Monday, 4 May 2015

Topman Top Picks

I saw a similar version to this oversized sleeveless tank in Topman London, Oxford Street. I'm in love with this top, I bought the one that looked similar, and now I'm beginning to regret. I haven't seen a baggy vest like this before, but it can easily be coupled with black, ripped skinny jeans and shorts. I've just ordered mine from TOPMAN for £22 and I think you should too. 

I've seen denim shirts around for along time, but this second wave of the style is better than ever in my opinion. Acid wash, especially light, acid wash denim can be coupled with almost anything, especially black jeans, stuff the double denim rule, it looks good! You can also get this from TOPMAN for £30

Even though summer is approaching I think it's obvious to own a long black tee. Black is the colour I wear a lot of the time, whether its a t-shirt of jeans. The long design of this tee is different to a conventional top. I've got a few different colour tee's in this style, which go perfectly with ripped denim shorts.
This tee is also available at TOPMAN for just £10

Ripped denim in general has become very popular recently, and if you can't afford to buy any then don't worry you can do it yourselves. All you need to do is grab the shorts or jeans you want to give that ripped look too and rub sandpaper against the chosen area until you're happy. All of the clothes above would fit perfectly coupled with these shorts, they're something I wear religiously in summer!
If you like these then they're available from TOPMAN for £34.
£34 seems expensive for a pair of shorts, but from a guy whose bought jeans and shorts from Topman for several years now, the quality is amazing... too but it bluntly they last a long time!

I also bought a necklace similar to this from The Topman on Oxford Street, the only difference is my has a small, plain silver disk on it. Although it's small, I'd say this was my favourite purchase of the shopping haul because I literally wear it with everything. This necklace retails for £7.50 from TOPMAN and I'm pretty sure the similar necklace I bought was the same price either way I love them both! 

Blend Active is a must!

What an eventful week I’ve had, literally from doing essays to organising work and trying to do deadlines I’ve had barely anytime too myself. I tend to like it that way though, there’s no better feeling that feeling like you’ve had a productive day, in my opinion anyway!

On Wednesday I went and brought my flat mate and I flat mate a Blend Active to share, and it’s probably the best thing I’ve bought in 2015- and it was only £29.99 from Sainsbury’s, always love a good bargain. Some of my friends knocked the product but for me, it’s a quick, easy way of kicking your day off on a healthy note.

I’m not an overly body conscious person, I have a few woes but who doesn’t? So as I’ve said before in an old post, I’ve been trying to make 2015, a healthy, proactive year…Didn’t really last very long but I’m on my second wave now and I’m going to attempt it again. Literally starting my day with a fruit shake, A. Gives me so much energy and B. keeps me full until lunch time, which I found cereal struggles to do.

Eating and drinking healthily, in my opinion is seen as a burden and boring, and to be honest with you… sometimes it is, but it doesn’t have to be. There are so many interesting and exciting things online which give you amazingly healthy but tasty recipes, so if you’re attempting to lose weight or just eating clean, I recommend doing a little bit of research which will definitely give you inspiration to at least try a more healthy option.

And, if that doesn't work- I truly believe following daily fitness blogs, on twitter, facebook and Instagram gives you that extra motivation to achieve, of course you’re going to have your cheat days, I do…probably a bit to regularly… but innocently scrolling through your new ‘healthy, fit’ social media will inspire you to eat more health.

I’ve been following a guy named Joe Wicks on Instagram for a long time now, and his short 15 second, healthy recipes are both funny and educational in health inspired meals and fitness ideas. I’d recommend following him on Instagram (Insta: TheBodyCoach), where there’s a link to his website and his “90Daysss” meal plan, which seem to achieve amazing results! Check him out!

Any way back to what I was first writing this post about… Blend Active- after being a bit of a juicing/smoothly virgin I obviously did some research on different ideas to try and decided to compile my favourite ones here!

