of those things where you give it a go and save it if you like it. It can be done from the comfort of your own home and costs you nothing other than your time and (hopfully) sweat!

Ditch your car

I don’t drive so i know better than anyone how easy it actually is to live without jumping in the car. When i am walking to work i see the traffic of car after car with just one person in it and wonder just how many of those people could have walked or cycled into work today. When i was growing up i would walk 2 miles to get to school in all weathers and in my adult life i have cycled 2 miles to get to the office. Most companies now have schemes for people who cycle to work where you can get your bike paid for or get added bonuses. All you need to do is take a spare set of clothes and have a way to freshen up and your set. So by ditching  your car you are helping the environment, reducing traffic and boosting your fitness.

Helping others

This is probably one of the most uplifting ones i wanted to include. By helping someone else you can in turn keep yourself more active than normal and keep yourself fit while knowing you are doing something good. Volunteering for example. A lot of charities need people willing to give their time for marshalling events, or working in their shops and cafe’s, help with building, lifting, gardening ect. and all of these things involve being on you feet and involve manual labour. So if you have a neighbour who has a dog they cant always walk offer to take them out, if your sister is having issues building a fence or decorating a room offer to help them, if you pop online to a charity and hit the ‘how can i help section’ take a look at their volunteer needs and sign yourself up. I have done this in the past and it is so, so rewarding.

Take up a hobby

There are so many hobbies that can be done for free but can really help you get motivated to get moving. Things like photography or bird watching get you out to new places and walking around. you can join free local groups on hikes, bike rides or litter picks. There are even mum groups who meet up with their buggies and go for walks together once a week. There are also fitness benefits in singing so if you can not afford a choir then teach yourself with a free you tube tutorial or a friend who might help you out. There are so many things you could do that you can organise yourselves too. Grab the lads once a week to meet for a game of football or rounders in the local park. Worth a go.

Outside Gyms

I have seen one in my local park and would really love to give it a proper go one day. There is a cross trainer, a bike and a swinging foot thing! I have also seen rowers in some out door gyms and weights. Obviously it is weather permitting but if its raining just stay in and do a home work out?

Look after yourself

I thought i would finish with an obvious one. Sleep well, eat sensibly, drink water and get your 5 a day. If you deter from any of these things it can really impact your self motivation and that is the first thing you need to get your fitness on. A lot of healthy living is about reprogramming your brain and day to day life. So your well-being and motivation should always be an important factor in any fitness or life plan. For free advice on this you can speak to your GP or NHS website or similar.

 

I hope these help and can give you some inspiration.

LilBlu xx

Lifestyle · positive thinking · Self motivation · Uncategorised

Daily Blog : Goals

I started this blog as a way to document a journey of self improvement from rock bottom and goodness me, what a journey it has been so far. My aim was always to do this in a way where it would be more informative than self indulgent and I really hope i have managed to maintain this. You see it all the time where a blog becomes a place for venting and expressing one-sided views and opinions and that is what i am trying to avoid. I am intending on posting daily, a variety of different content from life hacks to testing positive thinking. If you do have any ideas for things you would like to suggest please pop it in the comments below 🙂 So as a new month starts i am going to test if setting goals is a good way to focus our minds and help motivate us along our journeys.

Just as it is easy to become complacent in a bad, toxic environment it is also possible to become comfortable as things start to improve. Both will have us bobbing along dreaming but not really doing anything about those dreams. Its times like this that goals can be really beneficial. Our minds are all individual so it is important to remember the key to making this work is finding the best route for you. My mind set is happiest if i have a clear starting line. For example a new week, a new month to set goals in. Which is why having a new month about to start is so appealing to me. I am sure there is something in taking the ‘seize the day’ attitude but i’m not sure i am quite there yet but i must admit it is something i think worth adopting. But im running off on a tangent!!

Teaching yourself to set goals is not actually that hard and it is something i started while at my lowest point of depression, so if you are reading this thinking that life is too hopeless to work for you, it is possible. I have been there and believe me there is always a little spec of hope, you just need to keep searching and find your way to get yourself out of your complacency.

