Motivational Monday | 16 Steps to Happiness by Emma Elsworthy

1. push yourself to get up before the rest of the world - start with 7am, then 6am, then 5:30am. go to the nearest hill with a big coat and a scarf and watch the sun rise.

2. push yourself to fall asleep earlier - start with 11pm, then 10pm, then 9pm. wake up in the morning feeling re-energized and comfortable. 

3. erase processed food from your diet. start with no lollies, chips, biscuits, then erase pasta, rice, cereal, then bread. use the rule that if a child couldn’t identify what was in it, you don’t eat it.

4. get into the habit of cooking yourself a beautiful breakfast. fry tomatoes and mushrooms in real butter and garlic, fry an egg, slice up a fresh avocado and squirt way too much lemon on it. sit and eat it and do nothing else. 

5. stretch. start by reaching for the sky as hard as you can, then trying to touch your toes. roll your head. stretch your fingers. stretch everything.

6. buy a 1L water bottle. start with pushing yourself to drink the whole thing in a day, then try drinking it twice.

7. buy a beautiful diary and a beautiful black pen. write down everything you do, including dinner dates, appointments, assignments, coffees, what you need to do that day. no detail is too small.

8. strip your bed of your sheets and empty your underwear draw into the washing machine. put a massive scoop of scented fabric softener in there and wash. make your bed in full.

9. organise your room. fold all your clothes (and bag what you don’t want), clean your mirror, your laptop, vacuum the floor. light a beautiful candle.

10. have a luxurious shower with your favourite music playing. wash your hair, scrub your body, brush your teeth. lather your whole body in moisturiser, get familiar with the part between your toes, your inner thighs, the back of your neck.

11. push yourself to go for a walk. take your headphones, go to the beach and walk. smile at strangers walking the other way and be surprised how many smile back. bring your dog and observe the dog’s behaviour. realise you can learn from your dog.

12. message old friends with personal jokes. reminisce. suggest a catch up soon, even if you don’t follow through. push yourself to follow through.

14. think long and hard about what interests you. crime? sex? boarding school? long-forgotten romance etiquette? find a book about it and read it. there is a book about literally everything. 

15. become the person you would ideally fall in love with. let cars merge into your lane when driving. pay double for parking tickets and leave a second one in the machine. stick your tongue out at babies. compliment people on their cute clothes. challenge yourself to not ridicule anyone for a whole day. then two. then a week. walk with a straight posture. look people in the eye. ask people about their story. talk to acquaintances so they become friends.

16. lie in the sunshine. daydream about the life you would lead if failure wasn’t a thing. open your eyes. take small steps to make it happen for you.

source: Emma Elsworthy

Lush Lord of Misrule Bath Bomb Review

I'm a big fan of fresh scented bath products, so naturally I was drawn to the Lord of Misrule Bath Bomb from Lush's Christmas/Holiday. Upon first sniff, the bath bomb reminded me a lot of the Avobath bath bomb from Lush's permanent collection but it turned out to have a surprising amount of depth. Scented with mild herbs and patchouli oil, the product releases a bit of a nose-tingling kick with the addition of black pepper oil. The bomb is pretty large and can definitely be divided up for two or more baths (I ended up splitting mine into thirds and still got a lot of scent and color payoff per bath). The earthy green shell melts away to reveal an absolutely gorgeous wine colored center that ends up being the source of most of the water's color as the bath bomb melts away. The wine colored core represents the origins of the bath bomb's name, which comes from a title awarded to a peasant during the Feast of Fools (think Disney's Hunchback of Notre Dame). Rich in history and color, this bath bomb was definitely worth purchasing. It was available online until earlier this week, but I've been told that a few stores, including mine, have some in stock. Ingredients: Sodium Bicarbon , Citric Acid , Popping Candy (Isomalt, Lycasin, Carbon Dioxide) , Cream of Tartar (Potassium bitartrate) , Black Pepper Oil (Piper nigrum), Patchouli Oil (Pogostemon cablin) , Fair Trade Vanilla Absolute (Vanilla Planifolia) , Lauryl Betaine , Sodium Laureth Sulfate , Gardenia Extract (Gardenia jasminoides) , *Limonene , Fragrance , FD&C Blue No. 1 , D&C Red No. 33 , FD&C Yellow No. 5

Motivational Monday: Letting People In

One of my New Year's resolutions was to let people in. It's not an easy thing for me to do. I've struggled with it since my freshman year of college. It's not that I have trouble being sociable, I've always been good at holding conversations and smiling at the right times. I laugh more than just about anyone I know. It's easy for me to interact with people, but for me to feel connected to someone, to trust someone, and to let my guard down can be very difficult. People tell me all the time that I'm friendly, but that they never really felt as though they knew me. 

I don't always make the best decisions about who I let into my life and I tend to be absurdly loyal to the people I let in, even when that means turning a blind eye to their flaws. I always want to see the good in them, but when I was eighteen, in my first year of college, I entered into a particularly scarring relationship that has taken me a long time to recover from. If I'm being completely honest, I am still recovering. I have had a lot of trouble forming any kind of relationship since then. I make friends quickly and easily, but I feel as though I'm constantly on guard and expecting the worst.

Living that way has been a huge weight and this year, I am ready to be done with it. I've been spending more time investing myself in relationships with people who make me feel happy and alive and treat me as the best version of myself. I want to try to exude love and good energy, even on days when I'm scared to. Being afraid of people, constantly expecting them to take a bad turn or let you down, is no way to live. It's exhausting. I'm going to spend this year in the company of people who inspire me to be better, not only through their words, but through their actions. 

I used to be so trusting and open to whatever and whomever the world brought my way, and I think I'm finally ready to be that person again. Starting right now.