Making The Most of My Mornings

(Written on my phone so please excuse any mistakes)
Hey people!

Before I begin, I just want to wish my parents a happy 22 years as a married couple! I’m so proud to say they are my ONLY relationship goals. I pray God blesses me with a union as loving, strong and resilient as theirs. I love u guys! ♡

Now let’s get back into the regularly scheduled programme!

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Let’s begin with a question: do you enjoy waking up in the morning?

I’m guessing that the majority of you will say no. This is what I think usually happens. Tell me if I’m wrong but I think most people wake up on a Monday, maybe an hour or two before they have to leave their house, to literally wash, dress and brush their hair. Some might have time to eat or put on some make up but those things can be done on the bus or at work. They probably do all this in a daze, they are not quite awake and they don’t want to talk. They become more human-like when they have their morning coffee or once the phones ring at work and they have to adopt a cheerful tone. They might not have even uttered ‘good morning’ to their loved ones while still at home or ‘how you doing’ to their colleagues as they found their seat. They may not have given a thought to their friend who was having relationship problems or their aunty who had a cold last week. They didn’t even think about themselves.

Why don’t we like to put ourselves first? My guess is the fear of being accused of being egotistical or just not giving a damn about anything or anyone. But what if we put aside a few minutes of everyday to really focus on ourselves? Scenario: what things would you do if you were told that you could make others a priority only if you dedicated a small portion of your day to YOU?

Any dedicated follower of my blog will get that everyday is another chance of self-discovery for me. Most days of the week I am reading up on anxiety, self-motivation, acceptance and love. So most days I discover new tactics, advice or ways to improve myself. Now, I’m unapologetically me. That means I am aware of my flaws, if I know I can change something I will but if I can’t, I won’t. I know who I am as a person and I actually like myself. I have good and bad days just like every one else, I use my support system DAILY and I’m not ashamed of that. I am unapologetically me. So my journey of self discovery is for ways to improve what is already great about me and see the world a little clearly. In doing so, I’ve come across many articles about making your mornings count. Most of us don’t do that. We categorise ourselves as a non-morning person so we don’t bother doing anything that deviates from that.

I am a morning person. I know that I am more efficient, hard-working, cheerful and I concentrate better before lunchtime. However, I’ve never utilised the hours before work. Many of the articles emphasise on praying or meditating, writing a journal or even exercise. So I do most of that and more! I’m sure many of you have heard that when you wake up, you should declare the day. The more you do that, the better your chances of a successful day on a regular basis. I do that now. I have also started jogging twice a week at 5.30am. I also drink 500ml of cold water each morning. It makes me feel alive! In fact let me detail my morning clearly for you:

Tuesday/Thursday: wake at 5.15am to brush my teeth and get my workout clothes on. Jog for 15 to 30 mins. Get home by 6am and continue routine as like other days.

All other days: 6am wake up. Wash, brush teeth, floss, wash face.

6.20am: say “today is going to be a good day. It’s going to be productive and hard-working. People will recognise it. I am going to be in a good mood and my colleagues will like me. I am going to seize the day!” I say this with my sister. Privately thank God for waking me up.

6.25am: look for a motivational talk on YouTube. Most of the time, these are Ted Talks. Listen to these talks while taking my time to do my make up. Do not rush, enjoy it.

7am: breakfast! I do better when I have a cooked meal. So I have eggs, plantain and a veggie sausage. I’m still listening to the motivational talks.

7.25am: get dressed, do hair and fix make up if need be. Still listening to the talks.

7.42am: say “laters” to my family. Pack my lunch (made the night before), pick up my 1L water bottle and leave the house around 7.45-7.50.

7.55am- 9am: get on the bus and read. Halfway through, read a Christian devotional sent by my Tasha, meditate and walk a short distance to work. (Unless I’m writing a blog post on my phone!)

That is my morning on Monday through to Friday. It’s a lot! But I enjoy it. It sets me up for a good day. I get to work motivated and happy. It’s still a new job but I’m looking forward to the day. I’m not hating the fact that I work 8 hours a day and get home rather late. Since starting this new routine, I feel more positive and I feel like my mind-set is changing. I had a panic attack on the bus home on Tuesday and usually that would freak me out. But this time, I gathered my thoughts, told myself that to calm down and remember that I’m going to be okay. I didn’t even mention it to anyone (until now lol). Usually afterwards I need some time to process and I’m a little moody. Not this time!

I want to implement a few more things like playing affirmations in my ear as I walk to the bus stop or walk the short distance to my workplace. I’m looking for the best apps for that at the moment. But so far so good!

I think the real test will be on a dreary rainy day, where I’m late for work, it’s crazy busy and I get home an hour later than usual. But please Jesus, don’t jinx me lol.

How can you make the most of your mornings? Any suggestions for me?

Have a think! See you next week!

X

Always remember to fall asleep with a dream and wake up with a purpose.

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That’s My Best Friend

(Written on my phone so please excuse any mistakes)

Hey people. I hope all has been well since the last time I posted. I’ve had a really productive week and enjoying my new structure of waking up early and going to bed at a decent hour. I’m hoping I don’t get sick of it even though most people do!

