Accepting The Highs and Lows


Hey guys, how have you been doing?

I think it’s safe to say that Spring is most definitely approaching – the air feels crisp and the evenings are lighter. Colourful dots have begun to blossom amongst the green canvas of grass, whilst white wispy clouds swirl through the light blue sky, delicate and fluffy. Each morning, I have been going on runs. It allows me to absorb the surroundings and appreciate the smaller things in life we sometimes take for granted. It also helps declutter my mind and sets the tone for the day, in which I return home with clearer thoughts and a calmer vision for the day ahead. It’s really helped me stay calm, particularly during this weird time. Today, I want to provide some reassurance about the current situation, and hopefully encourage you to accept how you are feeling, because I’m sure we are all experiencing up and down phases at the moment – which is totally okay.

Take this scenario. You wake up one morning, your mood is flat, you feel lazy, Netflix sounds too tempting to resist so you stay in bed and wear pyjamas all day.

Sound familiar? *Currently raising my hand*

This post is a little reminder that ‘off’ days are okay, and you are not alone if you are finding this time difficult. It can be challenging to stay positive all the time, particularly when we are repeatedly reminded of everything that is occurring around us. This is a time of change and uncertainty where we are restricted to the four walls of home, with many of us having to adjust to different living dynamics and new routines. Things at the moment are different, so of course not every day will be easy – it’s only natural to feel that way. It is okay if you wake up feeling down. It is okay to have a day off. It is okay to feel worried or uncertain. These are normal feelings most of us will experience given the current situation. Good days will come, and not-so-good days will go. Remember that this time will pass, we just have to take each day as it comes.

What can help lift your mood?

Obviously, different strategies work for different people, but I’ve been trying to implement a few different activities into my daily routine to keep myself entertained, and to help distract myself from the situation. Simple things such as phoning a friend or spending some quality time with family members are a great distraction. I’ve also been drawing, reading, baking, painting, running, meditating and doing home work-outs for some technology-free escapism. I’ve heard great things about Yoga too – I plan on starting that at some point too!

Although this has been different from my previous posts, I just thought a daily reminder would hopefully help and reassure you that the emotions you’re experiencing during this time are all completely natural and okay. We are in this together and this time will pass.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and I hope it’s helped. Have a lovely rest of your day/evening!

Also, don’t forget to subscribe to be notified whenever I post on here! I’d love some support.

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

Homemade Banana Bread


Hi guys, how are you doing? I hope you are all safe and well.

From spending all this time at home, I have begun to appreciate the comforting scent of a freshly baked cake straight out the oven. Baking has always been a hobby of mine – there’s something so satisfying about turning a buttery, sugary mixture into a fluffy sponge of goodness. Last week, I was passing time and decided to bake a banana bread. I followed an old recipe from ‘River Cottage,’ but I altered it a little bit. It turned out super delicious and so I thought I’d share it with you!

You need:
100g unsalted butter (I used salted and it was fine!)
125g light brown sugar
2 eggs
2/3 ripe bananas
100/125g raisins/apricots/chocolate (anything you fancy, really!) – measurements are quite general for this because, in my opinion, it’s up to you how much filling you want to put in. I used raisins as we didn’t have any apricots in
200g self-raising flour
Lemon/orange (for the zest – not essential!)

Method:
Method is super simple!
Begin by mixing the butter (softened) and sugar in a bowl to form a creamy mixture. Then, crack the eggs into the bowl and mix again. Then, mash the banana’s into a paste and also add them into the mixture. Follow this by adding the raisins/apricots/chocolate (whichever filling you prefer) and mix well. Then, grate the lemon or orange zest into the bowl and mix! Then, it’s time to sift the flour and mix again. Pour the batter into a prepared tin and place in the oven for about 50 minutes (keep an eye on it though) on 160ᵒC.

Its really easy and it’s absolutely delicious – I’ve used the same recipe since I was young, and it’s never failed me!

