Hello everyone. So, I’m here in my PJ’s, in my bedroom on a Saturday night. Standard procedure. But, I was inspired to write this post and I may as well do something useful while I’m sitting here on my bed. As you may know, I’ve written a previous, brief post about my journey dealing with anxiety & depression. But now that I’m doing a little better I thought I would share some tips that I have learned in the hope that it could help someone one day.

Sidenote – [I feel like in my personal life I sometimes get judged for being mean/aggressive, and sometimes that’s true. But people who really know me, I hope, would know that deep down I do have a good heart and do want to help people who may be struggling, if I can]

In no particular order, these are my tips for dealing with anxiety & depression:

Seek help –This is a tough one, but it is so worth it. When your anxiety gets to the point that it interferes with your ability to function day-to-day, it may have gotten to the stage where getting some help is a good idea. I got to the point where I didn’t want to leave my house, and when I did leave it was like a nightmare in my mind. I also got to the stage where I didn’t see the point in getting out of bed. Getting help is definitely a step in the right direction.

Talk to someone – A family member, a friend, your doctor or even an internet chat room. Talking to someone goes a long way, because then you are acknowledging that you’re having a problem. It also helps to get things off your chest rather than bottle it up. [You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge – Dr Phil].

Challenge your thinking – I think that you need to accept the fact that you are struggling with anxiety, depression or both. But, that doesn’t mean that those thoughts control you. If you can challenge your thoughts and try to think logically about what is making you anxious, then it’s easier to manage the anxiety.

Keep a mood/anxiety chart – I started keeping one of these, and I’m not sure exactly how it helps. But, it is interesting to keep track of your good and bad days, and try to figure out what exactly is making you anxious/depressed.

Do things you enjoy – Motivation does not come on it’s own, you need to do the things you enjoy and then you will be motivated to keep doing them. Doing the things you love can get you into a better head space, improve your mood and be a distraction from whatever may be troubling you at the time.

Exercise/eat well – Exercising regularly and eating well most of the time is so important. Even though sometimes I can’t be bothered going to the gym, I still walk everyday just to get some light exercise. You don’t have to become a gym rat, but exercise is important for your mind and your physical health as well.

So, those are my tips. If you have other tips that I haven’t mentioned, please leave them below. I’m not perfect and could use any advice you have to offer!

Until next time,

Ellen 🙂

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[Disclaimer – This post is just random babblings]

They say that when you become single after a long time, you need to take time to be single and ‘find’ yourself. When I first read that, I thought it was complete bullshit. I thought it was some fancy-pants/yogi term. But after this year, I think it’s true.

I’ve been single for almost a year, and I’ve loved it. I enjoy doing things by myself, and I’ve learned that I am capable of a lot more than I thought. I’ve put more effort into the friendships that I have, and I’ve been able to spend more time with my family.  I also started writing this blog, I get better grades at university and have taken my health and fitness much more seriously. I think not having my time taken up with a relationship gave me the time and incentive to do these things.

Being single was the best decision that I could have made, and staying single has benefited me immensely. Who knows what 2016 holds, but single or taken, I will hold onto the new me.

 

So, I’ve become a vegetarian. Initially, it was an easy decision because I like vegetables, fruits, nuts and *some* seeds. But I’ve been finding more difficult as I’ve gone along. However, I’m hoping that this is just a short stage.

In preparation, I’ve read heaps of articles about vegetarianism including recipe ideas, the health benefits and the ethical and environmental implications of meat production. Reading all these things has actually taken a bit of a mental toll on me. Once you know the truth about what really goes on, I think it is hard to argue in favour of eating meat. It’s also hard not to become angry or depressed about the situation. But, I feel good about trying to do my part to help end it.

The main reason I’ve decided to do this for the animals. It literally makes me cry when I think about factory farming practices and I’ve decided that I cannot be a part of it any longer. There are heaps of videos and documentaries around that show these things, but I can’t get through a couple of minutes without bursting into tears. There’s also the health benefits I should get, and I’m helping the environment. [Fun fact – greenhouse gas emissions from livestock raised for meat production add up to more than all the world’s transportation vehicles combined]. 

In saying that, it is hard to make the change. It’s harder than any activist group/person might acknowledge. When you have eaten meat for your entire life, it is difficult to give it up and come up with alternatives. For me specifically, it is hard to cook meat daily for my family, then not have any myself – the temptation is real. But then I remind myself why I decided to do this – for the animals – and it really helps me to stay focused and reach for that salad. But that doesn’t mean you won’t find days difficult and you shouldn’t feel guilty about having cravings. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Having a solid reason behind your decision will help you when you struggle. That advice is true for any big decision, not just vegetarianism.

If you are considering becoming vegetarian, or vegan which is even kinder to animals, then good on you for wanting to make the change. I have a couple of key tips which I have discovered so far that I’ll share below:

1 – Collect recipes/know your nutrition.