As you all know, I’ve entered a new chapter in my life and I’m constantly thinking about how I’m going to improve my life and make the most of my time. I have a new routine, which I’ll talk about soon, and so I’ve been listening to motivational talks and reading self-help books. Just this morning, one of the speakers spoke about who you CHOOSE to surround yourself with and the effects of different energies. Now I believe that, as a whole, my family are very positive and that my life is and will be successful because they are my main supporters. So that’s a no-brainer. However, what about those who don’t need to be in your life but you want them in your life? Your friends.

I have a set of 4 friends that I cherish and rely on (I have other friends by the way lol). Three women and one man. I’m not going to go into how and why I love them as individuals because there is not enough time for that. But I will talk about one of them. You see, I consider them all to be best friends but she is THEE best friend. She may as well be my sister because the only thing that says we are not is the fact that we do not share DNA.

One of these talks that I watched said we need at least one person in our lives that can set us straight. They hear you out, they process the information, work out why you reacted the way you did (because they already understand the real you), tell you why you should not have reacted the way you did, suggest ways to make things right despite your protests and then tell you to get on with it whether it’s what you wanted to hear or not.

That person for me is Tasha.

People who know us might not believe that. I am the one that is (apparently) confrontational, tells it like it is and talkative. She is calm, a watcher and not talkative at all. So you would be forgiven to think that she does not put me in my place. The thing is, she is more mature than I am. Tasha has the skills to not react before thinking it through and I am still learning how to do that. Don’t get it twisted, I can do it but I sometimes lose the battle.

We have been friends since we were 11 years old and best friends since school but sisters since college. We have had our fair share of ups and downs and I’m sure we will have many more. Saying this, I’m very confident that we will never turn our backs on each other and do all it takes to get back on track. She is the one friend that I am afraid to lose. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be upset if I lose my other friends, by the way. It just means that if I lose Tasha, I lose a part of myself. There is no Naomi, the loud, talkative, emotional ball of fun without the support, reassurance and calming effect of Tasha. That’s why she is a sister because I feel the same way about my parents and siblings.

I find it hard to keep her out of my life. That sounds dodgy but I actually try to hide things from her on a regular basis! I’ll say to myself “why would she care about that?” or “she’s going to judge me” but I know that I have never felt judged when I open up and even if something that is so small to her is big to me, she’ll understand and talk it through with me. Tasha knows EVERYTHING about me. I don’t know if I know everything about her as I am an open book and she is somewhat reserved and protective of herself. Even if I don’t know everything about her, I think I know enough to understand why. I don’t push her when things are up in the air for her. I know that she will tell me in her own time. On the other hand, she knows I should talk about a situation straight away because I don’t do well when I am weighed down. Even if I say “I don’t want to talk about it” she’ll ask until I give in. Other times I’ll call her at ridiculous hours just to vent. Or send voice notes when I don’t want to disrupt her, knowing she won’t mind if I actually do disrupt her and she’ll get back to me with her thoughts.

I am one of Tasha’s biggest supporters. I hurt when she hurts. If someone does hurt her, it genuinely baffles me. I don’t understand how someone could do something that would bring her pain. I’m extremely loyal to her. My loyalty has caused Tasha and I to have problems too. I hold a grudge against the people who do her wrong even when she has forgiven them and moved on. At the time, I think it hurt her that I couldn’t move on too… I mean it happened to her and not me so I completely get it! But now I think she gets that it’s because I’ll fight for her no matter what. We have spoken about it, I always apologise for that part of me but the last time we spoke about it she said “you wouldn’t be my friend if I couldn’t trust you to have my back.” So now I’ll still work on it but if it does happen again, at least she understands.

Tasha and I definitely have our critics. I think she gets a hard time about “putting up with me” or I get told about particular traits she apparently has but have yet to witness. People don’t need to understand and we don’t have to explain it. It’s our friendship and our business.

Now, Tasha is going to be a mum. I can’t imagine a better person to become a mother. She’s already a mother by nature so the fact that she’s actually bringing a life into this world is such a blessing. Her child is incredibly lucky to have her as a mum. I cannot wait to meet the lucky little ball of joy! We have always said that her children will be my children and vice versa. I cannot wait to see the joy on Tasha’s face when she is holding her creation because if anyone deserves happiness, it’s Tasha.

If you have a friend like Tasha, if they have your back no matter what, they put you in your place when it’s needed and revel in your successes, consider yourself blessed and don’t take them for granted.

Love you girl x

True friends are never apart. Maybe in distance but never in heart ♡

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I Got The Job!!

Hey people!
Quick update for you: I’m employed! I’ve been working for a few days now and I am absolutely shattered. I finally remember why I would go to bed at 9pm every night when I was working full time before starting university. The job is standard admin and a little bit of sales – not randomly calling people up but if they call in with an interest, I am advising them and then hopefully getting a commitment from them. It’s a temporary contract however it’s full-time and fills the gap while I look for something long term.

