Looking Forward Into 2021 & A Retrospective Look To 2020

We live in a world full of oversaturated images of ideal circumstances. Pinterest and Instagram is stuffed full of overly clean interior design: kitchens without a drop of mess, living rooms with no life, bedrooms lacking spice and excitement. We see pictures of DIY projects completed seemingly in one go by yoga practicing, straight laced, ‘my body is a temple’ gods and goddesses, who seemingly have endless holidays and limitless bounds to their finances.

Overall, there is something very wrong with the way we present ourselves on social media.

Once we lose sight of the fact that these perfect lives have taken hours to capture the right moment on camera, waiting for the right lighting, the right opportunity, we start to wonder why our own lives don’t reflect those of the people around us, or who we chose to follow online. It begins to affect us in ways we cannot always physically see, in ways that niggle us from the corners of our minds. Suddenly, our own imperfect images online aren’t good enough, and we’re not sure why. Suddenly, the pictures from a very merry Christmas with aunt Susan and nana Peggy don’t look as fun as you remember.

In 2020, the world took a very strange turn into the world of the online due to Covid-19. We worked online, saw our friends through the palms of our hands, and we found ourselves alone a lot more than usual. Now, although this seclusion at first glance doesn’t appear the best, we found that we had time to reflect on our lives, retrospectively assess how we wanted to spend our time.

Some of us, myself included, felt that 2020 was the year we hit rock bottom. We saw a record loss of jobs and an increase in people asking for help. We saw people learn to live with their new surroundings, survive with the bare minimum and surprise themselves in situations they didn’t think they could survive.

Yes 2020 was the year we hit rock bottom but if we hadn’t hit the floor, we wouldn’t have found our solid foundations on which we could build and grow from.

Its important that when we look at the lives of others online who have seemingly thrived during the pandemic as motivational content rather than as competition, or something to be jealous of.

Its Ryan Serhant who said that this year has been like sitting in the backseat of a moving car and looking out through the right window and seeing a brickwall, dark, dingy and unappealing to look at. Its easy to think, looking through the window that this is the only outlook on life that you can have yet if you switch up your outlook, jump from one seat to the other and look out of the left window you might see bright sunny skies and a beautiful view. You’re still in the same car but with a tiny bit of effort you now have a much lighter view.

Its easy to slip into bad habits, think negatively about your situation and here’s the thing: no one is responsible for changing your world views but yourself. You can’t rely on anyone else for your happiness. Your sadness is caused by your outlook on life.

If you’re sad, lacking in motivation, craving change, then it’s you that also needs to stop being lazy and get moving. Wherever you are with your plans, implement something today. Not tomorrow, today. Why wait?

Yes we’ve had a bad year in terms of a life threatening pandemic but it doesn’t mean life has to stop, we just have to learn to adapt and change with it.

I think in 2021 we should look to incorporating more life into our online presence, more human error. We should promote normalcy, encourage candid shots of everyday adventures and show people that life is perfect just the way it is. We need to start creating a world we are proud to leave behind to a future generation of community based survivors, people caring prodigies, life loving collectives.

Believe in the message? Join in with the candid collectives on social media by using the hashtag #candidadventure in your everyday positive posts and help build our positive vibes across the globe.

Because when we help each other succeed, we all succeed.

Until next time, beautiful readers.

Being The Best You & Encouraging Others

I found myself having a discussion about who I’d be in an ideal world if money wasn’t an option. I said that if I could buy what I liked, when I liked, that I’d be one of those women who ate avocado toast for breakfast, drank healthy smoothies for lunch, did yoga in the early hours of the morning and pole dancing lessons to strengthen my core. My partner said he’d love to take up skating again and get some sort of exercise routine going.

Our discussion got me thinking about how we could mutually encourage each other to do these things, to make ourselves the best versions of ourselves. We ended up looking for used in-line skates on Facebook marketplace and gumtree to see if there were any cheap skates going. Unfortunately there weren’t at that point but the seed had been planted so that we could keep an eye out for the future.

My partner suggested that I start getting up with him in the morning and doing my yoga then in the living room, following along to a YouTube video. The only hurdle I have to overcome in the mornings is actually getting out of bed that early and not just wasting the time on my phone.

I enjoyed our discussion, our small sharing session incited excitement and got the brain cogs whirring. It also felt like an intimate discussion, an honest expression of our hopes and dreams, albeit humble ideas. It’s these kinds of conversations I live for, these two way streets which allow both parties freedom to express themselves without fear of being judged or persecuted.

I highly recommend opening a dialogue with your significant other about what each others hopes and dreams are for the future. If both couples are willing to discuss, it’ll offer a really fulfilling conversation which I think is much needed during this current climate.

So how about it? What are your hopes and dreams for the future? How can you see your best self? Are there small steps you can take now to achieve these goals?

Until next time.