This is what I’m struggling with now, and wish that I had done before. But, there are thousands of recipes out there, you just need to find ones that will work for you. P.S – you can get enough iron & protein from a plant-based diet

2 – Fuck the haters

If anyone decides to give you a hard time about your decision, just ignore it. As hard as it is, ignore them. You are doing the best you can to help yourself and the planet, be proud of that.

I haven’t written this post to push my beliefs on you. I just want to spread awareness about something I am passionate about. I hope that this post has at least made you think about the different diet options that exist, and made the idea of vegetarianism not such an unreachable ideal. I am just a regular person living a regular life. With some research and planning it is possible. It is my hope that one day everyone will become vegetarian/vegan, so we can create a kinder world that appreciates, respects and values all living creatures on this planet.

“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandi

 

Got an addition to YouTube like I do? Want to add to it? Check these people out.

1 – danisnotonfire & Amazing Phil

Can’t even describe the nerdy cuteness of these guys. Watch them and fangirl away! Good to watch for entertainment and they also have a gaming channel.

2 – Kalyn Nicholson

A relatively small channel, but I love how down to earth she is in her videos. I think she gives good advice, particularly about diet, fitness and anxiety. She also has a vlog channel, blog and her Instagram is on fleek!

3 – Samantha Maria

Formerly known as Beautycrush, Samantha Maria is a big channel. She covers beauty and lifestyle but mainly fashion. I like her styling videos especially, they are on point! She also has a vlog channel and blog.

4 – Alltime Conspiracies

Personally, I love conspiracy theories and find them interesting to watch. Random point, but the narrator’s voice being creepy adds to quality of the videos.

I’d ask you leave channel recommendations in the comments, but YouTube already takes up too much of my life. Happy watching!

 

Two months ago, I turned twenty-two. I know it sounds ridiculous, but I can feel the difference from being twenty-one to now being twenty-two. It’s probably just in my mind, but I feel more adult. At the same time, I can’t believe that I am actually twenty-two years old!. Sometimes I feel different ages, like sixteen when I have a crush on a guy, or five when I watch The Wizard of Oz or The Lion King. But, I thought that now I’m more ‘adult’ that I should have some small goals that I want to achieve before turning twenty-three. Here it is; twenty-two goals for my twenty-two year old self:

1 – Lose the rest of the weight

2 – Get a handle on my anxiety

3 – Do a lot more drawing/painting

4 – Volunteer somewhere

5 – Keep my room clean

6 – Keep this blog going

7 – Go on at least one date

8 – Meet some new people

9 – Buy a chair/mirror

10 – Get back into fashion designing

11 – Stay on top of housework

12 – Don’t leave uni assignments until the week before they’re due

13 – Find more interesting websites to browse

14 – Say yes to more opportunities

15 – Go to the gym at least twice a week

16 – Be more environmentally friendly

17 – Eat less meat/meat products

18 – Cut down my YouTube addiction

19 – Up my Instagram game

20 – Be nicer to people

21 – Be less angry

22 – Know myself, and be comfortable with all aspects of myself.

Most of them are trivial, but there are some more meaningful goals mixed in as well. Do you have any goals you want to achieve? If you’re looking for a sign, this is it. Do it.

I’m sorry for the long hiatus from writing posts on this blog. I could say the standard – ‘I’ve been busy’, ‘I had school’ or ‘I didn’t have anything to write’, but none of those reasons are why I haven’t posted. I’m slightly nervous to write what I’m about to write, but I think I need to write it for myself because acknowledging what is happening is the first step to changing it.

I have had anxiety & OCD for as long as I can remember. Not “I’M SO NEAT I’M SO OCD LOL!” Real, legit OCD and anxiety as well. Lately, it has been getting the better of me and bringing me down. That in turn, has made me slightly depressed and I lost the motivation to do the things I used to enjoy – like writing blog posts. So long story short, that’s why no posts. I have also had family problems, which have taken up a lot of my time and energy. Thankfully, that has now improved 🙂

Not a lot of people know that I struggle with anxiety & OCD. But I think it’s important to know that it can be anyone. I have started to take steps to address this, and hopefully this is something that I can overcome. If this is something that is relevant to you, then you’re definitely not alone. Many people need to deal with these issues in their lives and often it’s the person you least expect.

Anyway, there should be more posts from me from now on, so look out!

So, it’s a week later and I stuck to my goals! I worked out three times and only ate junk twice. I knew I could do it, and I feel so much better already. I had a couple of nights where I couldn’t get to sleep, but I went to the gym and worked out anyway and I’m really glad I did.  I’m starting to remember the benefits that I forgot about during my health and fitness hiatus, and it’s really awesome. I have clearer skin and I’m more energized and it’s only been one week.

For this week coming, I’m going to alter my goal and only eat junk on one day. That will be tomorrow because it’s my birthday! I’ll be 22 and I’m really excited.

I think this health and fitness ‘mojo’ idea is going to be a weekly thing, just to track my own progress. Let me know if you want some updated tips and advice for working out and being fit, but I do have posts related to that in my ‘Health and Fitness’ category.

🙂