Let me tell you about how I got it. Just over two weeks ago, my sister and I decided to meet up at a Costa and spend the day there – she was working and I was job searching. This was my first day of total job search dedication. I found this job and it appealed to me because I had previously done something similar – the responsibilities were practically the same, the office type was the same except it was more money. The only negative was it was Friday to Monday. I hate working weekends. I have always experienced a real case of FOMO so I’ve always said I’m never going to do it again. Anyway, my sister was not impressed with my hesitation! She reminded me that I complained about being broke and said “you can work weekends and get money or have no job and complain about being broke” and then she gave me THE EYE. Now I’m sure you know what THE EYE is and she has it down perfectly. So I applied and slyly prayed that I don’t get it lol. Literally two hours later, my phone rang and I didn’t recognise the number. I answered and it was someone at this company. I could not believe it. I was happy but I was still hesitant. Anyway, the lady was a recruiter for the company and was impressed with my CV. Straight away she said I was perfect for the job. But she offered me something different because my employment history showed diverse skills and so she asked me what I want! I was so taken aback! Why did she care?! I was the one who couldn’t be fussy… right? I told her the job was what I was looking for but I wanted a Monday to Friday with standard full time hours and I also have her an approximate figure of what I think I deserved. So she gave it to me! The job was the same with a few added responsibilities. Within the same day, she arranged an informal interview (the managers just wanted to meet me and ask a few questions) with the promise that the job was mine. I couldn’t believe it.

The whole ordeal was testimony to praying for what you want and really believing you will get it because you deserve it. You just got to put your wishes out there! I firmly believe that!

I’m writing this on my phone as I make my way to work so apologies for any mistakes! I’m back in the game folks and already working on my next move! Will tell you all about it soon I’m sure!

Have a good one xx

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‘Know Thyself’

Hey guys. I hope your week has been as bright as the sunshine we have been been experiencing recently in the U.K. My week has been very positive (since I last posted) and I will share all the details in a later post.

I was searching for a topic to write on and I came across a self-reflective blog on Pinterest. The title is: ‘Know Thyself’ in 25 Questions – Know Who You Are and What You’re About. I really liked the questions and took some time out to answer them. See below 🙂

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  1. What does your ideal day look like:

Wake up around 10am and go swimming with my mum. It helps to set the day up with a clear head. Go home and make a big English breakfast (no pork) and add some West-Indian trimmings such as friend dumplings and plantain. Eat the whole thing without feeling guilty or trying to work out the calories in my head. Go to the park with my best friends and family. Play sports, such as rounders, while Dad is manning the BBQ. Eat as much as we like. Later, go to a spa with my sisters & mum, where we all get full body massages and pedicures. Go home into my own space and change into my pyjamas. Binge-watch all my favourite T.V programmes while eating a big bar of white chocolate. Fall asleep in a sugar-induced slumber with the T.V on. All on a very warm English summer day ❤

2. What did you want to be when you were older?

I wanted to be an actress. Things changed in college.

3. Who are you most inspired by? Why?

My mother. I don’t know anyone who is as loving, hard-working, caring, self-less and wise as she is. As far as I am concerned, she is the greatest mother, wife, friend and person. Except for God, there is no one greater or more inspiring being than she is.

4. Who would you love to meet? What would you ask them?

I would like to meet my paternal Grandfather. I would ask him: what was your take on your relationship with my father?

5. What habit would you most like to break? What habit would you most like to start?

I would like to stop overthinking EVERY LITTLE THING. I would replace it with happy and positive thoughts. I would like to see the good in everything and every person.

6. Think of a person you truly admire. What qualities do you like about that person?

Caring, articulate, forthcoming, assertive, patient, forgiving, analytical, efficient, organised, punctual, respectful, self-less and compromising (not of themselves but in regards to relationships or situations).

7. How do you like to relax?

In bed. In pyjamas, binge-watching T.V or watching a movie, have sex and then sleep lol.

8. When was the last time you did something you were afraid of?

Four years ago when I travelled to China alone.

9. What are you most proud of?

Living in China for six months.

10. What are you most afraid of?

Dying without having children.

11. If life stopped today, what would you regret not doing?

Having children and letting go of petty bullshit.

12. Who would you like to connect (or reconnect) with? Why?

My future husband because I believe that I deserve love, happiness and peace of mind (and children lol).

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13. What qualities do you admire in others?

Please see number 6. Add 100% loyalty and people who view life as the glass being half-full.

14. What practical skills do you wish you had?

Touch-typing, changing a tyre, being able to cornrow (or cainrow) and knitting or making/customising clothes.

