5 Things I’m Grateful For This July (2020)

Here’s my monthly gratitude reflection!

The Ability to Say Goodbye

Goodbyes are always difficult. Sometimes they’re painful, sometimes they’re a little easier, sometimes they just exist as a reminder that we have to let something go. However, in a way, we should be grateful for our goodbyes, because, without a goodbye, we wouldn’t have had anything meaningful enough in the first place.

This month, I said goodbye to my university house as I moved all of my stuff out. It was a very strange experience that I don’t think has caught up on me yet, but I am grateful to have had the opportunity to move there in the first place and have a place to live where I felt really at home.

 

Online Internships

In July, I took part in the Bright Network Virtual Internship in Business, Operations and Marketing. It was a 3 day event, involving skills seminars, network sessions and a work task! I’m so grateful that companies such as Bright Network have put together virtual internships like this that give students and graduates the chance to enhance our practical experience during lockdown. I learnt a lot from the experience, and met some lovely people too! I am hoping to do some more virtual internships and courses over the upcoming weeks.

 

Eating Out

As those of you in the UK know, restaurants began to reopen in July. I went out for lunch with a friend for the first time since before March, when we first went into lockdown, and it was so amazing to feel like things were a little bit back to normal! The food was really delicious and it was nice to be around lots of people (although social distancing, of course). I have a feeling the transition back to normal life won’t go so smoothly and the restaurants might have to close again, but I am grateful that I have managed to go out a few times to enjoy it while it lasts.

 

Music

I feel like, because I’ve been doing a lot more reading and listening to podcasts lately, I haven’t been listening to music as much. It’s only when I turn it back on again that I realise how much I miss it. However, Taylor Swift unexpectedly dropped her new album Folklore at the end of July and I couldn’t (can’t) stop listening! It’s my favourite album of hers yet, and it’s encouraged me to whip out my speaker and play some tunes in between my job applications to break up my time.

 

The Bursts of Sunshine

Let’s be honest, England’s wild jumping between different weather climates is undoubtedly annoying. However, when the country does decide to actually embrace summer, it’s been nice to enjoy the sun! I’ve enjoyed sitting on picnic blankets in the garden, meeting friends in the park, and going on long walks. It feels a little bit more like a normal summer, so in case we end up going back to lockdown, I’m treasuring it as much as I can.

 

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What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments.

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

Sign up to my Weekly Wellbeing Newsletter here.

5 Things I’m Grateful For This June (2020)

Here’s my monthly gratitude reflection!

Completing the first draft of my novel!

Earlier on this month, I finished the first draft of my novel, which is by far the longest thing I’ve ever written! I’m so proud to have actually completed it, even if the words end up being a jumbled mess (I’ll find out soon, when I read it over!)

When I completed it, I was a little disappointed by the fact that it was shorter than I expected it to be (46K), but when I asked for some advice on twitter, I got such an overwhelming response from the writing community and I’m so grateful for all the lovely messages I received.

 

My Belongings

I’ve spent a lot of time this month decluttering my room. This involved clearing out my desk, my clothes and my books. During lockdown I’ve learnt that so many materialistic items we have in our lives are extremely pointless and unnecessary. Why do I have 7 white T-shirts? Why do I need 4 pairs of the same colour jeans? It has encouraged me to reduce the amount of items I own even more, and be grateful for the ones I do own.

If I pass along old books and clothes, someone else can enjoy them in the way that I once did. And I think that’s pretty cool. Let’s recycle a bit of happiness.

 

Seeing Family and Friends

This month I’ve been meeting up with friends to go on socially distanced walks and sitting in the garden on picnic mats in the sun! It’s been really lovely to just catch up on everything, especially since I haven’t seen a lot of my friends since January/February.

I also got a chance to see my cousin and her most recent art exhibition, which featured some of my creative writing! Her paintings are so wonderful and I’m so grateful to have had my writing alongside them. You can check out her website here!

