thoughts, blogging

Boundaries, Connection, Balance

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I have to be honest with you, I’ve been running on empty.  And I dont mean I’ve been surviving on little sleep each day – I mean that by the time bed time comes around again, I have to remind myself ‘a good nights sleep’ is the one thing that will get me through another day. Running.On.Empty.
Sometimes we need more than a good sleep each night to get us through a busy week. Sometimes a good nights sleep just doesn’t cut it.

I remember when I was in my early 20’s I could survive on very little sleep, every single day was exciting and every night was even more exciting than the last. I didn’t mind getting little sleep each night, in-fact I was prone to taking quick naps during my lunch break so I would have more energy to enjoy my night. I didn’t run on empty. My life was fascinating. I was running on whatever fuelled my soul. Now at 28? not so much.
Is it that I’m getting older or has life become a disappointment? I’m not sure, but that’s for another post.IMG_9748But the one thing I do know – I can be very ‘all or nothing’. You know those people who are ‘all work’ and no play or they are ‘all play’ and no work. They either save every cent they earn or they go on a spending binge until they have nothing left. One month they’re claiming to be a sugar addict and the next they’re on a strict sugar free diet……All or Nothing – that’s me. Hi.

Being the ‘all or nothing’ type person I am, I recently tried to set some boundaries in my life. I felt like there wasn’t enough time in the day to achieve what I needed to achieve. I decided to go on a massive cull and remove my social life, my down time and any other distractions from my planner and just focus on what needs to be done.
Bad mistake.
I was already running a little low. My soul was already starting to feel a little disconnected and my days were already getting that little bit too repetitive and THEN I decided to make it worse by removing break time and replacing it with work time.
IMG_9750So- setting harsh boundaries for myself lasted as much as a few days before it became quite clear to me that I needed more. I needed balance. A balance of everything that needs to be done, something to look forward to, and some downtime.
I love the Virgo in me. But the one thing a Virgo needs to be reminded of is – self care.
You can’t really expect to be performing as your best self if you aren’t first taking care of yourself. And taking care of yourself includes a mix of social time and down time…. believe it or not.  Connecting with others and then reconnecting with yourself.
But away from work, away from study. Away from the mundane routine of life that we all have to be apart of every single day. And at the same time setting some damn boundaries. I know … WTF. But when I thought about it some more it was quite simple.

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So downtime isn’t exactly binging on Netflix for 8 hours if it means you get behind on your studies. Rather fitting in a couple of hours to catch up on an episode or two in-between study sessions. It doesn’t mean going on a bender for a weekend and getting run down, rather a night out a month- away from all responsibilities to let your hair out.
It doesn’t mean ALWAYS saying no and it doesn’t mean ALWAYS say yes. Its finding a balance that works for you. Setting boundaries that feel right to you.
Staying connected and then reconnecting with yourself.

AND can I just say that sleep is GREAT.  9 hours of sleep each night really helps to get me through another day for sure. But there’s got to be more to life than just work, study, eat, sleep and repeat. Looking forward to bed time, is that a good sign? At 28?
I mean when I was 24 I could think of nothing worse, I just wanted to embrace my life.
There’s got to be a life to look forward to after work, between study sessions, after dinner and when you wake up in the morning.
Sleep shouldn’t be the one thing that keeps you going. Your life should.

Ef xx
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thoughts, blogging

Are you taking responsibility?

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I recently decided to put down my phone, step away from Netflix and get back into reading. I am not the type of girl that reads novels about love and empty promises, more the type to learn about how we tick and about our brains…..you can find me in the psychology and motivation isle of Dymocks during most lunch breaks.

So I did a little haul and tucked into my first book like Charlie Bucket tucking into all the sweets that Willy Wonka’s factory had to offer. I was hungry, hungry to learn.
And learn I did, I learnt so much that I went on a reading binge.
And do you know what I found out that was really simple yet needs to be smacked into your face sometimes? …..I am responsible. I am responsible for me and my actions and reactions. I didn’t realise this, well subconsciously I knew this, but consciously I didn’t.

Anyway, so being the sharer I am, I wanted to share with you guys in a ‘non preachy’ way, because I hope this will aid someone in some way?
The long and the short of it is – we cant control what people do to us. Yes, I know that sucks sometimes, wouldn’t it be easy if you could control some things… like that nice little top you saw at Zara last week on sale still being there when you get paid (fingers crossed for me please). Some stuff that happens to us straight up sucks and we cant always see the good in it or even the lesson at first or …ever. BUT what we can do is control and take responsibility for how we chose to react and move past this crappy stuff that happens to us.

