Sunday, 26 April 2015

Infinity Dreams Award

Thank you to the lovely Alisha Allkins for nominating me for the Infinity Dreams Award; I love doing this type of thing:) 


The Rules of the Award are:

1. Thank and follow the blog that kindly nominated you. Thanks to both girls, love your blogs!

2. Tell us 11 facts about yourself

3. Answer the Questions that were set for you to answer

4. Nominate 11 bloggers and set questions for them


Elelven Facts About Yours Truly:

1. I drink waaaay too much coffee and sometimes dream about getting one from Starbucks during my lectures. I usually get an espresso frappucino (less sugar and stronger coffee) or a spiced chai latte with an espresso shot. 

2. I am going to Santorini, Greece in July with my boyfriend and I so cannot wait!

3. I want to be an expert at something. When I am a qualified psychologist, I want people to look up to me and think "I wish I knew as much as her", like I do with my lecturers and supervisor at placement. 

4. I did a "50 facts about me" post a few months ago. 

5. I am YouTube obsessed! I usually binge watch videos. My favourite YouTubers are: Zoella (obvs), Marcus Butler and Niomi Smart. My favourite fitness YouTubers are Carly Rowena and Zanna Van Dijk. 

6. I'm weird when it comes to numbers. I find it really annoying that this is 11 facts. Why 11? It's such a weird number. 

7. I absolutely hate hating my photo taken but I realised this year that when I get older, I won't have any photos to look back on. I have gotten slightly better and will have photos with people now if they ask (beg) me to. I find it sad because some people don't bother to ask me anymore because they know i'll say no. 

8. I really want to achieve my fitness goals but I struggle so much. I just don't enjoy food all that much and find it difficult to eat the foods that I need in order to achieve my goals. I'll get there in the end though. 

9. I have only farted in front of my boyfriend (of nearly seven years!) once, and it was by accident. He would always go on at me saying that I wasn't normal because I didn't fart and then once, I accidentally let one out and he said "you see, now I think you're disgusting". Fantastic times. 

10. When I move out, my house will contain a random assortment of things. I have a weird taste in furniture and probably won't be able to make my mind up on a set theme, so i'll throw a bit of everything in!

11. If it wasn't for my friend, Harley (hi Harley), I probably wouldn't be at university right now and I'd probably still not have passed GCSE maths (yep, GCSE). 

Questions from Alisha 

1. What is the most unique thing about you?

I couldn't think of one so I asked my sister who said my laugh. This is NOT a compliment. She said that it's quite unique but it's like my dad's. I can't quite explain what my laugh is like but imagine a hyeena.. yeah that's pretty much it. 


2. Where do you aspire to be in 10 years?

In ten years time, I hope to be settled into my career as a Clinical Psychologist, maybe I'll also be a Counselling Psychologist too. I'd also like to be a practicing Hypnotherapist too. Another goal of mine is to have research that I have carried out published and also to hold my own intervention groups for those seeking therapy. I think that therapy is way too overpriced and NHS waiting times are too long. Some people don't even get enough sessions for their treatment to be effective, so I'd like to run an intervention group that is affordable for people. 


3. If you could star in any movie/tv show which would it be and what character would you want to play?

I'd play Serena Van Der Woodsen (think that's how you spell it, cba to google) purely because I fancy her and Gossip Girl is my fave. 

4. If you had endless amount of cameras/technology/people, what would be your dream blog post?

I'd like to do one exploring people's perceptions on people with mental health issues. I would ask people in the street and in different areas/professions about their knowledge and understanding and film it. Mainly to challenge social stigma and gauge an understanding of what different people, from different backgrounds think. (OOOOOOO, research idea)


5. Something you could spend a whole day doing?

This beyond sad, but my favourite thing to do is to chill at home, on my own, with endless cups of coffee, watching TV/YouTube and snapchatting my friends my ugly face. So i'd do that. 


6. Your 3 fashion staples?

I'm definitely not the most fashionable person. I've just had to take a pair of trousers back to the shop because I bought them, intending to wear Converse with them but my sisters informed me that they were dressy trousers and Converse look stupid. So that was me told. But I like wearing a simple plain top, with black, highwaisted jeans and a kimono maybe. 

7.If you could only wear one type of makeup for the rest of your life, what would it be?

MASCARA 100%. I literally look like an alien without it. All my blonde people will feel me on this. 

8. Fashion icons?

Myself. 

9. If you had to marry a celebrity who would it be?

I fancy Mark Wahlberg so bad. His muscles, omg. 