 

Online Resources

I’m thankful to have all the online resources that make learning new things possible. I’ve been working a lot more this month on a Google Garage Course on The Fundamentals of Digital Marketing. It is free to complete, and I’m about 80% of the way through, so I’m looking forward to doing the final test and hopefully getting the certificate! I think it will be super helpful for my future career.

 

Space

When I say space,  I mean living in the present. Over the last few weeks I’ve felt a little detached from social media and the online world. I think part of this perhaps has to do with the Black Lives Matter Movement, and how I wanted to educate myself but equally not let it overwhelm me. It’s hard to put into words how truly awful it is when it’s a lifetime of feeling that I could never and will never wholly feel myself. But it still is very upsetting – it makes me angry and hurt – and these are emotions I wanted to explore offline, through podcasts and shows, rather than feel like I had to live up to the expectations of social media and other influencers.

I think during this time, when I posted less frequently on my blog and social media, I realised how freeing it felt, to not have posts lined up for a while. As much as I love blogging, I think I forget how much time and work really goes into it. It reminded me that nothing awful will happen if I disappear for a while and it’s completely okay to do so. Living in the moment is such an important (and now, rare) thing to do, and I like that time away. I need it and I crave it and I’m grateful to have my phone and blog, but I’m also grateful to just live, and be, and exist. We all need that little bit of space.

 

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What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments.

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

Sign up to my Weekly Wellbeing Newsletter here.

5 Things I’m Grateful For This May (2020)

Here’s my monthly gratitude reflection!

My University Experience

This month, I sent off my final ever assignment towards my degree! Despite things feeling very uncertain at the moment, I feel so grateful for the last three years. It’s been a journey of many ups and many downs and I don’t think I could have grown this much as a person if I didn’t have the experiences that I did.

A week ago, I shared a post on how many words I’ve written in my entire degree (for a bit of fun!), so you can check that out here. I’m sure I will also share a larger post at some point reflecting on my university experience in a bit more depth!

 

My Blog

Something I’ve realised over the last few weeks, is that I rely a lot on my hobby of writing to keep myself feeling productive with a overall good sense of wellbeing. Without having blogs to write and social media posts to share, I think it would have been a lot more difficult to cope with ending university.

I’m so grateful to have a platform where I can speak my mind and connect with others. I’ve had a lot of really genuine and lovely comments on my blog this month, where I’ve inspired people to make changes to their everyday life, and convinced some to try out a new book! It feels good to be making that kind of difference, even if it small.

So thank you, so much, to all of you ❤

 

Books, Books, and More Books!

Since being in lockdown, books have essentially become my life. There are 3 ways I’ve been enjoying books and I’m super grateful to be able to do all of these:

  1. Reading books – the obvious answer!
  2. Cooking/Baking – I love finding new recipe books!
  3. Writing a book – yes, I’m actually in the process of writing the first draft of my novel! 😱

 

The Sunny Weather

Doesn’t everything just feel that little bit happier when it’s sunny? I’ve loved the rise in temperature and the fact that I’ve been able to sit outdoors in the sun to read, or go on a nice walk. It definitely helps with getting some fresh air in lockdown.

 

Learning to Make Do

I think what I’ve learnt the most during lockdown is to learn to make do with what I’ve got, to make an everyday life and routine out of about a tenth of my normal belongings. I’m sure it’s made a lot of people rethink the amount of stuff they buy because they think they need it, but, in reality, we don’t really need much at all.

I’m really grateful to have the things I do have – a house to live in, food on my plate, books to read, and a family to keep me company.

When I return back home, I’m determined to declutter my room and get rid of all the things that I honestly don’t need!

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What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments!

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

Sign up to my Weekly Wellbeing Newsletter here.

5 Things I’m Grateful for this April (2020)

Here’s my monthly gratitude reflection!

Joining a book club!

This month, I joined a new book club! Surprisingly, I’ve never joined a book club before, so this is pretty exciting. For the month of May, we are reading The Nine-Chambered Heart. If you’d like to take part, follow this instagram account for details. It’s all online, so we will be discussing the book throughout the month via the dedicated instagram post.

