5 Books You Should Read

healthy living

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Reading is an essential part of my every day life and I find it hard to believe that at one point in time it wasn’t really my thing. I really became a book addict when I was around 15 years old and since then, I haven’t gone a day without reading a few chapters. Now I’m not asking you to read a book in a few days but a few pages a day is beneficial. Of course, I started with paranormal romance as my guilty pleasure (it may still be, don’t judge me) and then I delved into self-help books and psychology books. Status Update – I’m a self help junkie.

I believe reading can either be about losing yourself in another world and living thousands of different lives or it can be about growth and attaining knowledge. I find pleasure in learning and we learn every single day.

I have read all of the following books down below. They are self-help books that take different approaches towards personal development and I think that no matter where you are in life right now, you can find at least one which speaks to you.

 

1. The Productivity Project by Chris Bailey – definitely one of my favourites and one I keep going back to. This book has helped me understand my issue of procrastination and has taught me how to deal with it. Discover ways to improve your work ethic and surprising factors that actually harm your productivity. I’ve definitely seen an increase in my productivity after implementing the tactics in this book and it has helped me decrease the feeling of burnout.

 

2. Hyperfocus by Chris Bailey – if you find yourself easily distracted or unable to focus on one thing for a period of time, then this book is for you. Tap into your superhuman focus and learn to work smarter, not harder. (PS. I’m in hyperfocus mode right now)

 

3. The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma – this book was not what I expected, I’d advise you to be patient at first when starting the book. I was sceptical about it at first and thought I wouldn’t be able to finish even half of it, but I was pleasantly surprised. Despite the book’s steady pace, it’s an enlightening read, it touches on mindfulness, human psychology and ways we can create a brighter life. Definitley recommend this one if you’re feeling a little lost or out of balance in your life.

 

4. The Secret by Rhonda Byrnes – I simply enjoyed the way the author voiced her message in this book, she eases you into the practice of gratitude in all aspects of your life without thrusting you into the ‘Gratitude frenzy’ going on all around the media (you know, the gratitude morning routine). It focuses on all aspects such as; wealth, health, relationships and many more. Again, as one who is often sceptical, I thought the book was all about the law of attraction and although it seems that way, I found another aspect to it. Just by reading the book I started to notice the things around me, it developed an awareness in me that has remained even months after.

 

5. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson – this book spoke to the sceptic in me, in other words I now live by this book. This was said to be the self help book for people who hate self help and it is a pleasure to read it. Now is there swearing every 3 minutes? Yes. Does it make it even better to read? Hell yeah, it does.To be honest, I often hear people say that you always have to be happy and grateful, but I am not always those things and I know you aren’t either. Social Media and even self help influencers indirectly lead us to believe that it’s wrong to feel that way, but it’s not. It’s okay to not be okay and this book teaches you that. 

 

Now before I go into a self love rant, let me leave it at that. As Always thank you for taking the time to read this. I hope you found something useful here and I would like to remind you that it’s not just about reading the book, it’s about implementing the methods and advice in it. Unfortunately, we can’t just absorb a book’s powers, we have to put in the action.

Lots of love to all of my readers and please follow for more posts like this, xoxo.

10 Tips to De-stress & Unwind

healthy living

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  • Stretching – this not only relieves muscle tension but it also increases you awareness of your own body and physical state. It gives you a chance to slow down.

 

  • Listen to a Podcast – I love listening to self-help podcast episodes to help me gain clarity and relax. I listen to them while working out or when I’m doing mindless tasks. I have another post coming up about my favourite podcasts, so keep a lookout for that.

 

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  • Put it on Paper – writing it out is the most obvious thing to do, I used to think it wasn’t helpful before, but now I reach for my journal whenever something is weighing me down. Don’t think about what you’re going to write (I’m not really into the whole writing a set number of things). Keep it natural and straight from mind to paper.
  • Escape for a day – now I don’t necessarily mean go on a trip to an exotic island or take the day off to hike in the woods, although that would be awesome. Escaping for a day could be anything from a road trip to just taking the day off for yourself. For example; I always have Saturdays off because of my religion, but today is Sunday and I decided that I just needed to take it for myself. I said no to going out because I needed to just slow down and be, which is something that’s key to de-stressing – learning to say no.