Let me know how you get on, and don’t forget to subscribe for more content!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

How to Stay Motivated When Working From Home


Hey everyone, how are you doing?

In the midst of this uncertain time, it can be difficult to stay motivated. Particularly when we are restricted to our own homes – it can be so tempting to slip on some cosy loungewear and immerse in Disney+ or Netflix. The sudden change in routine and having to work from home is causing most of us to struggle with our motivation at the minute, but don’t worry because that’s completely natural – it’s a bizarre time for us all!

Today, I want to share with you a few tips which have helped me stay motivated during this time. I finally completed and handed in my dissertation the other day – so some of these methods must have worked! Of course, I don’t feel motivated every single day, but the tips I’m going to share have most definitely helped me! So grab a cup of tea, curl under a soft blanket, switch off from the outside world and enjoy the post.

  1. Write a to-do list the night before
    Writing a list the night before helps create a structure for the next day, as it clearly sets out what needs to be done. Writing lists before bed really encourage me to feel more motivated the next morning, as I wake up and feel keen to tick each task off the list! It also means you don’t have to worry about what needs to be done for the next day, as it’s already written down ! (And it helps declutter the mind).
  2. Wake up early
    I find myself feeling much more motivated when I wake up early (same time every morning to maintain a consistent routine). Waking up early discourages any feeling of sluggishness, which can often occur from waking up late and/or having an inconsistent sleep routine. Each early morning is a gift of a fresh day ahead. Picture each new day as a blank canvas – untouched, brand new and ready to be painted.
  3. Get dressed
    I did an Instagram poll the other day, and like myself, the majority of people are spending their days in cosy loungewear/pyjamas. Trust me, I know how tempting it is because I often do it myself! But I’ve been trying to dress in outfits which I would wear during a day at the library (eg/ jeans, smarter attire), and it’s making me feel much more motivated to work.
  4. Reward Yourself
    After a day of work and being productive, I usually set myself a ‘rewarding’ task for the end of the day. For example, I’ll treat myself to a movie on Disney+, or I’ll have a bath that evening. Throughout the day, as I’m working, I then remind myself of that particular reward which I will indulge in once my tasks are complete. This really helps me stay focussed and motivated to complete what needs to be done, as having a reward is something to look forward to.
  5. Listen to yourself
    Remember, if you are having an off day, do not get frustrated with yourself for not being as productive as usual! We cannot be really productive and motivated every single day – it’s completely natural to have off days. We are going through a difficult time of change and uncertainty, so feeling up and down is completely normal. Listen to your body, and if you really are struggling, then that is okay and remember to take it easy.

So, those are a few suggestions which have helped me stay motivated when working from home, I hope they work for you too. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this blog post, and I really hope you are all doing okay!

Don’t forget to subscribe to see more content. Take care and have a good day!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

My Daily Routine at Home


Hey guys, I hope you’re all staying well and keeping positive during this strange time!

I know that many of us have been through a lot of change recently – a change of work setting, having to work from home, even a change in living dynamics. I’ve also noticed on social media that a few people have been struggling to adapt to this change of routine. So today, I’m going to share with you my daily routine which I have recently adapted to since all this change, and I hope it can offer some inspiration/ideas for you!

My Daily Routine:

Wake up: I usually set my alarm for 8:30am on weekdays. Setting my alarm for the same time each day really improves my sleep cycle and is a great way to keep your daily routine consistent. I’ll then drink a few cups of water and have a piece of fruit (I eat lightly at this time because I go for runs every morning).

Exercise: Since being restricted to home, I’ve really tried to utilise this time to practice self-care and aim to be healthier. So, every morning, I’ve been going on runs alone which are doing me the world of good. Inhaling the fresh air each morning whilst being surrounded by empty greens feels so invigorating and is also a great way to leave the house. I would definitely recommend a morning exercise to anybody, and if running isn’t for you, you could try a hit workout, normal workout or even yoga! They have so many tutorials to follow on YouTube, so definitely try that out. It really puts my head in a good space, preparing it for the day, especially when our days are now spent indoors.

