What I’ve Learnt Whilst Being In Lockdown.

What I’ve Learnt Whilst Being In Lockdown.

Hello my lovelies! I hope you’re having a great weekend so far and that it’s not pouring down too much! (That being said, I kind of love thunderstorms..) So, this week shops have begun opening again and lockdown measures are beginning to lessen, which is great news; and if you’re off out to them, please be safe and wear a mask! It’s amazing hearing that lockdown is sort of at its end now, and with shops opening it certainly feels a lot more like how it used to be; but at the same time it feels so strange because I’d gotten so used to everything being shut and no one going out!

Being in lockdown has allowed me to do a range of things I’d either forgotten about, didn’t feel like I had time for and has given me some time with myself and my thoughts. And with everything that’s happened (and still happening), if I didn’t take care of my mental wellbeing, my mind would end up a bit like this:

Naturally, having my mind acting like that is not ideal, so I’ve been taking care of myself by doing all sorts to manage my wellbeing; and I’ve learnt quite a few things about what makes me feel good and sets me up to have a good day.

So, what have I learnt? Well…

  • Something as small as a good cup of tea can work wonders when you’re feeling overwhelmed.

I’ve been trying all sorts of teas during lockdown and have finally landed on one that I absolutely adore, redbush tea. It’s naturally sweet and smells great. Plus it’s naturally caffeine free, and as someone who has anxiety, decaf is all I drink. I also used to have a heavy sugar and then sweetener addiction, and during lockdown I’ve managed to curb that to the point of only needing one sweetner in my tea since redbush is so naturally sweet. Anytime I feel like I need five minutes completely to myself, I go and get myself a lovely cup of tea and chill out for a few minutes.

  • Audiobooks are a great escape from the news.

The news has gotten so overwhelming and is the same thing repeated over and over again, so I’ve been limiting how much time I spend listening and watching it and have been listening to audiobooks instead. I found they’re a great way to escape the never ending covid news and just tune out and chill out for a bit.

  • Plants are an incredible way to brighten up any space and simply put, bring me joy and peace.

I have fallen madly in love with house plants over lockdown. Maybe it’s not being able to go outside much or something else, but I’ve gone from having three fake plants to over 10 alive ones during my time at home. I’ve found they’re a great distraction from everything going on, and they’re something you can focus your energy on even when you don’t feel like looking after yourself. And on top of that you’ll breathe easier with more plants in your space!

  • Redecorating is a great way to feel refreshed and give you that new start feeling.

I had been in the same space for several years, and it was a pretty dark room due to there being slanted ceilings and only one window. My brother had had the smallest room in the house for years and long story short he kept asking me when I was moving out (gotta love saving for your own place..) so he could have my room. So, I thought about it and decided it’s about time he got a big room. And so, over the course of a weekend we painted, moved furniture and reorganised each others room; now I’m in the smallest room in the house. You might think having a tiny room with only enough space for a clothes rail, bed, desk and bedside table would feel cluttered and give you anxiety; but it’s actually been incredibly refreshing and has encouraged me to completely declutter all of my belongings to what I actually need. My room feels fresh and bright and is the new beginning that I needed.

  • No one is looking at my scars when I’m out without makeup on. My skin looks fine with and without makeup.

Since we’ve all been inside for a long time, a lot of us who would normally wear makeup regularly have reduced our days wearing makeup to virtually zero. And as nice as I feel when I’m wearing a full face, not being able to touch my face for fear of my makeup coming off everywhere just isn’t worth it anymore for me. So now I only wear a full face when I’m doing a photoshoot. And even then it’s a much paired down makeup routine to my previous one. When I do go outside I wear a tiny bit of clear brow gel, clear mascara and lipgloss; and even then that’s a rare occurrence. At first I was concerned that my acne, rosacea and psoriasis scars would make people stare at me, but to be honest, no one really cares at all. And now I don’t even wear foundation in most of my photoshoots!

Light Projector
  • A light projector is a great way to rid you of night worries.