10. You have to move away to a country of your choice forever, you can take 4 people, who would you take?

My boyfriend, my sister Tiffany, my nan and grandad.

11. Your favourite colour to wear?

I dress so boring, my favourite colour is probably black or grey. I do wear occasional colour but it's usually navy. 

I tag: 
http://www.jessicabird.co.uk/ 
http://afrobeebeauty.blogspot.co.uk/
http://www.alemint.net/
http://uforurika.blogspot.co.uk/
http://dressbetter.co.uk/
http://www.allthingselsie.co.uk/

and anbody else who wants to answer the questions! I'm also looking to follow new blogs, so comment below if you have one! I'm interested in health and fitness, skin care, recipes and lifestyle!

Here are my questions:

1. Who was the last person you messaged on Facebook?

2. What is the last thing you ate?

3. Why did you start a blog?

4. You have to marry the last person you smiled at. Are you happy?

5. Do you believe in the supernatural?

6. What is your dream job?

7. Most embarrassing moment?

8. Best present you've ever received?

9. Favourite make-up brand?

10. Designer or high street? (If money was no object).

11. What's your biggest achievement? 

Tag me when you answer the questions as I'm nosy!

xx

Friday, 17 April 2015

RIP

On the 23rd March 2015 at 13:02, my beautiful Shiz Tzu, Angel was put to sleep. I wanted to do a post in memory of her so i'll never forget her (even though I never would anyway!)


In August 2005, we went to have a look at a bunch of Shiz Tzu's, hoping that we would be able to buy one. We were overwhelmed with how in love we fell with Angel straight away. Her mum, Lola, was a long-haired white and laid back Shiz Tzu while her dad Monty, was a short-haired brown and very lively Shiz Tzu. Angel was a twin and we begged my step dad to let us have both of them but he said no! Angel was only a few weeks old at the time so we waited until she was ready to leave her parents to bring her home. When we did finally get her home, she settled in straight away. She'd run around the living room and slide all across the laminate floor. She loved having her stomach rubbed and nibbling on our fingers. 
As she grew older, she developed her own little personality and we were all smitten with her, She was unlike any other dog i'd ever met. She was always so happy to me whenever I walked through the door- I always say that I wish everybody was as happy to see me as she was. She'd sleep in my bed at night with me most nights and take up literally all of my bed. She would have no qualms about lying across my legs, leaving my unable to move for most of the night. Whenever, I didn't let her in my bed, she'd sleep in her bed on my bedroom floor; every now and again throughout the night, she'd try her luck and jump up onto my bed, cheeky!
I bought her this cow bed (even though I absolutely hate cows!) and she loved it so much! Her tail was mid-wag in the picture. When we buried her, we wrapped the cow print cover around what we buried her in. 

She'd hide bones in her bed and just sit watching over them. If you went near her bed while there was a bone in it, she'd get all possessive and bow her head over it while giving you the side eye. 




You can tell how much Angel loved my bed by the way she looks so at home on there! I love this photo, she looks like a big teddy bear! 

Bath was one of my least favourite and favourite things at the same time. She absolutely hated baths and wouldn't come near me afterwards. When lifting her into the bath, she'd spread her paws out to avoid the water! I had to bribe her with treats throughout bathtime in an attempt to keep her in the bath and avoid jumping out. I'd always give her a blow dry and a doggy massage afterwards which she enjoyed but bathtime was definitely not her favourite time. 
This was taken just before we were going on a walk. As soon as you said "WALKIES", she'd go crazy and run around the house, sliding across the floor. Walks took a very long time; rather than having a few long wees, she'd have about 10 million really short ones. Rather than just having a poo, she'd sniff around for ages and then when she found the perfect spot, she'd go around in a circle for about 5 minutes before actually doing one. Then, she would drag her paws through the mud and kick up loads of mud everywhere. Such a strange but special dog! She'd also decide that she didn't want to do anymore walking so she would just lie down randomly and i'd have to carry her home! 


Our cuddles were always my favourite. When everybody had gone to bed, we would sit and watch TV and then go up to bed. The hardest thing is for me being downstairs on my own at the moment. I'm so not used to it because Angel always used to be down there with me and that's when we used to talk. Yes, talk. I used to talk to her like a human. 




To me and my family, Angel wasn't a dog she was part of our family. She always will be so so so loved and she'll never be able to be replaced. I feel so happy that we were lucky enough to have such a wonderful dog. 




 It has always been quite a well-known fact that Angel is a massive lesbian. She was always trying to hump female dogs whenever she got the chance. She used to have a teddy which she humped non-stop, all of the stuffing came out of it so we had to throw it away. She'd never grown as attached to a teddy again, focusing more on real-life dogs! I hope that she's chasing all of the girls up in heaven! 