Getting ready for the day: I’ll then shower and get ready for the day! I’m making the most of working from home, so I usually slip on a pair of comfy joggers with a cosy top – being comfy is key for me! I’ll then make myself a cup of tea (mint green is so good in the morning) and crack on with University work! Remember to drink lots of water throughout the day to stay hydrated!

Lunch: I’ll have lunch usually between 12-1pm depending on the day and how I am feeling! Eating healthy can really boost your mood, which is especially important during times like this, so I’m trying to be keep a balanced diet.

Back to work: After lunch, I’ll then usually work some more until 4pm. I understand that if you have a full-time job that you will finish later than that! Everyone’s routines will differ slightly!

In the evening: By the evening, I will switch off my laptop so that I’m not tempted to look/finish anymore work! It’s important to be able to switch off after a day of hard work! I’ll then have dinner.

Self-care: I preach about self-care so often because it’s so important to me! I try to implement a dose of self-care every single day, and find it particularly therapeutic to do so before bedtime. Whether it’s reading a book with a peppermint tea, painting my nails, running a warm bath, having a pamper session, watching a favourite film or a 10-minute meditation, I make sure I do at least one of these every night-time before I sleep. It allows me to have a calmer head space and helps me wind down for bed.

Goodnight: I usually aim to fall asleep at the same time each night to again regulate my sleep cycle and keep a consistent routine. I also still regularly use lavender oil before I sleep, as it really relaxes my mind and helps me drift off. I also recommend doing night time meditations (The Honest Guys on Spotify and YouTube are really good!)

So, that’s the routine I’ve adjusted to since being at home! I hope it helps you and gives you some ideas! I find that having a structured routine really helps both my motivation and my productivity when working at home.

I hope you are all staying positive and safe, and remember that we are all in this together!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

Ways to Keep Yourself Entertained At Home


Hey guys, how are you today?

I guess we can’t ignore the circumstances around us – it’s inevitably there. A sudden change in routine has occurred for many of us – remaining indoors, working from home and maybe feeling a little apprehensive and worried. For many of us, having to stay within the walls of our home can be a struggle, especially during the weekends when there’s no work to do. However, during an unfamiliar time like this, it is important to focus on the positives rather than the negatives!

Today, being the home-bird I am, I’m going to share a few things which you can do to fill your days spent at home. Staying proactive not only keeps you entertained, but is really good for your mental wellbeing (which is so important during a time like this!)

  1. Wardrobe clear out
    I’ve started to this already! Since being at home, I’ve had the chance to finally clear out my room and sort my clothes out – it’s so satisfying, and it helps pass the time (as well as being productive!) I feel so cleansed and organised from it!
  2. Morning workout/yoga
    As for the foreseeable future, most of our time will be spent indoors, so I would most definitely recommend doing some exercise! Recently, I’ve been implementing home workouts into my routine and this morning I went for a run. You could even try yoga – any form of exercise is so invigorating and healthy for both the mind and body. There are so many tutorials on YouTube so definitely try them out. Also, establishing a new routine is a really good way of adjusting to change and improving our wellbeing.  
  3. Read a book
    A cup of tea and a good book, curled under a soft blanket. Diving into a world of imagination, the story unfolds as you turn each page. Escaping reality by immersing yourself into a book is a really great way to stay entertained, and it also helps the mind unwind if you read before bed.
  4. Be creative
    Have you ever thought about creating something? Ever wanted to write a book, poem or practice your artwork? Release and challenge your creative energy into a project you’ve always thought about doing! This is great if you are wanting to spend time away from your phone and social media.
  5. Stay connected
    A FaceTime or phone call is only a click away! Stay connected by keeping in touch with family and friends!

