Learning to be more present: my top tips

 Well hello to you my reader chums! I don't know about you but being an adult, I've found life to be incredibly busy. Whether I'm working, socialising, practising my hobbies, travelling or trying to work on my self-development, it can be hard to stay present. However, the older I'm getting, the more I realise and appreciate how important it is to be present at the moment.

Time goes by so quickly and often we're so fixated on achieving the next big thing we forget to pause and appreciate the moment and be present in it. If you're struggling to be present or want to try to do it more, here are my best tips.

Learning to be more present: my top tips

Have 'slow days'

Over the past few years, I've really appreciated the slower days in life. The days when my calendar is booked up with a million things in the day. And, instead, I can take the day as it comes, spending longer on activities and appreciating the little things. These are the days when I can spend longer making a good breakfast, spend hours delving into a good book and take my time on a long beach walk. These days help me appreciate the wonderful things in the world and how there is so much beauty in simplicity, whilst helping me stay present in the everyday. Slow days are my favourite.

Get out and about in nature

Nature is one of the best things in life. We're so lucky to be surrounded by incredible amounts of beauty. I find nature is a great way to be present and discover the little gems right on your doorstep. This is why I'd recommend getting out in nature as much as possible. Whether it's a daily walk or a weekly activity, witnessing what nature can do can help change your focus from the busy thoughts lingering in your mind. 

Practice your creativity more

This is definitely something I've focused on a lot more this year and have been so grateful to. Being creative is one of my favourite things, I'm always writing after all. However, there are so many other ways to be creative such as painting and baking. Practising creativity is a wonderful opportunity to open your mind as well as be present. Creativity takes a lot of concentration and that means you can really focus on what you're doing and take the activity slowly.

Have no phone evenings

In a fast-paced world, technology is probably one of the biggest contributors to preventing us from being present and enjoying the little moments. Our phones often distract us and I can admit, I let them distract me far too much sometimes. However, something I've always been passionate about is trying to put my phone away when I'm spending time with someone to give them my full attention. But, I'd like to implement this mantra on evenings that don't involve socialising to avoid me doom scrolling. The times I have done this have really helped me have more fulfilled evenings.

Book more quality time with loved ones

Quality time is incredibly important. It's one of the most important things to me as I love being able to spend quality time with my partner, friends and family. It allows me to develop my relationships and enjoy others' company. Quality time also is great for being present as I can sit and enjoy the company of whoever I'm with and live in that moment as it comes.

Practice daily gratitude

I've spoken about gratitude a lot lately, however, it's really helped me form a more positive mindset and enjoy the everyday things life brings. Daily gratitude helps with being present because I can recognise the small good things about my day and why they made it so wonderful. It takes away the pressure from the need for larger things.

Spend longer on tasks

This links with my comment about having slower days and how it's important to take your time with things. Taking the time and spending longer on activities allows you to appreciate them more, be fully present and help you reduce stress. 

I hope you enjoyed this post. What else would you add?

Thank you for reading <3

5 ways to work on your self-development in a relationship

 Well hello to you my reader chums! When I got into a relationship, one of my biggest priorities was to not lose myself in the relationship and still continue to grow in myself and with my goals. Relationships are meant to help you grow together but still allow you a healthy environment to grow as individuals. 

Whether you're new to a relationship or struggling with working on yourself, here are the 5 ways to work on your self-development in a relationship.

5 ways to work on your self-development in a relationship

Make time for your hobbies and passions

We all have hobbies and activities which make our hearts soar. This shouldn't stop when you get into a relationship, in fact, it's incredibly important. You shouldn't become your relationship, you should still be an individual, and that means working on your hobbies. Making time for them is all down to you. This could be you allocating time every night, taking a class once a week or scheduling out regular time to pursue hobbies. You need to look at your life schedule and see what works for you, to make you happy and aid your self-development.

Schedule out alone time

I've spoken about the importance of alone time, again and again, however, it's even more crucial when in a relationship. This is because when were in a relationship, we often find ourselves always leaning on our partners, which is okay, but it can also prevent our self-development. If we're constantly leaning on someone to help us flourish, cheer us up and regulate our emotions then we'll never learn to do these things on our own accord. This is why, it's essential to schedule alone time, either to run errands, exercise, do your hobbies or simply be with your thoughts. Having these scheduled moments will provide you with the opportunity to work on yourself and learn to enjoy your own space and time. 