Coconut Milk, Cashew Nut Smoothie
250ml Coconut Milk
Large handful of cashew nuts
1 Banana
½ Cinnamon
Large handful of frozen berries

Spinach, Pear and Pineapple Smoothie
Large handful of spinach
Cut up pineapple (depends how much you like it, I love it so I tend to bit quite a bit in)
1 Pear
1 Mango
¼ Natural Yogurt (When it comes to natural Yogurt I’m not fussy, Asda do an amazing Greek yogurt with honey which I love, or if you’re trying to be really healthy then I’d recommend Fage Total 0% Greek Yogurt, which is high in protein also) 

Kiwi, Spinach and Mango Smoothie
1 Kiwi
1 Large handful of spinach
½ Mango
½ Avocado
¼ Natural Yogurt

For all of the above recipes, it also tastes amazing to add some oats, nuts or seeds to make it higher in protein.  

Monday, 27 April 2015

Easter Break

I feel like I start every blog post recently surprised at how time has flown by, and how little I’ve blogged! I’ve decided to blame Easter break for that and my three weeks away from any routine and structure. But, now I’m back at Uni, I can’t say I’ve missed a life free form organisation and stress.
It took a lot of persuading and encouragement to come back this term; being away from it all prompted a lot of questions which doubted my commitment and desire to stay. It was literally like an ongoing battle in my head for the duration of my time at home…shall I go back? Or shall I stay? Part of my doubt stems from my passion and dedication to working life, that kind of organisation and self-discipline I can deal with…well. Whereas studying and becoming robotic and confined isn’t an atmosphere I thrive in at all.

Student life is such a rich crop of myths, particularly first year. The promise of an easy, subdued life is still yet to be welcomed, it reared its face during fresher’s week but vanished soon after. The important thing to remember about university for any doubters or worriers (me), is, it’s not a vest I.e. one size fits all. Some aspects of Uni are so daunting that, if I had the option to, I’d have dropped out then and there, but I didn’t and it slowly makes each battle (essay) a little more achievable.

Anyway, enough of the complaining. Easter in Cornwall was amazing, all my friends were back from university, I had a few days at the beginning free from work and there was no way we’d take them for granted. Almost every day was spent completely different, which added some happiness to the looming decision forever present in my mind. I suppose it served as a distraction, which I’m thankful for to a degree, although leaving every ounce of work until the last day isn’t the best situation to be in, and even now, I still haven’t started anything. But it was the long needed break from Uni work I’d been needing.

Thankfully it’s the sun is nearly always out at this time of year, and with Bournemouth beaches it provides me subtle reminders of Cornwall.

Peace and love

Sunday, 22 March 2015

I think Taylor Swift is the best person at PR... ever!

After reading an article on PR Week (for anyone studying PR, subscribe to them, follow them, do everything... PR week is amazing) by Gavin Devine, he literally spoke, or should I say wrote? the words I'd been thinking for very long time, and that's Taylor Swift being the best at PR, ever. 

What would usually seem like an innocent act of kindness, for Taylor Swift it always warrants wall-to-wall coverage and rightly so. Writing a deeply evocative sum of $1,989 to help a beloved fan pay off her student loan paints Swift in an extremely giving, pure light. It seems the singer/ song writer also knows how to kills two birds with one stone... 1989... got it yet? For those who haven't Swift's most recent album was titled "1989" the stars birth year. Who wouldn't be generous, amazing and kind whilst also adding a dash of self-promotion. 

It comes at a time when Swift seemingly cannot put a foot wrong in publicity terms.
Studying PR I think I'd almost certainly get a 'first' if I'd sit through a Taylor Swift PR master-class: 

There are three key elements to Swift’s PR success.
First, she is the master of engagement - She's literally as obsessed with social media as we are!
  1. So many stars, companies and organisation are so eager to simply broadcast their news across there social media platforms...That's not the Swifty way. 
  2. Swift genuinely engages with fans, to the point where I'd argue they're friends... She roams across Facebook, Youtube and Twitter responding to fans directly (never me though!)
  3. AND, she goes even further... whether she's sending her fans presents or sweet letters as part of 'Swiftmas'... yes... Swiftmas! or inviting them into her home for a sneak preview of her new album she's always going to be creating a buzz.
Whatever amazing PR stunt she has planned next, all of it generates additional column inches or thousands more tweets. She'll continue planting her PR seed and sit back and watch social media make it to grow always making it look far to easy. 

Secondly, she recognises that her fans are everywhere is where she'll be too.
Around the launch of the '1989' album she was everywhere: online, in magazines, tabloids and broadsheets, and on broadcast media. 