Remember to stay positive, guys! Remember that we are in control of our attitudes and mindsets, and remember that positivity breeds positivity! I hope these suggestions have helped and I hope you have enjoyed reading!

Thanks so much for your support, and please subscribe to join the family! Keep smiling.

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

How to Boost Your Self-Esteem


Hello lovelies, how are you doing?

Sorry for the less frequent posts recently – I’ve been so preoccupied with University deadlines! However, as we precede to brighter mornings and friendlier weather, we can focus on the positive that Spring is soon to welcome us with a warm smile.

Today, I stumbled across an astounding figure which revealed that 85% of people have self-esteem issues. Although I knew self-esteem problems were common amongst society, I didn’t actually realise the extent of its prevalence. We live in a world surrounded by social media, where we are exposed to an influx of airbrushed and ‘perfect’ images. Careers become increasingly competitive and we often only hear about the successes of others. This can cause us to knock ourselves down, as we habitually begin to compare ourselves to others, which is detrimental to our self-esteem and our wellbeing. Having little confidence is a common feeling we have, but there are most definitely certain things which can be done in order to boost it. It involves a change of mental habit, and it definitely works for me! So today, I am going to share with you a few tips to help you improve your self-confidence, so I hope you enjoy!

  1. Treat yourself as your own best friend
    This is so effective. Whenever you begin to feel that you are putting yourself down, take a step back and ask yourself ‘would I say this to my best friend?’ The answer is, probably not. It’s very easy to become self-critical, and we end up telling ourselves things we would never dream of saying or thinking that about anybody else. Treat yourself as your own best friend, you are special, just like your best friend is!

  2. Remind yourself about the things you like about yourself
    This is something which can be easily implemented into your daily routine. After you read this blog post, list 3 things you love about yourself. This can be done every morning, evening or any time you are feeling unconfident. Injecting a syrup of self-love can make you feel so much better about yourself!

  3. Accept your flaws
    Nobody is perfect. There will always be something you don’t like about yourself, or perhaps you’re still fixated on that mistake you made the other day. These flaws and mistakes make you imperfectly perfect. You are perfect in your own way, so love yourself for who you are and embrace your flaws. It what makes you, you! What you don’t like about yourself, someone else will love about you. Everyone has flaws, we are just more susceptible to being aware and critical of our own.

Having self-confidence can be a tricky hurdle to tackle, but it’s important to focus on improving in as this will benefit your overall wellbeing! Love yourself for who you are! I hope these tips help you and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading!

Have a great day, don’t forget to subscribe to join the family!

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Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

Ways to ‘Switch Off’ From Stress


Hey everybody! How are you doing?

Happy March! How is it March already?! January gloomily dragged, yet I’ve seemed to have blinked and we’ve skipped a month! I don’t know about you, but I’ve been feeling pretty stressed lately – I think it’s this time of year. However, soon the light evenings and blue skies will emerge, and Spring will soon greet us with a burst of joy.

When we are stressed, it can be difficult to practice self-care habits as we get so wrapped up in the busy schedules of every day life. Today, I’ve decided to share with you a few simple, doable strategies which can be easily implemented into your daily routine in order to help you ‘switch off’ from stress and indulge in relaxation:

1) Listen to a podcast

I usually do this when I’m walking to or from uni. It’s a great way to switch off from the stresses of life and to listen to a topic of interest. I really recommend listening to ‘Deliciously Ella’s’ podcasts – they’re so uplifting, inspiring and also really relatable! You can find them on Spotify. She covers a whole range of topics, from accepting failure to healthy eating. Plus, it’s super easy to squeeze this into your routine, as you can simply listen to these podcasts on route to places, or even when you’re cooking or getting ready for bed. I couldn’t recommend them enough!

2) Colouring book

In a world where we are dominated by social media and stress, escaping the online world and engaging in an activity like colouring in can be so refreshing. I have a colouring book and it’s so calming to unleash the colour and glide the pencils across the paper, filling in each shape and design with care. It’s such a pleasurable way to ‘switch off’ and ease the mind, and it’s a great way to spend time away from social media. This is really relaxing to do before bedtime, especially if you don’t fancy reading!