 

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  • Coffee/ Tea Time – I’m writing this post right now in my pyjamas, with a cup of coffee and I feel at peace. I drink coffee more for the process than for the taste and no one can interrupt this sacred me time. Find joy in the little things.

 

  • Digital detox – definitely something I need more of. Take a day (or more if you’re feeling adventurous) to put the phone, iPad, tv, laptop and any other device away. Stay off of social media for that period and actually pay attention to what’s going on around you.

 

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  • Do absolutely nothing – yes, that’s right. Sometimes you just need to do nothing. Don’t try so hard to relax that you end up stressing over relaxing. If you want to lie down and just stare at the ceiling for an hour, going through the things on your mind, go right ahead. Just don’t let that hour seep into a week.

 

  • Mindfulness exercise – now this can be concentrating on your breathing or doing a whole body scan type of exercise. It can also be listening to calming audios or stories. I’m not one for manifesting meditations, but you do you.

 

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  • Self care routine – this is can be a pamper spa routine, reading a book or watching a movie, but developing whatever you do into a routine just helps reassure your mind that you have a system in place and it helps you believe in your process. Another good idea would be a self care kit, which I have coming up in another post.

 

  • Spend Time with a pet or an animal – animals help relieve our emotions and make us happy, that can be cuddling with your dog, riding a horse or staring at your goldfish. Trust me, it works.

 

  • Bonus Tip – don’t rely on potentially unhealthy factors. Besides the obvious harmful factors, even relying on food to help you with your emotions is a bad route because it will never be enough. At some point you will become intolerant to the happy hormones certain indulgences give you, so make sure you de-stress in a steady and healthy way.

 

Thank you for reading this post, I hope you enjoyed it and that it helped you in some way. Please follow for more posts like this, xoxo.

1 Week Detox Guide

healthy living

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Lately I’ve been feeling out of sorts, my afternoon dip has worsened, I find it hard to concentrate and I feel sick after meals. Especially after my birthday weekend, with all the cake and indulgent eating, I think it’s time for a week of detox. This is to repair my gut, increase my energy and boost my metabolism. Throughout this week I will be sharing my plan to re-stabilise my body and flush out the toxins (giving you all advice and keeping myself in check at the same time). Keep in mind that you should not take any drastic steps in your diet or workout without consulting your doctor first, you don’t want to consume too few calories or work your body into burnout. So here is my guide for the week ahead.

Things to avoid:

  • Sugar (no more cake)
  • Dairy
  • Gluten (this might be harder for some of you, but try and give it your best shot)
  • Coffee (I know it hurts)
  • Processed foods

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Things to enjoy:

  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Nuts
  • Chia seeds
  • Oats
  • Quinoa
  • Almond milk
  • Lemons
  • Matcha
  • Herbal teas
  • Smoothies
  • Water (a lot of it)

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IN A TIPICAL DETOX DAY…

  1. Drink water as soon as you wake up
  2. Workout for 30-60mins
  3. Drink lemon water before breakfast
  4. Have a smoothie for breakfast
  5. Drink more water
  6. Switch coffee for some green tea
  7. Have a clean lunch; this can be a soup, salad, quinoa and veggies with chicken…
  8. You guessed it, more water
  9. Dinner: keep it light
  10. Water, water, water!

 

Additional tips:

  • Intermittent fasting can be an additional boost to detox your gut
  • Get 7-8 hrs of sleep
  • Practice mindfulness for at least 10 mins
  • You can keep meat/poultry in your diet for protein if you like or you can leave it out
  • Exercising shouldn’t be taxing on your body, don’t overdo it

 

WHY?

