Don’t forget to fall in love with yourself

I’m always ranting on about how to love your body and cherish your flaws. And undoubtedly it’s easier said than done. You see people around you embracing their bodies but you continue to hide under that baggy jumper ūüôĀ .

Are there instructions on how to love yourself? Can I find a tutorial on YouTube? Unfortunately no, it’s not that simple (what in life is ūüėģ ). How do you love your body when you find it difficult to look in the mirror without getting anxious? Loving yourself does not happen over night, I wish it wasn’t but it’s a long, sometimes difficult process. It’s a lifelong journey. You’ve been criticising yourself for so long so you have to change that negative mindset. It’s waking up everyday and realising this is the one body you have. It’s wearing what makes you feel good and not what’s “on trend”. It’s not comparing yourself to anyone.

When I was at my lowest with body image I’d do anything to berate myself. Reminiscing it’s so sad that the only way I felt was to stick my fingers down my throat.

When I changed my perspective here are a few tips that helped me.

‚ô• Acceptance before love.
This seems mental right? But you’ve been hating, criticising and complaining about your body for so long you can’t just wake up and instantly love it. First, accept it. Personally, I hated my arms (and I still struggle with them today) so I wasn’t going to automatically start loving them. But I grew to accept them. I have big boobs so sometimes my arms can look chunky (or maybe it’s in my head). These are the only pair of arms I’m ever going to get so I better start accepting them and in time love them ūüôā .

‚ô• You’re not plastic.
I used to think why did I have such large open pores, why did I have cellulite on my bum, why did my tummy have little rolls when I sat down? Every little thing that I could criticise, I did. But I was comparing myself to airbrushed females in magazines, music videos and online. In reality, those girls didn’t even look like that. Stop trying to attain perfection, it’s tiresome and guaranteed you’ll lose a chunk of your life. Your lumps, bumps, scars and dimples are part of you.

‚ô• Negative people bring negative energy.
The people you spend your time with have an impact on how you view yourself. Yes we all go through dark patches and hard times but we don’t turn into a negative person because of this. To help ourselves be more positive we have to stop wasting time on people who bring us down. It’s not that we have to be around positive people 24/7 (because who is upbeat all the damn time ūüėõ ) but we need to be around people who make us feel good about ourselves. Love yourself enough to distance yourself from those who dim your light ūüėČ .

‚ô• Checking yourself will wreck yourself.
Constantly jumping on and off the scales will put you through mental anguish. I haven’t weighed myself in nearly
two years and I’m much happier for it. If you’re mood is affected by weighing yourself (which it shouldn’t be), get rid of it. If you do want to achieve a certain body, train for the feel good factor and not a number on the scale.

Never ever let anyone tell you that you have to look a certain way to love yourself. Stick a middle finger up to society’s idea of ‘perfection’. I’ve still a long way to go and an abundance of negative habits to unlearn, but self-love is a journey – and it’s a journey I’m glad I’m on ‚̧ԳŹ

You’re only as sick as your secrets!

Mental health isn’t discussed in our society as much as it should be, so it’s understandable that people are nervous to admit they are struggling. Ultimately, you feel completely alone when battling with a mental health illness – you’re alone with your own thoughts and the negativity in your own mind. Speaking from a personal perspective this is frightening.

Once we realize that we are not alone we can deal with these thoughts and have a better quality of life. The most difficult part is to actually admit that we need help, but I promise you it will be the best decision ever made ūüôā .¬†

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From suffering with an eating disorder, I have discovered that everyday is not sunshine, sparkles and solace. Yes, there are good days, okay days and then we have the damned ugly days.

What then? I used to avoid everyone and be stuck in my own head! Why? Because I was embarrassed to admit that I was suffering with an eating disorder. In retrospect, this was idiotic Рif I had a physical illness I would have requested help, and mental illness should have been treated in the same way.

Now I do things very different. I began to improve my personal perspective on life when I started my journey to recovery.

I’m a big supporter of alternative therapies. Mindfulness has played and is still playing a role on my path to recovery.

Mental health is unique to everyone and each person who encounters struggles will be different. But the one thing that we all have in common is that we can’t ¬†struggle alone.

Find a trusted friend or individual who you can confide in. Just letting that one person know is a major support and can be a weight of your shoulders. A problem shared, is a problem halved!

Relax ūüôā¬†Be selfish and take time for yourself. Organise me-time to do activities you enjoy that help you chill the hell out ūüėõ .

