Self-Care

Self-Care

Having any kind of illness let it be mental or physical can make taking care of oneself hard. I remember the days when I would not wash my face because it was too much work. I also never felt I was worthy of being taken care of even by myself. I think the worst was when I did not wash my hair for about three weeks when I was in university because I just did not care at all.

Taking care of yourself is so important and it can really make you feel better about life, the world and yourself. It is the small things that you need to focus on, not the big because that will just bring you down when you don’t achieve it.

If you are lying in bed right now and don’t feel like getting up and showering, don’t. Just get up and brush your teeth, if you do this you have taken one great step forward. If you know you should be going to the gym but don’t have the energy, don’t go. Instead just have that shower that seems like so much work. Do the smaller things, by doing these smaller things that feel like mountains you will feel much better because you have climbed a mountain and achieved.

 

During my really bad times, I would make a checklist. I would write the things I needed to do and then write the days next to it. I would create a graph sort of thing, then each day when I did the thing I was meant to do I would put a tick there. It made me feel really good to see all those ticks at the end of a week. This also gave me the motivation to do the next week. I have attached one for you to try and see if it helps you a little. Click on the task word and it will take you to the checklist.

Task

Here is a list of the simple self-care things that you can do and do not ever feel bad if you cant do them

  1. Brush teeth
  2. Brush your hair
  3. Wash your face
  4. Shower
  5. Eat breakfast, lunch or dinner
  6. Move from the bed to the couch
  7. Call a friend or family member that understands
  8. Write down how you feel
  9. Read a book
  10. Listen to your favourite music
  11. Put hand cream on
  12. Make the bed
  13. Go outside
  14. Make some tea or coffee

 

I am thinking of every one of you and wish you the best. Know you are not alone and you are stronger than you realize.

Sunday review: mini lipgloss

Sunday review: mini lipgloss

It is after New Years and I’m wondering around the mall when I see Dischem has a sales tables. My heart stops, the adrenaline leaves go through the roof, a sale table hell yeah.

I found a little mini essence lipgloss set which was a little box with three little lipglosses in it. It is so darn cute i just had to buy it and it only cost me R30.00.

Packaging

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The packaging is adorable and so pretty. The size is not practical as it will end up getting lost in my handbag or in my room. But it is nice to try a colour without buying the actual size.  The applicator is also small and adorable which got me all butterflies in the tummy like. I love cute little versions of things. It also applies the product really nicely.

The product

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I am not really a shiny lipgloss person as i don’t really like that sticky feeling on my lips. This has that sticky feeling like when i open my mouth it is going to look like i have a spider web between my lips. I do however think that they do show a nice pigment of the colour, they don’t suit me but they will work with someone. I will say that they are not drying and do last for some time, this i was rather impressed by.

At the end of the day i don’t regret buying this because it was on a sale and i find them too adorable not to have. I will say that i would not buy it on full price just because i am not a lipgloss kinda girl

Reasons I don’t like February

Reasons I don’t like February

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The first of February is here and welcoming us to a new month. A new month is exciting I agree, it is a chance to set new goals and start over in many ways. People feel that with a new month they can start some new goals and not worry about the ones they did not really reach in January.  This is a positive and something exciting but at the end of the day, I still don’t really like February.

There are a few reasons I am not the biggest fan of this month, first be the heat. It is rather hot here in the sunny South Africa during the month of February. I am not the best person in hot weather, it makes me grumpy. I also hate to sweat, I know weird thing isn’t it.

The second reason is the month feels strange being 27 or 28 days long. I feel like this just throws me off balance with the bigger scheme of the year. Before I know it March has arrived and I always feel shocked.

My last reason why I dislike February is valentines day. Now I have nothing against love and all that romantic stuff, however, I do have something against it being used to make money. The 14th of February is a day used to make companies extra income, they oversell the idea of love and what it should be. I personally would rather get flowers on a random day than on a day where one feels they have to show they love you. Why put so much unnecessary pressure on a relationship, I really think that this “holiday” leads to more problems then happiness. The single girls get sad, the girls with men who forget about the day get angry and feel they aren’t loved. Why do we do this too ourselves?