Finally, she understands that this is an ‘always on’ world.  

In a world where citizen journalism allows news corporations to gather stories instantly, Miss Swift is never papped looking anything other than well groomed and sophisticated and never says anything deemed politically incorrect.

All of this means that in an age when pop is ludicrously sexualised a star like Taylor Swift is a rarity, she consistently exudes a wholesome all american girl image whose style is timeless. She stands out amongst the crowed pop scene with style, sophistication and flare, giving her a sense of authenticity, approachability and reminds us she is only human after all.  

Of course the product – the music – has to be good. PR can only take you so far, and surprise, surprise it's more than good
But it is the work she has put into her image and amplifying her coverage that is key.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

OX Bar and Restaurant

After possibly the most hectic (but amazing) week I've had in a very long time. Literally being bombarded with deadlines, a press conference, interviews, prospecting... did I say deadlines? I decided spending one evening, relaxing with a glass of wine the cure to the constant battle in my head which desperately needed to settle.

So, when my friend suggested it - I quite literally ran to my car and drove too a local Pub/Restaurant called the "OX". It's one of those places you constantly drive past, think to yourself 'that looks nice', tell yourself you'll go soon...but never do. But, fortunately I did.

Inside, isn't your stereotypical Pub, It's so full of character. We went on a Tuesday, late afternoon after a strenuous week and deservedly refuelled on a glass of wine. I feel like this place should be experienced by everyone, the atmosphere is relaxed, warm and most importantly comfortable.

Food Rating - 4/5 
Although I didn't actually try the food, if it was anything like the presentation of the actual Pub I'd have a confident guess it would be amazing. I had a cheeky nose at the menu and although it doesn't have pages and pages of choice, I kinda like it. I'm so bad at deciding what to it, so it would make my job easier. 

Wifi - 5/5
Easy to connect into, and very good speed. Perfect for afternoons on your laptop, drinking a coffee, or instagramming my food...again

Menu - 3/5
Like I've said, on the menu it doesn't have an extensive choice, which I personally don't mind. But, I know my friends hate nothing less than choosing from a small selection of foods. 

Drinks - 4/5
I wont go a far as calling myself an avid wine drinker, but there's nothing better than a good glass after a long shift at work or on a summers day. I went for their house wine (living on a student budget here...), which was surprisingly amazing as far as house wines go. I glanced down their wine lists and there's a nice, long selection...which is always good! 

Atmosphere & Decor - 5/5
For me, other than the wine... this was the best thing about "OX", just because as a pub... for me it was so different. It was a mixture of a rustic, classy bar, probably an ideal place for lunch with my mum to be honest. As you'll see from the pictures, it's such a beautiful place to go, and with an outside seating area, which I can imagine is amazing in's definitely a place I'll revisit. 

Price - 4/5
The pricing here is very reasonable, and good value for money. Don't expect it to be too cheap. 

If you're planning on going you'll find OX at: 
81 Commercial Rd, Poole, Pol BH14 0JB

Not very often I do these sorts of post, but It's an excuse to try some wine and blog about it... both of which I love! 

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

PR Event

I know I've definitely told you guys I'm at university, but I don't think I've ever told you what I'm actually studying... But, I will now! It's Public Relations (PR)... Big round of applause for anyone who guessed.
Public Relations in case you don't know, is, by googles definition "the professional maintenance of a favourable public image by a company or other organization or a famous person", which is accurate... I suppose... But, because PR is such a broad industry I would argue that defining it in all it's multifaceted glory is an extremely hard task. For those of you that have and still do confuse Public Relations with Personal Assistant, which by the way actually happens, I'm letting you know now, it's definitely not. 

SO... Today has lasted for what feels like a life time, literally. Rolling out of bed, suited and booted at 07:30am, after getting only an hours sleep is never an enjoyable moment. But, when the reason for seeing such an unnatural hour was because of a PR Event it became a lot more bearable- coffee, fresh air, and I'm as good as new. The university set up a recruitment event, whereby national and international PR Firms came to view our CV's and speak to us about the industry as well as our experiences in PR and other employability. Imagine, one big networking event and you'll be able to picture it. 