  • Chia seeds? They cleanse the gut, removing toxins and they keep you satisfied for longer.
  • Water? Most of the time our cells are screaming for water and we’re too busy to notice. Water literally will flush out toxins and it’s also necessary for bowel movement (yeah, I just had to go there).
  • Coffee? Let’s make this simple, it gets you high but you’ll eventually crash and you will crash hard. Why don’t we take a break from the adenosine attack.

 

I hope you all got something from this post, follow for more like this to come. Thank you for reading, xoxo.

5 Tips to Stop Binge Eating

healthy living

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#1. Meal Prep- this is a great way to plan what you eat in a day and avoid standing in front of the fridge munching on potato chips (which should not even be in there btw). If you have all your meals already prepared, you are less likely to eat mindlessly.

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#2. Cut out sugar- one of the problems with sugar is that it promotes cravings. Have you ever found yourself craving sugar then craving something salty? Sugar only intensifies your hunger.

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#3. Add mint to your diet- mint is known to help curb cravings and keep you fuller for longer. Add some mint to your tea, smoothie or water to sip throughout the day.

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#4. Breakfast is key- make sure your macros are well balanced in your breakfast. Most of the time we have a carb filled breakfast and although carbs are needed in your meal, you should also aim to add protein as well. Protein helps keep you fuller for longer as its breakdown requires more time and energy. You can find protein in eggs, nuts, meat, fish, and poultry and if breakfast just isn’t your thing, it can even be lunch because either way you are still breaking your fast.

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#5. Reduce Stress-  often you’ll find that binge eating is related to emotional stress, because our mind is under pressure, our bodies turn to food for comfort (like devouring a tub of ice cream after a breakup). So to prevent or stop binge eating, you need to be more aware of how your body and mind feel and try to find another form of support rather than food.

 

I hope these tips are useful to you in any way possible and that you come back for more. Thank you so much for reading and I hope to see you again next time, xoxo.

5 Ways to Be More Mindful in 2019

healthy living

 

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  1. Start a Gratitude Journal– writing down only 3 things you are grateful for every morning can have a great impact on your day and on your life overall. Sometimes we fail to acknowledge the many great aspects of our lives, allowing us to take things for granted. Your list could include major things such as being grateful for your spouse or job or even little things like books and coffee. It really doesn’t matter as long as you’re being mindful of that person or object’s presence in your life.

Challenge #1: Tomorrow morning when you wake up, grab a pen and paper and write down three things you are grateful for.

2. Brain Dump– this is initially setting a timer and writing down everything that’s on your mind. This may be tasks you need to accomplish, creative ideas or even emotions. Having to keep all of that information in your brain is somewhat taxing, therefore by externalising it you are releasing your mind of the need to remember and the stress of forgetting.

Challenge #2: Set a timer for 15-20 mins and write down everything that clicks in your mind, take your time while doing this and let things come naturally to you rather than trying hard to focus.

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3. Learning more about food– one thing we all need to do in 2019 is to be more mindful of what we put into our body. This involves reading the ingredients list of the foods we buy and listening to how our bodies feel after taking certain foods. Being more conscious of our food will also help us to improve our energy levels.

Challenge #3: The next time you go grocery shopping, read the ingredients list of the products you buy and that day, write down each one of your meals and your energy levels (out of ten) after eating.

4. Declutter– this allows us to be more mindful of the things we buy and also helps to declutter our mind. Decluttering is a whole process in itself, but you can always start small. Perhaps start by decluttering you office area or closet, if an item doesn’t bring you joy or you haven’t used it in the last month, it’s probably time to let it go. You can choose to donate the items if they’re still reusable or pass it down to someone else.

Challenge #4: Choose a small area in your home to declutter and take out some time to declutter the space. It might be hard at first but it’s definitely worthwhile.

5. Digital Detox– taking out some time to spend without our devices or the internet is essential to calming our mind and being more aware of our surroundings. We often forget there is a world outside of our screens.

Challenge #5: Schedule in one hour or two and turn off all your electronics (perhaps you should notify a few people before doing so). You can choose to spend this free time reading or going out in nature. You may find this process almost addicting and next time you’ll try it for a whole day.