 

Are you looking forward to the month of February?

High end primer vs drug store primer..

High end primer vs drug store primer..

I love watching people compare a drugstore product to a high end product that I thought I will have to do this for myself.

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Honestly I am a little disappointed by the whole experience, there was no wow moment and in the end it was just another day wearing primer. I compared the Benefit POREfessional Primer to the L’Oreal Infallilable one as I have read that the L’Oreal one is a dupe for the Benefit one.  I have used each primer for a bit and have already come to my own feelings about each. I thought it would be fun to really test them side by side.

One morning I split my face in half and went high end primer on one side and drugstore on the other. Every other product I used was the same and I used the same applicators on  each side.

When applying the primer they felt the same on both sides and my skin looked the same after they had been applied. I then went to do foundation where I used my Maybelline FitMe, which I am obsessed with and used a beauty blender to apply it. Both sides applied nicely, nothing too special. When looking closely at my foundation both sides looked the same, both were smooth and my pores were nicely covered.

By the end of the day, I didn’t notice any difference on each side. Both latest the day and felt the same. My concealer looked the same, I actually found the side with the Benefit primer was less covered, one could see my dark circles more on that side than the other.

In all I think these primers are almost exactly the same, no one was able to say which side was high end and which was drugstore. If I hadn’t been the one to do it I wouldn’t have been able to say.

Mental Wellness Monday Share

Mental Wellness Monday Share

After sharing my story last week I got a lot of kind messages of support and others telling me about their struggles with many different illnesses. I decided to start the Mental Wellness Monday Share to help share peoples stories and let people know that they are not alone in the world.

This week I have the inspiring story of a young lady who has not had an easy time with her illness. It took Yolandé a long time to get the doctors on her side but this has not stopped her in life. Here is her inspiring story which I hope will help many of you know that you are never alone. Check out her Instagram page: Sheer Empowderment

Yolande & Richie ~ 009

My journey with fibromyalgia

A few months ago I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. Even though the diagnosis happened quite recently, I have been dealing with the symptoms for as long as I can remember. As a little girl, the doctors explained to my parents that it was just growing-pains and that eventually it will blow over. Well, I’m 25 now, and still waiting for my so-called growing pains to “blow over”.

Fibromyalgia is characterised by chronic, widespread muscular and joint pain. This is often accompanied by chronic fatigue as well as issues related to sleep, moods, concentration and memory. Because there are, to date, no physical blood tests that can be done to make a diagnosis, the word fibromyalgia seems to have become somewhat of a dirty word that some medical practitioners tip-toe around. This leaves the patient with nothing but questions, a feeling of hopelessness and a handful of (even more) painkillers. Yes, there is no cure for fibromyalgia but there are very effective treatment plans that can be put into place to drastically improve your quality of life despite living with fibromyalgia.

 

The most frustrating and disempowering part of my journey with chronic pain was getting diagnosed. It took years, endless bloodtests, tender-point tests and a very long list of different medical practitioners. From multiple GP’s, to psychiatrists and physicians. It’s a long and exhausting path but don’t give up! Even when the doctors do…

There were and still are days (although they happen a bit less often now) where my body is in so much pain and so stiff that I physically cannot move until I get my medication and warm my muscles up with microwavable beanbags. There are nights when the pain in my legs are so bad that I cannot fall asleep. Simple things like brushing my hair, climbing in or out of the bath, driving or even just being touched or hugged become a challenge on my bad days. The tricky thing about fibromyalgia is that the flare-ups (periods/episodes of intense pain) can be triggered by multiple factors. Stress, climate changes, poor sleep, certain foods, hormonal changes etc, etc, etc. You start to learn what your triggers are and either try to avoid them or if you can’t (ie hormones and weather) you at least know what’s coming. Because I also have endometriosis, it is a bit of a vicious cycle with the one condition feeding off of the other.