I picked up a light projector from amazon after switching rooms with my brother because I had individually stuck 800 glow in the dark stars to my old ceiling and my new room felt weird without them, so this was a great replacement. The light can change colours, project water and stars around the entire room. Plus this projector light is also a speaker and has a timer setting so you can leave it on when you go to bed without fear of it staying on all night and overheating. I like to put on a mix of red and blue light with the stars whilst I listen to meditations or read before bed. It’s super relaxing, and I’d recommend it to anyone who struggles to get rid of worries before bed.

  • Yoga is a form of meditation for me.

Before lockdown I would practice yoga on and off every now and again, but about halfway through lockdown I started practicing yoga for 30 minutes each day to chill out and reset. I’ve been watching Yoga with Adriene on YouTube and am about 3/4’s of the way through her 30 day yoga practice/challenge. These have helped me unwind after a day at my desk and spend some time acknowledging my thoughts and feelings and let them be what they are. Yoga is something I don’t go a day without now because it allows me to release and explore anything I need to without pushing my feelings down until they inevitably explode out of nowhere.

  • Just because I’m not going anywhere doesn’t mean I can’t look cute.
Shaved head

Something I used to do before lockdown was wear simple outfits during the work week with a hint of my unique style, and then go all out at the weekend. But since we’ve been inside an awful lot, I have taken pleasure in dressing completely unapologetically in my unique style, going all out with my outfits every day. Gone are the days where I would save outfits for an occasion; because after all, you don’t buy clothes to have them stay on the hanger only to be worn once in a blue moon.

  • Shaving my hair off is the most freeing and liberating thing I could have ever done.

As you probably know, at the beginning of lockdown I shaved my head. It was something I’d always wanted to do, and lockdown gave me the perfect opportunity to do it. Shaving my head was scary yes, but oh so worth it and I would do it again in a heartbeat because I’ve never felt more like myself. It’s helped me reassess what about my appearance I relied on as a comfort blanket and how I feel about how I look. I feel beautiful with and without hair and let me tell you, not having to do your hair in the morning is an incredible feeling.

  • Time really does heal.

So, at the end of February my ex and I broke up. We’d been together for over 8 years, since we were 15 years old. He was my first love and to be honest I think we weren’t sure what we wanted anymore. To tell you the truth one of the good things about going into quarantine is that its allowed me to process my feelings and work through what I needed to work through, and now, four months on I feel amazing. Time really is a healer and quarantine is the enforced time I needed for myself.

  • Days doing nothing are necessary.

Looking online I saw so many people talking about how they were working on their next project or finding a side hustle during their time at home, and it made me feel like having a day to do nothing was a waste of all of this new found spare time. But, as someone who hasn’t actually been furloughed and worked the entire way through lockdown whilst simultaneously running her own business, my spare time actually felt shorter than ever before and I began feeling guilty for wanting to spend the day in front of the telly. However, if you don’t take time to look after yourself and recharge, you’re going to burn out. So, I ended up taking a few days holiday during lockdown to literally do nothing. And they were just what I needed to recharge and refresh myself ready to get going again. You haven’t always got to be doing something!

  • Photoshoots are a great way to boost your mood.

Something I’ve been doing is having photoshoots with no real goal or purpose in mind other than to turn up some music and vibe; and let me tell you, it is such a great way to give you a mood boost. Plus, you get some super cute photos out of it too! I like using this as a tool for testing out new outfit ideas I’ve had as well, and the second I’m vibing in the outfit, it instantly brings a smile to my face making everything even cuter.

  • Family quiz nights are perfect for catching up with family without the awkward ‘how’s your love life?’ questions.

Most of us have been talking to family and friends even more than before over the last few months, and for my lot, we’ve been having two different game/quiz nights, one board game night on a friday with one side of my family and a quiz on the saturday night with the other side of my family. I love a quiz so these have been so much fun, and since we’re all focused on the game/quiz, all awkward questions you don’t want to answer hardly ever get asked.

  • Skincare routines are a small way to show yourself some selfcare.