Que picture, I'll spare you using your imagination. 
Both year one and two public relations student were dotted around a floor on an executive business centre, displaying their CV poster for employers

The best and probably simplest way of describing the event is a group of different employers, shopping for students who they believe is the strongest and best candidates to receive work experience/ internships from the company they're representing.

If you know me, you'd know that I was equally as excited as I was nervous about the event...and boy I was nervous. I think it's the fear of the unexpected, I'd never been to an event like this before, let alone catch employers attention and show them I could be the best candidate... But guess what... I did! Well, for one company at least and was offered an interview, an interview I'm not blog about just yet by the way, superstition and all! (yes I do believe in superstitious things, and although I don't actively avoid walking under ladders or dodging black cats like my adolescent self did- I don't want to get bad lack!) 

What a promising start my 2015 has been though, and it's only March! My calendar entries are growing and growing everyday, mostly weighted with exam dates and coursework deadlines, but amongst that grey cloud of miserary - these some sunshine (excuse the metaphor) I have another PR Networking Event; this time IN LONDON, and a mini press conference - the joys of studying PR aye, I'm unbelievably excited. So expect many a post, worrying about what to wear, how to act, what to bring, what to talk about... everything! 

The people I met at the event today were inspiring, engaging and saint like...I say that because they all oozed such poise and class, all appropriately dressed in savvy business clothing. So, there's no better excuse which allows me to buy my own... so I did, and rocked it at the event today. You like?

Brown Leather Shoes: Next - £48
White Shirt: Burton - £35 for two
Sun Glasses: Primark - £8
Navy Blue Trousers: Burton - £25
Brown Leather Belt: Burton - £12

Monday, 9 March 2015

Food Tasting Event

Wow, doesn't time go quickly. It's already been over a week since I did my last post and it only feels like yesterday.

Well, my last seven days were spent in Cornwall, because yet again I had another reading week... which by the way I've never spent actually reading. Instead I spend it either socialising, going out for lunch/coffee or complaining about how much work I have to do, yet never get around to doing it. The latter is usually on the daily, I feel somewhat embarrassed and ashamed to admit that.

So... being at home this time was unfortunately absolutely amazing. Now you're probably asking yourself "why unfortunately?", simply because it quite literally makes it one hundred times harder to go back to university. Spending a week at home was a blessing, it's usually a rushed long weekend, or flying visit for a special occasion but this time I could see who I wanted to see, spend quality time with my friends and family and relax, regretfully forgetting about how much work I should be doing. Which no surprise didn't get done, and still haven't. Instead I'm writing a post, but hey! it's enjoyable, university work isn't.

I think my reluctance of coming back, came from the sheer enjoyment I had at home. In case I haven't told you before, during my summers in Cornwall I work at a local restaurant/Bar as a sous chef and have done for coming up six years. My employers are such lovely people. the hours are long, the stress is huge, the responsibility is testing...But, I love it... why else would I have worked there for so long? Work for me is like a drug, leading up to it I dread it, I don't want to start the seemingly everlasting shift, but once I've started, I don't want it to stop. Surprising aye? My attitude towards uni work is poor yet my attitude towards employment is commendable, and that's why I question whether it was actually a good decision or not.

Anyway, onto a less depressing topic. As I've said before, I'm forever getting sidetracked when I'm writing. Being a sous chef comes with all the usual perks, trying delicious foods, main meals, desserts, the lot! So... when my boss asked me if I'd accompany her to a food tasting/supplier event I definitely didn't hesitate. The idea of the event is trying new, exciting, and innovative foods and ideas for businesses whilst experimenting with different styles and crafts in the field of catering. The list of foods and drinks at the event were endless, aisles upon aisles of wine tasting, coffee casting, fruit and veg, pastries, bread, olives, cakes, ice cream... everything, and for those of you that know me, know I would and did stuff my face. Felt a bit sick after, but free anything let alone free food is a must.
So, as you can imagine as well as eating, I was busy taking picture of anything and everything... I was more excited about the event itself than actually trialling products for the business.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

How to Stop Worrying.


It starts with a nagging thought.

That creates another few thoughts

And before you know it. there is a storm brewing in your mind, making you think irrationally.

BOOM! Your old friend is back.

