~ COLLABORATIVE POST ~ Living A Normal Life With A Health Condition

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  • Saturday, 29 June 2019

At one time or another in our lifetime, we will all get some kind of health condition. In fact, at least 1 in 3 of us will suffer from some kind of mental health condition at least once in our lives. That’s a staggering number when you think about it as mental health is not something we even think about being widespread. It's always been looked at as a minority concern. At least 1 in 2 of us will get cancer. That’s an even more frightening statistic because cancer is one of the highest killers in the world. Even with modern medicine, we still don’t have a high chance of making a full recovery. Then the lesser but albeit common conditions affect us as well. Eczema is one of the most common skin conditions around the world, and despite many different treatments there still isn’t a cure. So whether it's anxiety, diabetes or chronic joint pain, how can we all live the most normal lives possible with a health condition? There are certain things you need to do to prepare your life to go on without any hiccups.

Control your stash

If you are someone with a skin condition, you’ll know that you have to keep a steady count of how many treatments you have in stock. For example, if you have eczema or psoriasis you’ll be using your creams and ointments as well as pills, everyday. This means that you have to keep track of how much you have left and also make sure you don’t run out. A skin condition can quickly spiral out of control when you don’t use it everyday or as commonly as prescribed. This can make the condition even worse. For example, when you have eczema you cannot do normal things like take a bath with soap. Your sweat also acts like a cause of itching, making your already battered skin worse. So, you need to have a constant supply of creams and other treatments so you can live your life normally.

So it pays well to have a controlled flow of your prescriptions coming in at regular intervals. Using the Simple Online Pharmacy, you can book your prescriptions online and the service will organize everything else. They will put in a request with your local GP, they will also then arrange a time and date for when they deliver the medicines to your door. This delivery is completely free of charge as well. On average it will take up to one week to get a repeat prescription. You’ll have to either arrive at the doctor’s surgery early in the morning before the queue gets too long that waiting in it, would cause you to be late for work. Then you need to give the time to the surgery to get the doctor’s signature on your request and then finally be made ready to collect by the pharmacy. This service just saves you time and the headache of late or mixed up orders.

Avoid what you should

When you have a health condition, life is no longer the same. That is, your life is no longer the same as everyone else’s. If you have diabetes, you can’t enjoy certain occasions that you are your friends are having. For example it could be that you’re at a birthday party and the cake is very rich. You won’t be able to eat that cake because it would cause you great harm. But it can be very awkward when you’re the only one in the group who isn’t eating the cake. Everyone else around you is sharing their views on it but you’re inadvertently the odd one out. It can make you feel like you’re the ugly duckling. Alas, you have to adjust your lifestyle and avoid the things you know you should. If they are really your friends, they will understand and not make various social situations like this embarrassing for you. 

If you have some kind of chronic migraine condition that is triggered by loud noises and lasts for days, then you probably shouldn’t be going to sporting events, music concerts and other loud events. It's just how you have to live life from now on, you can’t do things other people and thus you must not put yourself in vulnerable positions that could make your condition worse. If you are suffering from social anxiety then try not to put yourself in positions whereby you know you won’t be doing well. Avoid public transport, perhaps don’t go to clubs and bars and instead enjoy the company of friends over at your house instead. There are various ways to cope with your conditions but you have to plan ahead and make those measures a part of your normal lifestyle.

The more they know

Having a visible health condition is quite annoying for many reasons. For one you might feel self-conscious about how you look. It's easy to think that people around you are judging you and become paranoid at every little thing. The other reason is that people who you don’t know and have never met, might ask you questions. Although yes it's generally considered rude for some stranger to pry into your health condition and ask you what could be deemed personal questions, most of the time they’re doing so out of curiosity. When you meet someone new for the first time, if you have a respiratory condition whereby you need an oxygen tank with you at all times, they might ask you questions about it. Maybe it's to break the ice or for some other reason.

Try to inform and educate those that are inquisitive. It can break the fourth wall and help them to understand what it is you’re going through. Sometimes even your friends and partner might want to know more about you. Although it can feel like you’re a guinea pig, the more they know about it the most they might be able to help and support you. You’re going to have to answer the same generic questions over and over but this is because most people don’t know about your condition. On the other hand you might meet someone who does. They could have a relative with the same health condition and give you advice that could be very helpful. The more they know, the more you can feel like a regular person. 