Set personal goals monthly/annually

I'm big on goals, and I love nothing more than mapping out my ambitions for the year ahead and having something to work towards. Whether you're goal orientated or looking to implement that in your life, setting goals can be a real benefit in your self-development journey. I would recommend starting small with actionable timelines and then beginning to set larger goals. By having something to work towards, you will ensure to put the time in place to work on yourself and lead to achieving them.

Practise healthy habits

I preach about healthy habits all the time recently and it's this year that I've really taken healthy habits seriously and implemented them. This includes a solid sleeping routine, exercising and starting the day right every day and ensuring I'm doing what's best for my mental health and well-being. Practising healthy habits can help you have the drive and motivation to reach your goals and work on your self-development. These two ideas really go hand in hand with each other.

Work on your self-love journey

I'm a big advocate for self-love, I talk about it all the time. We all deserve to be the love of our own lives, even when we're in a relationship. We're the only constant in our lives from the minute we're born to when we die, and that's why it's essential to learn to love ourselves. Working on your self-love can help you be a better partner and have a happier relationship overall. It can help you understand your emotions, your wants and needs and how to convey them to your partner. It also can help diminish toxic traits in a relationship.

I hope you enjoyed this post. What else would you add?

Thank you for reading <3

5 Ways To Make Self-Care A Priority In Your 20s | AD

Well hello to you my reader chums! I'm a huge advocate for self-care and always talk about how it should be implemented as part of everyday life.

This is a contributed post.

The twenties are often considered to be the best years of one's life. For many, this is a time of exploration and discovery. However, it is also a time when many people experience a great deal of stress. With so much going on, it can be difficult to prioritise self-care. However, there are some simple things that you can do to make sure that you are taking care of yourself both physically and mentally. Here are five ways to make self-care a priority in your twenties.

five ways to make self-care a priority in your twenties.

Adopt A Healthy Skincare Routine

Even if you are busy and stressed, taking care of your skin is important. This means washing your face regularly, using a high-quality moisturiser, and wearing sunscreen. Not only will this help to keep your skin looking its best, but it will also reduce the risk of developing various skin conditions that may be exacerbated by stress. Stress can take its toll on your skin, so by adopting a healthy skincare routine, you can ensure that your skin looks great and stays healthy.

Take Breaks

When you are constantly on the go, it can be easy to forget to take breaks. However, taking regular breaks is essential for both your physical and mental well-being. Breaks give you a chance to rest and rejuvenate, so you can continue working or studying without feeling overwhelmed or stressed out. Try to take a break every few hours, even if it's just for 5-10 minutes. You should also consider taking breaks in the form of long weekends away or short vacations.
Get Enough Sleep:

In our fast-paced world, it can be tempting to skimp on sleep in order to get more done. However, sleep is essential for both your physical and mental health. When you don't get enough sleep, you are more likely to get sick, and you may also find it more difficult to concentrate and handle stress. Therefore it is vital that you aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night.

Eat Healthily

Just as important as getting enough sleep is eating healthy. When you fuel your body with nutritious foods, you give yourself the energy and nutrients you need to function at your best. Of course, that doesn't mean that you can't indulge in your favourite unhealthy foods from time to time. However, try to ensure that meals and snacks are mostly healthy so you can feel your best.

Connect With Loved Ones

Spending time with loved ones is crucial for your mental health. When you feel isolated or alone, it can worsen feelings of depression and anxiety. Connecting with loved ones can help you feel supported and loved, which can, in turn, help you manage stress more effectively. Make an effort to spend time with family and friends regularly, even if it's just through text messages or video chats.

Self-care is essential for our physical and mental health, yet it can be difficult to prioritise when you are constantly on the go. By following these simple tips, you can ensure that you are taking care of yourself physically and mentally in your twenties!