You can also vote for what other book I read in May too, here.

 

The Spring Flowers

One thing I love about spring is all the flowers popping up – in the garden, across social media, everywhere! Not only do I love taking photos of them, it’s really lovely to sit and admire them. My favourite is the pink blossom!

 

Video Call

I’m sure we can all relate to this one at the moment – life in isolation wouldn’t be the same if we didn’t have video call. It’s been a lifesaver in terms of seeing friends and family, as well as continuing with seminars for my degree. Even my Grandma is now using it!

 

Playing the Piano!

Playing the piano is something I missed out on whilst at university, but now that I’m home it’s been really nice to play again! I chose a couple new pieces to learn this month, including Lover by Taylor Swift and River Flows in You by Yiruma. At the end of last week, I shared some of my progress over on my instagram!

 

Comedy TV Shows

This month, a new season of Friday Night Dinner, as well as the latest Brooklyn Nine Nine season, has aired on British TV. It’s been great having these shows to watch because they always bring a lot of laughs, and it’s been fun watching them with my Dad and brother!

 

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What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments!

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

Sign up to my Weekly Wellbeing Newsletter here.

5 Things I’m Grateful For This March (2020)

Here’s my monthly reflection on gratitude!

 

Meditation

A few weeks ago, I went to my first ever meditation workshop! I’ve meditated before – I sometimes use the apps Headspace, Calm and Insight Timer to help with this – but I’d never actually been to a class on it. It was a really insightful experience – it was nice being in a room with others who had a similar outlook. We did a variety of different meditations, such as chanting, body scan, focusing on the ends of each inhale and exhale, and looking at the seven chakras of the body. This session, as well as a podcast I listened to by Dr Chatterjee, got me thinking a lot about my breath and how I can work on decreasing stress through learning to breathe more deeply and slowly. I’m grateful for these experiences and resources that encourage me to make positive changes in my own life.

 

The ability to help others

As I mentioned earlier this week, in this blog post, I have recently created an email newsletter called the Weekly Wellbeing Challenge. Every Monday, I am sending out a simple challenge, to those that have signed up, for them to focus on for the week. Each challenge will promote wellbeing and productivity and it’s ultimately a fun way to try new things too! I’m hoping it will help everybody that is self-isolating, me included. I’m really grateful for sites such as Mailchimp that make creating this newsletter accessible and for everyone who has signed up, because this project makes me really happy and it’s nice to know that people are willing to support it and join in too.

If you’re interested in joining, here’s the link: http://eepurl.com/gW_SHz

 

Independent cafes

This month, before the pandemic hit, I was exploring Norwich and finding some really nice independent cafes to sit in and read a book! It was a nice way of changing up my scenery and taking a break away from studying. Unfortunately, due to recent events, all these cafes, along with many other places, have had to shut. It makes me sad because it is the independent cafes that will lose out most and I can’t imagine a world without them. It’s made me even more grateful for the joy they brought me earlier this month and I’m glad I got the chance to enjoy them before I moved back home to my family.

 

The Simple Things

As I’ve just mentioned, the pandemic has caused a lot of people to rethink the way they’re living their life. It has forced us to consider what our basic needs are, stripped back from materialism and unnecessary obsessions. It’s made me realise that, when it comes down to it, we can live on very little. We don’t need to have everything to live. I feel grateful to even have a house to live in, a family of support, electricity and technology. We are very fortunate – staying inside is nothing in comparison to those that had to fight in a war hundreds of years ago. We must remember this.

 

My university experience

Alongside many others, I am one of the students who has been stripped of their final moments of university due to the coronavirus. What I thought was going to be another month of last seminars, last yoga sessions, last band concerts and final goodbyes is now replaced with self-isolation, and it’s kind of surreal to think it is all over. Whilst it makes me sad to think that I have left the city of Norwich and all the memories within it behind sooner than I expected (or was prepared for), I’m very appreciative of my time there in the first place. It’s been a crazy three years but I’m so grateful to have lived them.