I’ve taken this time at home to fully delve into my skincare routine and find things that truly work for my skin. In the morning I use my Carbon Theory soap bar, followed by a serum or complete care cream (I alternate these daily) and then in the evening I use an aloe vera cleansing foam followed by an aloe vera moisturising gel and then my adapalene retinol cream. I’ve stuck to this routine for about 3 months and my skin has never felt better. Yes, I still have my adult acne, but the texture of my skin has changed and I think my skin tone has evened out a bit. 5 minutes in the morning and evening to look after yourself can really work wonders.

Tarot Cards
  • Tarot card readings help me feel centered.

This one isn’t for everyone, but I personally love doing tarot readings. I like to burn some incense sticks, put on some relaxing music and then give myself a tarot reading, focusing on whatever question or worry I’ve had going through my mind. The cards don’t give you direct answers of course, but they can give you a gentle nudge into a direction you could take. And I personally find a little bit of calm in allowing other forces (believe what you want to believe.. if you don’t believe in that sort of thing that’s your choice and you do you) to give me a bit of guidance on what I can do.

  • Routines are necessary to keep me productive on weekdays.

As nice at it was to work in my pyjamas every single day, it stops the day from being broken up and you can lose a sense of what day it is. So, I’ve created a routine which I stick to every weekday to help my days stop blending into one. I wake up at 6.30am, go get breakfast by 7am, have a cup of tea and then wash my face and brush my teeth; then I watch some youtube or tv and then start work at 8am. I then work until 4pm with a lunch break in the middle and then at 4.30pm I start cooking my tea. By 6pm I workout and shower, then play some animal crossing, watch some tv and then get ready to go to bed and then go to sleep by 10pm. Having structure has helped keep me productive and make sure I’ve scheduled in some time for selfcare.

And those are what I’ve learnt from being in lockdown!

I feel like I’ve grown a lot during lockdown, at the start of lockdown it had been about 3 weeks since my ex and I had split, I was in a completely different space mentally and physically, I was surrounded physical clutter too and I was stressed about all sorts. But now, I’m single and happy, I’ve moved into a new space, I’ve thrown away and donated the majority of my belongings by going minimalist, I’m finally on top of my savings and can manage my finances with (some level of) confidence and I’m now adult enough to keep plants alive and I give even less of a care about how others view my appearance!

Looking back at who I was at the beginning of lockdown is truly like looking at a different person. My family and friends have said I seem more like myself and happier than ever and I can’t help but agree with them. Truth be told I think lockdown was the time out from the outside world that I didn’t know I really needed.

What have you learnt from being in lockdown? Let me know in the comments!

Have a great weekend my lovelies and happy pride!

Love,

Victoria Blog Signature
My July Favourites.

My July Favourites.

Can You Believe QE

Hello lovelies! Can you even believe we’re in August already?! This year is going so so fast, and I’m not going to lie.. I’m already getting excited about the festive season. Autumn and Winter are by far my favourite seasons, everything is so cosy and the food is so good! Anyway, onto today’s post, my July favourites.

This week I’ll be telling you about my favourite makeup/beauty products, fashion pieces and other little things I’ve picked up over the last few weeks.

So, without further adieu..

Noughty Thirst Aid Conditioning and Detangling Spray

Noughty Leave in conditioner

I absolutely love this spay, it’s been a godsend for my hair, and makes it feel amazing. As someone who religiously straightened her hair for years this is a must, it also helps that I haven’t touched the hot tools for just over 4 months, but since my hair grows so slowly the damage is still on the ends, this is an essential in my hair routine now!

Yoga Mat

Yoga mat

This one has become a very new favourite of mine, I’m a bit of a yogi, but I stopped practising for a while due to back issues (post to follow in a few weeks) but I’ve just started up again. I found it’s good for my mental health (don’t worry, I won’t start preaching saying yoga solves everything – because it doesn’t) and I treat it as self-care along with helping with my back pain.

Cacti Packing Organisers

Cacti Bags

I’ve done a fair bit of travelling/staying away from home the last few days, so these have been amazing since I have a habit of being an over-packer. These have helped me stay organised and only pack what I need to, plus they are so cute and cheap (gotta love amazon!)!