Reinventing Yourself & Coping With A New Direction

Sometimes things don’t work out the way we expect them to. You might have a grand plan in your head of which path you’ve chosen for your life but a strong wind has turned your sail and suddenly you’re facing a different direction. You might battle against the wind, try to get back on course, but sometimes the wind is too strong. So we learn to accept our new course, we plod through each day with a new perspective on life.

We might feel saddened that our old life is no longer before us, we might even cry from time to time, thoughts of shattered hopes and dreams clear in the forefront of our minds.

You might lure yourself into a false sense of security that one day things might be different, that your old life will resurface and things will be better, but you know deep down that this is a coping mechanism to help you get through the bad days.

Obviously we never know what the future may hold. Some reminders of our old life are bound to resurface around us, a bit like as if we were on a boat in the middle of a shipwreck. Floating debris bob up to greet us, some may even get close enough to scrape the side of our boat and if there are survivors then you know damn well we’re right there pulling them aboard. It’s inevitable when your life was so important to you, that aspects of it will still be present but it’s our actions and how we proceed which determines what kind of person we are.

This being in lockdown is bizarre. It’s simultaneously the best time and worst time for reinvention and starting a new course. On one hand we have effectively broken all of our patterns and are in a changed position anyway, which means that we will have to not only start this new course during lockdown but also figure out where this new path is taking us when everything returns to some sense of normality so its almost like starting again twice. On the other hand, lockdown is a chance to get things done retrospectively, without outside influences.

Starting a new course is scary, especially when you have been forced into a new direction, but we can do it. We can make the best of a bad situation and we may even end up on top, living a better life than before.

Sometimes we will have moments of confusion and others of clarity. We’re human. We’re allowed to feel these things. We want to know why the thing has happened but also we know why and accept it, sometimes. We might get angry and our bodies might suffer with the consequence of sadness, but its important to remember that tough situations don’t last but tough people do.

Until next time.

Worried About Lockdown? Us Too.

For those of you who read my blog on a regular basis (shout out to Mum and Dad), will know that this blog is all about promoting the mental wellbeing of my readers by offering inspiring real life content and motivational pieces.

In the flesh, I’m no different. Unsatisfied unless I’ve done something productive in my day, I try and encourage mental wellbeing in both myself and my partner Darren. However, sometimes I need help and Darren, his sister Louise and my family have all been there to support me in this difficult time.

It goes to show that everyone needs help from time to time and just because your friend or family member seems to have their life in order, things may not always be as peachy as they appear.

I have worries and concerns everyday about a whole host of things, mainly financial due to losing my full time job as a product lister for an eCommerce brand, but I do my best to plod through. We deal with the hand we’re dealt and although sometimes it feels like a lot of others have landed on their feet where I keep stumbling and falling over, I keep moving forward because that’s all I can do.

However dark things may seem at the moment, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. Watching Darren progress at learning the ukulele and seeing the chord progression finally click in his brain yesterday was super encouraging and I am so proud of him.

It’s definitely true that other people’s energies reflect onto you and vice versa and as we carry on like the good Brits we are, I do feel hopeful, regardless of my worries. We will return to our new normal one day but for now, we should be making the best of things.

Things will have a habit of working themselves out, we just have to believe it so.

Until next time.

Starting A Business? 😅

Last week, if you’re a regular reader of the blog, you’ll know I finished the Alice In Wonderland inspired wall mural in time for The Mad Catter’s launch party which was a fantastic and interesting project which has seemingly launched my own business into action.

Seeing a friend succeed in business has been enough motivation for me to kick into action and has caused me to set up RoamBlogger as a business which has been so fulfilling it is almost unreal. (Except the daunting task of filling in a tax return, that’s not so wonderful).

I have the potential for a few ongoing projects lined up for not only the cafe, but for a doctors surgery of all places and I just hope to continue in this upward momentum for the foreseeable future as I would love nothing more than to class myself as a career woman with a successful business behind me.

If I have any advice for those also following in my footsteps and starting their own business, I would advise you to get as much sleep as you can in now as once you start working and the workload increases steadily you’ll find your days will start to become longer and longer.

But oh my gosh is it a fulfilling level of stress.

I hope to continue posting regular updates on the blog so you, dear reader, can follow along with the ins and outs of business growth from the complete bottom rung, to, well, the sky is the limit. Obviously my posts will still maintain to be lifestyle oriented, so I will continue to post fashion and interior design posts, however I’ll be tweaking these to also include the business side of things, to add more depth to my content.

What do you think about starting a business? What would you go into? What passion would you turn into a career? Let me know.

Until next time.

Life Update: Where Are We Now?

As I keep saying to my boyfriend Darren, this year is a year of firsts. From the blog perspective, this means trying videos on my posts, and social media tactics I wouldn’t have tried prior to this year. It also means trying online shopping properly for the first time. From a business perspective it means taking on creative projects like art installations for The Mad Catter Vintage Cat Cafe in Eastbourne which is proving to be both intellectually stimulating as well as encouraging my imagination.