I hope you enjoyed this post and if you have your own techniques in mindfulness, feel free to comment them down below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matcha Powder

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What is it and Why Are We Crazy About it?

Matcha is finely ground green tea leaves. It enables you to take in the full benefits of the green tea leaves compared to traditional green tea. Matcha powder is abundant in antioxidants, thus strengthening your immune system, as well as vitamin C, zinc and magnesium. Moreover, it boosts your metabolism, helping you burn calories and thus lose weight. Not only does matcha lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels, but it also helps to detox the body (plus I find the simple act of making it extremely relaxing). In other words, matcha gives you energy without the caffeine crash afterwards.

Uses

Matcha is a versatile ingredient that can be used in smoothies, baked treats, oats or chia pudding. My favourite is a matcha latte.

Matcha Latte Recipe 

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 tsp matcha powder
  • 1/4 cup hot water
  • 3/4 cup almond milk (or any of your choice)
  • sweetener (stevia)

 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Sift the matcha powder into the water to remove any lumps.
  2. Using a match bamboo whisk, start whisking the powder into the water. (You may use a regular whisk but it will not produce the same foam as a bamboo whisk.)
  3. Keep staring until it is well incorporated as the powder does not dissolve into the water.
  4. Add in the cold milk and sweetener to your taste.

 

 

 

Self Love…

healthy living

We often forget the importance of self love for the health of our state of mind. Reducing stress and clearing our mind is crucial to obtaining our ideal health and body. When we neglect our mental state we find ourselves letting our physical health slide as well, chronic levels of stress leads to high cortisol levels thus contributing to weight gain. So here are 5 self care habits to help you de-stress and unwind.

  • Yoga/stretch routine– sometimes a full blown workout isn’t what your mind and body needs. Stretching allows you to both relax your body and center your mind, making you more aware and present. When you feel stressed, try 10mins of yoga or stretching to calm yourself and rejuvenate your body.
  • Journaling– I’ve mentioned journaling before and it isn’t something that should be underestimated. Sometimes writing out your thoughts and emotions help to clear out and organize everything on your mind. Have you ever had something bothering you but you just couldn’t figure out what is was? Well journaling can help you realize or come to terms with issues located deep in your subconscious.
  • Rest day– taking a day off of your workouts is necessary to let your body relax and heal. No one can handle workout out vigorously every single day, so take a day off (I usually take Saturdays) and focus on other aspects of your life.
  • Filter your social media– we’re usually unaware of the effects of social media. Seeing endless pictures of perfect models probably isn’t helping you love your own body, instead you’re now analyzing and being critical of your own body image (keep in mind that this excludes fitness influencers or mentors). So filter out the type of people you follow or are subscribed to; if they don’t inspire or motivate you, it’s best to set them aside. Trust me this goes a long way to help you de-stress.
  • Digital Cleanse– this is one of the most difficult yet most effective habits, taking a break from screen time. That means ignoring your phone, laptop, tablet and tv for a set time (this doesn’t include sleeping hours so don’t cheat). This helps you to be more present and it actually forces you to be more creative or outgoing as you find other ways to entertain yourself (unless you lay in bed staring at the ceiling for hours).

I hope you implement some if not all of these habits into your life and I hope they help you in any way possible. Thank you for reading, please like and follow for more posts like this one. See you next time xoxo.

Tips for Fighting Stress

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Tip #1. Playing with Essential oils- scents like lemon, lavender and peppermint are know to relieve stress and anxiety. You can either light a candle, a diffuser or use a mist to help relax yourself. My personal favorites are lemon and vanilla.

Tip #2. Take a break from social media- Most of us wake up and immediately scroll through Instagram or Facebook. Without knowing it, social media sometimes gives us a negative point of view of our own lives.

Tip #3.  Take a day off studies/ work – a weekly getaway is essential to reduce stress, it allows our body and mind to rest. I always take Saturdays off to regenerate and relax, it helps me start my week off positively.