 

March has started and ended on two completely different notes and there’s no denying it’s overwhelming, but all we can do is focus on the present moment and try not to think too much about the future. Now, more than ever, is a good time to practice gratitude and remind yourself of all the great things that do still exist in your life. I will be continuing with this series, whatever happens over the next few months, and if you’d like to take part too, feel free to post on your blogs.

 

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What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments!

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

 

5 Things I’m Grateful For This February (2020)

Here’s my monthly reflection on gratitude!

 

Going out of my comfort zone

This is something I try and do as often as I can because it encourages self-development, but I feel like I did a lot of it this month. I had a lot of scenarios that made me feel particularly anxious, such as reading out my creative writing in class and doing a presentation in front of my seminar group. These are things that, back when I was really struggling with social anxiety, I used to avoid at all costs. However, this month I forced myself to do them, but with kindness. I reminded myself that the danger was all in my head and practiced positive affirmations in front of the mirror. For those of you who don’t know what this is, it involves speaking aloud positive phrases to yourself to change the way your mind thinks. I used the phrases ‘I am confident’, ‘I am likeable’, and ‘I can do this’ and I really noticed the way it made me feel more confident and happy within myself.

 

Seeking internships

Following on from going out of my comfort zone, I also sent out some speculative emails for potential work experience. Since, I’m nearing the end of my degree, my goal at the moment is to get as much experience as I can and learn more about the working world and how I will best fit into it. I had a couple informal interviews (one over the phone and one in person) which I was a little nervous about, but they went well and I’m proud of myself for taking action.

 

Walking

Over the past month I’ve noticed, through the health app on my phone, that my average steps a day has increased a lot compared to previous months. I’m hardly walking 10,000 steps a day, but compared to my own previous statistics, I’m a lot more physically active. I think this is something that is hard at university, especially when I’m only required to be in uni for 6 hours a week – it means I have to be more intentional with going out for a walk. But I bought some walking boots a couple weeks ago and I’m planning on doing even more walking to boost my health and wellbeing. I’ve found that going for a morning walk is a great way to start the day feeling productive and refreshed.

Check out my other post on why walking is so important here.

 

Going to the cinema

Lately I’ve begun to really appreciate the experience of going to the cinema. Films are something I’ve always enjoyed, but I never used to go out to see them much – I suppose because society is so driven by online streaming sites now, such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. But I’ve found that I never focus on a film in quite the same way as I do when I’m shut away in a darkened room in front of a big screen. I’ve found that it’s a great way to relax – to leave behind any worries – and fully immerse myself in something. I feel like in modern day, with technology and multi-tasking, it’s not often that we focus our attention on something for two hours, if at all, and it’s kind of sad really. The cinema is probably one of the only few places which encourages this.

Check out my film reviews from February below:

Jojo Rabbit

Little Women

 

Creative Writing

Last semester I didn’t study a module in creative writing and I kind of missed it. This semester I am so I’ve been doing a lot more writing and creative stuff! I’ve been working on my first assignment which is a 2000 word short story and I’m really enjoying creating a dystopian world for it. I’ve also been working on a separate project with my cousin (who is an artist) – she is painting portraits and I am writing short creative writing pieces to match each one. She is then having an exhibition showcasing these in April 2020 (in Brighton) and in June 2020 (in Burghfield) which is really exciting! So if you happen to be in one of these areas at the time, feel free to check it out! (message me for details)

 

Overall, I feel very grateful for the direction February has taken me. It’s been productive and creative and a good mix of work and enjoyment. Not to mention, I’m still really enjoying reading more books for pleasure!

 

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What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments below!

Take a peek at my social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

5 Things I’m Grateful For This January (2020)

Here’s my monthly post on my gratitude for January!