How would you start to do this?

This is totally up to you, it is your journey after all but if you would like a suggestion for a starting point, i would recommend lists.

List One: Things you want to change.

List Two: Your long team goals

List Three: The first steps (no matter how small) that you will take from List one to list 2.

You can then review these and keep setting regular goals as you achieve the small steps. It basically gives you a way to recognise what is wrong, a way for you to keep focused on the bigger picture and keep you motivated by using small steps to complete the journey from the bottom to the top (list one to list two).

This is just one of many methods and i would be really interested in hearing yours in the comments as i am not expert and as we all our, im totally making it up as i go along.

Thankyou for your time. I hope you found this post interesting. If you enjoyed it drop me a like and/or comment. It gives me a good idea of the type of content that my followers prefer 🙂

Have a great day. Stay positive and stay kind.

LilBlu xxx

 

 

 

 

 

Lifestyle · positive thinking · Self motivation · Uncategorised

30DaysWild 2019 : Introduction

For the last 7 or 8 years i have taken part in the Wildlife Trusts challenge 30 Days Wild. They ask you to get out and into nature for every day in June and to record your efforts with photos on social media.

This has always been a great month for me and i love having to think of new ways to keep it fresh and to not just repeat the same things over and over year on year. It also becomes more of a challenge especially as we spend alot of time in nature anyway. So i need to try and think of new things to do to keep it interesting and engaging for us (and you).

This year i am going to blog my efforts in weekly blog posts on here under the theme ‘affordable wildness’. This will demonstrate (i hope) just how do-able and rewarding it is and how it doesn’t have to cost you a penny to take your family out for the day. I think this year this challenge seems more important than ever to promote this. We as a country are becoming more and more awear about the environment and sustainability and this is something i would like to cover during the 30 days and hopefully lay some foundations to change the way i do things and encourage others to follow suit.

I am also going to try something to be more self motivated in this time, as i have reached one of those places in my ‘journey’ where i am comfortable and so could quite easily slip into settling into a simple life. If i am honest with you my goals scare me a little and for some bazaar reason the thought of making them real is terrifying to me. So to help motivate me to achieve them i am going to blog every day, which i expect will become really hard but beneficial as it will keep me organised and focused. I will try not to become too self indulgent and to keep it interesting to you but by combining it with 30DaysWild the two will hopefully help each other.

So if you have any suggestions of things you might like me to cover please do leave it down in the comments section below. I have some plans for life hacks, the 30DaysWild post and maybe some reviews of eco bands and their products but it would be great to know what you would be interested in reading. Let me know your thoughts 🙂

LilBlu xx

Lifestyle · positive thinking · Self motivation · Uncategorised

Me Time : Looking After You

I posted before about the importance of ‘me time’ and suggested things you could do to help you get time to yourself to help your mental health and well being . As i start to get to grips with my new life as a single mother, the more i personally am starting to appreciate the importance of making time for yourself & having something that is ‘just for you’ . No matter your status, we all need time out to relax and regenerate.

It is equally important to look after yourself in a more generalised sense, especially when you have people who depend upon you. Having strength and good health both physically and mentally is paramount if you are doing it alone or if you have someone, we all need to make an effort to take care of ourselves and i bet none of us feel we do enough. What i am finding is by doing this i am more motivated and have more energy, i am less stressed and irritable and feel generally calmer and happier in myself. It also seems to have my ‘mum brain’ under control which is a MASSIVE plus!

Here are a few of the things i have started doing to help me look after myself.

  • Take Multi Vitamins
  • Drink Water and Green Tea
  • Eat your Fruit and Veg
  • Don’t eat too late (after 9pm)
  • Exercise
  • Get outside more
  • Ditch your car and walk on a regular basis
  • Think positive and set yourself positive goals each week
  • Get health conditions checked out ASAP
  • Treat yourself but do not over indulge
  • Shower/Wash daily
  • Look after your skin, hair & nails
  • Pamper
  • Practice calm breathing.

