An Ending in Itself…

I’ve taken a lot of time to find my writing style lately; none of it done in any sort of expressive manner. The thing is, I think I’ve lost my way. You become so initially engrossed in putting thoughts to paper, that the desire to augment a veneer of affability only starts to become apparent when you no longer see yourself in what you write.

I needed to step away. I needed to leave this complaisant attitude that had driven me to find no ultimate meaning behind my words that seemed to everyone else, so real. Bored of being fake, I needed to see for myself just how I could manipulate my mind into being absolute. What I found most challenging, was to grant myself solice; being myself even in my sole presence has always been a struggle. People pleasing, manipulation and adapting to my environment all played a part in disenfranchising myself. Discovering that I was fragmented, I couldn’t possibly write with any sort of intent. Even the diary I kept from the age of eight had started to fall apart with lies, infrequent entries and general defeatism.

But do I have any sort of conclusion in mind for this seemingly mellow stream of consciousness? At this point, I should probably start to describe this as a stand of realisation – any sort of conclusion is idling, lingering in my mind as I begin to unravel my thoughts haphazardly.

Yet, I feel like it’s best to leave endings to chance. Sans pareil tends to come to those who have no cessation, plus, oblivion is exciting. Indefinitely boundless, I feel that the very conclusion I foresaw as desolate, is an ending in itself.

 

Oh, Urban Decay

If you haven’t had the pleasure of owning a Naked eyeshadow palette by Urban Decay, I pray that you’ve considered purchasing one. If you’re not a fan of the price tag, find respite in there being a half-size version you can grab for half the price.

I’m an avid fan of a few shades of powdered grey, but ever since I got the Heat palette, I’m a convert to colour.

There’s no expense spared when they made the beauty product – even the palette fitting snug in its box is a clear give away of it’s quality.

The ‘snap’ as you break the opening at the side and slide the palette is all it takes to get you eagerly wanting to prize it’s contents open.

The side mirror captures the exact moment you become animated with joy as you reveal 12 beautifully unique shades, all blessed with heavy pigmentation and vibrancy.

I’ve used the palette for natural every day looks, and only ventured into one evening look. It’s truly versatile – natural looks, evening looks, using one or more colours.

It’s true of me to say that this is an amazing product, with so many options that can give you so many unique looks!

I’ve experimented with the palette on different skin tones too – pale, tanned or ethnic – with every shade being so pigmented.

The pure versatility of the palette makes for endless combinations and looks, and there’s no better eyeshadow than one that looks good on everyone!

4 Tips to Keep your New Year’s Resolutions

Christmas has come and gone. A time for spending with family as we obliviously consume our weight in chocolate, turkey and mince pies, has drawn to a close.

When January rolls around, we form New Year’s Resolutions to reverse the effects of stuffing ourselves with the previous year’s insatiable goodies and unhealthy thoughts – the punishment we put upon ourselves to convert the guilt of losing ourselves – with a rather large spoonful of restoration. Not only do we seek to repent our gluttonous sins and overbearingly negative thoughts, but the likely scoundrels who put us there – ourselves.

We’re desperately seeking out new beginnings as we enter the season of renewal after a season of being a little too jolly.

Despite our attempts to keep our resolutions alive, we can only promise to keep them going for as long as possible. And that’s understandable – it’s hard to create a new version of ourselves when we never truly know who we are (or when we haven’t yet completed our resolutions from 2018) or what we actually want to achieve.

So how can we stick to our New Year’s Resolutions in 2019 amidst the self-doubt and tribulations? I have some tips to stay focussed if your resolutions are proving difficult to keep:

  1. Keep a Diary

The written word is a powerful tool. To keep your New Year spirits high, just a reminder of what you want to achieve isn’t enough. I recommend investing in a notebook or diary to keep track of your progress.

When you start to write down your thoughts, your resolutions become less scary and more achievable. Breaking down your effort’s day by day, or week on week can give you an insight into how you’re tackling your goals, which can give you real ways to improve. Trust me, it’s better than a generic how-to guide.

The sooner you can realise how you can improve your resolutions, the sooner you can start to focus your energy into something that you know you can do.

  1. Set Goals

It may seem like I’m stating the obvious here. I mean, a New Year’s Resolution is technically a goal. However, when you put your resolution behind a plan, you’ll start to track individual wins and see yourself going from crawling, to walking, to running as your motivation soars past any expectations you actually had.

  1. Talk

They may say talk is cheap, but little do people realise how important it is to speak about your resolutions. Most people don’t stay true to their internal thoughts, but a lot of you will try and stay true to your word. By saying out loud what you want to achieve, reality seems to kick in. If you’re not willing to talk about your goals, can you really call them goals? Or are they just dreams?

You’ll find it much harder to carry out your plans when they’re locked away in your head.

4. Meditate

Recently I’ve been using my meditation time, as a time for rest. And by this, I mean sleep for a few minutes extra each morning in the space I set aside to meditate.

But I can’t stress how much meditation can drive focus when you do it right. It helps you clear your mind, rejuvenating the place that constantly gets cluttered with meaningless and unattainable trivialities, to expose the core values that will ultimately keep your resolutions alive.

There are so many great apps that will help you to touch the surface of mediation. Guiding you through your first meditation sessions, Headspace offers narrated sessions for every level, length and concentration preference. It’s a great tool for growing your meditation confidence.

I’m not me without my anxiety

It amazes me that while anxiety spreads among us all like wildfire – crippling even the strongest of minds without an ounce of justification – the way we handle it is anything but as ferocious.

