14 Things I Learned in 2014

Hey, I can’t believe I haven’t uploaded a blog post since September! The reason behind my blog name is to live life with no excuses, so that is exactly what I have been doing! Here is a list of the things I learned in 2014:

1. There is no such thing as normal

What is normal?

‘conforming to the standard or the common type; usual; not abnormal; regular; natural.

Who sets these standards? I’ve been called weird more times than I can count on my fingers. I didn’t quite understand why I was put into this category. I would thoroughly think about my actions to determine what was so abnormal about them.

I’m still yet to come to a conclusion, I do not care for being ‘normal’. I only know how to be Rochelle and I will continue to do so. So the next time someone says ‘You’re so weird ‘or ‘Why are you so weird?’ I will take it as a compliment. Who wants to be normal anyway? 😛

2. I am in control of my emotions

The moment I left ‘self-doubt’ and any fears I had at the back of my mind, I was finally able to live life and experience new walks of life. One day I was so fed up of everything and made a conscious decision to make a change. It didn’t happen overnight, however it did happen so fast that I didn’t have time to think through what was going on.

I started to enjoy life at present and not over think everything or allow any negative thoughts to corrupt my mind. I started feeling happier, braver and most importantly I started to believe in myself more. 

3. My ‘problems’ are minuscule in comparison

Whilst I’m over here stressing over a little breakout or what to wear on a night out, there is someone out there going through something 100 times worse. I have seen true strength over the last few years, some of my loved ones have been through the worst and you would never even know it. Although you can’t run away from your problems, some problems aren’t really problems and it all depends how you perceive them.

4. Partying isn’t the only means of fun

I’m used to seeing people upload pictures of nights out and I sometimes think ‘Aww I’m missing out’. At one stage I thought I was in the boring category when I had no interest in going out, but you know what I’m not a boring person. I have my own idea of ‘fun’ and that’s where the party is at for me. Every once in a while I will throw on a dress, some heels and shake a leg or two, but there is only so much shaking one can do and it becomes repetitive. Quite frankly I would prefer to be snuggled in bed with a cup of green tea and a good read (haha I sound like a right adventurous one right?)

5. I am adventurous

One evening whilst I was on holiday I thought it would be cool to attempt to fly. I’ve seen superheroes do it on TV, so it was only right I put it to the test. OK- I’ll tell you the actual story. I sprained my ankle whilst of holiday last September. Just my luck right? I cannot recall how exactly it happened or how I managed to miss one step (Yes, it was one single step and it wasn’t even that steep). I can assure you that it didn’t stop me from enjoying my girly holiday. I picked myself up and continued with my evening, then I spent the most part of the following day in a Spanish hospital. Unfortunately I was unable to participate in any water activities for the remainder of my holiday. Next time I will stay clear of all stairs, I promise!

foot

6. Sleep is my sweet remedy

I love waking up feeling refreshed and raring to go. I’m one of those people that aims to go to bed early and it usually work out (Well 9 times out of 10 it does). I must admit the cold weather makes it almost impossible to drag myself out my bed, however once I’m up, I’m up! Gone are the days when I force myself to stay up and find some sort of entertainment. My duvet, pillow and iPod are my means of late night entertainment. By 10pm I have already planned the last few tasks before I hit the sheets.

7. There is no ‘happy’ in settling

If you have experienced waking up and having to mentally prepare yourself for a day filled with activities you dread- you will understand where I am coming from! I have spent days counting down the hours till I am finally free. The moment I’m free, I’m happy and in my element. There was a period of time where I woke up feeling excited and I looked forward to the day ahead. I loved what I was doing at this time and it was a highlight of my year. I will return here again. Always be grateful for what you have right in front of you, we have to do what we have to do to make ends meet, but do we really need to compromise our happiness for XYZ?      

8. I like my own company

I always have… I don’t get bored of my own company. I’m the kind of person that will go out and socialize from time to time, but after a while I need ME time. Not because I am depressed or in an emotional state, this is how I operate. ‘Don’t take it personally’

9. If everybody is going left and I want to go right, go right!

Just for the sake of it! It may be the wrong choice, but at the end of the day it was my choice. I don’t need to be where everyone else is.

10. Wasted time is worse than wasted money

This one speaks for itself. I can forget about the money I’ve put towards overindulging in my favourite snacks; however my time is so precious. Money can be made to replace what is lost; I can’t get back the time I’ve wasted on people or things. I often think about all the time I have invested in other people and irrelevant activities and if I could turn back the hands of time I would have thought twice about doing so. Note to self: set aside time to invest in yourself frequently. You live and you learn!

11. There is a first time for everything

It’s been a while since I could talk about any new experiences. I would avoid answering questions like ‘When was the last time you tried something new?’ because knowing me I would answer with ‘Yesterday I tried Texas BBQ flavoured pringles’ – The sad truth is that was as exciting as my life was.