 

I am considering giving up coffee too, i certainly need to limit it as i am drinking so much right now it cant be good but im not sure im ready to loose it just yet!

I hope you found this interesting, inspiring even.

Have a great week.

LilBlu

Lifestyle · positive thinking · Self motivation · Uncategorised

The importance of ‘Me Time’.

People often say to me ‘Nothing worth doing was ever easy’. When you truly want something, it scares you a little, it excites you a lot and it will probably cause you more stress and loss of sleep than anything but it is worth it.

When i started this blog i was in a tough situation and i knew for mine and my daughters own health and well being i had to change this. But when you actually take the plunge to do something about it you can be faced with a whole bunch of emotions you are not ready for. I don’t know if it is because of the situation i left or if this could be a general thing but something i am finding vital to move forwards, is taking a long hard look at my own self and i seeing how doing things ‘just for me’ can be really motivational.

I follow quite a few groups on social media who promote this and who will post reminders to ‘do something for you’. I started small but over the last few weeks i have really started to feel the benefits of it as my mood and motivation improves. Small things you could try are as simple as making sure you take a shower every day or go for a walk outside or spend an hour learning something new like crafts, a language or a new skill. It is the time old trick of ‘turning it on and off again’. These little things shut off your brain and give you a good old reboot and update. It is refreshing & after time really helps you relax and feel more yourself.

With hardship it is easy to forget who you truly are, you become complacent and go into survival mode. You can even doubt your self worth and loose your confidence in your capabilities or start to feel guilty for having a desire to do anything for yourself. But by doing what you love your mind starts to relax, by doing what you love you start to remember who you were and value all you hold dear much more than before. Taking it away and not getting time for you, can make you irritable and stressed. It really is worth implementing ‘me time’ into your life.

So here are a few suggestions that you could try to help you with improving your wellness and motivate you.

  • Realise you are worth it.
  • Start each day with a shower and set a positive goal
  • Don’t hold grudges and learn to walk away
  • Turn off the news & actively search for articles ad reports of kindness & positivity.
  • Stop being a slave to your phone and social media.
  • Go for a walk in nature
  • Start a class or take a course
  • Read a book
  • Mindfulness Colouring books
  • Take photos.
  • Sing out loud
  • Eat and sleep well
  • Exercise
  • Detox and pamper yourself
  • Have an indulgence day (treat yourself)
  • Spend time playing with your kids and get 100% involved.
  • Accept help & charity. There is no shame in talking to a professional.
  • Learn a new skill
  • To do Lists
  • Do everything in moderation and stay humble.
  • 100 happy days challenge. (Focus on the positives)
  • Embrace what you have over what you desire.

Remember looking after yourself is equally as important as looking after others. It is ok to have some down time and want to be alone.

Stay kind, stay humble and stay happy.

LilBlu

 

 

Self motivation · Uncategorised

A positive person in the face of pessimism

I have observed that there are two ways of thinking. You can choose a positive way of thinking and remain optimistic about things or you can let yourself be more guarded and take the pessimistic route. I think it will come as no surprise that i am the former and i hope it is evident from my social media pages that i try my best to remain proactive and productive in everything i do. But what happens when a positive, optimist such as myself is faced with overwhelming amounts of pessimism and negativity? No-one is infallible and so the answer is we struggle and do our best to over come it, fighting any urges to give up.

Things like this are a natural reaction, especially when faced with hardships such as ill health, domestic or mental health issues but i think we can all agree it is at these moments in life where we really do need to fight to keep our minds positive for our own well being. It’s not easy, in fact it is quite the opposite but it’s worth it and that’s the main point.

As you know i do not wish to use this blog as a way to air any ‘dirty laundry’. Some times though, i may draw on aspects personal experiences as that is how we all learn and it can potentially be comforting to another person to see how everyone have doubts and ‘wobbles’.