How to deal with overthinking

 Well hello to you my reader chums! I'm a massive overthinker, I always have been. Even the littlest of things can multiply into a million different thoughts, and I think the worse. It's all part of living with anxiety, and really become a part of my everyday life.

This post isn't going to be the solution to stop overthinking, I'm going to share some tips and advice which help me deal with it. Whether you're a worrier or massively overthink, here is my guide on how to deal with overthinking.

How to deal with overthinking

Remind yourself it's your mind doing the talking

This is a point which really helps me when my mind is off on a wander down many roads. Overthinking or wandering thoughts are usually irrational and fabricated, they're not realistic. They're not going to happen or what's going on. This is what I try to remind myself of. Overthinking thoughts isn't logical, they don't make sense and are usually your mind playing tricks on you. Try and remind yourself of this when they keep bothering you.

Have distractions in place

Sometimes it's hard to quieten the thoughts dancing around your mind and this is why distractions can help. I'm not saying they're the answer to help you feel better but they can put your mind at ease for the time being. Whether it's listening to your favourite music, watching a TV show, organising the house or doing one of your favourite hobbies. We all have things which make us feel better and smile. Make a list of those things and have them in place so you can find distractions easily.

Speak to someone to help 

A problem shared is a problem halved. I find talking about my overthinking to others very beneficial as they can help put my mind at rest. What I mean by this, is to remind me my overthinking isn't logical, it's all in my head and nothing like that will happen. They can help bring me back down to earth and be present at the moment a little bit more.

Practice healthy mindful habits

Healthy mindful habits are key to living a better life. This means practising gratitude every day, finding joy in the little things, learning when you need to say no, eating well, exercising regularly and staying social. There are many things which help our well-being and it's important to find the factors which benefit yours. This in turn can help when it comes to overthinking. You'll find if you practice healthy mindful habits, overthinking will become a lot less because you can train your brain to think more positively and grateful.

Have a solid nighttime routine 

Having the right amount of sleep is incredibly important to our mental health and well-being. A solid nighttime routine can help aid a good night of sleep and diminish overthinking patterns. Night routines look different for everyone. It could be spending an hour or so unwinding, from showering, skincare routine, and journaling to practising meditation. Find what works for you. I like to have a skincare routine, read and stay hydrated before bed.

Learn what the triggers of overthinking are

Overthinking doesn't just come out of nowhere, there are causes to make you think like that. Whether it's something someone has said, a negative thought you've had about yourself or a certain situation. Figure out the cause of the overthinking and it can help you find solutions to avoiding the triggers in the first place. 

Keep a log of triggers and solutions 

This leads me to this tip: keep a log. Journalling can be incredibly powerful in helping your figure out the patterns of your mind and how you can help yourself. Note down when the overthinking has begun and what happened before that. After logging in a few times, you may notice a pattern on the triggers and can start to look for solutions.

I hope you enjoyed this post. What tips would you add?

Thank you for reading <3

Book review: Odd Child Out by Gilly Macmillan

 Well hello to you my reader chums! I love discovering a book and falling in love with it and that's what happened with this book. I picked it up in a local bookshop in one of those surprise packages where you don't know what you're going to read. After I finally picked it up from my TBR pile, I couldn't believe I hadn't read it sooner.

If you're interested in picking up a thriller, here is my full review of Odd Child Out by Gilly Macmillan.

Book review: Odd Child Out by Gilly Macmillan


The plot follows two best friends, Noah and Abdi who have been inseparable since they met. They were the two kids who always stuck together when their peers excluded them. However, when a horrible accident leaves Noah in a coma fighting for his life, Abdi is too traumatised to say anything about what happened. It also follows the perspective of DI Jim Clemo, who has returned to work after an enforced leave of absence and is tasked to figure out what happened to Noah. Based in a city where racial tensions are running high, it's down to him to figure out what drove two teenage boys into a situation so desperate. It's up to the boys to talk, but one can't one won't.

Characters and relationships

The characters in this book were fascinating as they all had different personalities and backgrounds, and each person's character development was written so cleverly. Noah was a character that I liked at the beginning and sympathised with because of his illness but as the plot thickened, I swayed away from him and was more interested in learning about the other characters. Abdi, was completely different to Noah despite their friendship and I loved reading about them two and how they were the best of friends and what made their relationship so real.