15. Imagine you’re in your 90s. What memories would you like to have? What stories do you want to tell?

“Remember when your father and I took you three to ____________. We went to that beach with the white sands and villas on stilts. The water wasn’t even blue. It was clear and glistened so brightly from the sun that looked like a white ball in the sky. Your grandparents watched from the balcony of one of those villas. I know your Grandmother was cussing me in her head because you were only 9 months old and she said your skin would burn in the sun. She was wrong! She hated being wrong! Your grandfather was calling to your uncle Brinsley for a game of beach volleyball but your uncle was trying to ignore him. We could see him laughing to himself because he was thinking what we were thinking: this old man really doesn’t know how to sit down and relax himself! His wife scorned him as their little girl used her as a jungle gym. Your aunty Shadz was creaming her husbands back while cussing her two girls and son in patois as they got too close to the water. Aunty Olivia was busy taking pictures of her twin boys as they made sandcastles. Her husband was walking towards Grandad, probably going to offer him that game. It was was one of the best times of my life.”

16. What is your favourite book/movie/song? Why?

BOOK: too many to choose from because I love books and books love me. MOVIE: Love & Basketball because when I had first watched it, there wasn’t a movie out there that was solely based on the love of two young black people who are destined to spend the rest of their life together. I’m not saying there aren’t other movies like that but, for me, it was the only one that made waves. SONG: Ex-factor by Lauryn Hill because… Lauryn Hill.

17. If you could make one change in the world, what would it be?

Get rid of all evil.

18. What do you love to do for, or give to others (not an object – something from you personally)?

I like to give my time. People seem to appreciate that the most.

19. What excites you?

Food!

20. What do you wish you did more of?

Taking risks without being scared to fail. That is in ALL aspects of my life.

21. Pretend money is no object. What would you do?

Travel the world safely and stay and experience luxury.

22. What area of your life, right now, makes you feel the best? Which area makes you feel the worst? Why?

BEST: Exercise makes me feel the best because it is the only time I am able to really disconnect and stop thinking about all the negativity. I unwind, I de-stress and I think about nothing. I can’t even hear the music in my ears. WORST: Anxiety makes me feel scared, overwhelmed, out of control. It consumes everything and, unfortunately, a lot of people do not understand it. I hate it.

23. Let’s jump forward a year. What would you like to have achieved in the past year?

I got a very well-paid job doing something challenging and productive. I made a lot of money. Grind. Save. Grind. Save. I bought a lot of things without help or feeling guilty or thinking about a tight budget. I met the love of my life and I really opened up to him.

24. What piece of advice would you give to:

5 year old Naomi: Everyday when you wake up, say these words “I am beautiful, special and smart.”

16 year old Naomi: Savour every moment while being in the moment AND you don’t have to have your shit sorted within any timescale… take your time.

21 year old Naomi: Men will come and go. Look after yourself before them.

Now: Nothing really matters except love, giving to others, family (including friends who turned into family) and God.

25. How do you want to be remembered in life?

On my gravestone: She was more than mediocre.

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A long read! I hope you enjoyed. Here is the link to the Pinterest post: http://www.mistysansom.com/know-who-you-are-with-these-25-questions/

 

Nay x

Do you boo – Shameless Maya

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Disconnecting

Hi people!

It has been a long time since my last post. I have been busy studying, perfecting essays and a dissertation and now university is officially over! There have been some good times, however, I can’t say that I have enjoyed uni as an overall experience. I hated being broke, the pressure of trying to be smart, the constant deadlines and cutting out my family and friends. I am, however, proud that I completed it and have realised that no matter what grade I get, I will go far and can actually carve the life that I have longed for since starting this chapter.

I am now on a mission to be an adult! I was one before university but it was on pause and a lot of things have changed. I have to start over now. I’m moving back in with my parents and started looking for a job a few days after handing in my dissertation. I’ve decided not to share my goals too much (I have posted some goals before so you can read those) because I have realised that not everyone wants you to succeed. However, I think it is obvious that I’ll be grinding and saving like a mad woman in order to move back out and into my own space!

That is a brief life update and now I would like to discuss my feelings regarding this new chapter. After submitting my last piece of work, my immediate response was relief. I have never felt pressure like the constant burden of deadlines. The last week before I finished, I couldn’t sleep, I had panic attack after panic attack and couldn’t see the end. It was very annoying to hear people say, ‘you only have a week left.’ Pointing out the obvious wasn’t helpful especially when I was struggling to make sense of the words I had written down. The next day, I spent the day just looking after myself. I had a much needed lie-in, I went for a jog, I dressed up in clothes that I had not worn in so long (they felt new to me), took myself to the cinema (solo) and then mum and I celebrated in a local restaurant with burgers and cocktails. I needed that time to just be.

The following days were horrific. I started having more panic attacks and felt overwhelmed. I didn’t realise that moving on from the bubble wrap of uni would be so daunting. People tell you but you don’t believe it because you can’t wait for it to be over. I didn’t consciously threat about the future but it must have been on my mind in some way. Sleeping was difficult which made exercising a myth. It was a catch 22. Without exercise I couldn’t sleep or think straight but my panic attacks made me too tired to function. I was snappy and miserable. After approximately 5 days of this, I went swimming with my mum which helped me back on the path of working out. The next day I went for a jog and then to church. Sunday is also family day so I was lucky to be surrounded by loved ones. I got myself back on track after that.

