Tuesday, 28 March 2017

3 Things You Need to Check if You are Feeling Stuck

Do you feel like you are working really hard but not achieving your dreams and goals? Do you feel like you are stuck in a rut? Do you think you are doing everything you should be doing but you don't seem to be getting any closer to living your perfect life? Chances are that you are not doing all of the following three crucial steps. So lets take a look.

Working on yourself. This is about becoming the best version of yourself and I am going to further sub-divide this into 3 categories-
  • Personal Development. No matter what field you are in or what you do, working on yourself is crucial. Investing in personal development books, seminars, courses, listening to podcasts or hanging out with like minded people or individuals who have already achieved what you desire is essential for your growth. Having your 'you-time' or daily rituals or non-negotiables is key. Are you exercising and meditating regularly? Are you in touch with your spiritual side? Are you nourishing your body with good food? Wellness has never been more important. If you haven't got energy & focus you can't realise your full potential.
  • Personal Branding. You may not realise this but you are constantly selling yourself and influencing others. No matter what area you specialise in, creating a personal brand and marketing yourself has never been more important. Social media and online presence in general plays a pivotal role in creating your personal brand. How you show up on social media, what type of content you put out there, how your blog or website looks, it all matters. Is your brand in alignment with your values & the real you? Are you being authentic and true to yourself? This needs consistent work and is not a one time job. You need to re-invent yourself constantly. 
  • Down Time. Are you taking out time to play? Are you giving yourself enough breaks? I hope you are laughing a lot, taking out time to dance, being silly and I hope you are not taking yourself too seriously. Some of the best inspiration and insights can come to you whilst on a holiday or vacation. Taking care of yourself is the first step towards creating any change. 
Working on your professional skills. The only thing that is constant in this world is change and this is true for any field or any area. It doesn't matter if you are an online marketer or a doctor or a beauty blogger, you need to consistently and constantly learn more and up your game. Industry research, learning new skills and improving your knowledge within the area of your expertise can make or break your career. Just like personal development you also need to invest in books, courses and seminars specifically for your area of expertise. Improving your skills consistently means that you are able to gain more & more confidence as well as establish authority in your niche.

Taking consistent action. This is what ties it all together. And the most crucial step that most people tend to avoid. You could be reading a dozen self-help books or watching 'How To' Tutorials,  but if you are not applying the techniques or doing the recommended exercises, you ain't going anywhere. Consistent and massive action is the only way you will be able to move ahead. You could be reading all about how to increase traffic on to your blog but are you applying that knowledge? You could be reading the best self help book but if you don't do the recommended exercises in that book, you won't really have any breakthroughs. Are you taking daily action?

You have to take action on all these three steps consistently to move forward. One or a combination of two of these is just not enough. Are you doing all of the above? Lets do an honest reality check. Are you REALLY doing all of the above? I am going to be honest, I am not. But then again being aware is important too. Now that I know whats missing, I can take steps to make sure I am working on myself, working on my niche and taking action; all together! When you consistently do all three, changes will happen. Miracles will happen and no one or nothing can stop you from living the life of your dreams.


Monday, 20 March 2017

9 Ways to Help You Stop Comparing Yourself with Others

"Comparison is the thief of joy."- Theodore Roosevelt 

In todays day and age claiming that I never ever compare my self to others would be a blatant lie. But saying that I intend to keep it in check is nothing but mere truth.

Its funny because I am talking about this on social media, but social media and in particular the Instagram 'Explore' page can potentially be your one way ticket to Comparison Hell.

2 minutes in and you are looking at people you don't know, probably will never ever meet... but you end up feeling like s**t about yourself because they are younger, fitter, richer, prettier and all those good things. They are travelling , showing off luxury and even hanging out with celebrities. The worst thing about it all, this works within 6 degrees of separation. You probably know someone, an acquaintance, friend of a friend who knows them too. This is the single most frustrating thing and quite honestly a big cause of daily stress, anxiety and depression for many.

So then what can YOU do, especially if you too are trying to make a mark on the virtual world. It doesn't matter what field you work in, content marketing and digital influencing is the way forward. Getting off social media is not a sustainable action plan. So how then do you keep this in check?

But before we get into that I want to highlight all the reasons why you should NOT be comparing yourself to others. Online or off.

  • The sheer amount of time you end up wasting, is something to take into account. If you simply start adding up the amount of time you collectively spend online watching videos and looking at photos that do not bring you any joy or inspiration you will be shocked. 
  • Now think about actually taking that time and spending on your own self. You could be exercising, writing a blog post, meditating, doing yoga, making love! I don't know! Just feel free to add things that are relevant to you. 
  • Think about the stress, anxiety, boredom & frustration that you can avoid and perhaps avoid a shrink too ;)

Now here are my top tips to keep comparison in check.