Your vibe attracts your tribe ūüôā .¬†Did you ever hear this saying before? Well, basically it means the people who you surround yourself with have a major impact on your outlook. To be positive and banish any horrible thoughts it is essential that you have people around you who support you. Not people who are critical and make you feel bad about yourself. So if you want to move forward with positive mental health, consider who you are around on a daily basis.

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Remaining mindful¬†alleviates any anxiety about past or future problems which have a significant¬†quiver on our mental health. It is pointless worrying about things that have happened or that are going to happen. When you’re in the present, it is easier to remain positive and actually focus on what’s going on. If you ever feel yourself drifting, focus on what’s going on around you – especially your breath.

FullSizeRenderI just want to urge people, don’t let the stigma of an eating disorder or any mental health illness be a barrier to getting treatment. I understand the powerlessness and isolation of these secret battles. I was in a career I despised, anxious and extremely bulimic, if I can crawl back up I believe anyone can. You are only as sick as your secrets!

Always remember to be kind, you don’t know what battles people are going through.

Blowing out someone else’s candle will not make yours shine brighter!

”Be an¬†encourager, the world has plenty of critics already”.¬†

Throughout life, we will always encounter people who will attempt to tear us down and rupture our spirit.

There was a period when I let this negativity ruffle my feathers and upset me. I allowed peoples actions to influence how i felt. Thi

What I didn’t comprehend, is that we are in control of our own emotions and whether we are going to allow that toxic person make us feel negative about ourselves.

Talk to someone who cares 

Often, we are embarrassed that someone has criticized us or made us feel horrible so we keep all these cruel opinions to ourselves. Why verbalize something so appalling again? But by sharing these insecurities with someone who genuinely cares can support you and diminish how you judge yourself.

It can be extremely therapeutic to speak openly about these lousy times with a close friend. Scientific research even proves that a good moan and groan accompanied by a glass of wine and a good friend can reduce stress levels ūüôā . Who am I to argue with science?!

Erase the negative people 

I observed how incredible it was to be around genuine people. I was more upbeat and felt better in myself. Without toxic people in your life you ultimately flourish. You¬†don’t¬†need that friend who is going to betray you, you¬†don’t¬†need¬†someone who is going to unload all their negativity onto you, you¬†don’t¬†need an individual who is only going to make contact when it suits them! . Frequently, it is difficult to eliminate these destructive people from your life, but these are the relationships that impose negative feelings so for self-growth it is imperative .

People who are sincere will not aim to dishearten or depress you. You only get one life and you deserve to spend it with the people who make you feel good about yourself. Unfriend, unfollow and unfasten from all the negative individuals ūüėČ .

You are YOU!

Always remember who you are. Occasionally, we can focus on the actions of others towards us or their negative words. Don’t disregard who you are as a person, everything you’ve done and the qualities you have. Your mistakes, successes or goals do¬†not¬†define you. Other peoples toxic actions towards you is a reflection of how horrible they are, it’s not a reflection of you.

Say what?!

Always listen to your emotions. If these emotions are suppressed they will fester inside us. Unconsciously these suppressed emotions will affect us throughout daily lives.
I never addressed any of the emotions I developed when people were critical towards me. I didn’t realise how the criticism made me feel, I just aimed to improve myself each time. To get over this need for appraisal from others I had to realise how the criticism made me feel. I had to allow all the suffering to vent in order to heal the pain.
Instead of suppressing these emotions learn to be kind to yourself and work through it. Do people still criticize me? Yes. Do I let it bother me? No.

Appreciate.
Appreciate yourself. Set aside 15 minutes to appreciate certain things about yourself. Make this a daily ritual. It can be as insignificant as going for a jog or remembering to water your flowers! As long as you are conveying gratitude. We should not just appreciate ourselves when we achieve goals or reach milestones, the little things matter too.

Merci!

Thank yourself! Thank yourself for never giving up! Thank yourself for striving through difficult times! Thank yourself for coping!

 

As I approach each new day, encounter new people and engage in new activities I always remind myself who I am and who I’ve become.

If you allow other peoples negativity to characterize who you are by what they do or what they say, you are ultimately offering them authority to dictate your feelings. Life becomes easier when you delete the negative people from it ūüôā .

Giving up your sins

I hope you all enjoyed copious amounts of pancakes layered with nutella! Now as we enter Lent, we all vow for the next forty days and nights we’ll give up¬†everything¬†that grants us pleasure in our lives – alcohol, chocolate, spending a hefty amount of money on makeup you do not need *cough*.¬†Some individuals pledge that they will detox their life after all good routines were thrown to the gutter post January. Lent doesn’t have to be a time that you forbid yourself things, it can be an opportunity to start positive daily habits.

