Stop Eagerly Awaiting Friday

As a short disclaimer, I don’t intend for this post to be insensitive or ignorant towards anybody that may be struggling for any reason. If anything I hope to encourage happiness in all of you that do read this. 

As I’m sure many of you are aware after so much complaining, often on this blog; I’m at an annoying age in which I’m constantly questioning my next step in life. Never truly living in the moment or appreciating what I have and always worrying that I’m not doing enough, not seeing enough or that I’m not as far ahead as I should be.

A month ago I realised that I was overlooking so much that is brilliant in my life and is a cause for celebration everyday. So with this in mind, I decided to film a second from a blissful moment of each day for the month of September – so that I could finally see the joy in the little things and stop focusing so much on what ifs and worries.

 

I realise now that whether it’s a night with friends, a relaxed evening in or just seeing puppies in the street – there is happiness to be found in the smallest things & it is around us every single day.

 

 

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Confessions of a Bad Feminist

One of the best things I’ve ever read has to be a collection of essays by Roxane Gay, she is an absolute goddess and the mastermind behind “Bad Feminist.” It completely reaffirmed my beliefs and taught me a lot about how I conduct myself (particularly around other women.) There is nobody on this planet that I would not recommend this book to.

As a feminist, I often find myself thinking “that wasn’t very ‘feminist’ of you” as if that even means anything. I think it’s easy to get caught up in unwritten rules within a social movement and feel as if you’re doing something wrong. When realistically, as long as you’re supporting equality between every gender, you are a feminist.

It was however, amusing to collate the things that I thought made me a “bad feminist” so I thought it was only right to share them with you here.

 

Defending why I don’t want children 

I often find myself in conversation with people in which I state that having children really isn’t something that I’m interested in ever doing. The odd thing here being that in my head I know that this is completely okay and I have absolutely nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed about. BUT then I seem to go on to say the words “I mean I probably will in the future, I guess I can never completely rule something out.”

Now for all I know I could wake up one cloudy Tuesday in 2024 and decide that all I want in the world is 2 kids and a holiday home in France so this isn’t a completely ridiculous statement to make.

The problem is that I only say these things to try and defend myself in front of certain people. There’s something in my crap feminist head that can’t bare that look of “oh…so you just don’t…want…kids?” So what I’m trying to confess is that I pretend I might one day want them so that my womb can feel better about itself. Sad, I know.

 

Defending my body hair (apparently I’m a very defensive person)

I’m an inherently lazy person. If I don’t absolutely have to do something, I simply won’t. So when it comes to body hair, all I’m saying is that I’m not going to spend an extra 20 minutes in the shower fixing something that is not broken.

And once again – as with the children – I AM OK WITH THIS. BUT. I find myself getting awkward when people mention it, I make an active effort to cover my legs in certain social situations and I have no idea why. It’s so frustrating to me that I clearly still care about these stupid social constructs.

To quickly clear this up, I’m not saying that all feminists have body hair or trying to encourage stupid stereotypes that should have never existed in the first place. I’m simply saying that if I’m comfortable with something within myself – why the heck am I still hiding it away?

 

Feeling accomplished when hearing the phrase “you’re not like other girls” 

WHY 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8aDO 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a WOMEN 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a FEEL 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a LIKE 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a THEY 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a HAVE 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a TO 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a COMPETE 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a WITH EACH 4aa391051958b3ef60ba7780e0466a8a OTHER?!

We should be praising and empowering each other, not putting one another down and accepting sub par compliments that single us out from everybody else. It really upsets me to admit that I used to be filled with joy at the sound of these words, as if I’d done something spectacular when realistically this is another way of saying “being a woman is a bad thing” congratulations, you’ve succeeded in beating the rest of them.

Don’t even get me started on the term “you *insert any verb* like a girl.”

 

Being in awe of an authoritative woman/thinking that a female is “too bossy” 

The fact that I look up to authoritative women will never be a bad thing, the thing that upsets me about this is that is constantly seems to come with a side dish of “wow, she actually got to this position of power – good for her.” As if having anything other than a male boss is an achievement. Another thing that is worth noting is that is the old “bossy” comment.