The life as you know it before you were diagnosed with your particular health condition is no more. You have to adapt and change your lifestyle to suit your needs and be as comfortable as possible. Make sure you have a continued supply of the medicines you need to not be in great discomfort, stress and pain. You can sign up to a prescription service which does everything for you when you need to restock. Always be about a month ahead of running out of what you need. Most people are just curious of abnormalities and even though they might stare, try your best to continue on and live life normally. Try not to care what other people are thinking about your visible condition. If someone does ask you about it, you can educate them and help them know more about the condition. This can make you feel more normal in fact because you cut the ice and have a down to earth conversation. Avoid certain situations where you know they could add to worsening your condition. This could be a social function or perhaps a long trip. Plan ahead and make yourself as comfortable as possible in those scenarios.


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AD | Spring Fashion With Femme Luxe | The Casual Edit

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  • Monday, 25 March 2019

As a bit of a homebody, I’m all for wearing comfy clothing whilst I’m pottering about around my flat…

I’ve never been one to stay in my PJs all day. I know that some people absolutely love it, but for some reason I just can’t. I have to get out of bed and get dressed, even if I know I’m spending the day chilling out on my own with no make up on and no intention of going outside. Because of this, I am always on the hunt for clothes that make me feel a little more put-together and productive, but are super comfy and not restrictive in anyway. 

I have added a couple of new pieces to my wardrobe lately that fit this aesthetic perfectly and I have been wearing them pretty much non-stop over the last few weeks.

The first combination is this basic, black and white, cropped tracksuit. I’m not usually a fan of the whole ‘two piece’ however this duo is really comfy and fits like a dream. The bottoms are a skinny fit, which is nice because they almost feel like leggings rather than jogging bottoms. What I like about them is that they are high waisted, perfect for hiding that little food baby, and I find the cut really flattering. Because they have such a basic design and slim fit, they are also perfect to wear to my yoga classes, so I can go straight from slobbing out to working out without having to get changed! It’s the small things right…?

I also really like the fit of the cropped top that is the second part of this tracksuit duo. I really like that it doesn’t have a hood, instead opting for a scooped neckline. I really don’t like that so much leisure/sportswear has hoods on their clothing. I literally never wear a hood unless it is waterproof and it’s raining outside. The fabric is really soft and the placement of the white stripe creates a really sliming and flattering finish. 

Another duo I have loved lately is this really cute, white, lace body and pair of black cotton cycling shorts. Being on the larger side of life when it comes to lady lumps, I can’t often get away without wearing a bra. Obviously when I’m in the flat on my own I don’t need to, but I still like to feel as though I have a little bit of support. This body offers just that as it keeps me slightly more put together, without the constraint and digging-in that comes with wearing a bra. I also feel like the body, although covered up with other clothing, looks really pretty and makes me feel more confident. I even wore it under a shirt on a night out recently and it felt so freeing not to have to wear a bra but still feel supported. 

The black cycling shorts, although not the most flattering of clothing items, is certainly one of the comfiest and most practical! These are perfect to potter about the flat in, and wear with little jumpers. Plus during summer I think they will be perfect to wear underneath dresses without tights – no more awkward picnic sitting - no one will be able to see my underwear! 


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My Thoughts On Black Friday & Being More Mindful This Christmas

  • Thursday, 6 December 2018

I love Christmas and I always find that the build up is the best bit. I love visiting the Christmas markets, drinking mulled wine, pulling out chunky knitwear and watching all of the best Christmas films.

However, one thing that I’m not too keen on during this time of year is the ever-growing expectation based around gift giving. After the wake of Black Friday and the build up to the big day, it seems as though everyone that I speak to has money, and the amount they are going to spend, on their mind. 

Black Friday to me is a bit of an odd one. It originally started in the U.S.A. as a big sale event after Thanks Giving, but over the last five years or so, it seems to have become much more of a ‘thing’ over here in the U.K. as well. It seemed as though my inbox was completely jam-packed with emails from every retailer, tempting me to buy some of their Black Friday deals, and it became a little overwhelming. 

I tried to take quite a methodical and logical approach to the Black Friday sales and only bought things that I actually wanted or needed. So rather than scroll the internet or mooch about the shops, I had a thick about some of the things I wanted to buy, and then looked to see if anywhere had a particularly good deal on.  For example, I needed a new vacuum cleaner and I quite fancied a cordless one. I had a quick look on Amazon and found that they had a third off the one that I wanted on Black Friday.