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Throughout these past number of months I have altered many aspects of my life and incorporated these little positive alterations into my daily routine. I started my journey to recovery, I completely altered my career path and I eliminated all toxic people/situations from my life. I feel like I am totally content with each unit of my life but lent is just a gentle reminder to keep travelling on this path.

Here are my pointers on detoxing ūüėÄ

Meditation 

Clearing your mind from all stress and toxic thoughts will have a positive effect on the body. The morning is the best time to do meditation. It will be a difficult routine to begin with as the busyness of your day will weigh on you – but it will be worth it. It ensures you have a peaceful mind for the day ahead.

Saying Goodbyeeeeee to people pleasing tendencies

I am an extremely accommodating person and tend to abandon my own happiness to ensure those around me are content. This involves going to parties I’ve no interest in or scheduling a dinner date when I really just want to embrace a warm bubble bath. Throughout these next forty days I am going to acknowledge I can’t please everyone and that is totally okay! ”NO” is a complete sentence, no excuses, no giving up your own desires, no attending events that you really want to flake on. Never say yes when inside you’re saying no.

Dry body brushing

By keeping the pores open the buildup of toxins can be released. I do this ritual daily prior to my morning shower. Body brushing stimulates blood flow and removes any dead skin cells (especially if you have been splashing on the tan). The brush motions should move towards your heart so it is in sync with the normal lymphatic flow.

Record your thoughts 

This detox tip seems extremely old skool, but trust me is works! Since the beginning of time every young girl had a beloved diary. By jotting down thoughts and feelings in a journal you are cleansing both your body and mind. It can serve as a tool for self-reflection and physiological purification. Also by writing down certain feelings your mental well-being will greatly improve. I find that it helps me form a better connection with myself.

Get your greens

Leafy green vegetables are amazing at detoxing the body as they are packed with chlorophyll (this pigment aids the cleansing of the digestive tract). These little saviors also work wonders on your skin. Four days a week¬†I incorporate¬†a green smoothie into my daily diet. I pack kale, spinach, celery, cucumber, parsley and a green apple into my blender and voila! You can also buy these smoothies prepared in various health food stores if your’e looking for the easy alternative.

These are just my detox habits, but do what works for your lifestyle. Ultimately just do what makes you feel good about yourself <3 Everyday is a new opportunity to improve your life and start new rituals.

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People are like oxygen masks, You cannot help anyone until you help yourself!

So, I have been in this abusive relationship for far too long. Throughout this long term affair I was controlled and had my personal perception totally distorted. Oddly enough, this relationship was with myself.

It started out so simple, with the desire to tone up and eat healthy. Unfortunately, it manifested into this self-loathing battle with my inner demons. I began to skip meals. I then began going entire days without food. I went through months of restricting to a handful of calories per day. Then I started to encounter certain stressors in my life and these triggers made my disorder worse. This is where my story takes a more evil turn.
I ate to numb out my feelings. I ate to take my mind of stress. I ate to do something. My disorder had spiraled into this mountain that I couldn’t even attempt to climb!
I repulsed myself. I wouldn’t even wear shorts around my house due to the fear I may get a glimpse of myself in a mirror. I got to this dark place where I didn’t want to leave the house. I wanted to lounge in bed self-loathing all day, every day.
I was drowning in this plethora of perfectionism. I became a slave to this disorder, My thought pattern became so distorted that I thought if I gained a pound I couldn’t go anywhere. This included catching up with friends, daily chores, everything!
 
Nobody ever suspected that I was suffering. I was never a sickly thin frame with protruding bones. Nor did I have fat rolls bulging through my clothes. This conveys that eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes. The only thing they have in common is misery.
I either ate everything or ate nothing. The fear of having no control terrified me. When I think of my bulimia tricks they were absolutely absurd!!! The worst was when I would consume diuretics like a normal person would eat a packet of sweets. It felt like I was being consumed by an outer body experience.
Binge, cry, exercise, binge, cry, exercise! This was the vicious cycle I couldn’t escape.
 