I have also disconnected from some social media since then. I do not have Instagram or Facebook on my phone. I do have SnapChat though but that app feels different. I find that Instagram provides too much opportunity for comparison, idle scrolling and negative gossip from the celebrity blog accounts. As I read more on my anxiety, I become more aware of my bad habits that may be contributing to my mental health. I have never thought of myself as the type to compare myself to people I consider to be the ideal aesthetic, but I realised that I do. I have MANY insecurities regarding my physical appearance. I’m aware of it and I am working on it. In the meantime, I do not need to be reminded of it every time I scroll through my feed. Although my scrolling is often idle, I must be taking in these images hence my attempts for aesthetic perfection (my ideal).

I found it hard at first. I didn’t think I did because for Lent, I gave ALL social media up for 40 days and 40 nights. But this time, I starting experiencing major FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) which is actually a thing by the way. I started doubting my reasons for doing it: am I being too dramatic? What if so and so posts pics of that event? Surely I’m being childish? Saying that, my very good friend simply said to me, ‘you’re not missing much’ and for some reason this stuck with me. What was I really missing out on? If I wanted to see what was going on with friends or family, all I had to do was call. Who cares about the personal lives of celebrities? They have no concern for my well-being. Also, I still had SnapChat! SnapChat is different for me though. I follow people who I either care about or who don’t post anything dramatic. Also, the snaps only last a few seconds and disappear after 24hours.

Eventually, I would also like to cut down on the amount of reality TV I watch. Anyone who knows me, knows I love reality TV! I watch them all! I’m not going to give them all up but I want to give up on the ones that promote negativity (cheating, arguments, feuds between women etc). One thing I have learned about my anxiety is that I can’t do too much at one time, so I’ll stick with social media for a little while longer until it doesn’t feel like such a big thing to me, then figure out reality TV. I have also decided to keep my support network very small. Not many people understand why I think the way that I think. Some people make me feel bad about my reactions to things although I am confident that they don’t mean to. All of this is fine to me. I do not expect everyone to get it. It might be because they do not want to be brought down by my negative mind-set (this is while I am in my anxious state) or they just do not have the time. This is all okay. Adult life takes over! Everyone is busy or have their own shit to deal with. So I have 3 people (one of them is obviously my mum) that I offload to and who know EVERYTHING about me and what is going on with my life. I feel freer since doing that.

I am also reading some self-help books. I may do a book review on them once I have finished but I’m taking my time with them because I want the information to stick with me long-term. However, here are the titles:

  • DARE: The New Way To End Anxiety and Stop Panic Attacks by Barry McDonagh (recommended by my cousin)
  • Overcoming Panic by Derrick Silove & Vijaya Manicavasagar (recommended by my friend)
  • Counselling For Toads: A Psychological Adventure by Robert de Board (recommended by my mum)
  • The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F**k: How to stop spending time you don’t have doing things you don’t want to do with people you don’t like by Sarah Knight (recommended by my cousin – I downloaded this on to my Kindle)

 

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I’m hoping to upload content once a week from now until forever!

Take care beautiful people and thank you for reading!

Nay x

 

Storms makes trees take deeper roots. – Dolly Parton

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A New Perspective on Valentine’s Day

Merry Christmas, Happy New Years and Gong Hei Fat Choi!

I hope you are all well and that 2017 has been kind to you so far. A quick update of what has been going on with me. September 2016, I started my third and final year of university. I am now half way through and it is definitely the hardest stint in my educational career. October 2016, I turned 29. I didn’t celebrate because I didn’t feel like I had anything to celebrate. I woke up and thanked God for letting me see another day and for choosing me to live this life. That’s all I needed. We all celebrated Christmas and as usual I enjoyed the day and festivities. January 2017, I promised myself that I would make a conscious effort to be better but in a more focused way. I have 2 jars, one for memories and the other for any loose chain I can spare. It’s just a quick and easy way to remember to be always grateful and to get in the habit of spending. I also have a vision board of how I wish 2017 to pan out. And now we are in February.

 

If you are reading this on the day it has been posted, you will be very aware that it is Valentine’s Day next week. For many reasons, I despise this day. When I used to celebrate it, I felt obligated by my partner of the time to buy him presents otherwise he would accuse me of not being in love with him. May sound funny but we were in a toxic relationship so it really was not a joke. Another reason is I am still single and where that didn’t matter before, it definitely does now that I am quickly approaching 30. Again, it may seem funny to some but it’s actually quite sad for me. Thirdly, as well as appreciating boyfriends/girlfriends on this day, many people don’t think about sharing this day with their loved ones. Which leads me to the reason I decided to write this post…

Just last night, I had to start the process of healing from rejection. Apparently, there are many stages to the process and I am definitely (and obviously) at the beginning stage of anger. When I realised the truth I screamed, shouted, stomped upstairs as I hollered ‘I can’t believe it. Why is he like this? He’s supposed to be my dad.’ I threw things, slammed doors and pushed my family members away from me. I even growled. I felt years of frustration, pent-up anger and hurt come to the surface.

