Jack Wills Sweatshirt (currently on sale!)

Self care, it's a hot topic at the moment and quite rightly. There's been an undeniable social trend to constantly be as busy as possible, or at least to look like it. Ohmagod I'm just SO busy at the moment,  it's almost seen as a badge of honour. You're busy, so you must have your life together, you must be important and you must have a tonne of people who want to claim some of your time. I'm definitely guilty of this, I used to see being busy as living my life to the fullest and not just spending a weekend pottering around the house because god forbid I'm not actually doing anything of interest.

To mark the release of their new athlesire wear, Jack Wills invited me to curate a blog post on self care, wellbeing and exercise. It will all tie in if you continue on reading this post, but if I'm boring you then you could always go and check out their pretty snazzy womens joggers (honest truth - I own about 7 pairs of JW sweatpants and they'll always be my go-to for loungewear since 2008). 

So where was I, ah yes, being busy.

I tend to have a habit of cramming as much in as possible, and last year on top of working I also managed to squeeze in trips to California, Las Vegas, Paris, Stockholm, Liverpool, The Lake District and Cornwall. Then I also had freelance work, and my blog. I love blogging and it's generated a healthy additional income which is amazing but it does feel like a second job and it is time consuming, and stressful at times. My weekdays were spent on my day job and then freelance work in the evening, my weekends were spent working on blog content and shooting content for collaborations. I also attempted YouTube but as you can imagine, it just added to the time and stress.

Oh and we bought a house too, which was quite the journey. We get the keys in March!

It was quite a ride, but by the end of the year I was absolutely frazzled. My mental health and my physical health felt the strain. I was totally uninspired, my creative juices dried up and I just felt really down. On paper, my life looked pretty good but I was feeling the pressure.

Once you're in the flow of a busy life schedule it's hard to duck out of it, I had commitments and I couldn't simply just give somethings up, especially with a house to buy. So I pushed through, I had many a meltdown until over the Christmas period I decided something had to give. I spent 10 days on my sofa with too many chocolates and twiglets and did absolutely nothing for the first time all year. It was bliss.

I reevaluated my priorities and from that came a change in lifestyle. 

I cut down on my freelance hours to give me more flexibility and time over the weekend to be able to relax. I don't work on Fridays and now try and get as much work done as possible on this day so that I can have some time over the weekend to attempt to unwind. 

I am using some of my annual leave to have me time, self care time. I'm not going to make any elaborate plans. Self care doesn't mean jetting off to the Maldives to me, it means spending a Tuesday in my sweats with trash horror movies and a can of Pepsi max (or a fruit smoothie if I'm feeling healthy). 

I took up yoga, which has been absolutely amazing. I generally try to exercise more, whether that be a yoga class or a two mile walk around the park. Being outside and exercising really does wonders, and that comes from someone who is allergic to the gym. I definitely neglected my fitness in 2017, and exercise was somewhere down at the bottom of the list, now, I'm not going to turn into a gym bunny but I am going to throw myself into yoga, and perhaps take up a Pilates class too. 

2018 is set to be an exciting year what with the new house, travels and blog collaborations but above all this I'm also learning to self care. To take time out when it's needed and to listen to my body. 

*post in collaboration with Jack Wills