Calming Your Thoughts Before Sleep


Hey everyone, how are you all doing today?

Soon, we will wish autumn farewell for the year, and winter will greet us with frosty fingertips. As the fallen leaves on the ground turn crispier, the twiggy branches on trees remain bare as the icy air allures winter hats and scarves.

So, stopping racing thoughts before we sleep, how can we do it? A lot of us are prone to overthinking, especially when I’m trying to wind down before bed. I don’t know about you, but it often occurs when I’ve had a stressful day, or when I’ve got a busy schedule ahead of me. I close my eyes, trying to sleep, yet my mind is whirling around in a pool of rushing thoughts, making it seem impossible to drift to sleep.

As a frequent mindfulness goer, I have learnt that being able to distract your mind from busy thought’s is a powerful way to calm ourselves down. I have found that an effective way to distract your mind from reoccurring, stressful thoughts is by taking yourself to the present. Ask yourself: where am I? What can I touch? What can I smell?

As you close your eyes, you can feel the soft duvet shelter your resting body. You can feel your head sink effortlessly into the pillow. The warmth from the hot water bottle emits into your skin, as you inhale the soothing scent of lavender. 

Not only does this distract your mind from busy thoughts, but it calms the body and facilitates relaxation. Take yourself to the present. Remind yourself that there is no point worrying about tomorrow or worrying about the past when right now it isn’t in your control so it’s not worth worrying about!

So next time you’re struggling to sleep, close your eyes and try distracting your mind by focussing on the present! I hope this blog helps you, and if you want to see more content please subscribe!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx


Acceptance


Hey guys!

How has your day been? My Christmas shopping has finally started; all the discounts are on so now is the perfect time! I can’t get enough of the glittery lights which parade the city centre, and the dazzling Christmas decorations which fulfil the shop windows, each spreading the jubilant buzz as December 1st approaches.

I’m sure you’ve had a busy day today. As the beautiful blue sky falls to darkness and the nightfall hours approach, allow yourself some quality time. Grab a cup of tea, switch off from the outside world and allow yourself some time to relax and read this post.

Today, I was walking back home, listening to this insightful podcast about wellbeing. The content within the podcast inspired me to write today’s post because it mentioned something which I feel a lot of us could be better at, which is acceptance.

We’ve all felt it: sadness, guilt, disappointment, jealousy – the list is infinite. It is important to remind ourselves that it is entirely normal to experience these feelings from time to time. However, I firmly believe that there are ways to deal with these certain emotions that sometimes negatively overwhelm us.

Over the years, I have learnt that being able to accept these negative feelings as they come is a way to help them go. A quote I picked up from the podcast was “what we resist, persists,” and it’s so true. When we try to fight anger, the heat inside us intensifies. When we try to battle sadness, it remains stuck in our chest. When we criticize ourselves for being jealous, we feel worse. Essentially, rebelling against our emotions (rather than allowing them to happen), can overall affect us negatively.

Treat yourself and your feelings with kindness. Remind yourself that what you are feeling doesn’t define who you are as a person. People experience different emotions daily and that’s okay. These feelings come and go and being able to accept them and watch them gradually dissolve is a part of the amazing journey to self-love.

So next time you feel down, don’t resist it. Allow it, accept that you are feeling that way as it will pass.

I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s post and I hope it helps you! Please subscribe if you would like to see more content!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

Instagram: somewhatperfectblog
Email: somewhatperfectblog@gmail.com


Being Appreciative


Hey guys, how is everyone doing??

I just wanted to start this post off by saying thank you for all your support since I’ve started this blog. It’s so lovely that there’s more and more of you joining – it fills me with joy knowing that my posts are helping you guys.

Autumn is preceding to Winter and December will soon be meeting us on our door step. Daylight falls to dusk early, as we are woken to layers of glistening frost outside. Although I love this time of year, I feel like it’s a time when many of us are overwhelmed with stress. Our days are packed with meeting deadlines, our minds are actively revisiting Christmas to-do lists, and perhaps our bank accounts aren’t as beaming as usual due to the arrival of the festive season. During such a busy time of year, it’s very easy to subconsciously spiral into the hectic schedules of every day life. It can cause us to feel stressed and down, starving our minds from positivity.   