Some one said to me yesterday "Worry often gives a small thing a big shadow" and do you know what? it actually does! When people reel an endless list of quotes to me to try and make me feel better, I ignore them, normally because I've heard them all a million times. You know the ones I'm taking about? "The grass is always greener on the other side" "Never Regret anything that makes you smile"...yeh I suppose a lot of them are true, but are they really? To some extent I suppose,

BUT, and this is a big but... I've got so much to look forward too that, although it comes with worry- is over balanced with excitement. I'll tell you about that in another post, along with pictures and possibly videos... talking of videos, shall I start vlogging? mmm...

Anyway, back to what I was actually talking about. Forever and always getting distracted! Being a worrier, probably since the beginning of my teenage years, I've learnt of ways to combat and avoid inheriting an insane sense of worry.

Remember...Most things you worry about have never actually happened
I have a lot of trouble in my life, most of which has never happened. So... when you feel worries starting to pop up ask yourself this: How many of the things I feared actually happened?
If you're anything like me, then the answer would be very few, and those very few that did happen were mostly not as terrible as you'd expected.

Don't try and guess what is on someone's mind. 
Trying to read someone minds, usually doesn't work out too well for you. Instead, it can very, very easily lead to creating an over exaggerated scenario in your head.

Remember, people don't think about you as much as much as you think they do. 
Often worry is centred around what you think other people are thinking about you. Although there's is a lot of judgement in this world, the sooner you start to care less about what people think... the less worry you'll have
Right, before I ramble on and this blog turns into an advice blog and I suddenly become an agony aunt (well actually uncle, but aunt sounds better haha). I'm going to quit this post.

Monday, 16 February 2015

Fifty Shades of Beige?

I went and saw fifty shades of grey so you don’t have to.

Right then, before you make an initial judgement as to whether I liked this movie or not… unlike many of the people who watched it. I did. Should I be embarrassed to admit that? Probably, but I did enjoy it. The aura and obsession surrounding the books was the sole factor on my decision to unwillingly surrender a small fortune on purchasing a ticket. I say small fortune because the price difference between standard and student refrained from noteworthy discount. Anyway, the movie…Did I run out the cinema, craving an exploration into BDSM? No. Did I want too? Umm I’m going to say no. Did I love the film? Not really. Did I want to see it again? Well… I kinda, sorta, definitely did… but any more than twice? Not unless I actively wanted to buy an overpriced ticket which promotes boredom.

Fifty Shades the movie has emerged as a kind of fan-fiction of Fifty Shades the book, and the leap from page to screen didn’t perhaps promises the explicit, exciting nature everybody expected. I think this is where a reader’s imagination provides more excitement than the restrictions of cinematography. Although most of the novels fixation with style and wealth… or the barrage of stuff that wealth can buy, is carried onto the screen. Where the money shots should be, we get shots of what money can actually provide. Christian the novels protagonist wows Ana with rides, first in this thunderous chopper, then this smooth white glider and finally, his collection of countless cars he claims are all his.  Providing me with more jealously than I’d expected and definitely a different kind of jealously than what I thought I’d obtain…

Fifty Shades of Grey was released just in time for Valentine’s Day, and perhaps that was the problem. The film’s heightened expectations provided a greater fall, particularly since the film is not just unromantic in nature but specifically anti-romantic.

And there you have it, a disappointment for so many. The film in its entirety, grey, but with good taste. Shade upon shade of muted naughtiness. It possessed a predictably witty but humour forced script. It’s almost as if the dull greyness this movie oozed seemed far too oppressive for contemporary viewing, and so an injection of ‘humour’ was paramount in providing the colour the erotica would presumably deliver to your cheeks, but didn’t…or a rose, I suppose that would be more apt. You get dirtier talk in most action movies, in a film that is bogged down with clumsy stereotypes, it’s lacking that final push of controversy… although I suppose within the limits of Hollywood you’ll hit a brick wall that resists anything too changing.

True, however Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) and Christina Grey (Jamie Dornan) provide noteworthy and commendable skill towards their portrayal of the highly anticipated characters. Dornan given the job of inspiring lust, fascination and maybe a tiny element of intimidation and fear has become a major factor in the disappointment of the film, according to critics. However, a book provides a platform where readers could project any customised masculine identity and apply it to their expectations - surely it’s over active imaginations that provide the greatest let down.