As some of you know I had never been on a plane, I hadn’t even spent more than 5 days away from home. 25 years on the planet and the only place I really knew of was ‘Home’ (London). Towards the end of 2013 my friends and I discussed going on a girly holiday. At that point in the time I wasn’t sure how I would get there, but I did! I spent 7 days in Ibiza with 8 other girls which was a little out of my comfort zone (I’m not a party girl!). The holiday opened my eyes to the unforeseen and I cherished every minute of it. Now to plan where I’m off to next!

beefa

12. I am a blogger!

Yes blogging is my thing! I have my own domain name and the freedom to write about whatever I like until my hearts content! 

In April 2014 I decided to write a blog, I had no idea what to name my blog or what I was going to write about. I’m not one to express myself in so many words to any and everyone; however blogging was a whole new world to me and there was no looking back once I started. Before I knew it I was hooked on my blog and my blog has kept me going. In the past I’ve struggled to write 500 words about myself and here I am publishing my 80th post. Whoop!

13. Turning 25 wasn’t the end of the world

To be honest I do not feel 25- I’m still young at heart and there’s no reason for me to act my age. I’m over my ‘OMG I’m not married or in my dream job role yet’ rant. My life doesn’t have to be in order at this point in time. This year was spent investing valuable time into figuring out where my interests lie and it has worked in my favour. I will make mistakes like everyone else and pick myself up and keep going.Things will fall into place when the time is right.

14. I am whatever I believe I am

If I think I’m incapable of being the best I can be, I will portray this to the world and the world will respond to this. I have been working hard to ensure I feed my body with healthy foods and control the amount of junk food I consume mentally. I was afraid to be happy due to past experiences; I was stuck in a loop where I imagined everything being taken away from me in a blink of an eye. I believe there is so much more out there for me and I am going to go and get mine! If everyone else can do it, why can’t I?

2 0 1 5 I’m ready for you!

Here’s to Living with no excuses

drink

Learning To Love The Skin You Are In

Hi all, I’ve decided to post something a little different. I had second thoughts about sharing this as it is a touchy subject and something that has been an issue for the last decade or so.

My skin has pretty much been up and down. I used to be terrified of trying new products since my skin was so sensitive. I spent so much time researching new products, reading reviews, trying products and witnessing my skin taking a turn for the worst. There is one brand of skin care products that I now cannot live without….

photo (9)

I have never had any major break outs using any Simple products, it did take me a long while to get where I am today….

I have discussed my issue with a few friends over the years that were going through something similar. As a teenager you expect the odd spot to appear and to have a mini freak out session where you vow not to enter the school building because of it. Well imagine this happening ever other week for years. I accepted the fact I was one of the unlucky ones to have uncontrollable breakouts as I tried to find a solution for it.

I was told I was perhaps luckier than my peers since I was still only young and once I’m older and my skin clears up that’s when it will hit others (This is one of those things people tell you to help you feel better).  Many of my peers had perfect skin in my eyes and a breakout never occurred in their teenage years from what I could see.

I was never bullied; people noticed my skin and I would get stared at. I tried my hardest to keep quiet and I wouldn’t interact with people outside my social group much in case someone commented on my skin. I know how cruel kids can be and I didn’t want to be the centre of attention. Whenever I could I would wear clothing with high necks to try and cover the spots on my chin.

My friends would tell me it didn’t make a difference and my chin was still visible, I didn’t care it was like my comfort blanket. It never occurred to me to wear make up in school to be honest, I dare not ask for make up anyway as the answer would be no 100 times over.

makeuI ran into a girl in the year above me one summer and she looked me in the face and said ‘Err what happened to your skin?’ and I thought ‘Hmm how nice of her to point it out’. I’ve had little kids point and say ‘What’s that on your face?’ ‘Why do you have so many spots?’ Daddy why are those things on her face?’. Although I wanted to the floor to swallow me up in embarrassment I didn’t let it get to me- Kids will be kids.

I remember there was a guy who started to show interest in me and I overheard his friend say ‘She’s ugly though, have you seen her skin?’ I won’t lie those words hurt and for quite sometime I believed I was ugly, I went home one day and asked my mum why I was ugly. To this day I can’t recall my mum’s response to this. By now my self-esteem was at level 0, but I still prodded along and went to school everyday.

Doctors would laugh at me when I would ask to be referred to a dermatologist because my skin was fine and they didn’t see any problem with it. Mirror were off limits for me, when my friends and I waltzed into the girls toilet I would stand as far away from the mirror as possible. Staring at my reflection was just a reminder of how horrid my skin looked.1163909_80979652

When I was about 15/16 my classes changed and I started to mingle with new people. I was still very shy and after a while I learned not to care so much. The proof was in the pudding; I hadn’t even realised my skin miraculously cleared up until a class mate pointed out. This worked wonders for my self-esteem thereafter. I felt more confident and I realised  that those who truly did like me as a person didn’t care about such things.