 

Journalling

For the new year, I decided that I wanted to take up a consistent journalling habit. I was inspired by Dr Chatterjee’s book Feel Better 5 where he gave examples of good ways to journal at the end of the day. So now, as I’m winding down for bed, I get out my journal and write down 3 things that went well that day (something I enjoyed, something I’m grateful for, anything), as well as reframing a moment that I didn’t particularly like, explaining how it made me feel, how I can approach it next time and ultimately forgiving myself for it. For example, using my phone too much throughout the day, or not speaking up for myself. Not only will this help me actually put my stack of notebooks to good use (I’m a bit of a hoarder), but a lot of the time it drowns out the overthinking noise in my head and reminds me of the good parts of the day, so I can go to sleep in peace.

 

Books

One of my goals for this year is to read more books for pleasure, not just those for my degree. I’ve already read 2 books so far which is really good going for me, and it’s made me realise how much I appreciate the books that I have, the writers who write them, and my ability to read. I know for a fact that education has thrown my love of books all over the place, but this month I’ve reunited with that feeling. I’ve started a new bedtime routine where, after I have journalled, I read a book of my choice before I go to sleep, and I think it’s really helped to spark my enjoyment again, as well as improving my sleep.

 

Embracing Stillness and Rest

I’ve always been a bit of a typical introvert in that I love spending time alone to pursue my hobbies, such as reading, writing, blogging, etc. but I equally love being busy and doing things. I feel like this month I’ve just had a lot more space to breathe and I think that’s because I’ve taken more of a chilled out approach to things. I’ve taken the time I need to just sit and contemplate things and not feel guilty for resting. I find it so much easier now to say “no” to things I don’t want to go to, embracing the fact that sometimes I just want to stay home and chill and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. It means that I have more energy for the things I do want to go to.

 

Playing Music

Since it’s nearing the last four months of my time at university, it got me thinking a lot about the societies and clubs I do here and how I will actually miss them a lot when I leave. One of these is playing the clarinet in Big Band. Although I don’t practice much on my own, I really enjoy playing as a group and creating music that others can listen to and enjoy. This month Big Band released a CD that we recorded last year and we had an album launch at the uni bar where we played some of the pieces and sold the CD’s. I listened to the CD when I got home and it just made me really happy and proud that I could be a part of something so great. It makes me really grateful that my parents encouraged me to start music lessons, particularly my Dad since he is musical too. I think it’s pretty cool that I can play instruments and I don’t remind myself of that enough.

 

Binaural Beats

This is something that I only started experimenting with during the latter half of this month, but wow has it changed a lot in my life. For those of you who don’t know, binaural beats, in summary, is relaxing music that is considered sound-wave therapy – you can find music that is based on different frequencies and waves, such as alpha, beta, theta, etc. Each type of wave has different benefits, but most of them promote relaxation, decrease stress/anxiety and in some cases pain. I found a theta wave video on YouTube for brain fog, since that is something I have struggled with for a year now, and I was absolutely amazed when, even after the first couple listens, my brain fog had just disappeared. I feel like the music is so relaxing, and makes my body feel so heavy and at peace, that it dissipates any underlying stress that is in my body, which a lot of the time I don’t even realise is there. I haven’t felt so present and aware of my surroundings in a long time, and for that I am incredibly grateful to binaural beats. I’m not sure if this is something that will work long-term, but I’m going to continue using it and see what happens. For now, it is a very reassuring sign of hope.

[If anyone wants me to send the video or share any more details about this, drop me a message in the comments or through social media – links below]

 

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What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments!

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

5 Things I’m Grateful For This December (2019)

The final month of this year! Absolutely crazy how I’m halfway through my final year of university! So, time to reflect on my gratitude for this month…

[Check out my other gratitude posts here: September, October, November]

Spending time with family

Now that I’m on a break from university, I’ve been spending a lot more time with family. My second cousin from South Africa, whom I’ve never met before, is staying with us for three weeks and it’s been so fun to show her around London, Windsor, and our favourite places! She’s very similar to me and it’s honestly felt like finding a long lost sister. It was so lovely to have a Christmas Day full of family and board games and homemade crackers my cousin made (with funky socks and made up jokes that made me laugh so much). I feel so lucky to have a family that, although is small and broken up, I get along with super well.

