Moody?

The most important decision you make is to be in a good mood

-Voltaire

Reminder: Write it down

Have you often thought “There’s no way I’ll forget that. It’s too important”, only to feel intense frustration at being unable to remember?

Worrying about trying to remember important tasks or events can add extra stress to your day.

Sometimes when I’m in the middle of something (like having a shower or walking to the train station) I’ll think of something I need to do later or I think up a really good (read: moderately amusing) tweet. Then I’ll inevitably forget it completely.

What do you do to remember important tasks or events?

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During my high school years I was often seen with writing all over my hands. Frantically trying to remember all the things. Yes, all of the things. Even though I also kept a diary to write these things down, sometimes I’d need to write a reminder on my hand to remind myself to check my diary.

In my room I had pieces of paper everywhere of reminders and lists. I was always worried I’d forget something.

Hint: Random paper around the room and covering your desk doesn’t look great.

I love writing lists such as to do lists and packing lists for trips or overnight stays. So to avoid having pieces of paper all over my desk and bedside table I use the memo app in my phone. Or the evernote app.

I use an Android phone but I’m sure most phones have a default memo or notepad app.

Tips for keeping reminders:

Keep and pen and paper next to your bed. This is helpful for when you have too much on your mind before bed and can’t sleep. Writing some of the thoughts down will allow you to more easily let them go. Looking at a bright screen while trying to sleep can be a hindrance so using paper is good here.

Use apps such as Evernote or the notepad app on your phone to jot down any thoughts, reminders, tweets or lists. Just remember to check the app later!

Use the calendar app in your phone if you need to remember to do things on a particular date or at a particular time. Some calendar apps allow you to set a reminder alarm hours or days before the event.

What do you use to remember important things?

Leave a comment with any tips, tricks or apps that you use.

My experience with… Anxiety

Have you ever felt anxious?

Imagine that feeling before you stand in front of a crowd to give a presentation or a speech. Imagine feeling that for days on end with no relief in sight.

It’s very difficult for people who haven’t experienced anxiety to understand or relate to the symptoms of anxiety.

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The way I describe it:

It feels as though someone has a hold of your intestines and is squeezing as tight as possible, wringing out every drop.

I lose my appetite. I have my “gloomy specs” on so that everything is seen from a negative point of view. I jump to the worst possible conclusion of everything. Thoughts are quick, irrational and it’s like sinking, struggling to stay afloat to see past anything but the completely negative situation.

Anxiety clouds my mind. While trying to get through the day the fog in my head is sometimes too difficult to think through. It’s completely frustrating.

It’s so overwhelming that sometimes normal tasks like eating, sleeping and breathing are a struggle. I feel like I’m barely surviving through some days.

Yes, it’s frustrating for everyone around me. I’m aware. If I could fix the anxiety I would have already.

If someone you know has anxiety:

My opinion is that anxiety requires patient friends and family. Very patient.

Sometimes just a hug can relax the irrational thoughts for a moment so I can have a tiny bit of much needed clarity. That can help immensely.

What I have been doing to improve:

I have been increasing my use of meditation and practising mindfulness. Mindfulness is helping me become more aware of the present instead of being lost in my anxious thoughts of the future or mistakes of the past. I am beginning to notice when the thoughts are getting worse as it’s much easier to calm my mind before the anxiety takes complete hold.

Focusing on my breathing instead of the anxious thoughts brings me back to the present moment and helps me reduce some of the anxiety symptoms (fast breathing and heart rate).

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Before sleeping and upon waking is usually when I have my worst anxiety. Thinking of my to do list for my day ahead often whips me into a frenzy inside my mind. Just knowing that this is my weakness, I acknowledge it and breathe, remembering that I can’t do anything about the to do list until I arrive at work. So I am able to put it out of my mind until I’m ready to deal with each task.

I hope my experience can help you understand how someone you know is feeling. Or if you have ever experienced anxiety in this way I really hope this post has brought you new ideas to try so you can feel some relief.

Big comforting hugs from me to you.

Sleeping positions ruining my health

Which sleeping position do you use most?

