Monday, 26 March 2018

Learning To Love The Girl In The Mirror


I'm so excited to say that the book tour for Learning To Love The Girl In The Mirror has reached my blog! I thoroughly enjoyed the book and completely related to so many of the subjects she covered. Personally, I'm in the process of being a little bit kinder to myself and by doing that, I have found the pressure to be perfect is slowly releasing and leaving me feeling happier in my mind and body.

Learning To Love The Girl In The Mirror is written by a British actress living in LA, Helena Grace Donald, and offers a brutally honest account of her experience with an eating disorder. Aimed at young women, Helena talks through how she learnt how to be a little bit kinder to herself and 'the girl in the mirror'.

This book completely encapsulates everything that I'm trying to work on at the moment and that's why I found it so interesting to read. It was lovely to hear in-depth how somebody else has struggled with many of the same feelings as I have. It was also great to see that she worked on them for herself but, by doing so, is managing to help many other young women that haven't worked out how to be content in their own skin yet.

I found Helena's voice throughout the book to be understanding and kind and it's no surprise to me that she knows exactly what the reader is going through. She covers a range of subjects from unhealthy fad diets, to stress, to striving for perfection, to simple ways to appreciate your body every day. The book is filled with little self-help exercises that I think would be really useful to most people. I mean, have you really ever met anyone that is 100% confident and happy with their body? I know I haven't!

Similarly to Helena, I resonated with many of the struggles she covers in the book during my teenage years and she does a perfect job in pinpointing those issues, sharing her experiences and then offering a solution to them. I really would recommend anyone who is struggling with an eating disorder, low confidence, stress or trying to achieve the impossible feat of 'perfection' to give this book a read!

I have inserted a little bit of the book that I really loved so make sure to give it a read!

"We are bombarded with these images of so-called 'perfection' every day - not only in magazines, but also on TV, on our social media sites, and peering down at us from massive billboards. And, it's so easy to feel insecure and 'not good enough' in comparison. But, we don't have to allow it to influence us. We have a choice.

Recently, I was sitting down to watch one of my favourite shows when a commercial came on showing a 'perfect-looking' model in a bikini running in slow motion along a white sandy beach. For a split second, I felt a pang of jealousy. Luckily, my moment of jealous insecurity was short-lived. I quickly flipped a switch in my brain and said:

"Stop!" Why should I let a commercial on television have the power to make me feel insecure about myself?"

I then gave myself a gentle pep-talk. I told myself that I don't need to look like anyone else or be like anyone else, to be acceptable. I reassured myself that I am perfectly imperfect and that I accept and appreciate myself exactly as I am."

Now, here's the exciting part - I have one copy of the book to giveaway to anyone who is interested in reading it. Just comment below and I will pick someone to send it on to! Or, you can purchase the book here and enjoy - I'd love to hear what you think of it so make sure to come back and let me know your thoughts if you do read it!


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Tuesday, 6 March 2018

A Huge Life Update (In Manageable Bullet Points So I Don't Bore You To Tears)


For some reason, I feel like I should start with an apology for not blogging regularly but that is the exact thinking that made me give myself a long break from it so I'm not going to do that. So, hello again! I have posted the odd post about how I am working to change my diet to see if I can cure my acne on my own but that is about it...

That's why I thought it was time that I do a little update on where I'm at with everything. I'm starting to feel like I want to blog more again so I thought (for my own motivation) I would get the ball rolling with this blog post!