Since I’ve been feeling stressed recently, I have found that being able to break away from the blur of everyday life for even just a few minutes can help slow the mind down and relax. Allowing the mind to rest for a moment and focus on what we are grateful for in life can be an effortless yet effective thing to do. So, ask yourself; what are you grateful for? What do you appreciate in life? Even if your answer is as straightforward as having shelter, or being thankful for owning an electronic device in which you are reading this blog post from. Reminding yourself of what you are grateful for is a simple, easy way to be more thankful of things we naturally take for granted due to the busy lives we hold. I have even found that writing down on paper the things I am appreciative of helps boost my mood and facilitates inner peace. So, if you prefer writing these down rather than mentally thinking about it, then do that!

So, after reading this post, try to think of a few things that you are grateful for in life, and observe the way it makes you feel. I find this really helps me put things into perspective, especially when I’m feeling so stressed.

Thank you for reading! Please subscribe if you want to see more content.

I hope you all have a lovely rest of your day!

Lots of love,

Somewhat Perfect xxx

Don’t Regret the Past


Hey guys!

Have any of you been to the Christmas markets yet? I went last weekend – indulging in the festive atmosphere was so heartening. As fairy lights glistened, glitter baubles decorated the mini stalls and the queue for chocolate crepes was everlasting. Children were gleaming at the standing Santa Claus statues as adults shared laughter, sipping on warm mulled wine.

Today, I want to share a quick message with you, focussing on mental attitudes towards negative past experiences. Becoming consumed with upsetting past events is common, especially if they have significantly affected our wellbeing. However, over the years, I have learnt that focussing on a negative past event and regretting it doesn’t resolve any negative mentality. This led me to think ‘Why am I getting so worked up about something in the past when I’m now in the present?’

Through conscious effort (although I am no expert), I have tried to change my mental attitude towards negative past experiences. Although having these bad past experiences are unpleasant, I learnt that it is up to you in the present to help how it makes you feel now. Rather than looking back with regret, I ask myself what positive things I learnt from these past events, or what positive outcomes came from it. Whether it taught me to stand up for myself, brought me closer to loved ones or meant someone toxic was removed out of my life – a positive outcome came from it. I’ve found that occupying this mindset has allowed me to forgive the past, rather than dwelling on it with regret which overall leads to a happier frame of mind!

Hope you guys enjoyed today’s post! Don’t forget to subscribe if you want to see more content.

Lots of love,

Somewhat Perfect xxx

Instagram: somewhatperfectblog
Email: somewhatperfectblog@gmail.com


Dealing with Peer Pressure


Hey guys!

How are you all doing?

In today’s post, I want to talk about something which can affect anybody, and most people have probably experienced it at some point in their lives: peer pressure.

“Stop being so boring and come out tonight,” “go on, you know you want to.” Sound familiar? Have you ever felt pressured into doing something you haven’t wanted to do but have ended up doing it just because you think it will please the people around you? You probably have, and that’s ok, because I’m sure it’s happened to all of us.

I feel like school and University are breeding grounds for peer pressure. During these times, you are surrounded by people who are finding themselves and wanting to try new things. It makes us feel like we have to do what everyone else is doing because we want to fit in, and we want approval from others. But, the important key to dealing with peer pressure is by staying true to yourself. Loving yourself and respecting your values is crucial in order to find the strength to reject unwanted experiences in a pressured situation. If you are in a situation where you feel pressured to do something you don’t want to do – then put yourself first and don’t do it.

It’s easier said than done, I understand that, and in the moment it’s difficult. Our mind becomes a battleground between our morals and wanting to please other people. And, when in this pressured environment, irrational thoughts will materialise into our minds, such as; ‘they won’t like me if I don’t do it.’ (although its important to recognise these thoughts are often untrue and irrational). Plus, if these people were your friends and they valued you as a person, they wouldn’t force you or pressure you to do anything – they would accept and respect your decisions and will love you regardless!