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As you might be aware I am very open about my struggles with Anxiety, I dont like to keep it hidden away like a dirty little secret because I am not ashamed of it.
But I will say (and this may not help everyone with their struggle with anxiety but whats the harm in trying), I am now looking at things that happen to me like, ‘well OK, thanks for cheating on me – that sucks, but thats on you not me..all I can do is be responsible for how I let this crushing news affect me.’ Or another example, ‘you dont like me back (cute guy I have been into for like 6 weeks, and I feel like its going somewhere) OK then, its all good. I am responsible for how I deal with this.’ OR your friends wont text you back in a ‘normal’ texting response time, mmmmmm OK ‘not bothered’, pop that phone on hide alerts and go live your life.
(unless you asked them a question and you kind of need to know asap if the outfit you are trying on in Myer looks too mature for your damn fine 28 year old self) etc etc blah blah blah you get the point.

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Where I am going with this is…. are we carrying too much responsibility on our anxiety riddled plates? Can we afford to lose some of that heavy load?
Take a little time to assess what it is that is giving you anxiety right now. Write a list if you need to. (I do this and btw, its actually really good to see it written down on paper and you start to think…..wtf ….why did I write that?)

Lets try and ease our anxiety load and feel a little bit lighter. Taking responsibility by reassessing how we act and react. We all deserve that, we all deserve to feel a little freer in our lives. Switch off our devices, YES we hear this a lot but seriously not being connected makes us more connected. I cannot tell you how amazing it has been to get home from work and be excited to read in bed with my little diffuser going. Its utter peace.
And another little unexpected side effect, apart from how much better my sleep has been since I have cut down my screen time, my darling mother said that I seem to be a lot calmer.
So there you go my sweet little rays of moon shine, pop down the phone, pick up a book and tune out.

Happy Reading
G.S xx

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thoughts, blogging

Anxiety is a bitch

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Anxiety is a bitch to live with.
I am naturally quite an anxious ‘over thinking’ person, I’ve been like this as long as I can remember. I come from a beautiful family, my parents are supportive of me and I was fortunate enough to have Mum be at home full time when I was younger. As a child I was never too far from my Mum, as an adult I look back and think that may have contributed to my anxiety. I wasn’t a kid that loved change, the transition from primary school to high school was beyond traumatic. It may have involved me going to school for only one day, after spending 2 hours in the car that morning crying and refusing to go in – even the principal came out to try and get me to go in…. funny story to share now, at the time not so much.
So now that I am approaching 28,I have gathered some good tips and tricks that I use to keep my anxiety in check. I wanted to share some things that I do when I feel like things are getting a bit too much.

  1. I make sure I have a support system. I think it is super important to make sure that you have a great support system, whether that be friends or family it’s just really great to have someone you know you can rely on. I make sure I avoid toxic people
    and toxic situations as best I can. I will be realistic here – sometimes it may be
    someone from work like a shitty boss, where unless you leave, then you kind of can’t do too much about it. If I’m in that situation I have to use different coping
    mechanisms. I have been there, where I dread going into work each day and I can’t wait to leave! Sometimes I’ve had to sit and write out the pros and cons of staying at that particular toxic workplace.IMG_9571
  2. A big way that I deal with my anxiety is by exercise. I find it so helpful to just sweat and move, because I know for the duration of the workout my brain has a little holiday. When I say workout, for me it can be something as simple as a walk, a yoga session, tai chi or something as intense as F45. It’s really been about setting my own pace and finding what makes me feel good in that moment.
  3. Meditation! I like to meditate daily, but sometimes I just can’t get that happening. On these days I try and aim for 15 minutes of just lying in savasana literally just means laying on your back. There are heaps of meditation apps which are really great, there’s a few free ones which are awesome.
  4. Self-care Sunday’s are my favourite day of the week! I always keep Sunday free for
    myself. When you work 5 days a week and you only get 2 days off, you really need to schedule some alone time in there. I like to have a bath with a lovely, chunky, amazing smelling Lush bath bomb! I pop on a movie or tv show on my laptop, pour myself some kombucha and settle in with a hair mask and face mask on. That way, I finish off my weekend and head into a new week feeling like I have given myself some proper down time and love.IMG_9572
  5. I see a professional to talk through my anxieties which works amazingly for me. It’s very freeing and I always feel like my mind is a clean slate afterwards. They can be quite expensive to be honest, and I know I don’t have the budget for one. When I first started, I spoke with my doctor about going on a mental health care plan and now I get the sessions subsidised. But I know there is also online counselling which is becoming super popular. I’ve looked into it and It’s very helpful because you have regular access to trained professionals via the internet from your laptop or phone, you can choose your preferred method of contact and it’s normally much cheaper than an in-person session.

OK so like I said at the beginning, anxiety is a bitch, but I’ve learnt over the years how to cope and better live with it every day with just a few simple things. I live a full and happy life. Sometimes it’s just about stepping back and asking, am ‘I loving on myself right now?’

G.S xx