3) Write in a journal

I’ve owned a journal since I was about 10 and I use it religiously. Being able to write your thoughts and feelings down after a stressful day is so cathartic and I’d recommend it to anybody. It’s also a really therapeutic way to write down all the things you are grateful for in life. Being able to take a minute to focus on what you are grateful for can help relieve stress, as it puts things into perspective. With regards to fitting this into my routine, I often take ten or fifteen minutes before I sleep to write. This is also a great way to wind down after a busy day because you can switch off your phone (which is one of the biggest sleep disrupters!)

Overall, being able to practice self-care to relieve feelings of stress is so important for our wellbeing. The stress of life can often take a toll on us, dragging us down and causing us to neglect ourselves. I love being able to share with you these things which can make all the difference, so I really hope they help and I hope they work for you.

Thanks so much for reading and for all of your support! Don’t forget to subscribe to join the family!

Have a lovely day.

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx


Vegan Pancake Recipe


Hey guys! How are you doing today?

The rain here has plummeted down constantly this week, falling from the grey clouds and spitting on the ground – not ideal! However, we can’t forget that Pancake Day is soon approaching! A few months ago, I tried out a vegan pancake recipe and I absolutely loved it. From the powdery flour to the sugary vanilla extract, this recipe requires minimal ingredients and is super easy to make! So, today I thought I would share it with you! I don’t know about you, but nothing feels better than sipping a hot cup of tea under a soft blanket on a cold Sunday evening. So, get cosy and I hope you enjoy the post!

I’m pretty sure I found this recipe on the BBC website, but there are plenty of other vegan pancake recipes on the internet! All you need is:

300g self-raising flour, 1tsp baking powder, 1 or 2 tbsp sugar, vanilla extract, some cooking oil, 400g plant-based milk (I used oat milk), a mixing bowl, whisk/spoon and a frying pan!
I added 2 tbsp of sugar because I wanted them sweet!
Canola oil and light olive oil are good to use!

Throw them into a mixing bowl and give the mixture a whisk to create a smooth batter! Once smoothened and thick, scoop a portion of the mixture onto the frying pan, wait a few minutes and flip! It’s so satisfying to hear the mixture sizzle, as the creamy batter turns to golden baked circles of fluffiness.

To decorate, I drizzled the pancakes with maple syrup, pleasantly watching the syrupy liquid glaze over the freshly baked batch. I also sliced a fresh banana which added extra flavour (as well as adding a healthy twist!) But obviously there’s plenty of alternative options such as lemon, sugar, strawberries and chocolate (if you aren’t vegan) etc!

I hope you enjoyed reading and let me know how you get on with your pancakes! Have a fantastic week and a great Pancake Day!

Don’t forget to subscribe to see more content! Thanks soo much again for all of your support.

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

Some Tips and a Guide to Meditation


Hey everyone! How are you doing?
The weather this week has been manic! Gusty winds have raged through country and the cold weather has encouraged snowflakes to sprinkle the ground. For me, February month feels like a Tuesday of the week. Emerged in the midst of frosty weather, it’s also heaped with deadlines and stacked with copious amounts of work – stressful, right? Today, I want to share with you a few simple tips about meditation.

I’ve mentioned meditation a few times in many of my previous blog posts, as I know how effective it works when reducing stress. However, I realise I’ve never actually gone into detail and depth about it. Today’s blog post is going to focus on how I began meditation, the benefits of meditation and how to begin/fit it into your routine.

Firstly, some of you may be thinking ‘what actually is meditation!?’
Meditation is all about resting the mind and gaining a state of consciousness which is different from the normal wakening state. It’s about focussing on the present and containing our thoughts. Our minds are naturally so used to wandering and overthinking, which is why meditation can be hard at first, but practice makes perfect!