 

Food

It’s safe to say Christmas is definitely a time of lots of nice food! I am a huge fan of roast dinner – it’s one of my favourite meals – and I enjoy tucking into feasts with family and friends. I’ve also done a bit of baking this month which has been nice! I made a chocolate and banana cake which was really delicious. I’m grateful that I have the ability to create meals and desserts and also have access to such a variety of quality food in the first place.

 

Lifelong friends

I feel very lucky to have a circle of friends who I can always count on to have a laugh, but equally count on to be supportive and encouraging.  I love that I have friendships that involve a lot of investment from both sides – we’re in it for the long haul – and sometimes I forget how rare this is and how lucky I am to have found such amazing friends. It makes me really happy, because I know for sure that I will not only take these friends into 2020 but, as cliche as it sounds, into the rest of my life. So I’m super grateful I have all of you – you know who you are 😊

 

Living in the Present

Over the Christmas holiday I’ve tried particularly hard to use my phone less. My social media usage has dropped down to under an hour, and sometimes even half an hour, each day and I’ve been messaging people less, which has been difficult, but it’s often nicer to call or meet up in person instead. As a result, I’ve felt my brain fog decrease and this has really given me a lot of hope. I feel grateful that I’m alive so I should make the most of living it.

 

Acceptance

I feel like this month more than any other I’ve tried really hard to accept situations as they are, without reacting to them. There’s been a few occurrences where people I consider friends have ghosted my messages and in the past I would have felt anxious, but instead I now just accept it. Whenever my mind tries to beat me up, I calmly speak back to it like I’m reassuring a friend. Even as I’m writing this now, I’m stuck at a train station waiting for a friend who got delayed by more than an hour. I could have got annoyed, but what would be the point? Instead I’m accepting it as it is and enjoying a sausage roll and hot chocolate. With acceptance comes gratitude for what is right in front of you, not anger and anxiety for what isn’t.

What are you grateful for this month?

Let me know in the comments!

 

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Christmas Day Socks with the family!

 

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

5 Things I’m Grateful For This November (2019)

It seems like only a few days ago I started this blog series, but both September’s gratitude and October’s gratitude have gone by, so here I am again for November!

 

Time to breathe

This month, I decided to start up meditation as a consistent routine. I’ve done meditation on and off before, but I never really set my mind to do it for a long period of time. My friend decided she’d like to do the same so we now message each other every day and try to do meditation at the same time. I feel so grateful to have apps like Insight Timer, Calm and Headspace where there are so many free meditations available for use, but also to have a friend that shares the same interest as me and who motivates me to better myself.

 

Dream-like moments

There are some moments in life where everything seems kind of surreal. Often it’s when you’re in a change of environment or you’re doing something new. It’s a dream-like moment where you feel as though you’re in a bubble of happiness away from your everyday life. I’ve had quite a few of these this month – going for a long walk, days out with friends – and it reminds me how nice it is to break the routine. I felt as though I existed in myself on those days, away from all the external and materialistic things I associate with myself, and I feel so grateful for that.

 

Spirit

With the build up to Christmas, it’s really made me appreciate how wonderful the spirit is around this time of year. I’ve always loved Christmas, but I feel like I notice it so much more now – the warmth of people, the excitement and the singing. I went to the switch on of the Christmas lights in Norwich a few weeks ago and it was so lovely to see everyone gathered together for the event. I understand why some people might find Christmas overwhelming, but to me it is the time of year where everyone seems so free and genuine and kind.

 

The Little Surprises

I think when a lot of us hear the word “surprise” we think of something big, like a surprise party, but sometimes even the small, unexpected things are overwhelmingly exciting. A week ago my Mum sent me a little box in the post full of surprise goodies and it was so lovely! In it was a little pine cone lady decoration, a pot of travel facts, a cute magnet, an advent calendar and a lot of chocolate! I’m so grateful to have these goodies to get me through my essays over my final weeks at university this term, so if you’re reading this Mum, thank you so so much!