Now, I could be wrong, but I just need you to take a minute and try and think of any situation in which you’ve thought a man was being bossy in your workplace. Please tell me if you’ve found something. Because in my experience, a man telling their colleagues what to do is them doing their job. A woman on the other hand, is being bossy. If this isn’t a clear example of inequality at work, I don’t know what is.

 

Judging another persons’ sex life 

Ok, we’ve all done it. Unfortunately it seems to be part of human nature to judge other people. BUT we need to make sure that we’re judging people EQUALLY.

I’m kidding, this is my public statement saying that I will never judge another person on their sexual activity. As long as their not hurting anyone, of COURSE – and even then, what problem did judging somebody else ever solve?

 

Openly not doing “feminine” things 

This one is just silly. When I was younger I remember actively not doing things because they were deemed girly. Whatever gender you identify as, you should be able to wear giant pink fluffy everything or make up or a t-shirt that literally says “I’m a big masculine manly man” because clothes don’t mean anything. Objects do not contribute anything to your gender or who you are as a person 

 

Saying the words “I only hang out with guys”

Firstly, why I ever wanted to only associate with guys baffles me – not that I’m throwing shade at the “male race” but purely because it just seems so closed off and weird. That statement in itself confuses me but sadly, it used to be something that frequently left my mouth.

It really gets me down that there was a time in my life where I would instantly assume I wouldn’t get on with a “girly girl.” Because it’s one of the silliest things I’ve ever heard.

Roxane Gay actually says something that perfectly epitomises what I’m trying to say in Bad Feminist:

If you’re the kind of woman that says “I’m mostly friends with guys and act like you’re proud of that, like that makes you closer to being a man or something and less of a woman, as if being a woman is a bad thing…it’s okay if most of your friends are guys but if you champion this as a commentary on the nature of female friendships, well, soul-search a little.” 

I’d definitely recommend reading the article that this quote comes from, It’s fantastic. We need to stop the toxicity and competition in our friendships and accept that we’re all fabulous.

ALSO, while I’m ranting – on a slightly unrelated topic – there is a meme that circulated a year or two ago about girls that are only friends with guys. You may have seen it, the woman with hot dogs in her mouth? Maybe I’m just being a negative nelly and not taking a joke but did it annoy anyone else that this makes the assumption that a woman can’t be friends with a group of men without engaging in sexual activity with all of them? As if – oh I don’t know – women were sex objects. I could have completely misread it, but I figured there’s no better time for me to have this rant.

 

Feeling uncomfortable about doing things that are typically aren’t “feminine” 

The best example of this that I can think of is when I was younger and I felt really uncomfortable eating large amounts of food in front of other people. Or being messy or gross in any way. As if it was a strange thing to do because I’m a petite, polite lady. Luckily I got over that and frequently shovel mass amounts of food into my mouth for all to see – throwing it everywhere and causing a huge mess of course. (You’re welcome.)

But this is completely the same for hobbies, media, sex – the list goes on and on (and it shouldn’t exist.)

 

Not knowing what to do around a crying man 

…as if it were any different to comforting anybody else. This is something that I think needs a lot more attention in our society. Men have been emotionally repressed for far too long and the idea that’s emasculating to cry is ridiculous. Similarly, the idea that it’s hysterical for anybody to cry is. We are all human, everybody needs a good cry sometimes.

Gender equality still has to come a long way and although it’s undeniable that things are better than they were – I think we all need to continue to work towards building a society in which everybody is equal, regardless of their gender, race or any other construct that seems to segregate us even though we are all human.

 

 

PSA: You are good at being an “adult.”

In the fear of exclusivity I feel that it’s important to mention that obviously not all of these things are do-able for everybody – life is cruel and just outright unfair at times. But if you’re doing at least one of these things, take pride in your accomplishments and remind yourself that you are moving forward

You’re on your way home from work, you’re tired, frustrated and questioning when your life became so utterly draining. You think back to a time of pure bliss, running around in the sun all day – eating colossal amounts of junk without a care in the world. What’s were the worst things in your life? Being #6 on your BFFL’s myspace top friends and knowing you’ll have to eat cauliflower for dinner. Bliss. Although I think we can all agree it didn’t feel that way at the time.