In a situation where you are being peer pressured, being able to recognize in the moment that you feel uncomfortable/uneasy about doing something is already an important step to staying true to yourself. You can then trust your feelings and remind yourself that you don’t have to do anything you don’t want to do. Value your opinions and yourself. Just because everyone else wants one thing doesn’t mean you want it too. We are all different and that’s totally fine!

So, in summary, stay true to yourself and your beliefs and don’t feel like you’re a bad person by saying no to people. Your true friends will stick by you and accept you for the person you are regardless if you want to do certain things or not.

Hope you have a lovely day and I hope this helps!

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx

Instagram: somewhatperfectblog
Email: somewhatperfectblog@gmail.com


Christmas Gift Inspiration


Hello guys! How are you all?

It’s that time of year. The sparkling lights are up, Christmas tree’s cover shop windows and the smell of gingerbread latte’s suffuse cafés – the festive air is certainly approaching us! Todays post is a little different, but considering December 1st is approaching and Christmas shopping is on my to-do list, I thought it was the perfect time to suggest some Christmas present idea’s for friends and family.

Just a side note – when buying Christmas presents for others, it really helps me to write a list. I can then tick off each person once I’ve completed sorting their presents and it makes me feel a lot more organised!

If you are struggling for idea’s, I found that a lovely touch to a Christmas gift is sentimentality. Personalising or handmaking a gift adds a memorable, warming touch to give anyone on Christmas day. One year, I got my Nana a personalised calendar for the year. Each month was personalised and decorated with photographs of the family, and it was so nice to add that sentimental value to it. I ordered it on ‘Snapfish,’ which is a great website for personal gifts. They also sell mugs, keyrings, canvases and photo frames – so go and check them out. They make lovely Christmas gifts and it’s perfect if you are on a budget because they usually have amazing discounts!

Another great online store for sentimental gifts is ‘Not on the High Street.’ It’s packed with uniquely designed items with many options to personalise different gifts. I once bought my other Nana (who loves a glass of a wine) a personalised wine glass with her name on it, in which she loved! They also do really lovely jewellery, designed so beautifully and intricately. They sell a whole range of presents for men and women so I would definitely recommend!

So yeah, they’re just a few of my go-to websites for Christmas presents so I thought I’d share them with you!

I know it’s a little different, but I hope you enjoyed today’s post. If you have any other ideas for Christmas presents, please let me know!

Don’t forget to subscribe if you want to see more content 🙂

Lots of love,

Somewhat Perfect xxx


Being Kind to Yourself


Hello guys!

How are you all doing today?! Currently sat at my desk with a cup of tea (and some fluffy socks on) – it is freezing!

The other day, I was listening to a Podcast walking back from University. It was about healthy eating, encouraging us to eat well because our bodies are ‘temples’ which we should treat with care. Essentially, it was saying that if we put good things into our bodies, then there will be good outcomes which will benefit us (eg/ feeling healthier, better skin, being fitter etc). It inspired me to write this post because it led me to believe that surely if our bodies are temples, then our minds are too. So today, I want to talk about being kind to yourself.

‘I wish my lips were bigger,’ ‘my skin is so bad,’ ‘I wish I was thinner.’

Do these thoughts seem familiar? Every day, we are exposed to influxes of images and videos of people looking their best and having the most amazing time of their lives. Through adverts, social media, models and fitness guru’s, we are consumed into this downward spiral of self-comparison. We are constantly exposed to airbrushed images and desirable lives, resulting us to helplessly compare our worst to someone else’s best. What we need to remember is that our minds are temples, and so comparing ourselves to others and putting ourselves down only makes us feel worse and less confident – and nobody deserves to feel this way.

What can we do to minimise these habits? Firstly, it’s good to realise that you are doing it. When you notice that you are comparing yourself to others, or that you are putting yourself down, then you can alter the negative into a positive. So, instead of comparing yourself and putting yourself down, try saying “yes, she may have nice hair, but I love my eyes and I love that I’m a kind person.” Being kind to yourself and treating yourself the way you would treat a friend is one of the key routes to self-acceptance and happiness.
Secondly, remind yourself that everyone is different. You will have amazing qualities which some people won’t have, just like other people will have certain strengths you don’t have. We are all individual and talented in our own, unique ways and that’s totally fine. So be kind to yourself and remember to feed your mind with positive affirmations – you will feel the benefits of it!