I have recently gone through some of the hardest months of my adult life where i have felt the need to fight to stay positive to keep myself focused and motivated but i feel i am getting there, in my own way. To those looking on the outside i am apparently ‘inspirational’, ‘a hero’ , ‘incredibly brave and strong’. I am ‘amazing’ and ‘doing the right thing’. The things is, although i am very humbled by these compliments i struggle to feel they are all justified. I certainly am no hero and i have been a crumbling mess rather than having the strength and bravery everyone keeps mentioning but i can see the progress i have made and these are areas i am proud of. Especially where my daughter is concerned, her development and well being have rocketed in the last few weeks and that is the best reward i could have asked for.

It is never easy to come to terms with hardships, what ever they may be. When you are in the thick of it all, it can almost be like your self defences have desensitised you from the full extent of the situation to protect you from further harm. I think this may be why people struggle to accept help or charity because you genuinely feel things are ‘not that bad’, when they actually are. The best thing i did was to ask for help and to talk to people and ask questions.

It is important to remember help does not just fall at your feet when you need it. Most of the time you need to seek it out and find it for yourself. I would not advise expecting or presuming you are owed anything because of your situation but it is always worth asking and surrounding yourself with the love and comfort it brings. Opening up to friends gives new perspectives on the situation and their continued support will keep you strong and focused. Speaking to charities and support networks can help organise the ever growing to do lists and help reassure any worries or questions may have. Speaking to local authorities and organisations openly can also introduce you to support or benefits you were not aware of. Asking for help IS worth it and accepting their help really can help change your stars just be honest and appreciate the help offered.

I guess one of the benefits of being an optimist is the fact that you have a natural drive to be proactive and motivated. When you let yourself be governed with a pessimistic attitude you tend not to even bother trying as it seems pointless to try just to fail, even when there is still hope of success. But i do wonder if one of these types become the other? I would like to believe that there is hope for someone who is more prone to pessimism to find ways to act positively and maybe through a surge of positive experiences it may change but sadly i do think there are people who are so engorged with negative attitudes that it is their only way of thinking and there is no changing this. My advice would be that if you are a more proactive, optimistic and positive soul, make sure you surround yourself with like minded people if you wish to thrive. Optimistic people will find that having a large circle of pessimistic support will be draining and in time start to alter your own outlook. You may start to feel lethargic, complacent and as if you are losing yourself and even (dependant on the situation) lose of your self worth. So surrounding yourself with optimistic people though will motivate and inspire you.

I guess ultimately what i am trying to say is if you are an optamist dealing with pessimistic attitudes; believe in yourself, embrace your optamism & positive motivation & Don’t let the buggers drive you down! Just keep going and dare to hope things will improve for the best.

LilBlu xxxx

Lifestyle · Uncategorised

A Charity Case

Giving to charity is a very positive thing and people who do get involved are well thought of and praised for their time and/or money. Charity in general is a good thing as it helps so many people in so many different ways. Thousands of pounds are raised, donated or collect for them a year because we know it is a great thing to do, to support other people who support others. So why is it when we, ourselves are in need of the type of help one of our many charities offer we feel it is shameful to accept that help?

As you may have seen from my past posts that life has not been easy for me of late but i am so determined to change this. To many people, myself included will stay and struggle in bad situations because they do not realise or will not accept that the help of these charities is available to them and all you need to do is ask for it. Within the last few months i have taken the first major steps to turn my life around and i would not have been able to do with without the support of not one but a number of wonderful charities. Charities like The Trussell Trust who run the food banks they help in small ways but when you literally have £3 to buy you and your family dinner they are there with love and support, food and toiletries, a cup of tea and wifi. Yet people turn their noses up at this. It baffles me. So i wanted to write a blog post around my own experiences of being ‘a charity case’ and hopefully take away some of the stigma around accepting help.