As previously mentioned, I am still struggling with the work/life balance, however weekends are now proving to be both productive as well as socially recharging.

This year has been a year of firsts but it’s also been a rollercoaster ride of events. From breaking down on our way to Chessington last week, to travelling to Portugal in March, to spending time developing my creative business and having opportunities to do so has meant this year has been a mixed bag of ups and downs. This year has seen death but it has also seen an abundance of life and passion, love and creativity and has shown me that it can be one big surprise, one after the next.

I am blessed to be able to say that I have lived life to the fullest, I have had adventure after adventure and have created memories which will last a lifetime.

While I look around, I see that the most fulfilled people are the people who have explored their passions and followed their dreams. My brother is now working in Ireland doing what he wants to do, Lucy is opening her cat café next month, Louise is about to pop a baby out, Andy is getting married, Ruth has successfully moved house, and I am so incredibly proud of all them and wish them all the best during their adventures.

Whether you have had a small or large life success we should learn to celebrate these. It is also worthwhile celebrating the life successes of others, as we should be able to celebrate and be happy for those of us around us.

I hope that the rest of this year will be as fruitful and as we creep into the darker, more dismal months of the year, I hope we can all keep our sights on our best futures, our new and existing adventures and grow into wonderfully enriched adults with a whole host of memories under our belts.

Until next time.

The Life Of A Career Woman: Hectic Schedules 🤯

For the past couple of weeks my calendar has exploded, making me feel like one of the most in demand people in the East Sussex area. I’m not and I’m only exaggerating for emphasis but I, like many others in this world, am struggling to maintain a healthy work/life balance as my life is missing one vital element: time to breathe.

From the moment I wake up to the time my head hits the pillow I am rushed off my feet. For starters I get an estimated six hours of sleep a night which is not ideal as I do love my sleep and it’s proven that less sleep can actually negatively impact your day as much as too much sleep can.

From the word go, I am rushing to get myself ready and in the car, opting to put makeup on when I reach the office instead of wasting precious time at home.

In an ideal world I’d have a driver and a PA to reduce my stress levels but who has the money, am I right?

Enough is enough. Stress is one of the largest killers across the globe, a preventable affliction brought on by an over abundance of empathy and the unwillingness to say no or disappoint people.

I work a 45 hour week roughly, and have spent an estimated additional 10+ hours on top of that designing logos for my friend’s new cat café opening in Eastbourne in the autumn, as well as running my blog (which, apologies, has been slacking lately). Across my weekends I am out and about constantly, socialising and recharging my extroverted batteries.

It’s safe to say that I’m exhausted.

So I have decided to manage my time better and allow time for myself. I am going to allow for an evening a week, or even two, where I can just sit on the sofa in my most comfortable pyjamas, listen to the ambient Dave Brubeck and relax, without worrying about anything else.

And this is the most effective way to reduce my stress. Not yoga, not mimosas with my girlies, or anything else. In order to relax, I personally need to take a step away from everything, shut off and be Kirsty, if only for a couple of hours.

How do you manage your hectic schedules? Let me know in the comments below or reach out to me on any of my socials (linked on the header of this website).

Until next time.

3 Ways To Better Skin

My skincare routine is so bad it’s almost non existent, in fact, most days it is. I leave my makeup on at night accidentally and I think I’ve had the moisturizer on my shelf for an embarrassingly long time.

I know I could do better and I have a feeling that you might be in the same boat.

When I do remember my skincare routine, my face feels so much better, and I have a healthier glow in the morning because of it.

Micellar Water- Should you be using it?

I swear by Micellar water. It’s by far the easiest and simplest way of taking off makeup without owning 101 different creams and powders, because, if you’re anything like me, you don’t have the time or the inclination to spend an incredulous amount of money on products for your skin. One cotton pad, a couple of drops of the stuff and away you go, wiped and ready for bed. It really is that simple.

Water, water, water.

I’ve mentioned it before but it’s my swear by, cure all, skincare necessity that has cleared my skin of blemishes and given me a healthy glow. That, paired with multivitamins, keeps my skin looking bright and helps reduce the black circles under my eyes that make me look like a raccoon.

Facial Scrubs.

On the odd occasion I’m feeling extra generous to my skin, I also (try to) use a weekly Simple face wash which helps scrub away at those blackheads and clogged pores. Simple is a brilliant brand I’ve been using for years because it’s sensitive to skin and has no unnecessary chemicals or perfumes in.

When it comes to skincare, I keep it simple (pardon the pun). That way I can focus on the things that are more important to me, such as writing and maintaining my blog.

What is your skincare routine? Am I missing out on a fabulous product? Let me know.

Until next time.