Oh, So Ladylike!


Lol, Lying in the sun, getting her teeth out!

My beautiful girl will never ever be forgotten! I'm so thankful for such a special and amazing dog. I love you more than anything Ange. I hope you like what I did for you in the garden. I'm quite the gardener now! 

I'll love you forever! 








Friday, 10 April 2015

Applying the Health Belief Model to Achieve my Fitness Goals...

I have a lot of big goals that I am working towards achieving; I want to graduate with a first, train as a hypnotherapist, get a job in healthcare, move out with my boyfriend and be happy with myself.

 I am actively working towards all of these goals, apart from one. I'm not happy with myself and won't be until I do something about it. I've struggled with my appearance for a while and although I do go to the gym and try to eat healthily, I've definitely not been putting in enough time or effort in order to achieve what I want. The hardest thing for me is knowing that if I just work hard 4-5 times a week consistently for about a month, I will start to see the results I'd like, but for some reason, I manage to talk myself out of going to the gym and I over indulge too much, not because I want to, I just do.



I'm definitely one of those people who say "well, I've eaten one bad thing, so I've ruined it for the day now, I might as well eat badly all day and start again tomorrow", which is just totally ridiculous. I know that the best approach to nutrition is "everything in moderation" and I've been doing it for long enough to know that this simply doesn't work for me. As someone who binges, if I eat one bad thing, I'll eat another five, just because. When i'm eating healthily, there is nothing missing from my diet to make me binge, i'm not hungry, I just eat for the sake of it. I think I don't have the drive to achieve my goal because I think "my body isn't that bad. I'm not happy with it but it could be worse".


So, as a psychology student, I know enough models of change that are applied to intervention groups to help people break a habit such as smoking, drinking, exercising etc. So, I thought i'd try to apply it to myself to help me stay on track. I'm writing this blog so I can refer back to it when I need to and also if anybody does read it, it may help you too :)








In my opinion, the most prominent model of change is the Health Belief Model (HBM); this model is typically used to explain and predict health behaviours. It is widely used in interventions to educate people on their health behaviours and give them the tools to change. It can be used to change the way people see their negative behaviours (smoking/drinking) and also promote positive health behaviours (exercise/healthy eating).

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=health+belief+model&espv=2&biw=1920&bih=955&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=jiwoVcT3K8HhaPzAgNgJ&ved=0CAYQ_AUoAQ#imgrc=922gqPb-k-kz0M%253A%3B1utuHLlvIQUhnM%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fupload.wikimedia.org%252Fwikipedia%252Fcommons%252Fthumb%252F7%252F7a%252FThe_Health_Belief_Model.pdf%252Fpage1-1280px-The_Health_Belief_Model.pdf.jpg%3Bhttp%253A%252F%252Fen.wikipedia.org%252Fwiki%252FHealth_belief_model%3B1280%3B989


The model suggests that a persons level of engagement or lack of in a health behaviour can be explained by their personal beliefs regarding their perceived susceptibility to illness, perceived severity, perceived benefits of behaviour, and barriers to action. The model also says that a cue or trigger is neccessary for prompting an individual to want to change their behaviour. As an example, if somebody smokes:



  • Perceived susceptibility to illness- most smokers are aware of the effects that tobacco has on the body such as lung cancer, gum disease etc. If you believe that you will become ill and develop a disease, you are more likely to take stages to stop smoking. 
  • Perceived severity- as mentioned above, most smokers know that they are likely to develop a smoking-related illness but some are often in denial and think "it won't happen to me".
  • Perceived benefits- "by stopping smoking, I am reducing my risk of disease and will save a lot of money".
  • Perceived barriers- psychological people may find it very difficult to stop smoking. For some people, smoking is a habit and for others they are addicted to tobacco so a distinction will need to be made. 
  • Cues to action- this refers to the reasons which an individual has decided that they want to change their behaviour. This may be an internal cue; pain or symptoms of disease. External cues refer to events or information from the environment, this may be from a family member or healthcare professional or an advertisement on TV. 
Applying the HBM to myself:

Perceived Severity: 
  • As somebody who has been on both ends of the scale (I've been both chubby and slim), I know the implications of carrying more weight and I don't want to be overweight. I perceive being overweight and the implications to be very severe; I have seen the effects that it can have and the damaging effects that it would personally have on my life. I want to be able to be fit and healthy for myself and those around me. 
Perceived Susceptibility:
  • I am not a naturally slim person, I have always had curves and know that if I continue to eat the way I am at the moment, I will continue to put on weight and potentially be overweight in the future. 
Perceived Benefits:
  • I will (hopefully) feel more comfortable within myself.
  • I'll reduce the risk of weight-related illnesses such as diabetes etc.
  • I'll reduce the risk of being wiped out in a zombie apocalypse because i'll be able to outrun them ;)
Perceived Barriers:
  • There literally aren't really any apart from my mental barrier, I have barely any excuses to not stick to a healthy diet and exercise plan. People who are far busier than me find the time, so I can too. 
Cues to Action:
  • My "trigger" or "cue" to change is the fact that I feel uncomfortable within myself and I shouldn't. 
The idea behind doing this is to understand the reasons I have for wanting to change and the reasons why I am not already. 

My Plan of Action
  • Create my own gym plan (which is suited to my goals and what I enjoy doing)!
  • Create my own meal plan (which fits around my gym schedule and is maintainable without bingeing)!
  • Stop seeing a treat as a binge (it's okay to have one chocolate bar- this is the biggest thing I need to work on)!
  • Set a goal for the week and reward myself when I achieve them!
  • Update my blog with my progress as a way to keep track!
If anybody reads this and is interested in health and fitness, please comment any receipes you have for healthy alternatives to some food. I follow loads of people on instagram and fitness blogs but i'm yet to find any healthy alternatives that I like:( 

Goals for this week:
  • Create my gym and diet plan and put it into action
  • Keep a photo diary of what I eat so I can look back on it and see how well I am doing 
  • Be positive and patient!
  • Think of my holiday!
  • Get all of my assignments done!

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Future Goals

I haven't felt like writing anything for a while as I've been so busy with university and other things but I wanted to jot down my goals so I can look back on this when I start to lose my way a bit. 

1. Graduate from my undergraduate course with a first or a high 2:1. (Preferably the first; definitely do-able, I just need to get my head down!) 

2. Get a job as a Research Assistant or as an Assistant Psychologist. (With the experience i'm building up now, this is definitely do-able but i'm not sure how ready I am for such a big role yet, but I have a year to prepare myself!)

3. Gain a place on a MSc Clinical Applications to Psychology course. (Hopefully if I get the job I want, they'll pay for my masters for me!)

4. Go to Disneyland in Florida. (I've wanted to go since I was little and I want to go on my own before I have children- even though that's ages away!)

5. Save up and move in with my boyfriend! (We've wanted to move in together for ages but credit ratings and finances are not working with us!)

6. Learn how to drive. (I definitely need to learn but it's scary and expensive waa.)

7. Train as a hypnotherapist. (Expensive waaa.)

8. Travel around the world a bit more!

and here come the generic ones...

9. Have babies and get married (in the very distant future!)

10. I'd also like to go rock climbing or something like that. (I find it really scary lol.)





What are some of your future goals?

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Living With Bipolar Disorder...

No, I don't have Bipolar myself but I still live with it on a daily basis. My mum has the disorder and it's definitely not easy to be around some of the time. My mum has Dysphoric Bipolar Disorder which means that she has depressive episodes which are brought on by her mania. 

This is a different type of Bipolar as the most common type involves the individual to be experiencing depressive symptoms most of the time (low mood, lack of motivation, fatigue) and then experiencing a manic episode all of a sudden for a short period of time (increased level of energy, hypersomnia, increase in productivity).

But with my mum she is predominantly manic and then goes through a sudden stage of being severely depressed. When she is manic (which is most of the time) she shops several times a day, every single day; our house is full to the brim with food, "inspirational" quotes on the wall, ornaments, fairy lights and other things that we have no room for. You're probably thinking "why is having a house full of food a problem, surely that's a good thing?" Yeah, it is a good thing, we would never go hungry, for sure, but when the cupboards are that full that every time you open it, things fall out on top of you. Or every time you open the freezer, you have to put a chair against it to keep it shut, that's when it becomes a problem.  

She is very unreasonable sometimes (most of the time) because her mind doesn't work in the same way and she perceives and interprets situations differently to how we would. It's also hard to reason with her about normal things; because she'll see it in a completely different way. 

She's always been a good mum. We have always had anything we needed and wanted and we've always been loved. I know that a lot of people with this disorder are sectioned and their children get put into care so we're definitely lucky. My life could be a lot different if she wasn't the way she is and i probably wouldn't be interested in psychology if it wasn't for her. 

I'm not sure what the point in posting this was but I wanted to get it off my chest. 

The Versatile Award!

Thank you to the lovely Ana Taylor for nominating me! I love doing this sort of thing! 