My friends still hung out me regardless of me having a huge spot on my chin. I was worried my skin would instantly put guys off, yet it didn’t seem to bother the ones that liked me. Over the years I have had people say hurtful things, however they were not important people in my life. My college and university years were pretty much a blur to be honest, my skin flared up from time to time but I got on with my coursework.

I started to use a new range of skincare products earlier this year and I was convinced they would working for me. I decided to take a photograph of my skin and I wanted to cry (I probably did). I immediately stopped using the products.

I compared photographs of my skin in March and August and I like the results I see!!

I still make little mistakes and I often make the wrong choices and try products which are not right for my skin. For e.g. I brought a cleansing brush and regretted it after two uses. It was way too harsh for my skin.

photo (14)

‘Just because it works for everyone else, doesn’t mean it will work for you’. Its all about trial and error and like I mentioned before Simple products work for me and ‘If it ain’t broke, why fix it?’.

Its taken me 10 years , but I’m learning to love the skin I’m in! I feel like I still have a long way to go though and when I can I will visit a dermatologist. There is more to life than having or wanting good skin, but at the same time it is not a nice feeling having to stare at your reflection and not being happy with what you see!

If anyone has anything to say about your appearance, do not let them have any power over you! You are in control, the moment you take control of your thoughts is the moment you will notice a change- it may not take immediate effect, however in time you will notice a difference mentally.

AND don’t forget to…

quote

 

If Everyone Else Can Do It, Why Can’t You?

I had the strangest dream the other night, someone I would least expect to give me life advice said “If everyone else can do it, why can’t you?”. I woke up with no recollection of the rest of the dream other than this person saying this quote to me. I felt as though the person had said this to me face-to-face and knew how I was feeling.

I thought about the quote countless times throughout the following day. If everyone else can do it, why can’t you?...Well? Why can’t I? I thought to myself. There was room for a excuse to be inserted, but instead I had to remind myself that there really is no reason why I can’t do it and there’s no reason why you can’t do it either!
thinkingkid

6 Reasons To Appreciate Your Job 

1. The people you meet

I’ve met some truly awesome people at work who have become friends outside work. There are days that may not be considered as good days and it’s the people I work with that make my day. You may not make any friends, however you may benefit from learning how to adapt to working with all kinds of people.

2. The experience/skills you gain

It looks better to have a job then to have a huge gap on your CV/resume. Believe it or not future employers do sympathize and understand the difficulties people go through to find a job. Your skills are transferable in one way or another.

3. The income

We live in a world where everything has a price, so do what you have to do! Your job title is irrelevant; it’s what you do when you’re there. Be proud of how far you’ve come. You see that pay check you just received? You earned it! Go you!

4. The connections 

Ok not every job you’re in will have worthwhile connections. Stay in touch with those you get along with. I’m not suggesting you force contact with everyone; Let it come naturally, check up on people every once in a while. Stay on good terms and never close doors unnecessarily. You never know what the future may bring; they do say it’s who you know that puts you at an advantage.

5. You were offered the job for a reason

Your employer likes you? Great! I’m sure they didn’t hire you for that reason alone, I can guarantee they expect you to put the work in. If this wasn’t the case they would be better off hiring someone they dislike, but does the job well. At least they would be getting their money’s worth.

I had to remind someone of this the other day. This person seemed to think that due to his employer liking them, they were sure to hold onto their job. I pointed out that their recent actions were giving their employer reasons to think otherwise.

You are being paid to do your job, at least do it well!  You could be the best computer programmer in town, but don’t think for a second that the best programmer in the next town won’t snap up your job. Don’t be the one that gets replaced. Always keep on top of your game!

6. You chose to be there

Your employer offered you the job; however you took the first step and applied for the job, you sold yourself, they offered you the job and you accepted. You didn’t have to say yes, but guess what? You did! At one point in time this was what you wanted and you got it. It is your choice to remain there. If over time things have changed rethink/reevaluate your goals and start over.
591716_73639314

5 Tips For Getting Your Motivation (Mojo) Back 

Writing 101, Day Sixteen: Serial Killer III– Imagine you work in a place where you manage lost or forgotten items. What might you find in the pile? I took an alternative approach for this assignment…

1. Reevaluate your goals 
Over time things change, we change. The things we once wanted turn into the unwanted. There’s no point convincing ourselves that we want the unwanted, dig a little deeper and start over if you need to.

2. Talk to someone 
I have friends that allow me to vent and vice versa. I never feel like I’m being judged by them; they listen, advise and encourage me. Reach out to someone in your life that fits the bill.