When I’m having an off day, I find that writing a list of things I am grateful for and writing things that I like about myself really cheer me up. It is so easy to get wrapped up and distracted in our busy day-to-day schedules that we forget to be appreciative and grateful for the things we have in life.

So, look after yourselves and have a lovely rest of your day! Feel free to subscribe if you want to see more content! I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s post.

Lots of love,
Somewhat Perfect xxx


Instagram: somewhatperfectblog
Email: somewhatperfectblog@gmail.com


Taking a Break


Hey guys,

Happy Halloween! The dark nights have approached us, the crisp, cold air greets us each morning and the hot chocolates are most definitely needed. Although I love this time of year, I also think it’s a time where people are prone to feeling down, due to a variety of reasons: Seasonal Affective Disorder, assignments and deadlines, exams approaching, missing the hot weather.

This week, I took a week off University as I was visiting Cornwall for a couple of days for a holiday. Initially, I was really stressed at the thought of missing uni, however, hindsight made me realise it was definitely the right decision. I had been very caught up in uni work – ongoing thoughts about my dissertation became very overwhelming, and the uncertainty of what I will be doing after my degree was disquieting me. I want to talk to you today about how beneficial it was for my wellbeing to take a break from what was stressing me out, and how it made me feel to live in the present.

Going on a mini-break meant I could disconnect from the busy world of work and enjoy a relaxing, peaceful time away. It was great – walking on the beach, going bodyboarding, walking in the woods, drinking hot chocolate, roaming around independent shops, eating pastries and cycling. And what I particularly loved about this holiday was that for the majority of it I felt so distant from technology. My use of social media was limited, I rarely checked my emails and the heavy stress I was carrying on my shoulders disappeared. One of the activities I particularly enjoyed was cycling, because not only was I exercising my body, but it felt so mentally rewarding and refreshing to absorb all the surroundings nature could offer and appreciate the scenic, aesthetic views. This may seem very cliché, but my point is that I felt so content and happy during that bike ride because I was living in the present. The worries of my dissertation vanished, the worries I had about the future dissolved and I felt so fulfilled at the fact that I didn’t need to focus on anything other than the what was happening in the now. Going on a bike ride is not something I would usually choose to do, so it was good to experience something that isn’t in my usual routine.

Going on a few days break really did me the world of good. My mind feels clearer because of the quality time I had, with minimal phone use and a high dosage of nature. It felt so good to just let go of the worries and enjoy what was happening in the present.

I just thought I would share my experience with you because it felt so rewarding and refreshing! If you’re feeling overwhelmed or sad, why not take a break? It can just be for one day – or even just a few hours. Go for a walk, go for a bike ride, go for a run and just embrace what is around you and live in the moment.

I hope you guys have a wonderful rest of your day!

Lots of love, Somewhat Perfect xxx


Staying Positive

A common problem I notice a lot of my family and friends struggling with is keeping a positive mindset. Most people can relate to the feeling of the world working against them. Today’s society can put a lot of pressure on our relationships, friendships, work or school life. When more than one of these factors present issues, it can become very overwhelming, quickly leading into a negative mindset. You might have thoughts such as ‘Why am I bothering anyway?’, ‘I give up’ or ‘I can’t do this’.

Often when I am trying to overcome personal challenges, I focus on maintaining a positive outlook. Of course you are probably thinking ‘it is easier said than done’; which is true. However, developing a positive mind is something we have to work on, here are my top tips for you to think about and help change your outlook…

  1. Keeping Perspective– Sometimes in the heat of the moment, when emotions are involved, an argument or a stress that is on your mind can feel really big. Of course this only works for smaller issues, however looking at the bigger picture of your life and considering how important this particular issue is, can help you to realise that things are more okay than they seem.
  2. Thankfulness– Focusing on the aspects of your life that you are grateful for. I like to write a list in my diary of things that I sometimes take for granted such as family, friends and uni. Often appreciating these things helps to give the perspective I was describing before.
  3. Positive people– This is something I have only understood the importance as I have got older. The people you surround yourself with can have a massive impact on the way you think and the person that you become. Always choose friends who build you up, support you and encourage you to reach your goals. Talking through things on your mind, however big or small with these people will make the world of difference.

