5 ways to get yourself into a better mindset

Friday 26 June 2015

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We all have those days when we’re just not feeling great and that stack of work on our desks just makes you want to curl up in a ball and cry. On those days we don’t feel like doing anything, except staying in our pajamas, snuggling up under our duvet on the sofa, and binge watching the BBC TV series adaption of Pride and Prejudice, while stuffing our faces with Ben + Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge ice-cream (or is that just me?). Nothing usually gets done on these days as we honestly just feel too pooey to do anything, and the tasks that were supposed to have been completed that day just get rolled over to the next, when we still don’t want to do them. To stop this we need to get our procrastinating butts off of the sofa and actually get cracking.

   To really get some proper work done however, we need to be in the right frame of mind. I thought I would share a few ways in which I achieve that with you guys.

1. Have a cup of tea

Tea. Oh how I adore it. Tea is the answer for everything. Seriously.

     Feeling sad? 
     Feeling too cold?
     Feeling thirsty?
     Feeling ill?
     Have a cup of tea!

     And if you’ve already had a cup of tea today? Have another one, simple as that.

2. Put on some make-up

This applies to everyone. And I mean EVERYONE. Well - as long as you like make-up.

If you like to wear make-up and you know that it makes you feel even a little better about yourself, put some on and you’ll feel better instantly. I guarantee. Sometimes it’s fun to put on a full face of make-up, however, just a small amount is usually enough to suffice.

Don’t spend too much time on this though. It could lead to a whole day spent applying blusher!

3.  Put some nice clothes on.

We all have that one outfit that we adore. That one outfit that makes us feel like we could conquer the world. Try it on and see what happens.

4. Play your happy songs

For me, this means ‘Friday I’m in Love’ by The Cure, ‘Popular’ from Wicked and practically any Taylor Swift song. They should be songs that you know all the words to, songs that you can jump around and dance to and not care who sees you. These songs should help you get off of your backside and give you the motivation to do something productive.

5. Skip the junk food

This is a sad one, and I’m sorry for what comes next.

Put away the toffee waffles, the Nutella, the chocolate fingers and the ice cream. They’ll only be distractions and will encourage the binge eating I mentioned before. 

If you really want, bring a packet of crisps or something small to your desk with you to snack on. Eating healthier will make you feel more up to doing your task and you’ll therefore get down to doing it more quickly. It’ll make you feel more energised and awake, because who wants to feeling all bleugh when you’ve got stuff to do?

What do you do to get yourself into a better mindset? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

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Ode to Joy

Monday 22 June 2015

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We all aspire to be happy. We all want to achieve it. We all strive towards being it.  For many, happiness is the key to existence – life’s one true purpose. We are distraught when we don’t have it, and are often bored when we do. It’s a funny thing really.

Think about this for a moment: How many times in your life would you consider yourself to have been truly happy? I’m sure I could think of a few. Having TV marathons with my best friends, reading one of my favourite books, or just going for a solo afternoon walk in the middle of winter. Simple things make us happy, and more often than not we don’t realise it. But then, on the odd occasions that we do recognise our happiness, we can then be filled with dread for the time when it’ll stop.

Or is that just me?

 I tend to find that I’m happiest when I’m not realising it. I’m too caught up in my happiness to know that I’m so ridiculously happy. That’s the true, utter bliss we all crave. The kind of happiness that makes us stop thinking about happiness – that makes us stop comparing our lives to others' for even a minute. We’re completely absorbed and caught up in the moment, and it seems like nothing else matters. We can feel our hearts smile from inside us at the slightest of things.

Making someone grin so wide that lines form around their mouth, or they laugh so hard their nose and eyes scrunch up with mirth. Receiving a cup of tea when you weren’t expecting one but secretly really REALLY needed one. Watching the world, and knowing, from what’s in front of you that this is a truly awe-inspiring place. Finally beating your little brother at the Rainbow Road track on Mario Kart after countless failed attempts. Jumping up and down with your friends, belting out the lyrics to a song being played at your favourite band’s concert. Lying on the beach next to your family, slowly falling asleep to the gentle sound of the salty sea waves crashing against the sand. Cats in general. The excitement of opening a long awaited parcel that yes, is indeed for you. Running through crumpled and crusted leaves that have fallen down onto the concrete pavement on a crisp autumn morning.

These area all things that I totally and unreservedly believe constitute to my personal happiness. They're little things in life that we often look over, when we certainly shouldn’t. But if we did focus on them more – would they become bigger and more significant? Would we overthink them as we do so many other things? Maybe it’s better that we don’t think about them, otherwise they could stop making us so happy.

We should live our lives in the moment; that way we can all achieve as much happiness and contentment as is possible, in the short time we call life.
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"You like that band?"

Wednesday 17 June 2015

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Why is it that people so often judge someone else on the type of music they listen to? Why is it that whenever some teenage girl says that she likes One Direction that automatically means that she can’t like The Beatles or Mozart or Fall Out Boy or any other artist that the person she has opened up to deems to make ‘good’ music? Because heaven forbid someone listens more than one genre of music!

   I admit - I may not be entirely innocent when it comes to judging people on the music they like. But I can still recognise how stupid I’m being and think to myself:

 ‘You go love that band! And that one! And any music you want!’

 Because, really, another person’s taste in music is neither my business nor my problem.

  We spend way too long worrying about (or should I say examining) someone else’s taste in music. Way too long.  Sure, talk about a band as a common interest but don’t say how much you hate them if the other person has already stated that they're their favourite band. That’s honestly just plain rude. Why should you make a person feel bad just because they like a band that you probably don’t care all that much about? It’s just getting them down over nothing – and what’s the use in spreading even more negativity than there already is in the world?

   If someone wants to listen to classical music and rock music: let them.
   Heck if they want to listen to a classical-rock fusion let them!
   Let them listen to any type of music they want!

If it makes them happy, why should it be a problem?

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Just A Quick One!

Monday 15 June 2015

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School is, at the moment, extremely busy. We have exams in a few weeks time and our World of Work week is tiring us out for the entirety of this week. Then with added homework, D of E and other activities, I am left with barely any time to do what I love best: reading and writing.

Really what I am saying is that I can't give you guys updates as often as I usually would. Don't panic! I will still be posting, however there may only be 1 or 2 posts a week rather than the normal 3. This is to just ensure that I am as unstressed as possible and that I have time for my hobbies, as well as revision, without getting too worried about putting a post up that night.

Because in the end, this blog is a bit of fun. It's a place for me to publish my work and for people to see it. But because it's just a bit of fun I don't want to be stressing about it instead doing something that has a higher priority.

So, once again: I will be posting - just not as often as normal - and my schedule will get back to normal (that'll just be once my exams are over and I am not such a busy bee as I am now!).

Jemima x

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5 Ways to Conquer Post Concert Depression

Friday 12 June 2015

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1. Listen to the artist/band’s music on replay

It doesn’t matter whether they have 1 album or 10: play them constantly! Play their songs on shuffle, in order, backwards or upside down – you only care as long as you’re listening to them.

2. Down the ice cream like there’s no tomorrow

Strawberry, chocolate, vanilla, your favourite band member’s favourite flavour - whatever it is just keep shoveling it down. I swear ice cream is the remedy to anything…

3. If they have a YouTube channel: STALK IT!

Or maybe their supporting act’s channel. Whichever one you prefer. But remember that even if you have watched a video 500 times before there’s nothing wrong with watching it for another 500 times.

4. Then stalk their social media

Only make sure you don’t like a post from 379 weeks ago; people will start to think you’re a bit of a weirdo.

5. Constantly keep an eye out for more tickets to their shows

Even if it’s 2 years away, that’s something to give you incentive for anything.

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Everyday Clothing Problems

Wednesday 10 June 2015

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Clothes, we all have them and we all have our own different ways of wearing them. Some prefer to wear very little while others like to cover themselves from head to toe. It’s something we have done for thousands and thousands of years and are very unlikely to stop doing any time soon.

We wear bad clothes and baggy clothes and tight clothes and trendy clothes. Wear cheap clothes and expensive clothes and colourful clothes and monochrome clothes. The clothes we wear come in all different shapes, sizes and types. We give each style of clothes some fancy name that will be on the front of all major fashion magazines as soon as they become the “in thing”. We pass judgement on people’s fashion choices as they walk past us on the street. We see pictures in magazines of celebrities whose outfits have been deemed to be “Not Hot” or “Disasters”, while their wearers have been told: “What were you thinking?”

And all this time we go on to agree with these magazines and mention to our friends about that random celebrity’s odd dress, or hat, or top, or any item of clothing that is thought to be untrendy.

But, what is it to us? Really? Does it even matter to you if Lady Gaga decides to go parading around in a meat dress, or that woman you saw on the street had a dress that was maybe a size too small for her? Why should you care if a person wants to show off their religion or culture through the way they dress, or if someone prefers to dress in a way that isn’t viewed as the social norm?

Does it affect the way you go about your life? No? Then leave them be. It’s not your business and it has nothing to do with you. It’s their choice what they put on each morning, not yours. Let’s be honest, it’s got nothing to do with you.

We should all be able to wear what we want, when we want, without feeling as though we’ll get judged, hated on, or even bullied for it. We should be able to wear what clothes we like and what suits our own individual tastes. We shouldn’t wear something that injures us (I’m looking at you killer heels), makes us feel uncomfortable or we just plain don’t like, because it’s the “trendy” thing to wear. If you honestly don’t like wearing something, don’t; it’s as simple as that. But hey! If you like wearing them go for it! It’s entirely your choice.

   You want to wear your pajamas to the shop? Go ahead.
   You want to wear a formal dress to go bowling? Sure thing.
   You put someone else down for what they choose and like to wear? Stop it, now.

Wear whatever you want to wherever you want; be you and don’t give a damn who is looking. You’re probably looking incredible anyway.

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5SOS 07-06-2015

Monday 8 June 2015

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About a year ago, one of my best friends managed to get hold of 2 tickets to see 5 Seconds of Summer in Cardiff. As I had not been able to acquire some myself (and they’re my favourite band), she offered me one of them and, of course, I jumped at the chance.

    Yesterday, my mum and I drove up to Cardiff, where we met up with my friend and her mum (who just happens to be one of my mum’s best friends too). Because of our move, we don’t get to see them as much as we would like, and this trip provided a great opportunity for us to see them – a meet-up that had been planned before we even knew that we would be moving.

    So we had arrived. Exactly year after we had seen them perform as a supporting act for One Direction (back in the Zayn Malik days). We were outside the arena, in amongst the queue that snaked around the outside of the building. We were feet from the concert, minutes away from when it would start. We had our tickets ready, and our phones with as much battery as possible. We found our seats and we were there.

   It’s far to say that we were excited. Well maybe excited doesn’t cover it. Ecstatic? Euphoric? We were pretty damn excited I can tell you that.

   After we happily sung our way through Hey Violet’s performance (they were amazing, check them out on YouTube) we sat, trembling on the edge of our seats, awaiting for 5sos to take centre stage. And when they did they were phenomenal. Absolutely phenomenal. It was such a good night – so god in fact that I don’t think I would be able to describe it to you, even if I tried. Our throats may have been hoarse and our legs may have ached - but it was a brilliant night that I won't forget.
   Those who dismiss them as “just another boy band” forget the true talent they have; that talent becomes so much clearer when you listen to them perform live.

Have you ever been to a 5SOS concert? If so, tell me about your experience in the comments.

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5 Reasons to Love Train Journeys

Friday 5 June 2015

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      I adore train journeys, you may think I'm a bit of a weirdo, but it's the truth. I thought that I would share some of the reasons why, and maybe you can learn to love them too!

      1. They're relaxing.

Whether it is a short, one stop trip or a 5-hour journey across the country, I will love every second of it. There’s something about simply being on a train that I find oddly relaxing. It’s a different world in there, almost disconnected from the outside civilisations. It’s so easy just to lie back and enjoy the ride – your mind blank, free of work and deadlines, even if it’s only for a few minutes. This one usually applies to longer journeys, whereas short commutes in busy cities such as London may not be as relaxing – in fact they may seem like the exact opposite to you. However, as I am not a regular visiter to London and have mainly used trains that travel in the countryside, this has not been such a problem for me. Although for those of you who generally travel in big cities, try and relax on there; it’ll do you the world of good.

2. It's a great time to do work.

Well, okay, maybe you don’t have to relax all the time, and you’re not going to be work-free constantly. Time on the train can turn out to be amazingly productive. I know of some people who have written books on trains – they put in the hard work then that ended up kick starting their careers.
     However long your train journey, this is a great time for you to get something done. The train provides you with a great opportunity to get on with things – it could be anything from writing a CV to some revision for an upcoming exam. It’s time that is just hanging about not doing anything; you may as well use it well.

3. It’s the perfect place for people watching.

Who doesn’t love a bit of people watching? And where is better to do it than somewhere with a variety of people coming and going almost continuously? It’s always fun sitting in a chair and watching as unique people go about their unique lives. On the train you can catch glimpses of celebrities, hear a family’s loving farewell to a child going on a trip - families in general just being ridiculously loud and hilarious – you can see people just like you taking in their surroundings, there’ll be the group of little old ladies or teenage girls in the corner nattering about something that is probably completely inconsequential. There are people travelling alone or in massive packs, some whose destinations are far off when others’ are just the next stop.

4. They give you time to just think.

When I go on the train, I never usually takes long before I have gone into a daze. My eyes go out of focus and my legs curl up underneath me – a comfortable position for me but many others may think that I look a bit odd. I go into a daydream. A haze, if you like. For me, that's a place where anything can come into my mind and will get thought over thoroughly, even if it really doesn't matter at all.

 5. They show off the country at its best.

As I have grown up on small, one-carriage country trains and rarely ever go through the city, I have always linked trains and the countryside in my mind. A lot of tracks go through some really gorgeous scenery and (I don’t know if this is true for countries besides the UK) I truly believe that they are the best way to see the country at its best.

So what're you waiting for? Go hop on a train and enjoy the ride!

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Dear My Future Self

Wednesday 3 June 2015

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Hi! Hello! Hey! I hope you’ve got this greeting people thing sorted out, cause God knows I’m terrible at it right now.
    So you’re me – us. How are you? I hope you haven’t been too stupid in the years to come, that’d be nice to know. I don’t know exactly when you’re reading this. A few years time maybe? You’ll be very different from me now, I presume. But I hope the essentials are still there. I don’t doubt that my main passions will have continued on to become yours. For who would we be without books, writing and our violin?
   Speaking of writing and books, have you finished that novel yet? You better have done – I’m quite sure you’ll be kicking yourself otherwise. Or have you written another one too? That would be pretty cool. Do you still re-read your favourite books every other month? Do you still play your violin at every chance you get? I hope so, and I hope you’ve got some more grades under your belt as well.
   I hope you’re more confident in front of people than I am now – a fault I probably need to rectify. Do you speak up more in front of new people and voice your opinions? You know you want to say something important to them.
   Sure, you’ve probably made some mistakes, but don’t worry, I don’t mind – they’re what help make us who we are. Go for whatever it is, and don’t have any regrets.
   Have you worked up the courage to perform small acts of kindness whenever you can? Even if it’s just saying “bless you” to some stranger who sneezed on the train.
   Do you visit home regularly? Go see the friends you and I both know, perhaps too well. Do you see the people who matter to you? If you don’t: drop everything and go see them now. I mean NOW.
   Are you more social than I am now? Because anything would be an improvement on that! I’m wishing that you’re not a hermit still. If you are, go outside and read or write there, instead of in your dark bedroom, where you know light will never reach your skin. You might be beginning to look like a vampire.
   Have you seen the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them film? I found out that Eddie Redmayne is going to play Newt Scamander yesterday. Do you still keep up to date with Doctor Who? And have you watched more episodes of Classic Who? Have you finally got Netflix, so you can actually watch some of the shows you keep telling yourself you need to watch?
   But most importantly, are you happy? Are you safe? Are you having fun?
   Don’t worry: I have faith in you,

   Yourself, at 15.

If you like this post you might like Letter to the Rain.

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