 

I had called my biological father crying down the phone. He asked me what is wrong and I asked him, ‘I haven’t spoken to you in over two months because I haven’t called you. Every time we speak is because I picked up the phone to see how you are. Why is there no effort being made on your side?’ His response was, ‘You know where I live.’ My problem with this man is that he never takes responsibility for his wrongdoings. I am quite aware that I am an adult, capable of calling her father and visiting him on a regular basis. However, I am also old enough to recognise when someone is not actively making the effort to be in my life. This is not the first argument that this man and I have had. And this is not the first time he refused to admit that he was wrong.

 

I am lucky though. I have another dad. A REAL dad. He has raised me since the age of five and has never let me down since the first day I met him. I thank God that my mum decided to marry him and raise a ready-made family with him. When I found it difficult to calm down from the rejection, when I pushed away my youngest sister and mother, my REAL dad took me by my wrists on both hands, told me to look him in his eyes and said, ‘you already have a dad. Have I ever let you down?’ He said this over and over until I answered him. He calmed me down and hugged me until I stopped crying.

 

As I write this, my eyes are filling up. My ‘step’ dad, my REAL dad is the best man I have EVER known.

 

So I know many people have said that they are cutting people off without feelings in 2017 but I cannot always do that. I will, however, move on without my biological father being in my life. I am doing this reluctantly. I would rather have him in my life but it is not possible when his pride and stubbornness overpower our relationship. I will not have people in my life that do not show loyalty, clean hearts, humility and grace. If I feel like you are bringing ill-intentions into my life, I will move on without notice. I cannot promise myself that I will do this without feeling sad because I was not made that way. Some people were not meant to be in your life –  including ‘friends’ and family. So if anyone reads this and feels like they have been cut out (I’m speaking generally as well as in regards to my life), then so be it. The one man who was meant to love me unconditionally has successfully broken my heart and forced me to cut him out of my life, therefore I now know there will be more to come.

 

Please think about the people who are actively showing you love. If situations are mendable, don’t waste time getting things back on track. On this upcoming Valentine’s day and the years to come, show someone (other than your partner) that you love them – buy your mum flowers, buy your dad that watch or just send a text to your best friend. Don’t forget your brothers and sisters even if you don’t always get a long, your nieces and nephews too. Time is limited – don’t waste it on regret.

 

Happy Valentine’s Day Daddy x

daddy

My REAL Dad x

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A Love Letter

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To Naomi,

I’m so proud of you this summer! You have really made the most out of an unideal situation!

You learned from last year’s mistakes and have proven that everyday you get stronger. Last year was so tough. The anxiety was at an all time high, you fainted and put on so much weight from feeling so low and out of control.

But even last year, you were determined to overcome each hurdle and show that YOU have anxiety and anxiety does NOT have you! A lot of people look at asking for help as a sign of weakness but instead of choosing to have that mentality, you asked and received the tools that you still use today. AMAZING! People don’t realise how easy it is to stay focused on the present or give yourself a few minutes just to regroup and check in with yourself. The meditation has been key. Stay mindful. It works!

And thank God that you have really been trying to stay in touch with your spirituality. Praying everyday is so cleansing and taking some time to just let God speak to you is so refreshing. Others may think you are bonkers but it’s a new experience that has done wonders. You can feel the benefits so try to keep it up

In terms of physical improvements, the running has done you a world of good. Not only have you noticed that your clothes fit differently but it has created a new discipline. Waking up at 5.30am is not for the fainthearted but you do it! YOU do it! Plus it sets you up to be positive for the day and your sleeping so well. Also meal prepping your lunch and dinner would feel like a chore to most by now but you don’t let it deter you. Good on ya girl! You have to keep going though. Don’t forget about how elated you feel and how great you have been at managing your stress because you are looking after your physical health.

Furthermore, it’s mean a long time since you appreciated what you see in the mirror. Keep repeating ‘I was made in His image’ because it’s true. You are beautiful. So what if people don’t like how you dress – (and this goes for everyone) if you want to wear a bodycon dress and other people disapprove because of your rounded tummy, forget them. If you love big brows and others think it’s a good idea to offer unwanted opinions, walk away from them – who needs em?! If you decide to wear natural hair or relaxed hair but others seem to know what’s best for you… Guess what? They don’t! Do YOU! It’s your body, your life and therefore your choice. You can’t swap it for another one so I’m so glad that you see yourself for the beauty you are. I’m so glad that you are not the type of person to be swayed by the opinions of others. Although you are not 100% in love with your body, you still love it way more than you did just 3 months ago. It’s a huge improvement!
Okay so some things haven’t been great this summer- there’s that twat, money has been really REALLY sparse and you couldn’t find a job for the longest time. Let’s not mull over those details. It is what it is. Some things you could control and other things you couldn’t but you made the choices you thought were best at the time. Luckily, you have the best family EVER, fabulous friends that were there for you DAILY and a job came along! Just when you least expected it! That’s always the case. However there’s that quote you saw… Can’t remember it fully but being broke is one of life’s CRUCIAL lessons and you have to get your heartbroken in order to realise who is right for you (you don’t believe in THE ONE). With each situation, you vented to your support system and then got on with it – as you always do. It’s a formula that has worked and will always work in terms of surviving. You’re a surviver. Cliché but true.