The sound track to Fifty Shades of Grey is actually amazing! Since watching the film, I've downloaded most of the songs that featured in it. 
Below, Beyonce - Haunted (featured in Fifty Shades of Grey) 

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Life as an over thinker

I read an article yesterday; and I'm obsessed because it couldn't describe me more accurately. I'll put the link at the bottom. It's regarding over-thinking... something I do all too regularly.
But who's too blame for this generation of over-thinkers? someone surely?
In the article it gave 14 things only Over-Thinkers will understand, so I've decided to compact the ones that I think apply to me the most.

When we say "we're sorry" we really, really mean it. 
If I feel like I've hurt or upset someone, regardless of if I've said 'sorry' 150 times, I will quite literally spend hours analysing the details of our fight. If you accept the apology or not, this worry will not be forgotten very easily.

Sleep is difficult (sometimes)
Laying with minimal distractions inevitably allows me to return to my racing thoughts.

We can't let things go easily. 
I'm convinced that by running over the details of a situation just once more will some how change the outcome (it won't)

We actually enjoy a break from our head
If someone takes me somewhere interesting/new/spontaneous anywhere that's a distraction, we appreciate it a lot- to the extent where I'll sound sarcastic about how much I'm enjoying it... when I probably am having 'the time of my life' .

Our friends don't seem to appreciate our over analytical mind. 
"you are over thinking this" "stop over thinking" are terms I hear all too often. Especially when we figure out what someone really meant.

As someone who over-thinks a lot, I found this article just as amusing as I did relieving to think it wasn't just me!

For the whole article the link is below; Enjoy!

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Blue Mondays

After day, another post… and although it’s only been two days since I started blogging I’m hooked; but…that’s probably because I have such an addictive personality though- as you know- fags, coffee etc, the list is endless.

“Today is the worst day of the week…Monday” a man announced to his wife on Monday morning. I won’t say I disagree with his statement, I provided him with a nod of agreement, because realistically who doesn’t hate Mondays? But, considering I was in a rush to Starbucks not even his attempt of conversation could amuse me.

There was no reason for me to be having a Blue Monday, but for some reason I was. Not even the strong pull of caffeine could lighten my day. Someone told me recently that I’ve always had a negative outlook on life, and I can’t really argue. It’s not a negative outlook in the sense I have high flying expectations, or even a negative outlook on myself. I’m not fretting about dry skin or vanity pounds. It’s an element of uneasiness with how I’m sailing through the world and what I don’t think I’m capable of.

If you don’t know what you truly want, nothing will satisfy you.

Right now, I have a stable personal life, can walk out my door and, in five minutes, be drinking Starbucks Coffee (always a bonus), I’m at university studying a degree I’m actually interested in. It’s not that I take these good things for granted, it’s just, my mind seems programmed of never giving itself a break and instead scans for negativity (Why am I at Uni when I could be earning money already?). I literally don’t know how to refrain from scanning all disapprovals instead of basking in appreciation.

BUT if and when you do have a ‘Blue Monday’ distract yourself, I do. Go for a walk, run, swim, cook, clean…ANYTHING; do something productive and you’ll already feel one hundred times better.

Monday, 9 February 2015

My Motivation for 2015

It’s officially 42 days into a brand spanking new year- and what once absolutely terrified me about the New Year died down ever so slightly as I somehow managed to inherit positive vibes about the upcoming year. I suppose the thing for me, to pass time is to have something to look forward to, and work towards that. That for me builds a positive attitude. I’m starting a new job as a barman on February 27th, I have Easter break on March 27th, my birthday of April 26th and then I finish my first year of university on June 1st, give yourself spread out things to look forward to and the parts in-between go quickly. I’ve been eating clean, reading, and actually doing some university work… I used to think New Year’s Resolutions were empty promises but this year I’ve actually stuck to mine.

Me being me, have never and will never be a fan of New Year Resolutions; But as you’ve probably guessed 2015, is the year that I jumped on the band wagon of attempting it. My attempt, nothing surprising… was to eat clean and get fit (probably to most common NYR ever). But, I’m actually doing it…still!