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Tip #4. Write a journal – writing down your thoughts and events in your life, even minor ones, can be an outlet for anxiety or stress. It helps to be more mindful of your life and yourself, as well as remembering motivating thoughts or quotes.

Tip #5. Organize yourself – this can be simple as using a planner or writing a to-do list every morning. You’re more likely to get things done when they are planned and feeling less under pressure and more put together will help fight stress.

Tip #6. Read a book or listen to an audio-book – it can be a motivational book or anything that might pique your interest, it distracts you from issues of your day-to-day life. It’s a gateway into another world, people who read get to live 1000 lives.

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Tip #7. Have a pamper routine – Treat yourself, that could be an at home spa day or a skincare routine. Take the time to take care of yourself and unwind from daily struggles. However, this is better suggested for women.

Tip #8. Enjoy your workout – I know it seems almost impossible, especially when we have our lazy moments, but if you don’t look forward to working out and you dread it then you’re probably trying out the wrong one. There are so many ways to be physically active; swimming, dancing, running or hitting the gym, you just have to find the right one for you. Exercising helps to release tension and could make you feel so much more relaxed.

Tip #9. Try a new hobby – just like with working out, it’s good to change your hobbies  from time to time. Exploring different things stimulates the brain, reading, sketching, cooking and writing are some of my favorites and who knows, you might discover a hidden talent.

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Tip #10. Have some alone time – as much as you may enjoy family events and parties with friends, we all need some time to ourselves- to center ourselves and figure out where we stand and where we’re going. Sometimes we just need to embrace the moment and relax.

 

Thank you for reading, I hoped these suggestions were able to help you in any way. Keep reading for more posts and updates. xoxo.

10 Healthy Habits

healthy living

Here are some habits and tips to help you lead a healthier life. I’ve learned these myself and though I’ve struggled with a few, I can say they definitely have a positive effect on the mind and body.

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  • Drink lemon water this is before you have breakfast. It helps to regulate blood sugar levels, it aids in digestion, removes toxins from the body, improve skin condition and it promotes weight loss.
  • Get more sleep I’m sure you’ve heard it before and it’s the most difficult one for me. However, little sleep actually leads to weight gain, it’s detrimental to our health and it causes dark circles and bags under our eyes, so make sure you get at least 8 hours of sleep.
  • Drink green tea this also regulates blood sugar levels and helps with weight loss. Drinking up to 3 cups burns around 70 calories. You can drink a cup after every meal to help you lose weight.

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  • Add fruit to at least one of your meals this also helps to lose weight and boost your metabolism. I usually add fruit to my breakfast or dinner. You will feel more energized throughout the day.
  • Getting more fresh air it helps strengthen your immune system, helps you feel more peaceful and can make you happier. Try going out for a walk away from the busy city, where there is more greenery or maybe you can go to the beach.
  • Taking up new hobbies this helps to reduces stress and takes your mind away from any negative thoughts. It also gives you an opportunity to express yourself. You can try learning an instrument, reading, art, a sport activity, cooking or dancing. There are so many possibilities and you can accomplish anything you put your mind to.

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  • Use extra virgin olive oil for cooking. It is high in antioxidants and is a healthy fat, therefore it does not cause weight gain.
  • Regular exercise this is an obvious tip, but sometimes it is hard to keep up with. The key is finding the best activity for you, the one you enjoy the most. I really enjoy Pilates, you can also try swimming, working out at the gym or a new sport. It’s important to have a workout schedule and to dedicate time to working towards a healthy body.
  • Incorporating more vegetables into your meals this is an important step to achieving a healthy balanced diet. When having a meal, make sure at least half of your plate is filled with vegetables.
  • Purge all junk food and sugary drinks from your home this may be hard to come to terms with, but bags of chips and soft drinks aren’t doing you any favors. They actually slow down your metabolism and hinder weight loss. Don’t worry you won’t go hungry, there are many alternatives to unhealthy snacks and I will share my favorites in my other posts.

I hope these tips helped you and know that there is much more to come. Please leave a comment and follow for more posts. Xoxo.