3. Write your feelings down 
6 months down the line you may feel like you’re losing your motivation again. Use your diary to understand how you felt and how you worked towards getting your motivation back. It’s not dwelling on the past; it’s reminding yourself how far you’ve come and helping to get you back on track.

4. Write your goals in list form
I made a bucket list and posted it. I have more goals which I have elsewhere for personal reasons. Glance over your list regularly, imagine you are about to perform your favourite song on stage and keep repeating your list to yourself.

5. Picture it
You can make your own collage for your bedroom or pretty much anywhere! Wherever you are you can look at all the beautiful things you desire. Pinterest is a great app to use; I dabble in it when I’m on the go.

And if you still can’t find your Mojo, you can share mine 😀
mojo3

Read about The Day I Lost My Mojo here

Photo credit: http://about.me/julientromeur

Hello Emotions!

Writing 101, Day Fourteen: To Whom It May Concern

I opened a book and the first word I saw was ‘Willing’ on page 29, so I picked up another book and my eyes were drawn to the word ‘Emotions’.

Dear emotions,

Sorry for the time you’ve spent bottled up, I know this wasn’t necessarily the best way to go about things. It was very selfish of me; I hadn’t considered how you must be feeling in all of this. At times I feel it’s best to keep you locked away to prevent you from getting the better of me.

It’s as if I’ve mastered the art of keeping you in a bottle and leaving you at home some days. Sadly to my dismay, there have been days when the bottle has burst unexpectedly and you are finally free. I’m suddenly hit with an overload of mixed emotions that are often hard to get my head around.

I’m learning to deal with you in small doses and so far this technique has helped me a great deal. I’m finding it easier to move on from previous chapters in my life and focus on the present. I’m more than ready for what is to come.

There is no need for me to be afraid of you; I am willing to allow you to show me the way in future. No hard feelings emotions, you are more than welcome to make an appearance. Please promise not to frequently overwhelm me with your presence.

 

Yours Sincerely,

 

Chelle

bottle

9 Lessons I’ve Learned From My Mum

1. Take everyone with a pinch of salt
Not everyone will be to your liking. People have said that I see the best in people and this isn’t necessarily the case. I’m far from naive; I’ve been taught that giving people the power to annoy me will not benefit me in the long run. There are situations that could have turned out the complete opposite, but I refused to let people get the better of me. Of course there are times when this is hard to do, I am only human! Accept differences whenever possible and keep it moving!
salt
2. Every spoil is a style
There have been a few times I’ve questioned my mum’s outfits, although she wears her clothes well! My mum responds with her famous line “I paid for it, it’s clean and I didn’t rob anyone. So I will wear whatever I want”. Wear whatever you feel comfortable in!

3. Dance like nobody is watching
No matter what the occasion is my mum will dance the day or night away. She is the party! Wherever there is music she will dance, even if there isn’t music I can guarantee she will make her own. I’ve been in the middle of a conversation with her and I’ve turned around to find her dancing on the other side of the room. Dance your troubles away!
pipes
4. Don’t put dampers on it
If I’m frowning and my mum enters the room, I know I have to turn that frown upside down ASAP! She will question me and once I begin to reply, she will cut me off and say “I don’t want any negativity in here” then a little rant will follow this. You may be wondering why she didn’t give me a chance to reply, this is her method of helping me get back on track and it works! I grew up on tough love and it didn’t do me any harm! Try to remain positive!

5. Do not rely on anyone
No expectations = No disappointments. If someone pulls through, then great! If they don’t, no biggie! We all need a helping hand from time to time, however if you can do it yourself then…

6. Do it yourself
I can’t even count the amount of times I have witnessed my mum do things I wouldn’t even imagine doing. Whilst my friends were playing outside; I was inside helping my mum plaster a ceiling or assisting her as she built a wardrobe from scratch! I remember a neighbour saying that my mum and another lady on my street were manlier than all the men on the street put together (There was a compliment in there somewhere I promise lol). If my mum can do it, so can I! I am not implying that I will be making a wardrobe from scratch though.
swing2
7. Friends come and go
Over the years I have realised the amount of friends I have is insignificant. I can count all my friends on one hand and that’s okay because they are the ones that have been there for the long haul. My mum would tell me about what to expect in terms of friendship groups and I didn’t imagine it coming true. I guess my mum knows best!

8. Passion is your oyster
I’ve never come across anyone as passionate as my mum. I almost feel as though I’m looking into her heart as she talks. She was lucky enough to find her passion at a young age and it is has stuck with her to this day.
passion
9. One kindness deserves another
I consider this to be my mum’s all time favourite quote. She has mentioned this quote over and over recently. I can hear her in my head right now saying this quote to my brother. If someone is kind to you, be kind back!