Bare Minerals Powder Foundation, Highlighter and Brush

Bare Minerals makeup

In Edinburgh I spent some time shopping in Princes Street and went and got my makeup done at a Bare Minerals counter. It was my first time having my makeup done by someone else and I loved it. I finally found a foundation that I could wear without it looking cakey, too dark/the wrong tone and it covers my acne scars and rosacea! And the highlighter is a pretty with pinky lilac tones you can see in the light.

Overcooked – Nintendo Switch

Nintendo Switch overcooked

Overcooked is a cute yet manic cooking game made for the Nintendo switch where you have to run around the kitchen in all sorts of areas completing orders before time runs out. I love playing this when I just want to disappear from reality for a little while. And it can be played by yourself or with as many as 4 people!

Oversized T-Shirt Dress

Tshirt dress

I picked this up the other day and it’s already a favourite of mine. With it being so hot at the moment this is perfect for staying cool, and it’s great for travelling. I’ve paired this with bike shorts and vans for a casual look and as a bonus – it feels like wearing pyjamas! And who doesn’t want to walk around basically in pyjamas all day?

Dungarees and Balloon Sleeve Top

dungarees balloon sleeve top

You might remember the dungarees from my last post, where I embroidered them with a small sunflowers to brighten them up a bit. And I absolutely love my balloon sleeve top paired with them that I embroidered myself too! I just love that sense of pride when you’re wearing something you had a hand in making.

So those are my July favourites! What have your favourite things been for July? Let me know in the comments. If you like these posts then maybe I’ll make this a monthly or bi-monthly thing! Well, that’s it for me today, have a great weekend!!

Love,

Victoria Blog Signature

July Favourites pin

I’m Taking Part In RED January

I’m Taking Part In RED January

Happy New Year everyone!! 2019 is upon us, and I can’t wait to see what great things are going to happen this year.

For me, this is the year of me trying new things and pushing myself out of my comfort zone; and what better way to start than by doing something I’ve never done before! Cycling. Now, I know what you’re thinking, how can I have never cycled before??

Well, that’s not 100% true, the last time I had a bike I was 6 and it still had stabilisers on it with pink tassels on the handlebars. So in my mind, I’ve never really done any cycling. Especially not on my own bike now that I’m an adult.

So, what even is RED January?

RED January was founded by Hannah Beecham after she found out how your mental health can benefit from exercise; she found this through helping her mother through the darkest of her depression with love, support and by working together towards a goal (The Walk The Walk Midnight Marathon).

RED January Poster

Why am I taking part in RED January?

One of my new years resolutions for this year is to raise some money for charities that I have had a personal relationship with. And one of those charities is MIND.

I decided to take part in this challenge because I realised that I’m actually reasonably active; this is due to having to do physio for my back (that’s a post for another day) and developing a healthy relationship with exercise since recovering from anorexia, and it has definitely improved my mental health.

And also because I’ve just received my first every bike, I’m now cycling to work every day! So it makes sense that if I’m already being active every day and feeling the benefit, why not raise a little money in the process??

RED January Poster - I'm getting active every day, to beat the blues away.

So that’s what I’m doing this month. Even on my birthday, the 17th! Taking part in RED January doesn’t sign you up for having to force yourself to do something terrible every day that is harrowing. The only requirement is that you do something active everyday in January, if you don’t like running, you can go for a walk, what if it’s raining and cold outside? You could do some yoga, find a workout on YouTube or simply dance around your house just in your pants if you want. That active part is up to you.

Now, since today is the 5th January, I’m about to go do day 5 of the blogilates 100 Ab challenge (wish me luck! I’ll be doing a follow up of this at the end of the month so stay tuned!) and then go for a bike ride if it’s nice outside.

Oh, and if you wanted to sponsor me, you can find my JustGiving page here! I know we’re all tight on money since Christmas is over, so don’t worry if you can’t donate, why not sign up to do the challenge yourself with me?

Have a great day lovelies!! See you next week!

Love,

Victoria Blog Signature
Red January Banner - I'm getting active every day, to beat the blues away.