Ultimately, this year isn’t going to bring huge change for me. I won’t be graduating (yet), I won’t be getting a full-time job, I won’t be travelling the world. Unfortunately, I’m trapped in the confines of education for another 2 years before I branch into adult life. It saddens me, as it reminds me how little I have to be proud of, to tell people about, and to congratulate myself on. But, this year is about just that, perfecting the small things, like my diet and exercise, combating anxiety, changing my mind set and becoming a  more organised and self-assured person. Some days I’m literally the most anxious person, I’ll seclude myself and refrain from socialising but this year I’m going to at LEAST make that time productive, write a blog, do university work, apply for placements, do some exercise, rather than succumbing to anxiety and slump just because it seems easy.

Already though, despite this year not being a year of change, it already seems far more optimistic than previous years. Previous years I lived in a clueless bubble believing that I’ll never grow up, thinking some miracle would happen and I’d suddenly win the lottery. University has taught me that life is a competition it’s shown me that by working hard the rewards will eventually show. The people in class and lectures are ultimately are all going for the same job in the end, survival of the fittest I suppose. I need to keep telling myself that whenever I’m too scared to move forward, whenever I’m anxious about something, I need to push through it. Life begins at the end of your comfort zone, and sadly if you remain seated in whatever you deem comfortable, how’re you going to get noticed? It’s easier said than done, and from someone who suffers from mild anxiety I believes it’s escaping that mental cage.

But, there’s ways to combat it. Since this year being the first year I’ve seriously abided to a NYR, I’ve seen how eating healthily makes itSO much better, both mentally and physically. Eating clean gives me a clean mind, and therefore I’m naturally more organised. Yeh, I still have those ‘I can’t be bothered to do anything days’ but who doesn’t?  

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Cornish Summers are the The Best

Okay, so I’ve diagnosed myself with heliophilia. Heliophilia is basically a strong desire to stay in sunlight…that I have! Although winter I think is so magical, it’s just so draining. I miss waking up and it being light, the sun brings so much energy out of me. But, when summer eventually arrives- I am one of those people that constantly complain about it being too hot; there’s honestly no pleasing me!
I’ve been meaning to write about my winter hatred for, oh, over a month now… but you know, busy-ness and uni work and excuses, excuses, excuses. But, today being a uniquely sunny but cold day it reminded me of my love of summer and the sun. There’s something about summer that makes me feel so young, which of course I am, but my teenage life is creeping to a close… quickly!  That’s another post for another day.
Although I work like a freaking dog in summer, there’s something about it that makes it feel like time slows up. Whether it’s the long evenings, the warm, bright nights, I don’t know but it’s feels good regardless. I blame my love of all things ‘sun’ purely because of my childhood living in Cornwall. I’ve only just recently started thinking ‘Rhys you’ve spent all your life living in a place people regard as an amazing holiday’. So thank you Cornwall for making my summers the best summers…ever! Cornwall is quite simply addictive, it’s like a drug, to my despise I had eventually quit because beneficially it isn’t providing what you need; queue University.
Summer for me, reignites so many memories. Some very positive highs, and very negative lows… but for the most part they were good, and of course they would be, It was summer! You see, winter, for me just becomes so oppressive and bleak. I struggle, massively (I’m not kidding) trying to get out of bed, I wake up all the time… feeling so unmotivated and drained- I rarely get that feeling from summer. I even sleep with my curtains open so I wake up to sunlight, it’s a good alarm clock… trust me! Summer just lights up everything (cringe). Talking about ‘lighting up’ summer was the first time I ever lit up a cigarette… at sixteen, and I got served… I literally felt like I’d just committed the biggest crime and was convinced I’d be arrested. For those of you who are wondering, that day was the downfall of the rest of my life, yes I still smoke, yes being a student it makes me very…very poor, and yes I would never recommend starting. Phew conscience cleared. Asides from smoking summer actually saw a lot of first time experiences; first time I drank, passing my driver’s test first time, first time I had a job and first time I lost my… naa we’re not going there
I suppose I’m reflecting on these memories because in reality I only have a few summers left until I venture into the world of adulthood. All my teenage life was spent telling my mum and friends repeatedly “I wish I was older”, as if no one heard me the first million and one times- and now I really am starting to grow older, I’m actually trying to resist it. The thought of adulthood is scary, those summer evenings I spent with my friends, huddled round our mini fire on the beach, barbeque, beers, and music cramped into several ridiculously small bags- those care free and naive days were a blessing and are beginning to expire. Childhood and my teenage years were the best, it’s a time where your dreams grow so big, your only worry is wondering what new, exciting adventure you’ll do tomorrow. Your imagination was so vivid, you could quite literally turn a small twig into a wand (I’m the Harry Potter generation), convince yourself the floor was actually lava, I miss those days. But…that’s the good thing about memories I suppose. One regret I do have though and I don’t have many, is quite literally hating myself because I never paused, not even for a second so I could truly appreciate the moment. They’re the moments I regret. When people used to say ‘your school years are the best years of your life’ I didn’t believe them, but now I do. Fortunately, it’s taught me to appreciate every moment, even going for coffee with my best friend… which, I do all too regularly. Coffee is my life.