  • Go on a social media detox. Try and do this for one day or if that sounds like a mammoth impossible task then do it in instalments. Don't take your phone to the gym or to the spa. Sleep with the air plane mode on, that's even better.
  • Don't check your social media accounts first thing in the morning or last thing before sleeping, whilst in bed. 
  • Turn procrastination into productivity. Trade Instagram or your most destructive platform for apps such as Calm, Headspace or Audible.  For those of you who don't know, Calm and Headspace are guided meditation apps and Audible is a monthly membership audiobook app.
  • It's okay to let go of certain people/influencers you are following on social media who don't bring you joy or happiness or inspiration anymore. If their frequent posts are getting you annoyed, please give yourself the permission to unfollow them. Feeling bad, fearful thoughts & being angry, frustrated or jealous will not help.
  • You probably believe that you don't get to choose the situation or circumstances that you were born into. But what if this wasn't true? Flip this around; what if you actually chose this life for reasons you don't know yet and perhaps for you to rise up, learn and grow from your life situations. The idea is to fall in love with your life. 'This Here Now' is the most important thing. Learn to cherish it. Don't curse it.  Don't put conditions on it. Think why you are where you are and what you need to learn & do in order to bring about desirable changes. Bring the focus back on you and your life and ways to make it better. 
  • Celebrate other people's success. When you cringe at another person's success you are basically cringing at success in general. If you can't truly be happy or at peace, know that at a vibrational level you are repelling that success. Next time you see someone with a bag that you want but can't afford, bless them, or even better celebrate them. If you can't come to terms with this concept yet then at least ignore and unfollow them. But please don't react negatively. Even if you keep your thoughts in check, feelings don't lie. If your body is contracting looking at them or you start breathing tight or you skip a heartbeat... these feelings vibrate and bring you back the same feelings of lack & comparison, magnified. Law of Attraction has got ya!
  • Gratitude is such a big one here. If you are grateful for what you have, at least in the moment of that gratitude it is impossible for you to compare yourself with others. Try and live in gratitude most of time. Writing down things that you are grateful versus just thinking about them helps you feel true gratitude quickly.
  • Don't frown upon the habit of comparison. See it for what it really is, just a habit. And just like any other habit this one can be replaced by another more productive habit. Being aware is key. So next time when you find yourself in the dark depths of comparison; observe, acknowledge and accept that. Then try and bring your attention back to something else, perhaps yourself, your life & your accomplishments. It's ok! Breathe, let go and get on with your daily tasks. Catching yourself on the comparison train is a big step towards keeping it in check. 
  • Try and always keep your focus on becoming the best version of yourself. This should automatically keep comparison in check. 

If you ever find yourself comparing self with others, just know that whatever you see on the outside surface or on social media is a very tiny part of people's lives which has been set up to look good. You will never know about their struggles or what really goes on behind the scenes. And no one has it all perfectly sorted out. Imagine if that was the case, life would be pretty dull. Wouldn't it?

And let me know if you found this blog post useful, I would love to hear from you.


Saturday, 11 March 2017

Vegan Hemp Thandai A.K.A Mock Bhang

Holi Hai!!!

More than a decade ago my friends and I were partying away on Holi and I tried Bhaang (edible cannabis) for the first and last time. I had the scariest trip on Bhaang and I have no intention of consuming it in any way, shape or form ever again!

Thandai is a traditional creamy-milky-sugary drink from India and people usually spike Thandai with Bhaang and drink copious amounts on Holi. Om Namah Shivaya!

Last Holi I created my hemp smoothie as a gentle nod to Bhaang and the festival of colours but this year I wanted to try & create a Vegan version of Thandai which is a healthy spin on this traditional drink. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you my Vegan Hemp Thandai...

If you are looking for a healthier, cleaner Thandai option then look no further and this one is safe for kids too. The only thing cannabis in this drink is hemp and I promise it won't send you crazy. On the contrary, hemp is a popular super-food and is a rich source of plant based protein.

To make two servings of my Vegan Hemp Thandai (Mock Bhaang) you will need-

  • Thandai Spice Mix (4 cardamoms, 4 peppercorns, 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon of saffron strands blended together)
  • 1/2 cup of  raw cashews
  • 3 cups of almond milk or any other plant based milk
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut sugar or any other non-refined form of sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of hemp powder
  • 2 teaspoons of rose water

Make sure you use a powerful blender. Throw in all the ingredients in the blender and blitz until you get  a rich-creamy-smooth-golden consistency. Let this chill for at least an hour. Give it a good shake before serving and to make it look all pretty garnish with cardamom, pistachio, saffron, spice mix whatever you fancy!

This tastes very authentic and is a perfect drink of choice for a clean Holi. This Thandai is vegan, gluten free and refined sugar free. Poppy seeds are meant to keep you cool & calm as it gets hotter & hotter in India. Winner!

Let me know if you try this and I hope that you have a very happy and safe Holi xxx

Monday, 6 March 2017

Pacifica Persian Rose Perfume Review

I have a thing for roses! I absolutely love rose fragrances, rose tea and rose infused beauty & skincare products. 'Rose-Anything' and I am in!!

Anyway, I was hanging out at Wholefoods Market at London. Yes, I generally like to 'hang out' at Wholefoods! I was in their beauty department and I stumbled upon the Pacifica aisle. Although I had heard about this brand before I had never really properly explored it. The thing that caught my eye were these 30 ml perfume bottles. And yes the Pacifica Persian Rose Perfume was a clear winner. Did I mention I have this rose obsession?

This 30 ml perfume bottle come in the dinkiest-cutest size, perfect for throwing in your handbag and also perfect for taking travelling, in-flight etc.

I have been making a conscious shift towards using ethical, cruelty-free and vegan skin care products for a while now. And I love supporting brands that are conscious & mindful. I can totally get behind Pacifica and would love to try other products from this brand soon. All Pacifica products are mostly natural, vegan and cruelty free.

I love this perfume as it unfolds into a slightly fruity almost lemony, citrusy lingering scent. I hope I am describing this right...Do you guys find difficult to describe scents? It is surprisingly long lasting for a natural perfume. Sometimes rose as a fragrance can get granny-ish but not this one. Because it's meshed with fruity scents, is quite a fun/young take on rose fragrances.

Price Point 
£20 for 30 ml

Cruelty Free
Gluten Free
Paraben Free

Bulgarian rose, subtle violet, myrrh and delicate fruit

Contains natural denatured alcohol (from corn) and Pacifica's own fragrance blend with natural and essential oils including Bulgarian rose, subtle violet, myrrh and delicate fruit.

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