We all have these days, cursing adulthood. Are you doing enough? Are you seeing enough? Is your life flashing by before your eyes whilst you’re spending everyday sitting in the same place, watching the same TV shows and drinking in the same pubs? Well, yes. Yes it probably is. Which is exactly why I think it’s important to take pride in the little things – the achievements you make every single day. Signifiers that you are actually pretty good at this adulting thing.

So with this I ask you to close down Instagram, stop overthinking the future and take a second to sit and think about how good you are at life.

Paying Rent – 

Ah yes, rent. The evil word we wish we could all avoid for as long as physically possible, because realistically who actually wants more than a third of their monthly earnings taken from them to fulfil their basic human needs? It’s ridiculous. Yet, unfortunately unavoidable.

The fact that you’re paying your rent and bills each month is brilliant. Annoying, yes. But also pretty impressive if you ask me.

Eating real food – 

I had strange realisation the other day which sparked this entire post – I could eat cookies for dinner. I’m completely in charge of my own life and wellbeing, if I wanted to, I could eat sweet treats for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Instead I make sure I eat my five-a-day, I bought a blender to improve my everyday diet, I USE CHIA SEEDS. ADULT.

Forgiving friends and letting things go – 

Do you remember being in secondary school and falling out with your friends every other week for completely stupid reasons? Maybe you sat next to somebody else on the bus during a school trip and it caused an explosive argument? *still apologising for this one 8 years on – it was just one bus journey Sammy, forever sorry, love me*

Anyway, noticing that these silly fall outs are irrelevant and learning to not sweat the small stuff is important in the art of growing up – otherwise nobody would get along. Oh, wait.

Leaving the pub after one drink – 

Obviously this is still something I’m terrible at and I don’t mean for one second that having alcohol related fun makes you any less of an adult. Embrace the pub. Have a jagerbomb for lunch. Whyever not! BUT on the rare occasions that you actually have something important to do the next morning, controlling that little person that tells you to do shots and going home early is an achievement if ever I saw one. 50 extra points if it’s a full on party. 100 if the person you fancy is there.

Crawling into work hungover –

On the flipside – we all find ourselves going out for one drink, walking home singing and preparing a questionable sandwich on a Wednesday night. Are you useless at work the next day? Of course. But did you call in sick? No, you didn’t! Because you’re an adult who appreciates their job. Proud of you!

Applying suncream

I learnt this lesson the hard way, with a white circle outlined on my chest after standing in a line to enter Boomtown for hours. Attempting to sleep in a tent with a completely burnt torso is NO FUN. Drink all the gin you can stomach and I promise you, you will still feel uncomfortable trying to drift off – not to mention everything will be covered in suncream because you learnt from your mistakes TOO LATE.

Wearing suncream without it being forced upon you is not only responsible but incredibly sensible. Classic adult behaviour.

Edit: have not learnt from my mistakes. Spent hours on the beach earlier with completely bare skin. Luckily living in England.

Understanding that everybody is different – 

I think it’s easy as a child to get confused about why things aren’t going your way and why people respond differently to everyday situations. Learning that everybody is a sum of their own individual experiences and using this to improve your own impressions and mentalities of different people is great.

Buying things you don’t actually want – 

Recognising that although you don’t want to spend £6 on cough medicine, it will make you feel better so you probably should is fantastic adulting. Who actually wants to buy a hoover? Nobody! Of course we’d rather spend our money on trainers – but we don’t. Why? Because we’re adults. Or, perhaps you get both because you’re unaffected by today’s crippling economy and housing crisis. Lucky.

Big up yourself, you may still feel like a teenager, getting drunk and singing classic Britney might give you the most joy in the world and that’s okay! Just remember on those bad days, you’re doing well!

Realistic New Year’s Resolutions

Every January 1st people awake thinking “this is my year, I’m not going to do all of the horrible unhealthy things I did last year. Somehow in the past 12 hours I am new. I am different. And I will be better.” Gyms are flooded with people, Holland and Barrett run out of stock and Nutri Bullet make enough money to last them until the next New Year.

But come January 12th we’re all back to our old selves; inhaling chocolate because it’s all we’ve been thinking about for 12 days. We’re a very greedy species, we indulge far too often and let’s be honest – we don’t really care. So I’m here to give you ideas for realistic resolutions, perhaps this year it’s best to set goals that you know you can complete. You can save yourself from the disappointing reminder that you’re a terrible human being that procrastinates too much and will never be able to get through the week without a glass of wine.

Drink more

It’s important to support independent businesses and your local pub is just as good as that random health food shop you always say you’ll shop at but constantly fail to. You may think that partaking in dry January is a fantastic idea but the truth is, alcohol is good for the soul and down time is just as important as working.
Keep spending that hour on your phone in the morning

Yes, I suppose social media is ruining our conversations. Sitting in bed for an hour every morning scrolling through apps like a zombie probably isn’t productive. But at the end of the day, when all is said and done, you’ve got to get the likes. How else will you measure your self worth in this cold, plastic society?
Keep drinking very little water

Being hydrated is probably overrated anyway and let’s be honest, you don’t have time to keep going to the toilet during your busy day. Keep telling yourself that the health benefits of drinking water are a myth. You’ll be fine!
Ensure you have 6 hours sleep every night

8 hours is far too much, you don’t want to be too well-rested in the day. You need your lack of sleep and dependency on caffeine to stay alert and be at your best performance! This will also give you more time to watch more trashy television and ridiculous YouTube videos.

Eat any (vegan) food that you want  

I don’t know how many times I have to say food is love before the world agrees. Restricting calories and going on silly diets will only make you unhappy. Who wants to sit at work all day dreaming about pasta to go home and eat a salad? You’re only gonna snack afterwards. Do yourself a favour, eat the pasta. Or if you really want to do better this year, eat a pasta salad.
Avoid the gym

You’ve walked to the pub, you’ve done some pretty brilliant drunk dancing. You’re good for the week! You don’t want to tire yourself out before work tomorrow.
Remain happy in your messy room

Tidying is futile, it will just get messy again in a few days. Save yourself some time and live peacefully amongst the chaos. PLUS messy people tend to be more intelligent…this random article says.

Cancel that yoga class

We all know you’re only going to go once and there’s no point getting to know people just to let them down. Maybe try and do a yoga YouTube tutorial at some point this month. That’ll do!
Watch more Peep Show

I have nothing satirical to say about this, it’s just a brilliant resolution that we should all work towards.

Common Vegan Myths Debunked

I too once uttered the words “I could never be vegan.” 9 months later it is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. 

I’m sure you’re all thinking “oh great, another vegan preaching about something I will never think twice about.” Unfortunately this appears to be a popular opinion and often people are too quick to jump on the anti-vegan bandwagon as opposed to learning more about the movement and considering it as a lifestyle choice. As a child my life revolved around breaded chicken and anything made by Cadbury’s. As I grew older and discovered the dark side to these “treats,” I couldn’t bring myself to participate in the cruel and quite frankly, gross animal agriculture industry. Over the albeit brief time I have been vegan I’ve heard a multitude of complaints and excuses so I thought it was about time I confronted some of these and finally debunked common vegan myths we hear everyday.

“Vegans are protein deficient”

Protein deficiency is incredibly rare in modern society, it is present in a lot of food and it’s shockingly easy to consume an appropriate amount of protein each day from a solely plant-based diet. Here are some examples of protein rich plant based foods. It genuinely confuses me that people still believe that protein is only present in animal-derived products – in 2016. I mean, come on guys.

“Veganism is far too expensive” 

Okay so I can see why people think this is the case. I also walk around Whole Foods questioning who can actually afford to do a food shop there. However, realistically the products that are expensive tend to be meat substitutes which are in no way essential within the vegan diet. Staple foods such as rice, vegetables and pasta are affordable and extremely versatile. Am I going to treat myself to Booja Booja every now and then? Well yes, yes I am. But I definitely don’t need to – and without luxury items such as that, my average food shop is inexpensive. Also, I don’t mean to be catty but I’m sure meat costs a fair bit.

“I enjoy going to restaurants far too much to be vegan”

Veganism does not effect the glorious activity that is eating out. I mean, obviously don’t walk into a steak house and expect a variety of vegan options but there are so many restaurants that cater to the vegan diet. A lot of popular restaurants now have vegan options including Zizzi, Pizza Express and Wagamamas. AND there are a ton of independent cafés and restaurants across the world that have growing, delicious vegan menus. There is also a fantastic website called Happy Cow that gives you vegan options in restaurants from all over the world.
If animals didn’t get killed, the world would be overpopulated” 

Animals are bred for consumption, if more people cut animal products from their diet, breeding would decrease. Thus making overpopulation not even nearly a problem.

“They’re bred to be killed anyway” 

Using this logic, if you impregnated a cat with the intention of killing her kittens, that would be okay. Yes? No. Furthermore the idea that we are breeding anything with the intention of slaughtering needs revising.

We have canines, we’re obviously supposed to eat meat

To begin, there are animals with much bigger canines than us that survive on a purely plant-based diet. Secondly, the fact that we have these does not change the fact that humans can thrive on a plant-based diet. With this in mind, there is literally no reason that we should be killing innocent animals and eating them – other than “bacon is so good though.” *facepalms all over this society we’ve found ourselves in*

“All vegans are health nuts” 

There seems to be an idea that all vegans are mega healthy. That they wake up in the morning, drink a litre of water, do some yoga and eat a watermelon. That is not the case. This diet can be adapted to suit every individual person. If you want to eat 10 bananas for lunch, great, good for you! If you’re more of a 15″ inch pizza with a side of carbonara kind of person (same) then go with that!

“Cows need to be milked”

Cows are the same as any other mammal in that, they need to produce breastmilk to feed their young. To produce Cravendale, a calf is taken away from their mother in order for dairy farmers to take the milk we use. If we were to stop drinking cows’ milk, these poor cows wouldn’t just roam around uncontrollably lactating – they would use their milk to feed their children, as it should be! As an additional point, male calf’s are deemed useless on dairy farms, taken away and killed. PLEASE tell me how this is worth your strawberry milkshake.

Similarly, male chicks are also worthless and are therefore killed shortly after birth. Female chicks are also kept in captivity, treated terribly and killed when they are no longer profitable to farmers.

“We need to test products on animals so that we know they’re safe” 

At this stage in modern society, we’re so advanced that most research is unnecessary and happens purely because of outdated laws stating it must. There are so many products that are no longer tested on animals and companies that use alternative methods for checking the safety of cosmetics and other household items. When it comes to medical research, there are also alternative methods of testing which can totally eliminate the need to use animals, Dr Hadwen Trust is a brilliant charity that  fund research for this and have worked on a range of illnesses such as Leukaemia and Diabetes. There are other options, we do not need to exploit animals for our own gain any longer. 

If you’re interested in turning vegan there are so many helpful websites, books and other resources to make it easier than you can imagine. Also you can always just pop me over a message and I will bestow all of my vegan wisdom upon you – or point you in the direction of someone that has actual wisdom on the matter. Click here to see the presentation that opened my eyes about veganism if you’re interested in learning more!!

 

 

 

9 types of people you’ll meet when returning home from Uni

Going to Uni is a glorious time, filled with hope and independence you wave goodbye to the people you love and try and contemplate moving to a new city and paying for toilet roll. Unfortunately for many of us, living away from home is incredibly difficult and before you know it, you’re back in the same dingy club you threw up in on results night. Now I’m not one to stereotype (jk it’s who I am,) but I am certain that these people exist in every small town in the country and you will absolutely meet them upon returning home.

 

  1. The ones that have stayed the exact same:

They’re still hovering around clubs, drinking the same thing and talking about memories from 6 years ago. They’ve been around for so long, they’re practically part of the furniture and you find yourself questioning whether you’d be able to tell them apart from their 18 year old selves.

  1. The ones that became real adults:

They’re parents, have real careers and are saving for a mortgage. You’re happy for them but can’t help think of a time in which they were grinding on some stranger to Rihanna’s hit song “S&M.”

  1. The Judgy Aunts:

No I don’t know what I’m doing with my future, yes I do think my degree was worthwhile and no, I don’t want a job with your friend’s husband’s cousin, thanks.

  1. The Old Fling that you had completely forgotten existed:

Whilst doing your best “oh hi I didn’t see you there” you shimmy towards the door, repeatedly telling yourself that you were young and stupid so it’s okay.

  1. The friend from years ago that you still love:

You’re completely different people now but you still get excited about seeing them and discussing all of the dumb stuff you used to do. Hopefully you’ll actually end up grabbing that drink you’re always on about with them.

  1. The “Twelve Year Olds” that are now eighteen:

Yes they are allowed to drink legally now and no matter how much you deny it, you were doing the same thing as them three years ago.

  1. The Fresher that goes to your Uni:

You end up yelling a variety of places that you can get cheap drinks at and going on about how much they’re going to love University – whilst hiding how jealous you are that they get to experience it for the first time.

  1. The smug ones that are exactly where they want to be:

Great, you have the perfect job, I’m so glad that you landed on your feet. Now please walk away so I can sob into my glass of wine.

  1. The people that are in the exact same boat as you:

Thank you for keeping me sane, you fantastic people you.

 

Climbing Out of a Rut

Everybody has bad days. Get ready for a babble. 

I’ve been neglecting this blog more than ever recently, just when I thought I couldn’t get any worse (sorry blog I do love you I promise.) I’ve been in that hideous process of writing something, deciding it’s naff and deciding it will never see the light of day. Funnily enough the last post that I had drafted was about positivity and optimism for the future. Naturally this was before I had a two month holiday from life.

I decided earlier this year to move out of London, leave my job and take some time to actually enjoy my life. After years of deadlines, budgeting and an ever-increasing addiction to caffeine, I thought it was only best I had a break. I saved more than I ever thought I could, booked two trips and decided it would be a great idea to get drunk in a field for four days (it was.) So at the end of July I packed up my stuff and moved back to my hometown, excited for my working class gap year.

Since the beginning of August I have laughed more than I ever thought possible, had everything stolen from me for the first time in my life (glitter included – don’t cry for me) and finally decided that I am not afraid of flying. I’ve jet-ski’d in the Mediterranean, travelled around the most beautiful country I’ve ever seen and finally found a vegan chocolate croissant. It’s been perfect.

However, the holiday blues are so real.

Returning to real life has been a massive awakening that I am in a rut. I didn’t want to share negativity on my blog, I think everybody wants to appear as a ray of sunshine on the internet. Unfortunately I find this incredibly therapeutic and am certain I’ll end this on a positive note. Anyway, I have fallen into a typical early-twenties quarter life crisis, questioning my own success and whether I’m ever going to be able to use my degree – you know the drill.

I woke up this morning and wanted to sleep all day. I lay in bed thinking about who I am and what I need to do to even begin feeling better about my life, hopeless, sad thoughts filled my brain. Fortunately, I literally have no time to mope. My overdraft will not allow it. I crawled out of bed and began scrolling through rejection emails, sipping at a disappointing cup of tea and wondering when I became such a negative loser. Then I received a phone call from a very kind lady offering me a job. A job that has absolutely nothing to do with my degree or my ever-diminishing dreams but a job none the less. A beacon of hope that was much needed to pull me out of my funk.

Naturally I whacked on my fav gal Amy and began writing this blog post. I already feel better. Writing this, or anything for that matter has been the biggest issue. I’ve been in such a slump, feeling sorry for myself and doing nothing to help the situation. I hate feeling down and luckily I eventually get bored of pitying myself.

I know that this probably makes no sense and I’ve just babbled about first world problems for 600 words but what I’m trying to say is that I’m so aware that everything is going to be okay. I have the upmost faith in my ability to pull myself out of this rut and I can’t thank my beautiful friends enough for being there to give me a hand.

I’m sure the next time I post on this blog – hopefully not three months from now – I’ll be back to my cheery old self and will ramble about puppies. But for now, thanks for listening to me moan.