Seven facts about me:

1. I suck my thumb. (Yes, I'm 21. Yes, it's disgusting. Yes, it has ruined my teeth. Yes, I wish I cared).

2. I was always a bit of a loner at school, at the time, I didn't really enjoy it but now I wish I had less friends because there's more than I've ever handled before. I mean, I did have people at school that I'd talk to, I wasn't a social outcast or anything but I wouldn't say that I had any real friends. All of the friends that I have now are the bestest friends ever. I have a handful of really close friends who I know I'll be friends with for life! (Soz, for the soppiness/cringeness).

3. I first got with my boyfriend at the age of 15 and when we were going into year 11 (I think). When I first met him, in year 10, I had never ever seen him before or noticed him despite going to the same school for 3 years prior to that. 

4. I come home from university feeling really drained because of the people in my class. I struggle to understand how most of them will go into a caring profession when they graduate as the majority of them are self-absorbed and have no regard for other people (may sound harsh but it's just my observation and after spending two years with these people, it's hard to see them being any help to those in need because of the way they are).

5. My boobs have gotten bigger recently and I'm not sure what to do with them as I'm not used to actually having boobs.

6. I really enjoy exceeding people's expectations and it happens a lot (unfortunately)! I feel like a lot of people assume that I'm a "typical blonde" (ugh, I hate when people say that) and have nothing else about me. It's nice when people say "ooh, you're actually quite clever" but I find it patronising at the same time.

7. I get great pleasure out of binge watching YouTube videos and reading blogs as I getting an insight into other people's lives and perspectives on things. I love learning about new people.

I also did a '50 Facts About Me' post quite a while ago if y'all wanna know more about me (I'm not that interesting, although I think I am). 

The Rules:

- Thank the person who gave you this award and leave a link to their blog
- Tell the person who nominated you, 7 things about yourself
- Select 15 blogs/bloggers that you've recently discovered or follow regularly
- Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award

Jeannie- She has such a lovely blog and takes beautiful pictures of her travels!

Abbie- Has a great blog full of DIY beauty tips! I still need to try the lip scrub!

I've only decided to tag two bloggers because I can't think of 13 more to tag! 

xx

Sunday, 25 January 2015

The Past Few Weeks

I've had such a busy few weeks that I haven't had chance to do anything! I started my first university placement which was very nerveracking but I survived the two weeks and will be there every Wednesday for a month before started seven weeks at my next placement. 


My placement involves intervention groups which are run on a daily basis for older adults whom have an early onset of dementia. Memory management, cognitive stimulation therapy and self memory management groups are run and are designed to help older adults manage and accept their diagnosis of dementia whilst learning strategies and techniques to help them as their dementia progresses. I've never really had an interest in dementia or working with older adults; my interest has always been with young adults and adults who have disorders (bipolar, personality disorder, schizophrenia, addictions, eating disorders). But I have enjoyed my placement so so much and I've learnt a lot. I've recieved really positive feedback from my mentor and supervisor and reassurance that I'm going in the right direction! I'd advise anybody who wants to go into a career in psychology to volunteer or apply for work experience within the NHS; I've learnt so much is such a short space of time and have gained a lot of good contacts. 


I had to wear really boring clothes for the time I was there. The first day I got a fob which was number 23 (ooooh freakyyyy). 

After my first day, I felt really drained due to a mix up. My mentor was not aware that I would be starting placement on that day so for the whole day I was left to read through booklets which definitely was not fun. When I got home, the first thing I did was get in the bath with a lush bath bomb and lay there wallowing in self pity for a while. 



Since that first day, I have absolutely loved the whole experience. I think I have fully embraced it and took on extra responsibilities. I had to blag it a few times and pretend I knew what people were talking about when really, I had no clue! 

After a good week two weeks at placement, I decided to treat myself before going back to uni!


H&M £29.99 (I think) 



H&M £14.99 


Gym top = Tesco F&F £6 
Gym bottoms = Fabletics.co.uk £22
Trainers = Nike Free Runs 5.0 (gift from last christmas) 

I barely went to the gym whilst at placement as I felt too tired and had s lot of work to do so I did a little home workout. 



Gymshark

 
Brita filtered water bottle £12 Debenhams

Workout: 

30 second sprint and then 30 seconds rest - five times 

10 press ups 
10 burpees
10 toe touches 
15 low squats 
15 hip bridges 
10 jumps over the treadmill 
20 mountain climbers (10 each leg) 

I nearly died after doing no cardio for two weeks. I absolutely hate it! Gimme weights any day! 

Have a lovely week:)!