My personality changed. I was no longer this bubbling ray of sunshine; I was a horrid, anxious mess. I lost interest in family, friends, hobbies and dreams. I became infatuated with food. I was so infatuated with losing weight I would spend my recreational time researching ‘diets’ or working out. My mind was fixated on my weight and nothing else. I despised any activity or hobby I previously adored.
Throughout these months of gloom I was experiencing anxiety attacks regularly. It was something I battled with since developing the disorder. This cloud of gloom had consumed me. I was lifeless, lonely and low. There was no escape and I felt totally worthless. I felt that I didn’t deserve happiness. So I shut out all potential joy – family-time, friendships, relationships, outings, everything!
I always had perfectionist tendencies. If I wasn’t the best, I must have been worthless. Any personal mistake or criticism from other people exacerbated my eating problems. I was drowning in my fear of failure.
I battled through this eating disorder by myself and finally managed to retrieve my zest for life. When you battle with this you truly figure out your genuine friends. The isolation was terrifying and some people didn’t even try to understand what I was experiencing.
I would urge anyone not to fight alone. It’s a dark, somber place. There is help available – avail of it.
The fear of failure is always something I will battle with. But by removing my mask and exposing my problems I am walking into freedom. You are only as sick as your secrets!
 
Recovery is like two steps froward and one step back. I don’t care as long as I am going forward in some way and being able to reclaim my happiness. Being able to sit down with my loved ones and thoroughly enjoy a family meal or go to lunch with friends without being anxious is something I really appreciate now.
A life with an eating disorder is not a life!
 

Be kind……..to yourself!

”You are amazing, you are good enough, you are worth it”.

One of the best things you can do daily is be kind to yourself! Life becomes uncomplicated and relationships improve. Ultimately life will be bliss.

Although I am a kind person, I always neglected myself regarding kindness. I always felt guilty about self-compassion. By¬†practising¬†these little tips and tricks each day¬†I’ve¬†became happier¬†and my self-esteem has grown enormously.

I love you <3

The majority of people are convinced that in order to be lovable, goals must be accomplished. This may be cooking a delicious meal, achieving high grades or receiving a promotion. All of these things must be done in order to be lovable! FALSE! 
Everyone deserves love and affection. If family, friends, partners are critical towards you do not let this influence the perception of yourself.
Your mistakes, successes and goals do not define you.
”I love you” say it to yourself! Say it in the morning. Say it when you are feeling criticized. Say it always.
Love is essential for self compassion.

Say what?!

Always listen to your emotions. If these emotions are suppressed they will fester inside us. Unconsciously these suppressed emotions will affect us throughout daily lives.
I never addressed any of the emotions I developed when people were critical towards me. I didn’t realise how the criticism made me feel, I just strived to¬†improve¬†myself¬†each time. To get over this need for appraisal from others I had to realise how the criticism made me feel. I had to allow all the suffering to vent in order to heal the pain.
Instead of suppressing these emotions learn to be kind to yourself and work through it. Do people still criticise me? Yes. Do I let it bother me? No.

Appreciate.
Appreciate yourself. Set aside 15 minutes to appreciate certain things about yourself. Make this a daily ritual. It can be as insignificant as going for a jog or remembering to water your flowers! As long as you are conveying gratitude. We should not just appreciate ourselves when we achieve goals or reach milestones, the little things matter too.

Merci!

Thank yourself! Thank yourself for never giving up! Thank yourself for striving through difficult times! Thank yourself for coping!

 

Crave happiness NOT perfection!

”When the ground is crumbled it opens up the crack so light can shine in and wildflowers can bloom”
I have never had the ability to surrender to anything. Surrendering is giving up your power, being vulnerable and defeated. From an early age I was unable to cope with negativity. This varied from ensuring I achieved outstanding grades in school to creating the perfect make up look. I craved perfection in my life and if I didn’t attain it I would become distressed. This imposed an abundance of anxiety on me. Not only was it exhausting,¬†but¬†it was¬†virtually¬†impossible!
Everyone gets frustrated at times and sees themselves as inferior. Trying to change ourselves, wanting to be a certain way or trying to will things to be different does not work. Mindful surrender is not giving up, it is accepting and trust me that takes courage!
This life of self-acceptance is what I am trying to cultivate within myself. I need to have the ability to let go and surrender to situationships that are not within my control.
I have to remind myself that my self-worth does not depend on how others perceive me, it is how I perceive myself. Also, to remind myself that I must live my life in the way that I want.
I’m not an expert on this, but I am finding my way. It makes me less tense, it helps me to be more mindful and less frustrated. It makes me a happier person. Ultimately, I wish all of this for¬†you¬†<3