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Saturday, May 27, 2017

I'm someone who has way too many journals but not enough downtime to keep a diary. Luckily for me, there are plenty of journals out there that don't necessarily need a paragraph of writing the way daily diaries do. If you're like me and also struggle with the journal to time ratio, hopefully you'll find this post useful in some way. The journals I've included below require very little daily attention and rather than keeping track of your life as a whole, focus on just one part of it.

1. Happiness Journal
Every night write a sentence or two about something that made you smile that day. This could be a compliment someone gave you, a joke a friend or family member told you or a action you took that you're really proud of. Anything that left you with a nice warm feeling inside afterwards. Then if at any time you're feeling blue, you can flick through this journal and relive all your happiest moments.

2. Gratitude Journal

There is always something to thankful for. Take a few minutes to write about a couple of things that you want to express your gratitude towards. Jot down a new list every day. You could be grateful for a person, a place, a book or even a song. The options are endless. When life gets busy/chaotic, we often forget to appreciate the little things in life. It's so easy to get caught up in your past or future, you can neglect living for the present. This journal will really force you to think in the moment which is really important for us to do sometimes. 

3. Dream Journal
If you're a light sleeper, you're sure to have some pretty strange but seemingly symbolic dreams. Keeping a dream journal is a great way to look into these further by finding reoccurring patterns or ideas. Make sure to keep this journal on your bedside table so you can record your dream the moment you wake up. When it's still fresh in your mind, it's easier to get a more accurate description.

4. Goals Journal
This journal is for any goal setter who wants to track their progress and be able to acknowledge every little step they make towards their ultimate accomplishment. By putting your goals to paper, you're more likely to stick by them. In this journal you can write down a plan of attack and make yourself a checklist for the smaller achievements within your bigger goal. So no matter how far out of reach your end point may feel, you'll still know that you're getting closer to it every single day.

5. Ideas Journal
Keep this journal handy in case of any lightbulb moments you have on the go. Fill it with diagrams and brainstorms. Don't be afraid to make it messy. As long as your getting your thoughts across, that's all that matters. Remember that no idea is too small or too crazy. Whether it's a tiny inkling, an elaborate picture or a question you can't stop asking yourself, if it gets the cogs turning, it's worth noting down. You never know, it could be the start of something big.

Out of this list, what type of journal appeals to you the most? Thanks for reading! 

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Saturday, May 20, 2017

A perfectionist is fuelled by their need to not only achieve but excel. I know perfectionism well and while I believe in the self-driven nature of this personality trait, you have to acknowledge the destructive side as well. As perfectionists, we're never fully satisfied with our accomplishments. When we reach our goals, we can't properly celebrate because our minds are too busy giving ourselves a new target. One that is just as tiresome and exhausting as the last. When we have these unrealistic expectations of ourselves, that's when working towards "perfection" can really start to take a toll on us. 

Concentrate on The Bigger Picture
Time is precious so we want to make sure we're using it on the right things. I definitely obsess too much over the minor details. If you're having to redo something again and again, take a second to think about how significant it is to the end result. The more you keep touching on it, the more paranoid you become. Know when to move on. Tell yourself you'll come back to it later and I guarantee you that by the time you've finished up, you'll realise just how small and unimportant it was.    

Allow Yourself to Make Mistakes
You're human, it's normal to slip up sometimes. We learn from being wrong and we make better choices because of this. It's true that our achievements define who we are but so do our mistakes. You must embrace this if you want to grow as a person and gain self acceptance within yourself. 

Don't Focus Too Much on One Thing
Don't let everything you do revolve around just one job or one class or one friend. Make sure you're tending to all aspects of your life. It's all about finding the right balance between hobbies, school/work and social life. If you were to spend every hour of every day "perfecting" your skills in a sport you play, you're likely to neglect all your other commitments. Which means if something were to go wrong and you were out for the season, you'd have nothing else to fall back on. 

Find The Silver Lining

Perfectionists often recognise the bad before the good. The voice inside our mind criticises our every move and floods our heads with insecurities. You're allowed to self-evaluate and reassess situations, however if these internal reflections are consumed by negative thoughts, they won't get you anywhere. Applaud yourself every once in a while. Instead of focusing solely on improvement, give yourself a chance to reflect on how far you've come and take pride in where you are now. 

What are your thoughts on perfectionism? 

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Saturday, May 13, 2017

For me, no is the one of the hardest words to say. Declining people is a personal weakness of mine. If someone were to ask me to join them in an after school club or activity, I'd accept their invitation without stopping to consider whether or not it was something I had an actual interest in. I'm a people pleaser. I feel like I have to say yes to everyone and everything. I don't like drama and I don't confrontation so I'll give the response I know people want to hear, sometimes sacrificing my own happiness in the process. I thought that saying yes was the only way to avoid disappointing my family and friends and for a long time, I was so focused on pleasing the people around me that I began to feel out of touch with what made me most happy.

Learning to decline someone's offer was tough. If it was my insecurities holding me back, it didn't seem like a legitimate excuse. I had to be genuinely unavailable and if I wasn't, then no other explanation mattered. What I've learnt is that saying no is a right and if something doesn't sit right with you then that's reason enough not to do it. Every time I used yes when I really wanted to say no, I was putting other people's feelings before my own and that's fine to do from time to time but if you're constantly committing yourself to things you don't feel okay about doing, you can begin to lose sense of what you really enjoy and are most passionate about.

I've definitely gotten better at saying no now that I know the people who truly care about me will respect whatever choice I make. If I had continued to take part in everything my friends and family members had asked of me, my life would have revolved around their interests and values instead of being shaped by the things I liked and believed in. Saying yes to things without taking yourself and your feelings into consideration leads to a very negative way of living. I had no idea how much control that simple, three letter word had over me. Knowing how to say no is an important life skill that most will be able to do with ease, however for those who struggle like me, just remember that your happiness and wellbeing matter so if you're not enjoying something, stop doing it. If you know you're not going to like something, don't sign up for it. It's okay to say no.

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Friday, May 5, 2017

I can always count on a good quote to pick me up when I'm feeling down. If I'm in a negative mood, it's always so uplifting to come across a quote that feels like it was meant for me to see. When it seems so relevant to something I'm experiencing/going through, there's no faster way to give me the happiness boost I need. Today I'm going to be sharing with you my top 20 inspirational quotes for blogging. This post is for any blogger out there who needs their daily dose of motivation. And if none of my favourite quotes work for you then I really recommend searching online yourself. Make a little list like I've done here and keep it close by because sometimes when you're feeling a little bit lost or uninspired, a few words of wisdom can make all the difference.

1. "If you can't stop thinking about it, don't stop working for it."

2. "Small progress is still progress."

3. "The only person you should try to be better than is the person you were yesterday."

4. "Success doesn't come and find you, you have to go out and get it."

5. "Don't give up. Good things take time."

6. "Believe that you can and you're halfway there."

7. "You get what you focus on so focus on what you want."

8. "Life begins at the end of your comfort zone."

9. "If it doesn't challenge you, it won't change you."

10. "Little by little, a little becomes a lot."

11. "Don't compare your beginning to someone else's middle."

12. "To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong." 

13. "Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try."

14. "Never doubt your instinct."

15. "You're always one decision away from a totally different life."

16. "It won't be easy but it'll be worth it."

17. "Grow through what you go through."

18. "If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door."

19. "You were born with the ability to change someone's life, don't ever waste it."

20. "Work hard, dream big."

Thanks for reading! And if you have a favourite quote you'd like to share, write it down below!

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