 

Yoga

If you’ve been following my blog over the last few months, you’re probably aware that I decided to join yoga club this year at uni. It was one of my goals for tackling stress/anxiety and I’m so happy that I’ve managed to keep it up! I’m so grateful that the club has so many sessions on offer. There is a mix of fast-paced, calm, and core-based sessions and I always look forward to bringing on the new challenges. Before yoga I was super inflexible (I couldn’t even touch my toes) and I’m hardly the opposite now, but I have noticed a lot of improvement. I always feel so refreshed afterwards as if I can breathe so much easier and freely, and it helps reverse the sitting positions I resort to throughout most of the day. I think it’s easy to have a stereotypical perception of yoga or the kinds of people who do yoga, but it consistently surprises me. It has helped me so much, and I think everyone can benefit from a little yoga every now and again.

 

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A photo I took on a walk around the lake!

 

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud

5 Things I’m Grateful For This October (2019)

Following on from my previous ‘5 Things I’m Grateful For This September (2019)’, I’m back with the second blog post of the series! I think the first post went down quite well, and I think it also helped me reflect on the good parts of the month more than anything else. So here we go again!

Small Interactions/Connections

I often find that the smallest of things can make me really happy. This month I’ve had various moments where I just felt really connected to people – people I didn’t know, people I had only just met. I was sitting next to someone on the train the other week and, just before he left to get off at his station, he turned to me, smiled, and said ‘hope you have a great trip’. It was such a simple remark but it really made my day – and he probably didn’t even realise it at the time. I guess what I’m saying is that this month I really felt the good side of humanity – the kind, the emotional, the honest side. And I noticed that, when I was travelling, I felt the urge to reach out and speak to people too, to also make that connection. It’s almost like a mutual wave of kindness was just flowing around and recruiting people along the way, and that makes me happy.

 

Unexpected Writing Opportunity

I wrote a post about this a week or so ago, which you can view here, but I had to mention this within the list because I’m so hugely grateful to have the chance to put my writing out into the world through an app! Writing has been a huge part of my life for as long as I can remember, but writing for a cause is so important to me too. I don’t just write for myself, I write to help others too, and so it felt great to take part in an opportunity that involved reaching out and helping people through my words. The whole experience was an unexpected occurrence, but I think sometimes unexpected things end up being the greatest opportunities! I had a wonderful day watching the recording of my writing and I’m sure it’s something I will be grateful for for my whole life.

 

My Progress

This is a bit of a weird one, but I’m really grateful for the amount of progress I’ve made. There’s a lot of things I have struggled with over the years, due to mental health, and speaking my mind and in front of others is one major one in particular. This month, I’ve really been trying to push myself and disengage the associations my brain has with school/university classes. Speaking up in class has always given me a lot of anxiety – red face, shaking, sweating, losing breath, you name it. It’s really difficult to hide this when everyone is staring right at your face. However, after all my hard work over the past year to increase my confidence and decrease social anxiety, I’ve finally managed to speak up more in class than I have in my entire three years of my degree! The anxiety isn’t completely gone, but I’m able to get through it and still feel good about myself by the end. And that really is a huge step in my progress. I really am grateful to everything and everyone that has brought me to this point.

 

Clothes

This may seem trivial compared to the previous three things, but sometimes it’s good to take a new perspective on something that has become so habitual. I don’t go shopping that often, but when I do I sometimes end up buying quite a few things to make up for it! I’m grateful that there’s so much choice out there in terms of fashion. It’s amazing really that someone designed every single piece of clothing and that we use them to express our personality. A lot of the time it is not just a piece of clothing, it’s more than that. The fact that fashion gives people confidence and happiness is pretty wonderful.

Flowers

Again, this is a very simple thing, but for my birthday earlier this month I got sent a bunch of flowers and I just thought that they were really beautiful. I mean, they’re kind of starting to die now, but it’s interesting watching the slow transformation each day. They have also inspired me to take photographs for my Instagram which I’m grateful for, so watch out for some flower pictures!

What are you grateful for this month? Let me know in the comments below!

You can find me on social media here:

Instagram: @mymindspeaksaloud

Twitter: @mindspeaksaloud