To fall asleep I often need to be lying on my stomach or side. However, these sleeping positions are hazardous to my health!
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Not exactly hazardous, but they are causing problems. Two specific problems that are currently bothering me. My teeth and my wrinkles.

Let’s start with my teeth.

Thanks to wearing a dental plate during my younger years I had wonderfully straight teeth. No braces required!

Then, within the past few years I’ve noticed a change. My front teeth are moving out of place. So during my (semi-regular) dentist appointment I asked about this movement.

One expensive wisdom tooth removal surgery later, my teeth are still moving.

Maybe it’s just my paranoia but I think they’re moving faster each day

The answer:

I finally realised that sleeping on my stomach pushes my teeth backwards each night. That’s a lot of hours of pushing!

Now on to the wrinkly bit

I am pretty careful with skin care and applying sunscreen regularly so I was surprised (read: mortified) to find I have a deep wrinkle on my body.

Right there on my chest. A big wrinkle.

Now, I know it’s all superficial appearance nonsense and I shouldn’t worry. I agree. I wish wrinkles didn’t bother any of us. However, it’s playing on my mind and affecting my self esteem.

The solution

I found my solution while reading a book called Amazing Face by Zoe Foster. Right there in the pages was my answer.

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The book clearly stated that to stop boob wrinkles I have to stop sleeping on my side.

The other problem

I can’t fall asleep on my back.

I just can’t.

How to fall asleep on your back

While trying out apps to combat insomnia I found out that:
1. Some really work to put me to sleep.

2. If I fall asleep on my back while listening to these apps I stay on my back until I wake.

Some nights I really can’t stand lying on my back so I give up. But otherwise I have discovered the best way for my body to sleep.

Have you found any issues with your sleeping positions? Please share in the comments section.

My experience with… Meditation

We often hear the word “mindfulness” but how many of us have actually understood the meaning?

The journey

I have begun on a personal quest or journey to discover what mindfulness means. Or at least what it could mean for me.

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From the beginning:

I downloaded a few different guided meditation apps such as Calm, Stop, Breathe & Think, Insight Timer.

I found some more useful than others.

So far:

I learned it’s okay if sometimes I struggle to meditate.

If I start the morning with a quick guided meditation I have more patience for the rest of the day.

More patience means the little things don’t bother me as much.

Settling myself before falling asleep leads to less insomnia.

Doing a little meditation per day helps immensely overall.

My “ah-ha!” moment:

I finally started to understand my mindfulness journey when it was described as daily brain training. I love my brain training apps for maths, English and languages so I added the meditation apps to my list of brain training I do daily.

Things I’m beginning to learn:

Being mindful = being in the present moment.

If my thoughts of the future are making me feel anxious (eg. Before work) then I can help myself be calm and focused.

If my thoughts of the past are also increasing anxiety and sadness, then mindfulness is useful to bring me back to the present.

I’m hoping that meditation will also help reduce outbursts of frustration and help me think before I speak or act.

I learned there’s a type of meditation for increasing self esteem and loving oneself. This is a huge challenge for me but I’m hoping to give it a go soon.

Tips:

  • Just a minute or two per day can help
  • Stick with it! You can make it a habit to meditate daily
  • You can notice thoughts and feelings but don’t let them get to you
  • It’s okay if you don’t feel like your mind is settled enough during a meditation
  • Use a guided meditation app if you are a beginner

I definitely recommend meditation.

Give it a go. You’ve nothing to lose!

A fresh sheet of paper

Hello

Welcome to my first post!

I feel like I’m staring at a clean, crisp new white sheet, which is exciting and daunting at the same time. I am ready to take the plunge and begin this blog!

You can do anything

Firstly, I believe that we are capable of achieving anything that we believe we can, all we have to do is strive for it. Having unbreakable will, spirit, or “inner fire” can push you further than you might realise.

Fire flames isolated on white background

We’re in this together

Secondly, I think that help and advice from others can assist, nudge and give encouragement in the right direction.

In this blog we hope to inspire and encourage with our knowledge, life experiences and handy hints.

Enjoy!

We sincerely hope you enjoy reading because we certainly enjoy your company.