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!

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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!

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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

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I Can’t Be The Only One!

It all started when I was about 13 years old. My friends and I were sat in our Geography class ‘working hard’. Only 3/6 of my group of friends (including myself) were in this class and we were lucky enough to sit together. My friend asked why our girl group wasn’t like other girl groups. I was curious to know what she meant by this. I thought we were pretty ‘normal’ (whatever normal is). My friend questioned why we didn’t talk about the guys we fancied like all the girls on TV did. My friends were crazy about boy band members and I never understood the fascination. I would think ‘OK he’s cute, now back to reality’.

‘What boy do I like?’ I thought to myself. I was yet to have a crush on a guy and I felt quite embarrassed about it. Around this time there was this guy who seemed to think he was in love with me. I told him early on that I wasn’t interested in having a boyfriend. All I wanted to do is play games, watch TV and write. Why would I need a boyfriend? I knew for a fact I would never get to see him anyway, so it would be pointless.

My friends went off into one about this one guy they both saw around school. Both of my friends were able to describe him to a tee and I sat there clueless as I had no idea who he was. Before I knew it all eyes were on me ‘Who do you like Rochelle?’ I looked outside and pointed at the first boy I saw. I wasn’t attracted to him in the slightest, he had a queue of girls pining for him- however he wasn’t my cup of tea!

It stuck with me throughout the next two school years. ‘Rochelle look who it is, its brown eyes!’ and I would pretend to be happy to see him. I wasn’t… I really wasn’t! I couldn’t wait for it to be old news. Then when I was 15 I had my first crush, he was there all along. He was OK looking and I found him to be annoying at first. Then when I got to know him I started to realised how handsome he actually was, he was far from annoying and I discovered what butterflies were. In fact I was unable to get my butterflies to keep still.

To this day I’m still the same. There are no celeb’s I’m crazy about. I am always in the background when my friends talk about the guys they consider eye candy in the public eye. I can’t define the type of guys I like, I like what I like. I have no particular preference and it takes a lot more than physical attraction for me to start ‘crushing’ on someone.
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Maybe I am the only one?

The Sweet ‘n’ Sour Fruit Tale Part 2

You can read Part 1 here

Over the next 5 years Beth and Arnold still kept in contact. It was usually Arnold who would send Beth messages to check up on her. Then within no time he would disappear off the face of the earth. Beth was used to it; whenever she questioned his disappearances he would avoid the question entirely. Beth assumed she wouldn’t hear from Arnold again when he announced he was moving to another city. Then one day he popped up again…

“Can I ask you a question?” Beth asked out of the blue.

“Sure you can!” Arnold said with a hint of curiosity.

“Why do you keep disappearing?” Beth questioned as she expected the worst.

“Honestly I liked you a lot and I was finding it too hard ” Arnold explained.

For the first time Arnold didn’t avoid the question. Beth was finally able to understand where he was coming from. They were finally getting somewhere after all these years. The best part was the fact Arnold was moving back to her city!

“You inspired me to write a post on my online journal” Beth randomly mentioned in one of their conversations.

Arnold had a tendency to encourage Beth to write on her online journal. He would occasionally read through posts and give her feedback.

“Oh really, I want to read it. Send me the link!” He said as his voice was filled with excitement.

“No, I don’t think I want you to read it” Beth said nervously. Beth was nervous about sending Arnold the link. She didn’t want him to question why she had remembered a conversation they had 5 years ago.

“I’m waiting! You’re breaking my heart” He said jokily. Arnold knew Beth could be a little stubborn. Within no time she sent him the link and asked if he had remembered the conversation.

“Of course I remember!” Arnold said as he chuckled.

“Phew” Beth thought to herself. She felt a sense of relief now she was assured he didn’t think she was crazy.

There were barely any fights or disagreements. However when they fought their exchange of words hit home. Beth and Arnold had planned to meet up for the first time in ages. Beth was a little nervous and Arnold asked if she needed more time. She didn’t- it was a day she had thought about for a very long time. Then a couple days before their planned encounter this happened…

“Are you alive or are you just bored of me?” Arnold asked in a text message.

“I’m alive and I’m not bored of you” She replied swiftly as she anticipated what was to come.

“I feel like we are going backwards. I thought we were moving forward and over the last few days you seem away” He ranted.

Beth was genuinely confused. For the last week or so she was the one to initiate the communication. Arnold had taken a step back and she questioned his lack of conversation, however she didn’t express her feelings vocally.

“I have had a lot on my mind at the minute. If I have been away, it hasn’t been intentional, sorry” Beth explained; she felt like she was apologizing for no reason.

“That’s when you should talk to me, so I know how you’re feeling” He snapped.

“I would have if I needed to. It’s not like I haven’t made contact for ages, I even messaged you yesterday” Beth had a point. They spoke yesterday and even then everything seemed okay.

“I could sense something was up over the last few days, but I guess we can be friends. It’s better than nothing”

“Wow. You’re not listening to me. If I have been slightly away it has nothing to do with you!”

“K” He responded with the dreaded letter that ends conversations promptly. He shut her down, no matter what Beth said he didn’t believe a word of it.

Things took a turn for the worst and the day Beth had waited so long for wasn’t likely to happen. The fruit was slowly becoming sour…

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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

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What Makes You Happy?

If I had to narrow it down to one thing, it would be my family!  No matter if it’s rain or shine my family are always there for me. We are a close knit family, It’s always nice to know I have my little support unit.