I hope some of these are useful for you, let us know in the comments below what you do to stay positive when you’re feeling overwhelmed.

Thank you for reading 🙂

Love,

Somewhat Perfect x

Calming the Mind Before Bed


Hello guys!

How is everyone doing?

In this post I want to focus on how to calm the mind before bed. Raise your hand in the air if you have tried to get to sleep, yet your mind is SO busy that you just physically can’t? Your mind is full of thoughts about what needs to be done, what may happen, a payment that’s due soon or an assignment you need to complete. So, you try closing your eyes, but the thoughts in your head are so active that you find yourself tossing and turning. You then check the clock and it’s 2am so you try counting sheep, yet you’re STILL wide awake?

*currently raising my hand*.

Yeah, sounds familiar.

I’ve been having these conversations with my friends and family lately about these anxious, repetitive thoughts that we often get before sleep. Over the years, I have tried and tested a variety of strategies which have helped declutter my mind before bed. So, I thought I would share them with you!

  1. TOMORROW’S TO-DO LIST

Write a to-do list for tomorrow. This is something I never used to do. However, after living with my flatmate (who, can I add, is extremely organised and writes lists all the time), I decided to have a go myself.  

It sounds crazy, but I almost felt that the jumbled thoughts in my mind reorganised themselves into a neater, less clustered order. I felt that ‘tomorrow’ had more structure, and that there was no need to worry about these things because they were written down already and can be simply ticked off tomorrow.

2. LAVENDER

A few years ago, when I was doing my GCSE’s, I found myself feeling very on edge and anxious about the upcoming exam period. The feeling often came before bed whilst I was trying to sleep, so my sleeping patterns became disrupted. And so, my Dad bought me lavender oil, and since then I have literally used it every night before I sleep. It’s just as simple as blotting a few drops on my pillow before I sleep, and I honestly find it makes all the difference. I read into lavender and its effects and found it has tremendous calming effects on anxiety and it has been shown to increase slow brain wave sleep. If an essential oil doesn’t take your preference, you could always buy a lavender spray which diffuses around the room, or even a lavender bath bomb and relax in a bath before bed.

3. MEDITATION

I know it sounds cliché, but meditation is a very good method to calm and help control the mind. I go through phases of meditating, but I tell myself I should really have a regular routine. When I’ve recommended meditation to my friends and colleagues at work, they say, “but how do you meditate?” and “I just don’t understand how you begin.” So, I’ll tell you a bit about my journey with meditation.
I literally began listening to YouTube clips on meditation for beginners. You basically begin closing your eyes, back straight, sat down with your hands on your knees, and you take slow, deep breathes. Now, the important thing to remember is when you are sat taking deep breathes, you must focus on your breathing and your breathing only. In…and out. In…and out. As a beginner, your mind will naturally wander to other places, but meditation is all about learning to control these thoughts, so you just have to acknowledge the busy thoughts and gradually move the focus back onto your breathing. And at first, it is quite challenging. But when your thoughts drift off, you just have to be patient, accept it, and slowly focus your attention back onto the breathing. It’s like anything really – it just gets easier with practice.

If just meditation isn’t for you, I found that Sleep Meditation is 1) easier to fit into a regular routine and 2) very effective. I basically listen to Sleep Meditation recordings most night’s before I sleep, and it has worked so well for me. When I listen to these sleep meditations, my whole mind calms and my busy thoughts are put to bed. I always listen to “The Honest Guys” meditations – you can find them on YouTube or Spotify. They are honestly incredible! They have a whole range of meditations, including recordings especially designed for sleep – I couldn’t recommend them enough. I particularly recommend the sleep meditations which involve delta waves – these have been found to encourage deep sleep and slow brain wave activity and they send me to sleep in minutes. 

So yeah, those are my recommendations for now! I really hope this helps. If you have any preferred topics or posts, you would like me to write about please just let me know, and don’t hesitate to contact!

Feel free to comment your idea’s and thoughts 🙂

Lots of love,

Somewhat Perfect xxx