Mood changes are also associated with fibromyalgia. It often leads to feelings of anxiety, helplessness and depression which can, in turn, trigger another flare-up. This is the kind of knowledge and understanding that usually only comes after we know what we are dealing with. Without a diagnosis – you have no answers and no treatment plan. You do not know what to avoid, what to focus on and what to expect. It’s a very lonely space to be in and extremely difficult to explain to the people around you.

My current treatment plan enables me to live a normal life. I am able to study, work and reach for my dreams because I know my limitations during flares and I (finally) understand what my body needs from me. I have had to make a few changes to my mindset and lifestyle which I will elaborate on below. This year I am completing my Masters in Industrial and Organisational Psychology and lecturing part-time. I will also be celebrating my first anniversary with my husband who completely understands that some days we will be having take-aways and lying on the couch because cooking or going out just isn’t possible on a “fibro-day”.

 

  1. What have you learnt through this journey?

So often, we really are our own worst enemies. I can be extremely hard on myself and tend to push myself to the limit. It’s just who I am. But I have learnt that it is okay to take time out for yourself, actually it’s a necessity if you want to be the best version of yourself. Taking a night or a weekend off does not mean you are lazy or aren’t worthy of your dreams. It means you have learnt to listen to your body when it needs a break. It means that you chose to take a day or a few hours off instead of being bed-ridden for the next week because you pushed your body past its limits. I have also learnt that my aspirations and achievements are literally worthless if I don’t have my health– so my priorities have definitely changed.

I also realise that some people might never understand what I’m going through and actually that’s okay. I don’t wish it upon anyone to know the feeling. So certain comments and requests may come across as insensitive, but I don’t let them affect me because I realise its coming from a place of lack of awareness. Fibromyalgia has a long way to go in terms of awareness and that’s why articles like these are so important.

  1. What is the hardest part of living with your fibromyalgia?

I think the biggest challenge for me is the fact that I cannot always predict when I will be having a good or a bad day. That means it’s difficult for me to, for example, stick to a set time to go to the gym or know which days I’ll be able to study without with ‘fibro fog’. So as much as I thrive when I can plan my schedule to a T – that simply isn’t possible and I have had to learn to be more adaptable. Another challenge is the fact that fibromyalgia is an invisible illness. People cannot see it, so for many it simply doesn’t exist.

 

  1. What makes the hard days better? Any home remedies, hobbies, self care tips

There are so many! Keep in mind what works for me might not work for everyone but it’s definitely worth giving it a try. A few things that really help me:

-Multiple microwavable beanbags (I think I own more of these than shoes)

-Epsom salt bath (hot water)

-Magnesium and zinc supplements (I use Ultimag tablets from clicks or dischem)

-Sometimes I find it helps to limit gluten in my diet

-The occasional painkillers (try to avoid habit-forming ingredients like codeine as much as possible – the last thing you need is pain from withdrawal)

-Sticking to a sleep schedule (this is very important)

-Exercise (But like I said, be flexible with when you exercise – you want to exercise when you are not in pain. Otherwise you can stick to gentle stretching)

-I was prescribed chronic medication so I set reminders on my phone so that I remember to take these religiously.

-Taking time-outs at least once a week. You cannot expect your body to function for 7 days a week if you are working all day and during the evenings. Either take at least a full day off over the weekend where you do not touch work, or give yourself evenings off from work.

– I have recently started an instagram account called Sheer Empowderment focussing on empowerment and cosmetics. This gives me a creative outlet and also provides me with a platform to empower others with the things I have learnt through my journey.

 

  1. If you could give the you who started this process of diagnosis some advice what would you say?

If I knew what a difficult diagnosis it was to make right from the get-go I think I might have been less frustrated by the process. But the most important thing is that you deserve answers. Maybe you don’t have fibromyalgia. Maybe it is something else with similar symptoms. Whatever the case, keep fighting until you know what it is you’re dealing with and how you can treat it. Diagnosis can become a very expensive exercise which also extends the time it takes to get answers and in some cases even make it impossible. This is because more often than not you are sent from one doctor or specialist to the next. I would advise that in the meantime you start focusing on basic self-care tips which will help no matter the diagnosis (getting enough sleep, a healthy diet, vitamins and supplements and putting processes into place to reduce your level of stress). And whatever you do, don’t accept the answer of “it will blow over, it’s just stress, here are some more painkillers”. This is your life, your body – and this is your fight.

 

 

 

 

Sun Shine Blogger Award

Sun Shine Blogger Award

 

I have to say a big thank you to the stunning Gabrielle Banner for the nomination. Gabrielle Banner is the author of the incredible blog The Fashion Faux Pas Of Gabrielle. Basically, this award allows for bloggers to nominate each other and ask them some questions. This helps get bloggers out there and get other to know them.

The rules

1 Thank blogger(s) who nominated you in the blog post and link back to their blog.

2 Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you.

3 Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.

4 List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or in your blog

The questions

  1. Favourite make up range
    1. this is such a hard question to answer as i often don’t stick to a brands range. I will say that i loved the MAC 2017 Christmas range. The packaging was divine and the colours were right up my alley

2. When and why did you start blogging?

I started my first blog when i was about 13 and when school started i stoped because things got busy. I then played with the idea in the first year of varsity but also found i was too busy. At the end of 2017 i was really emotionally struggling and i needed to find a creative outlet and something that made me happy. I found that blogging gave me a place to be me and explore what i loved.

3. Whats your main blogging goal for 2018?

I think my main blogging goal would be to get a sponsored post so that i can pay for my next year of blogging. It would be awesome to say that my blog paid for itself

4. Whats your favourite pair of shoes and why?

My favourite shoes are my adidas originals, i literally wear them everywhere. I must admit they are starting to look a little old. I just find them to be so comfy that i always go to them first

5. Whats been your biggest fashion failure and why?

This is not an easy one because i have so many. I am going to go with the stage where i wore boys hoodies because i thought it made me look cooler.

6. If you could rename your blog, would you? And if yes, why and what would you call it?

Nah i think im happy with my blogs name, for now anyway

7. What’s your favourite store to buy fashion from and why?

Right now i am loving Legit because they sell clothes that are so flattering for the curvy body.

8. Whats your full time job?

I am a full time student studying early childhood development and foundation phase education. I then work as a tutor on the side.

9. What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve done to your hair?

I once used a box of expired hair dye ( i did not know it was expired till after i used it) and it turned my hair black and straw like. This was also the day before we were flying to go to Amsterdam so there was a lot of panic and tears.

10. What do you with you could tell your younger self?

Stop doing this for other people and start doing things for yourself

11. Do you have any hobbies other than blogging?

I do enjoy taking photos but right now blogging is the main one.

Thank you Gaby for the nomination.

I nominate

Olivia Blogs  https://oliviablogssite.wordpress.com

The dairy of Ellie https://thediaryofellie.com

Currently Lately https://currentlylately.com

Tiffany’s life  https://tifanydheanisa.wordpress.com

Love Cally https://lovecally.com

Here are my 11 questions

  1. What is one food you refuse to eat?
  2. What is your favourite part about blogging?
  3. When did you first find out about blogging?
  4. One fact about yourself that might surprise your followers.
  5. If you could get on a plane tomorrow where would it be going?
  6. What app do you find helps with your blogging the most?
  7. What is your favourite song today?
  8. What are you scared of the most?
  9. Are you a dog or cat person?
  10. What is the one thing you don’t like about being a blogger?
  11. What blogging goal do you most hope to achieve by the end of the year?
Fun with colour

Fun with colour

I got a really fun eyeshadow palette to play with from a close friend. There were so many colours that it took me some time to actually decide what to try.

I was impressed by the amount of eye shadows there were in the palette and the amazing range. It was a very colourful palette which is not my normal go to thing, i like my more nudes and brown colours. I did however have fun playing with some colour for a change.

I was amazed by the lack of fallout from the palette, it made working with the colours really great. I will say that the colours were not as pigmented on my eyes as i would have liked, they looked a little washed out which was not great. I also did not find the shadows easy to blend, it took a rather long time.

I did my one eye pink and the other blue because i could not decide what colour i felt like going with.