So it’s always back to Cornwall in my mind… 


 I’ve been spending A LOT more time in coffee houses recently, mainly Starbucks, but that’s because it’s close. It got me thinking about coffee culture in general, and how so much is based around coffee… a chat, a date, business meeting etc. I drink coffee, probably too much so I decided I should probably write about it seeing as though I always talk about it.
My idea of morning without coffee is a distasteful thought. Morning commuters seem to fall into one of two categories: the caffeinated and the Un-caffeinated- the latter rarely ever being me, but when I do it’s easily recognisable. The caffeinated are bright-eyed and engaged and prepared for whatever their day decides to spontaneously thrust upon them- they manage to digest their morning papers, check emails, read for pleasure all with a croissant and coffee in hand; it just screams business savvy. They're sometimes armed and loaded with travel mugs of tumblrs from their coffee shop of choice- and when their ammunition has ran out…they reload, Starbucks is never far away. The rattle of ice from clear plastic beverage cups providing that long searched for relief on a summers days. They walk a little faster in the early hours of the morning, leaving last night’s issues and worries far, far behind.
This uplifting awakening is not the case of the un-caffeinated amongst us. They sleep through the AM commuter underground and the groggy walk to the office. There unfocussed and hazy eyes struggle to adjust, fully to morning sun. Materials they intended to review lay untouched in their laps whilst they battle to fight the resistance of that possible head whip when you close your eyes for just a second…and you’re gone. The un-caffeinated are easily recognisable, they’re the right side standers on the escalator from under to over ground. You see the irritable glare they produce when you hurry by them. They plod, they trudge, they linger. I know this because, I’ve done it. On the rare morning I forget my daily dispensary I subconsciously produce this inner envy and bitterness towards these manufactured morning people.
Though these only exist in my mind, coffee has become my companion. Who doesn't want a friend that wakes you up? Accompanies you, daily on your normally unpleasant journey to work. Coffee culture is universally recognised, it’s personal, accessible, and for me, inspirational. I say inspirational as I’m sat in Starbucks now, slurping on my black Americano, seamlessly writing this post. There’s something about any respectable coffee house that’s instantly reassuring. It feels like, well, home. The muted brown walls wedded with a gentle slur of humbling chit chat and ambient music is blissful. Friends, family, lovers and business men and women are peppered around the shop floor engaging in ‘easy’ conversation…I hope. I’ve just been caught staring at a couple… I couldn't think what else to write so started staring gormlessly at them… awkward.
I think my obsession with coffee stemmed from my frequent trips to America as child, where Starbucks is quite literally a religion. A Starbucks takeout cup is used, almost as an accessory, or so it seemed through my then adolescent eyes. I blame those daily exposures for my eagerness to replicate the suave, sophistication a simple coffee cup holds.
From then to now however, those impressionable days are thankfully long gone. My love of coffee, is now a reliance, and without it I’m not a very conversational person. Coffee and a cigarette (probably not the healthiest combination) can quite literally alter my mood instantly... God knows how but if I’m ever in a bad mood, you know what to do! Two coffees and a several cigarettes, I’m content.

So...Starbucks has sorta been my hub for the last few days. I spend too much time here, I consider coffee shops to be my second office/home, I use the space not just to to relax but, write emails, browse the internet, write a blog post, do university work, eat, and finally enjoy coffee- so... Starbucks is essentially a cheap office space, and one I'll continue to use.