One of the most interesting parts of the characters was the two families, Noah's and Abdi's. Noah was from a rich white background and lived in a huge mansion, whilst Abdi's family was originally from Somalia and were refugees. I think the author does an incredible job of exploring the issue of race in the UK, and how because of that the investigation of what happened was affected and misunderstood.

The detective was an interesting character to learn more about because the book delved into his life as much as it did the two teenage boys which added layers to the overall plotline.

Overall thoughts

Overall, I absolutely loved this book. I started out thinking it was going to go one way, and it took several complete twists and turns multiple times in the book, and I wasn't sure how it would end. It's a book that didn't just have an incredible twist to figure out what happened to Noah but also touched on many issues. The book delves into understanding what living in a refugee camp can entail and the physical and mental effects it can have on the person. It discusses racial and class issues throughout the storyline. The book also focuses on abusive relationships and really encapsulates what a friendship can look like from two different backgrounds. And, it talks about the hardship of a family when a child is diagnosed with cancer. 

I loved how the book has an incredible amount of insight to it and as well as being able to enjoy a read, I also learnt more about different perspectives and what that means for society as a whole.


The ending of this book was incredible. I felt like in the last section of the book, all the layers that were built up throughout it finally came together and I sat there thinking 'wow'. It was cleverly written and ended on the right note for the plotline. I will say, the whole book and ending were incredibly heartbreaking and touched on many horrific elements which happen to many people around the world.

I hope you enjoyed this post. Do you like thrillers?

Thank you for reading <3

5 Great Gifts to Get Your Boyfriend for Your Anniversary | AD

Anniversaries are the perfect time to show your partner how much you love them by planning a special day together or buying something you know they will adore. Whether they're into thoughtful gifts or love an adventure, this guide shares 5 great gifts to get your boyfriend for your anniversary. 

AD - This is a paid content placement.

5 Great Gifts to Get Your Boyfriend for Your Anniversary | AD

Get him tickets to watch his favourite sports team

Whether your boyfriend is a football, basketball, hockey or baseball fan, getting him tickets to watch his favourite team play is a great way to show him how much you care. If you can't afford tickets to the big game, consider taking him to see a local team play instead. Either way, he's sure to appreciate your thoughtfulness. You can also purchase souvenir merchandise from the game for him to keep as a memento. Finally, don't forget to include a card letting him know how much you love and appreciate him.

Plan a weekend getaway

A weekend getaway is a great way to show your boyfriend how much you love and appreciate him. If you live in a large city, consider planning a trip to the countryside or vice versa. You can also look into booking a cabin or cottage for the weekend. This is a great way to spend quality time together and create lasting memories. Make sure to pack his favourite snacks and drinks and some games or activities to keep him entertained.

Get him a new gadget

Is your boyfriend always asking for the latest gadget? If so, then get him one for your anniversary! Whether it's a new phone, tablet, or laptop, he's sure to appreciate your thoughtfulness. If you're unsure what to get him, consider asking his friends or family for recommendations. You can also look online for reviews of the latest gadgets to help you decide.

Consider getting him jewellery

Jewellery is a classic gift that is perfect for any occasion. For example, if your boyfriend is into watches, consider getting him a new one for your anniversary. You can also get him a ring, cuban link, or bracelet. Whatever you choose, make sure it is something he will appreciate and cherish. You can also add a personal touch by engraving the piece with a special message. In addition to jewellery, you can also get your boyfriend a gift card to his favourite store. This way, he can pick out something he wants or needs.

Plan a romantic dinner

What better way to show your boyfriend how much you love him than by planning a romantic dinner? You can cook his favourite meal or try something new. If you're not the best cook, consider ordering in from a nice restaurant. You can also set up a special table with candles and flowers. Don't forget to put on some soft music to create a romantic atmosphere. Whatever you do, make sure it is something he will remember for years to come.

These are just a few great gift ideas for your boyfriend on your anniversary. Whatever you choose, make sure it is something he will love and appreciate. Most importantly, don't forget to include a card letting him know how much you love him!

Thank you for reading <3