Step One (to changing your stars) : Admitting things are bad

This probably seems quite obvious and in a lot of situations it will be the people around you who notice the issues before you do. These are the people who you confide in, the people who hug you and cheer you up. These are the people notice you’re loosing weight, drinking too much, are acting out of character. These are the people you need to trust and listen too, especially if they are all pointing out the same issues as each other. Listen to them, take it on board and talk to them about it with an open mind.

Step Two: Accepting it yourself.

Again this probably seems quite obvious but for me this was one of THE hardest things to do. To psychologically come to terms with the issues i was actually going through. I could hear what my circle of friends and family were saying and i had researched it to the hilt but i was still struggling to accept it. That is until i contacted a professional help line. It oddly took a lot of courage to do it and it was one of those situations where i wrote an email and hit send before i could change my mind (i have done this a lot recently) but i am so glad i did as this was what i needed to motivate me.

STEP Three: asking for help.

You may be struggling with money or you may be in a bad domestic situation or have a medical, mental health or another issue. Whatever it is, if you are struggling alone, you do not need to. There are always people who will help you but as with anything people can not read your mind and support does not just fall into your lap. You need to make the first step and willingly ask for help. That could be anything from asking your friends or family, going to CAB or calling a helpline for support and advice. That first step will open doors to a whole new world of care and support that you probably never thought possible. So go in search of it and teach yourself how to say yes and genuinely be grateful. It is not shameful, it is brave. It is not a burden, it is kindness. Embrace it and accept that you are deserving.

Step Four: accept help and be grateful

For some reason there is this stigma within us to struggle on even when help is offered. The thing is when the chips are down, help is needed and taking what is offered is often best. Right now i am a charity case. I am not proud of that fact but i am not ashamed of it either. Without the support of these charities, organisations and friends i would NEVER have been able to move forwards. My tears have been one of overwhelming joy and the love ad support i have been shown. I can now move on, pick myself up and change my starts thanks to the combined help of so many. So learn to say yes, and be thankful for it. Give back what you can and good things will follow.

One thing i should also add is in all of this,  you need to find your self motivation, you need to keep optimistic and have an open mind. Alot of the time it is these things that stop us from believing change is possible.

Stay positive, stay humble and believe in yourself.

LilBlu xxx

Lifestyle · Self motivation · Uncategorised

Rep Life

In August 2018 I took the plunge and became an Avon Rep. You have probally seen those sales posts especially around Christmas ‘would you like to earn some extra cash from home’ and like me you probally ignore them most of the time. For years I was adiment I would never do anything like this, as it was alot of work for very little financial reward. so how did I end up working for Avon?

*Before I start don’t worry this isn’t a sales pitch..

The answer is quite simple, my circumstances changed & so I started to see that doing something like this was quite a good start point & could potentially give me something more than extra cash.

It’s given me confidence, it’s given me a new understanding about how to interact on social media, it’s shown me areas I need to improve and the importance of supporting other small buisnesses. It has NOT given me instant cash, it has not given me a decent wage and it certainly hasn’t been easy.

For me it’s been a stepping stone forwards it’s helped me regain some self confidence and a little bit of financial support. It has also given me access into communities of small buisnesses and see just how many of us are trying to ‘make it work’.

So if you are considering becoming a rep for a larger company my advice would be;

1. Be prepared for long hours for little instant reward.

2. Don’t be too hasty. It takes time to build a client base.

3. Support other small buisnesses. Interact with them by commenting and liking their posts.

4. Don’t expect too much from your employer. It’s your buisness at the end of the day.

5. Remember to do your taxes.

6. Customer service is key. Be personable, flexable but professional.

7. Save your early commission to give you an emergency fund for when customers take the goods and run.

8. Enjoy what you do & see the positives of it are more than financial.

9. Know your buisness. Join rep communities, attend seminars, do online training and personally test your products.

10. Learn who your customers are and remember what they like. So when a promotion comes along, you hit the nail on the head.

Hope this has been helpful.

Keep moving forwards

Mucho Love

LilBlu xxxx