I look forward to our regular catch ups, which sometimes last longer than anticipated. We spend a lot of time sharing stories, reminiscing, laughing and exchanging advice.

I want them to have the very best in life because they truly do deserve it!

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What makes you happy?

The Great Escape Part 1

It was a room full of empty desks with no warmth or interacting going on. There was just silence and animosity in the air. It was a place once described as a fun and friendly environment. It definitely wasn’t living up to its expectations and it was only day one. On paper it looked great, it was right up my street. I ignored my first impressions as I was excited about the new chapter in my life. Little did I know that everything would take a 360 degree spin.

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True colours slowly started to seep through the cracks in the walls. The tense environment became almost unbearable, it was difficult to get up every morning and convince myself everything was okay. Things weren’t adding up, I felt uneasy and I knew something wasn’t right.

The rumours I had heard through the grapevine were starting to make perfect sense. I needed to know where I stood. I confronted the situation and the response was sugar coated, then put aside as I was reassured all was well. I knew it wasn’t, but I smiled and left it at that.

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I was back to being trapped in the corner with no clue what was going on in my own surroundings.  The whispering continued and I tried to take everything in my stride. I wanted this so much and I couldn’t even concentrate.

False accusations started to echo in the room. I was genuinely confused as I was doing everything I was asked to do. I bit my tongue when something out of line had been directed at me. I tried to convince myself it would be worth it, I wanted this for so long.  Dishonesty had now replaced the silence in the room. I couldn’t take it anymore, I knew today was the day.

Part Two: http://wp.me/p4xLH1-4X

10 Of My Biggest Life Lessons

I have been doing a lot of reflecting lately. I thought about some of the things I have learned over the years. Here is a collection of 10 of my biggest life lessons:

1. Accept compliments!

Don’t question everyone that compliments you. I’m pretty? What me? Really? On what planet? Are you sure? All this is unnecessary, a simple thank you will do. Let it sink in, it was a compliment directed at you, enjoy!

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2. Spontaneity is the way forward

Being spontaneous is the best way to go. Some of the most memorable outings have been unplanned. Is it me or does planning sometimes suck out all the fun from the get go? When my friends call with last minute plans; 98% of the time we have the most fun! I find it’s the events that take longer to organise that don’t always end well.

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3. There is no obligation

If you don’t want to do something, don’t! The keyword here is “Obligation”, if it is your job/duty to do so, I’m advising you to do it! This applies to other scenarios.. We sometimes do things to please others and there is no harm in doing so! However, if something isn’t your cup of tea, don’t feel as though you always have to say yes. With that being said, always make sure you are at least being open minded which brings me to my next lesson…

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4. Be open minded

Explore other options and leave your comfort zone once in a while. Your friends may have invited you to a Roller Disco, you’ve never been, but for some reason you don’t want to go. Think of all the reasons why you don’t want to go and weight up your options. If sitting at home watching TV is your only other option, then why not at least give it a go. It is an opportunity to try something new with the possibility of meeting new people. Once you’ve tried it, you can then cross it off your list! Sitting too comfortably in the comfortable zone could mean you are missing out in the long run.

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5. You don’t need to justify yourself!

My mum has been saying this to me for years. If you make a decision, it is your choice to go ahead with it. If you are happy with your decision and it isn’t affecting anyone else; why do you need to explain yourself? People can plug you all they want, but it is your prerogative to divulge. Try it one day; instead of replying with a full blown reply to justify yourself, say you did it because you wanted to.

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6. Not everyone is going to like you!

Don’t spend time thinking through the reasons why someone could possibly dislike you. Throw that thought to the back of your mind. If someone wants to waste time and energy hating you, then leave them to it! You have bigger fish to fry my friend! Always remind yourself which bill of yours they are contributing to. Oh… they don’t pay any of your bills?

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7. Leave the excuses at home!

We all do it. We get to work a little late and say “My alarm didn’t go off”, when deep down we know it did! Admit it, your Pillow asked you to stay 5 mins longer and you couldn’t resist! One day I was running a little late for work, I had already thought of an excuse to use, instead I said ”Today I was disorganized, I need to sort out my time management”. My manager did not expect that response, he let it slide due to me being honest. Take responsibility for your actions!

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8. Kill them with kindness!

This can apply to all aspects of your life. If anyone has anything bad to say about you, be kind!  Do not stoop to their level; I know it’s easier said than done, but at the end of the day they are only making themselves look bad! If you know it is out of character for you to mirror their actions, then continue as you were. At least no one can badmouth you for being too kind.

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9. Voice your opinions

If you have something to say, say it! Don’t be that person that has a zillion things going through their mind throughout a discussion, yet hesitates to say a word. Be bold; bring it to light, there and then! I was once a very shy girl. I would sit quietly in the corner and barely say anything to anyone. You know that saying “The shy girl catches the worm”, she doesn’t!  (I’m aware this isn’t the actual saying). I wasn’t put on this earth to mimic a tree, no sir! Now I’ve started, I can’t stop and won’t stop!

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10. Be yourself

You are unique, so embrace it! Do whatever blows your hair back. You are a one off, limited edition, non-refundable, non-exchangeable bundle of delightfulness. It’s kind of like when you are proposing your business idea, there’s always a unique selling point. Remind yourself of your unique qualities and run with it!

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You Live and You Learn!