 “But how do you start!?” is a question so many people have asked me. Although I’m not a daily meditator, I have dipped in and out of meditation routines for years and years, so I can certainly talk about how I began. About 4/5 years ago, I was feeling overwhelmed during the exam period. My Dad, who meditates quite often, shared with me his experience about meditating and, after hearing all the positive effects it had, I decided to start myself. I searched some clips on YouTube – there’s so many! Type in “Practice Meditation for Beginners” and an endless list of options appears. I also really recommend “The Honest Guys” on YouTube and Spotify – they’re really good.

How do you meditate?
You must sit in a comfortable position, with your back straight and eyes closed. Focus on your breathing and focus on the sensations you feel within your body. Focus on the present. And, when you notice your mind is beginning to wander to other things (which it will at first), simply acknowledge it, and swiftly divert your attention back to the present moment. Practice makes perfect!

How to fit meditation into your routine:
Begin by scheduling a 5-minute slot each day to meditate. I recommend doing it in the morning, as this will begin your day with a fresh, clean slate. Meditating in the evening also helps, because it helps calm the mind before bed, altering your body into a resting state which initiates better sleep. Each day, gradually increase the amount of time slot which you spend meditating. It’s up to you how long you meditate for – whatever fits into your routine.  

The Benefits:
Personally, when I am routinely meditating daily, I feel an indefinable change in my mood. I feel less stressed, I cope with stress better and I overall naturally obtain a better mindset towards things. There are so many past studies which reveal the positive effects meditation has on both the body and mind – I’d definitely recommend giving them a read! It’s almost unbelievable because it is so effective. So, if it works for you, I would most definitely recommend giving it a go, because what have you got to lose?! It’s quick, simple and will benefit your wellbeing both physically, mentally and emotionally.

Bit of a different post today, but it’s one I definitely wanted to share! I hope you enjoy reading and let me know how you get on with it! Don’t forget to subscribe if you would like to see more content!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

What To Do When You Feel Overwhelmed


7:00am. You wake up to the familiar sound of your alarm and already you are thinking about your to-do list which flows like the closing credit of a film. Wouldn’t it be so much easier to stay wrapped up in the warm comforts of bed, shielding yourself from all the stress? Life can calve endless chores and tasks into our days, making us feel overwhelmed and tired. I can’t count the amount of times I have had to take a step back and force myself to relax to help manage my stress levels. We’ve all been there, and it can be very mentally draining. So, today, I want to share with you a few tips which can help cope with these feelings of overwhelmingness.

  1. Let go of what you can’t control

I once read a statistic which showed a high percent of what we overthink and worry about doesn’t even happen. What a waste of thoughts, right? You can’t control everything in life, so letting go of the things you’re not in control of is a great first step to reduce stressful thoughts. I sometimes ask myself ‘what is the point in worrying about what I can’t control?’ Overthinking these things is pointless, because thinking about them won’t change anything – what will be will be. Let life unfold the way it wants to, because things work out eventually.

  • Simplify

When things feel overwhelming, it’s so easy to fill your mind with tasks, making you feel like they all need to be done at once. This only causes more stress. When you wake up, simplify what needs to be done. Break what needs to be done into smaller steps – you can do this by writing a to do list and prioritising. Seeing things written on paper definitely reduces my stress levels as they no longer feel jumbled in my head!

  • Relax

Relaxing when you feel overwhelmed can make you feel slightly guilty, I understand. But it’s so important to listen to your mind and body if you feel like you’re crashing. Allow yourself to just relax for a little while – your wellbeing is much more important. Also, you are way more likely to be more productive after a rest because it gives yourself time to replenish, so it’s a win-win!

So, there are a few tips I thought I would share with you when things feel like they are getting too much. It happens to all of us and I believe being able to cope with stress and put our wellbeing first is so important. Let me know how you get on!

I hope you enjoyed reading and I hope this helps! Please subscribe if you would like to see more content!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx