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A Summer Reading List

July 23, 2017

One of my goals for this summer is to get through some of the books that seem 'important' to read. When I say important, I guess what I really mean is the classics; the books that always appear on 'Top 50' lists, or that are thought to have some significant social or historical context. I know I can't possibly read them all, but I thought a list of eight would give me something to aim for...

1) 1984 - George Orwell

2) Animal Farm - George Orwell

3) To Kill A Mockingbird - Harper Lee

4) Of Mice And Men - John Steinbeck

5) Lord Of The Flies - William Golding

6) The Great Gatsby - F.Scott Fitzgerald

7) The Bell Jar - Sylvia Path

8) The Diary Of A Young Girl - Anne Frank

Admittedly, not all of these books are new to me. To Kill A Mockingbird was part of my English GCSE course, but we were made to analyse the plot and context to a point where the story was no longer enjoyable. The Bell Jar and Of Mice And Men were also introduced to me when I was eleven, but I can barely remember their storylines and I imagine that much of the meaning was lost to me at that point. I'm hoping that this time they'll have more of a lasting impression.

What will you be reading this summer?


Where I've Been

July 22, 2017

To say that the past 12 months have been stressful is an understatement. 

In the time since I wrote my previous blogpost I've moved to a different part of the country, begun and ended my first real relationship, dealt with instability in my home life and completed my first year at university. My life seems to have been ruled by sleep deprivation, suitcases and polarised emotion and, whilst I've made some brilliant memories, there were times when felt like I was completely losing myself. 

In some ways I suppose it isn't really a suprise that I haven't written a blogpost, although I can't help but feel a little disappointed that it wasn't something that I managed to keep up with. Regardless, I'm back again, filled with good intentions and inspiration. I'm excited at the prospect of sharing a little piece of myself with the world again, and I hope that you are too!


Posts Worth Reading

March 27, 2016

All week I've been desperately trying to come up with something interesting to write about but, for one reason or another, I've come up with nothing. I think I might be in one of those horrible 'I've run out of ideas' periods. Anyway, for that reason, I've decided to hand over this week's post to five other bloggers, who clearly have more ideas than I do. Here are some posts that are definitely worth a read:

  1. this guide to Notting Hill is beautiful
  2. I couldn't be more grateful for this beauty edit
  3. this post reminded me that Spring is on it's way 
  4. these Easter treats look too good to be true
  5. reading this reminded me of the importance of self care

Living Positively

February 29, 2016

I've been wanting to write this post for a while now, but until recently it didn't seem natural to do so. It didn't seem honest to write about living positively until I knew that I was making a conscious effort to do so myself. I'm not quite sure why things seem to have fallen into place for me recently, but I'm certain that what I've listed below has contributed. These are a few of the things that I feel are important when aiming to live a happier, more positive life:

Look after yourself. This is by far the most important for me. Start with the basics: get enough sleep; go outside from time to time; exercise when you can; drink plenty of water and eat a little healthier.

Change your perspective. Seeing things in a positive light often seems impossible, but the difference it can make is astounding. Nothing is ever as bad as it seems and it's important to keep this in mind, especially when things go wrong.

Learn to let go. It's so easy to dwell on the things that make you unhappy, but holding onto them will only negatively effect you. It's okay to be unhappy from time to time, but it's also important to recognise when it's time to let things go.

Realise the possibility for change. Everyday is a fresh start, and if you're unhappy with something, change it. Never stop adapting and growing as a person, and don't be afraid to change your mind about things - your aims, opinions and style don't have to stay the same forever.

Be kind to others. I firmly believe that you attract what you put out into the world, meaning that if you choose to spread kindness, you'll recieve the same in return. I know that it's not always easy to be kind to others, and that it may seem fake or unfair to do so, but with enough practise it will become second nature.

Stop worrying. If you have a solution, what's the use? If you don't, what's the point?

Cut out all negativity. If there are people in your life who make you miserable, they don't deserve to be there. Although cutting them out may seem difficult, you'll feel better for it in the long-term. The same goes for your belongings. Holding onto useless items that you don't need, that hold negative sentimental value, or that don't reflect you as a person, only gets in the way of the things that do.

Do what makes you happy. Unfortunately, for so many people, this isn't a priority. Life gets in the way and doing something simply because you enjoy it seems like a waste of time, or money. Even so, it's important to do what makes you happy, at least once in a while. Never feel bad or apologise for doing what's best for you, regardless of what other people think.

Reflect. At the end of each day, take time to reflect on what made you happy, the things you achieved and what you are grateful for (it often helps me to talk this through with someone, or to write it down). Work out the changes you want to make to make tomorrow a better day, and act on them.

Have confidence. This takes time, and it's definitely easier said than done. Don't try to be anything you're not, and work on accepting your insecurities, rather than wishing them away. Self improvement is good, of course, but don't change for anyone other than yourself.

Undoubtedly, it's impossible to do all of this at once - positivity requires time and effort, and you have to be willing to work for it. Even so, I hope that you can take something from this post and maybe by being aware a few of the things I've said, you'll begin to notice a difference in your own life.

See you soon!

P.S. Apologies for the fact that this post is neither on a Wednesday or a Sunday. The balance between blogging and A-levels is still something I'm trying to work out.