I’m also proud of you for getting back in contact with your dad. It was overdue but you made it happen. You know what he’s like and it’s time to accept it in order to salvage something that’s worth keeping. He will always be your dad and you have always been told how much he wanted children and how much he loves you. It was brave and admirable.

Oh and let’s not forget the grafting you have been doing for the last 3 years. Education! Well done on passing your second year and moving on to your third year! This is huge! University was never on your radar but God made you realise the best path and now look! The goal is so reachable! You can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens you! It’s true! It’s tough but now you are entering the last stages of this time in your life, the realisation that YOU was able to start something not all people finish, is not something to be taken lightly. You are doing it girl!

Finally… singledom isn’t a death sentence. It’s the time to do everything that one day you can’t. MAJOR KEY! Seize the day! Enjoy your alone time! Continue working on loving the reflection in the mirror. Thank God you appreciate and enjoy being single. Yeah of course there are days you miss having someone you can hug and kiss but that’s human nature. However, this is the time you can be selfish and don’t have to think about ‘what would he want?’ EFF THAT! You like taking all the covers, you like being spontaneous and being just Naomi… you’re not known as ‘Naomi and…’ You have your own identity. Just know that God has the best plan for you and it’s coming into fruition. When you meet a good person, you will know. You’ve asked God for a sign and  just be confident that you will get it. Continue to embrace it and signing the ‘Single Girls Advocate’!

Thank you for finally treating yourself as the QUEEN that you are!

I love you,

Ni xxx

 

 

 

Love yourself first and everything else falls into place

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Chicken, Oxtail, Lamb etc etc

No time for greetings,  I can eat chicken! (And the crowd roars… in my head.)

 

Probably due to my meatless funk, each day has blurred and so I can’t actually remember what I’ve eaten since the mushroom risotto. I do remember eating a vegetable burger which was rank… Saying that I ate half of it before realising how odd it was.

 

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The weekend has been jammed pack so eating wasn’t a priority. Don’t get me wrong, as a foodie, food is always on my mind but the quality of it just didn’t matter. I went to Nando’s and only ate chips. I know I have snacked on my usual Sainsbury’s Nude Sweet & Salt popcorn alongside grapes and mangoes.

 

I took part in the Black Lives Matter U.K march yesterday (10/07/2016) and didn’t prepare for when I would get hungry. Therefore I ate mangoes, chocolate honeycomb brownie bites (heaven) and a slice of banana cake (I died and came back again). Was totally worth it and I reckon I earned every morsel because I done over 20,000 steps! My legs felt to heavy and once I got home, I conked out.

 

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Also, I’ve been upping my game at the gym, working out at the park with my friend Alyson, jogging with my sister and paint-balling! It’s been an active but awesome week! On top of that, I’ve lost another 2lbs! Can you believe it?! I suppose this vegetarian life definitely has its perks. Can’t say it’s worth sacrificing my love of chicken for a week-by-week weight loss. Nope. Not going to do it.

 

Here is how Tasha done for the last few days of the challenge:

 

 

And her food:

 

And her boyfriends food -__-:

 

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EVIL

 

I think it is safe to say that Tash and I could not wait to for this bloody challenge to end! At 12am, I ran to the kitchen and consumed 2 pieces of oxtail that was sitting in my mum’s pot. D I V I N E! I recorded it and I tried to send it to her but the wifi connection was poor.

 

 

Erm… Here is my celebratory meal for successfully completing in the challenge and losing a total of 4lbs!

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Oxtail, Rice & Peas and Salad

 

Mum made sure to give me a huge portion of the meat (not that my gentle threats had any effect).

So it’s goodbye to the challenge. I am ready to fall into a meat-induced coma and wake up knowing that I don’t face difficulty planning my meals.

Thank you to Tasha for agreeing to do this challenge with me. (And Happy Birthday!)

Talk soon!

 

~ Nay x

If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you

 

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Mushroom Risott-No

Hey Guys,

 

So as mentioned in a previous post, Tasha and I cooked a vegetarian meal together. Tasha decided on a Mushroom Risotto and since I have never eaten a risotto, I was all for it. We also followed a Weight Watchers Recipe for my benefit.

Here is the recipe:

Ingredients

  • 20Mushrooms, Porcini

  • teaspoons Olive Oil

  • medium Onion(s), finely chopped

  • clove(s)Garlic, finely chopped

  • 250Mushrooms, chestnut

  • 100ml Dry white wine

  • 150Asda Risotto Arborio Rice

  • tablespoons Parsley, fresh, small bunch, chopped

  • pinch Salt

  • 12teaspoons Black pepper

Instructions

  • Step 1 – Place the dried mushrooms in a measuring jug and add 750ml boiling water.

  • Step 2 – Heat the oil in a large, heavy saucepan and gently stir fry the onion and garlic until softened.