Those who suffer a more aggressive and inherent form of anxiety, well, they have to deal with it chronically; and deal with its most ferocious attacks.

It’s impossible to opt-out of (major GDPR breach if you ask me), but over time, it’s possible to control the wildfire and eclipse its flames so it begins to embody an embryonic version of what it once was.

It lingers nonetheless and perseveres in removing all sense of… sense.

There are some days that I feel so mentally crippled, that I struggle to recollect a time when I don’t have it. Heck, I struggle to remember what it’s like to have normal emotions sometimes. While anxiety commonly perpetuates mundane emotions, it tends to push out other feelings in order to preserve its extremities.

It’s mentally exhausting to carry on whilst you’re imploding; losing your sense of self one blockade at a time. As the darkness starts to engulf me, though, I seem to find respite when I’m at the height of my anxiety – it’s conditioning me to feel my most vulnerable in my normal state. Only when I’m at my worst do I know that it can only get better. And only at my worst, can I start to control it.

It forces me to be introverted, to think deeply and to analyse everything I do; it works to my advantage in more ways than you could comprehend. The only caveat being that I have to bargain with it to finally give me what I need; affirmation. I’m a better person for it and I wouldn’t change it, because I’d be changing who I am.

This is why I’m not me without my anxiety. Despite it renouncing my complete control, I am my anxiety.

What a Wonderful Wonderland

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Despite the Christmas alure wearing increasingly thinner as 6th January draws closer, Winter Wonderland was anything but blue.

The lights, the food & drink and the entertainment make it a wholesome experience as they hearten the last remaining fragments of Christmas – fragments I desperately want to cling onto come every late- December.

The hustle of London doesn’t stop at the iconic towering arches at the entrance of Winter Wonderland, but I think that’s the beauty of it. A crowd is symbolic in causing chaos among the introverted and extroverted alike, but for me, it does just the opposite. You’ll soon realise as you weave among the stalls and attractions, that losing yourself comes around faster than you can say ‘Bratwurst’. It’s strange how disarray becomes blissful when it merges itself with a feeling of content.

Everyone was merry on something, whether that be a mulled wine with a shot of amaretto (my chosen poison), baileys hot chocolate or pure excitement. I was somewhat grounded in the middle – I wasn’t letting the aesthetic go enough to lose myself entirely to the mulled wine – with excitement and a little tipple being all I needed. Saying this, the amaretto wasn’t entirely necessary to achieve this… (the amaretto was, however, very efficient)

There’s really no shortage of things to perfectly and necessarily waste your time in Winter Wonderland, with or without alcohol. The Bavarian Village was no exception to this. The tingling of wine on your taste buds paired with the woolly touch of the fires, makes for a blissful accompaniment to the upbeat disco music covers sung by the bands playing around the village.

Winter Wonderland is the one thing I can truly say isn’t for life, but for Christmas. While the memories keep me yearning to go back for the other three seasons of the year, there’s something magical about the winter months that injects so much life into Hyde Park.

 

 

New Year, New Me?

I can’t lie, I haven’t thought of a single New Years resolution.

But do I really want to make the same old promises that I break without fail or remorse every fricking year? Making a resolution isn’t going to give me the motivation to excessively exercise myself to death in the name of washboard abs, or to keep up a beauty routine for the sake of my selfie game. Making resolutions like these won’t change anyone’s mindset.

And it’s mindset we need to focus on if we truly want to grow. Because anyone can change a habit if they put their mind to it, but only if they have the right mind to do it. So I propose a new tradition.

New Year, Same Old Me

But why do you want to stay the same? Well, I’ll tell you. We can’t sustain a new habit if we don’t have the right mindset behind the scenes. And for a new mindset, we can’t just replace ourselves with a picture perfect version of us that we quite frankly were pressured to create on NYE because everyone else was; because this isn’t sustainable. I’ll give you two weeks, tops.

We need to form, learn, and nurture ourselves into a new mindset; let’s not kid ourselves that we can transform overnight.

Let’s work on ourselves. Let’s be a better version of ourselves, not a new one.

Let’s work on our mental health. Let’s work on our passions. Let’s work on being the person we aspire to.

Those pesky traffic lights

“Nearly run the red, because you were looking over at me” – Taylor Swift

For a girl who’s perhaps a little too obsessed with Taylor, I can’t escape her. Neither, do I want to. But I never have to try and fit her somewhere in my life; I found the song ‘All Too Well’ especially fitting for this occasion. She finds herself carried away in a whimsical but homely romance which she knows ‘all too well’, but chooses to neglect the dark side that’s corrupting the relationship around her. And suddenly, almost like it was an outlying dream, she finds herself walking away with a broken heart, telling herself that she knew its consequences all a little too well.

But in the midst of this, she found herself cherishing the moments she had.

Funnily enough, I don’t find myself creating a blog to tearfully wash away the pain of a relationship like you would assume. I’m forming an analogy to describe how life can escape us sometimes. We really need to be aware of what’s going on so we don’t waste our time.

And that’s how I found myself here. I don’t want to waste my time; I’ve spent too long dipping my toes into something ‘I don’t have the time for’. Running the Red is a blog about me and my life, which definitely needs to be slowed down, and I think this quote captures the meaning behind it and the importance of writing down ‘moments’.

Having an outlet for my writing is all I want; somewhere to showcase my penchant for creating content. God only knows where it’ll take me, but I hope it finds me somewhere nice (by this I mean, it has to be accompanied by an espresso or two).

Let’s get to it then, shall we?