Content Creation - Blog, Writing + Vlogging
  • I did mention in my post about why I started blogging that it had begun to feel like a little bit of a chore for me and I was actually just pretty exhausted feeling like I was working my day job and then coming home and working another full-time job blogging. So, I decided to give myself a break over Christmas and made the decision that I would start writing as and when I wanted to so I could 're-find' my love of blogging if you like. So, I'm back! I don't think I'm going to work on a specific schedule just yet but I am keen to start brainstorming different topic ideas and get back to blogging again!
  • After months (literally, months) of having two novel concepts sat in my head waiting for me to get my bum in gear and write them, I have decided to start writing a screenplay with one of them. I have mapped out different characters, themes and scenes that keep springing into my head and it is a work in progress. It feels really good to be working on something that's just in my own head with no pressures of deadlines etc. I'm also really enjoying writing creatively again!
  • Vlogging... I still love you but I don't have enough time for you yet. I started vlogging when I was waiting to start my job and I absolutely loved doing it! However, with the 101 million other things I'm working on at the moment, unfortunately, vlogging has had to take a back seat. I am hoping to get it going again in the summertime, though, so that should be fun!

Goals - Life + Career
  • So, Tom and I are now in full swing of saving for a house of our own. We're still unsure of where we want that house to be exactly but it feels quite nice to have the future undecided in regards to where we'll be settling down. It's hard work saving for a deposit but I'm just keeping the end goal in mind and that's making it a little bit easier!
  • Career-wise, I'm pretty stuck. I mean, my dream is to be a writer but I am aware that that is a career that I am going to have to slowly chip away at whilst I work a full-time job as well. It would be great if I was mega rich and could just jack my job in and write and blog all day long but that's just not doable. So, for now, I am pursuing writing as a hobby and just trying to stay persistent with it until I'm in a position where I can consider it as a full-time job!
Diet, Skin + Exercise
  • It's no secret that I've converted to a paleo-based diet and I've only been banging on about it so much because it literally is my main focus in life at the moment. I started it with the goal of improving my acne and it is proving to be a bit of a wake-up call in a lot more aspects of my life than that. It has started to slowly improve my skin (I have a hunch that dairy and possibly gluten are the culprits) but it has improved my mood, my energy, my digestion and, possibly most importantly for me, my mental health around food. I am absolutely loving eating nourishing meals and I am eating more than I have done in years. I am certain that this diet is perfect for me (I say 'for me' because we're all individual and what works for me won't work for everyone) and I haven't felt happier in general whilst being on it!
  • I have taken up HIIT based training again and loving it. I did try out a bit of long-distance running and tried to make myself like it with no luck. I like short, intense bursts of exercise and that's how it will always be! So, I'm really enjoying doing HIIT training at the minute and it's just adding to my increase in energy and mood.
Blogs/Vlogs I'm Loving

As I'm sure you can understand, some of these categories cross over so I have featured some of them in more than one category but I really wanted to share with you some creators that I'm watching or reading every day - Make sure to check them out!

Inspiration + Positivity:
Labeaute.org - I absolutely love that her blog goes beyond just external beauty and encourages people to look for the beauty in everything in life!
GraceFitUK - I've only recently discovered GraceFitUK (I know, I'm late to the party) and I just love her attitude to life, it's very uplifting.

Food:
Sarah's Day - So, she lives paleo based and makes the yummiest food ever! She really showed me how easy it was to eat well and varied on a paleo based diet without missing out on treats you love.
Whole Heartedly Laura - I stumbled across her blog on Pinterest and I've been obsessed with pinning her recipes, they're great!

Exercise:
GraceFitUK: She looks so great and her workouts look so fun! She's inspired me to start introducing weight training into my exercise regime.
Sarah's Day - She does a lot of plyometrics, HIIT and body weight training which is the sort of exercise I love. She also hates running which I can relate to (ha).

Travel:
Expedition Happiness - Tom and I have a dream of buying a van, doing it up and travelling around either Europe or America in it and that's exactly what these two did. We spent the whole time going 'ooh', 'aah' and 'wooow' so it's definitely worth a watch if you secretly want to be a hippy like us. The shots are also amazing and they both seem like really great people!

Fashion:
The Anna Edit - I really want to start a capsule wardrobe and this gal has it covered. I love seeing how she pairs things together and I will be going back to her when I start my own.
Lisa Olsson - I'm obsessed with everything this girl wears. I love her minimalistic style.
Love Style Mindfulness - Everything Sinead buys, I want! I just think she looks great in everything and she gives me daily outfit inspiration. 
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