  • Step 3 – Add the chestnut mushrooms and stir for a further 2 mins before adding the wine.

  • Step 4 – When the wine has all but gone, evaporated and been absorbed, add the rice. Drain the dried mushrooms, reserving the stock, chop into small pieces.

  • Step 5 – Add to the risotto with 150ml of the stock.

  • Step 6 – Cook the risotto on a low heat stirring frequently until the stock has been absorbed and then add another 150ml and so on until the stock is finished.

  • Step 7 – Season and stir in the parsley before serving.

    (Serves 2)

The recipe claimed that it would be 30 minutes to prepare and 30 minutes to cook. LIES! Tash and I met around 2pm, shopped for the ingredients, prepped and cooked. By the time we ate, it was nearly 5pm! I would say step 6 was the longest bit but that might be due to our rumbly tummies. We just wanted to eat… Ugh.

Here are some pictures of the cooking process:

The verdict: It was bland, there were too many mushrooms and not enough rice and it definitely served at least 4 people! I teamed it with Bulgar wheat and sweet chilli sauce which made it eatable. Tasha had hot sauce and still didn’t like it.

At least we tried! So we only have Saturday and Sunday left and I can’t say I’ll miss this challenge at all. The only bit I liked was spending more time with Tasha!

Anyway, see you Sunday!

~Nay x

Best friends? Well I guess you could call us that but I think we are more like sisters.

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Ever Heard of Quornloaf…

*THIS POST SHOULD HAVE BEEN POSTED YESTERDAY. SORRY GUYS!*

 

Hiya peeps!

 

Was meant to post an update of our vegetarian challenge on Sunday but it’s been a very packed week and weekend. Sorry! So I’ll aim to write another post on Thursday, Sunday and Monday.

 

Back to the update then! Okay so I’ll admit that I keep forgetting to use my Weight Watchers tracker (Mum said she’ll remind me on a daily basis). Tash has been so good though. Here is what she has been eating:

 

 

Tash has been way more experimental than me. She has eaten bean burgers and made fritters from Cauliflower. She said that the fritters were a little bit soft but that might be due to her making a big batch and suggesting that they should be eaten straight way. Other than that she likes them. I’m not sure what recipe Tash followed but here are two I found from a Google search:

  1. http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/291/cauliflower+fritters
  2. http://allrecipes.com/recipe/221177/cauliflower-fritters/

 

For some reason I was put off by bean burgers. I don’t know why because I like beans but I just imagined it to be a weird texture and tasteless. Tash liked it though:

 

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Spicy Mexican Bean Burgers with Camembert Cheese

 

I may try it this week. In other news, mum suggested that I make a sort of ‘meatloaf’ from the Quorn -__-. She told me that she was making lamb for the Sunday dinner and I was complaining that I didn’t have anything that was a good enough substitute. My question to myself was “why did you let mum convince you that this was a good idea?”

Not that you lot should EVER make it but here is how it was made:

Ingredients:

  • Quorn mince
  • Peppers
  • Red onions
  • Seasoning (depending on how you want it to taste but I suggest a LOT of it)

 

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Method:

  1. Leave the Quorn out for a little bit. This is so the seasoning sticks to the mince.
  2. Dice up the peppers and onions.
  3. Put the diced peppers and onions in the mince.
  4. Line a loaf tin with baking paper.
  5. Put the mince the lined tin.
  6. Put the tin in the oven. We put the oven on gas mark 6/204 degrees C. It cooked for about 45 minutes.

 

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On day one of the ‘Quornloaf’, it tasted okay. Mum even described it as ‘nice’. However, a couple of hours later, it tasted satisfactory. A day later, it tasted bland. It’s like the Quorn repels seasoning. I put so much seasoning on it but you wouldn’t have known, I tell ya. I actually like the Quorn mince but I will NEVER make it again. Maybe it’s because the cooking instructions of the packet doesn’t include putting it in the oven. Or maybe it’s because it was a bit sh*t. Oh and guess what, I still have two days worth left over…

 

In order to make progress with this new lifestyle, I have been using the S Health app on my phone (Samsung Galaxy users know). It has many functions such as food tracking, jogging  tracker, pedometer, sleep monitor, heartbeat monitor, stress manager etc. I have been using the water reminder. I actually enjoy drinking water but, like most people, I forget on a daily basis. Some days have been better and some days I can’t bring myself to do it. I feel really full  when I stick to it. I suppose that’s the point! Let’s see if I can be consistent for the rest of the challenge!

 

 

I have also been using the pedometer. I have tried to walk 10,000 steps each day but some days don’t require so much walking or the weather has been bad. I really enjoy it! I love staying active!

 

Also, I have lost 2lbs! I cannot believe it! I’m so pleased with myself! I haven’t asked Tash about her progress but will put it in the next post.

Anyway, see you Thursday!

Laters,

 

~ Nay x

A fruit is a vegetable with looks and money. Plus, if you let fruit rot, it turns into wine, something Brussels sprouts never do.

 

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