This approach to Black Friday also got me thinking about Christmas. It’s seems crazy to me to think about how much money everyone spends on gifts for people. I know that I personally don’t really need anything and so my family and I have decided that we will buy some tickets to see a comedy show together. That way we all get something we’ll enjoy, without spending a load of money on things that we don’t really need or want. 

I read a really nice quote the other week in reference to Christmas gifts…

“Something they want, something they need, something to wear, something to read…"

I do have a couple of gifts that I would like to buy this year, but I think that I will try to stick to this little phrase whilst I shop.  


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Simple Ways To Overcome Self-Doubt & Feel Confident With A Bit Of Self-Love

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  • Sunday, 2 December 2018

I don’t think that it is too bold a statement to say that we all have insecurities about ourselves. It isn’t uncommon to have something that we’d like to change or improve upon, and it is complete natural. I think that it is also true that we look to others as sources of inspiration and admire qualities in people we that we sometimes wish we could adopt and apply to our own lives and personalities. 

It’s a difficult subject to talk about and I think that some find it harder than others. I know that I struggle to deal with my insecurities about myself, both in terms of my personality and the way that I look. 

When I sat down to write this post I wanted it to be about confidence and self-love. But the reality is that my self-confidence is pretty low at the moment. I feel as though self-doubt can be one of the hardest mindsets to overcome.

I tend to think of my self as quite a logical person, however, I am also extremely emotional. This can be difficult at times to balance, and I find that I am often faced with conflicting thoughts about how I feel about myself from these two different ways of thinking. 

Self-confidence isn’t something that can be given to you. And one thing that I have learnt is that there is no quick fix. It is something that you have to learn and accept and it can take a really long time. I do feel as though there are little things that can be done in order to help move things along however. 

For me, I know that I feel confident when I’m wearing nice clothes that flatter my body shape. I also know that I feel more confident about myself when my face is looking fresh and clear. I know that these are only little things, but sometimes it can be something that is so insignificant to others, that can have the biggest impact upon us. 

I’ve had a bit of a bad spell lately in terms of breakouts on my skin, so I have been actively trying to make more of an effort to get into a good routine and keep spots at bay. I’ve also added a few new pieces to my wardrobe lately that I feel flatter my body, and make me feel a lot more confident about the way that I look. This also includes underwear and loungewear, because even if I’m at home alone, or know that no one else will see it, I still like to dress in a way that makes me feel good about myself. 

I have loved wearing this DKNY PJ set it is so comfortable and the fabric is so soft and thick. I think that these are perfect for winter and the sizing is really spot on so I feel like they fit like a dream, whilst being comfortable enough to wear in bed. I have also been wearing some beautiful lace bras by Pretty Secrets which are again so comfortable but also very flattering. I love the cuteness of the baby pink and I really feel much more confident about myself, and my body when I’m wearing it. 

I really feel as though acceptance is key when it comes to self-love and feeling confident, and whether it is a flattering item of clothing, a new skincare routine or whatever else it may be that might make you feel good about yourself, embrace it. In the words of Rupaul; If you can’t love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love somebody else?!


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Exploring Notions Of Spirituality

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  • Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Spirituality is something that I have always been a little sceptical about. However, over the past few months I have tried to focus more on having a healthy and positive mind-set. As a result of this I feel as though I have learnt the importance of looking after my mind and realised that it can have just as much impact on my wellbeing as exercise and healthy eating.

So I have been reading a little bit more into the different notions of spirituality and below some ideas that can act as a starting point if you too want to explore this further…

Align your chakras

You may feel a bit sceptical about this, but all it’s really based upon is centres of energy in the body. There are seven ‘chakras’ and if one of them is out of balance, then it is believed that this can negatively impact your health. You can align them by meditating, and adding pressure to certain parts of the body. The idea has its roots in ancient Buddhism and it is very popular in yoga practices.

Speak to a psychic

If you can get a psychic reading, you may find out more stuff than you even anticipated. Of course, not everybody believes in this, but if you stumble upon a psychic who tells you about your entire past, then that's quite weird. They profess to tell you your future, and who isn’t low-key interested in what it holds? You can also get an Online Psychic Reading, if you can’t find any in your local area.

Read some spiritual poetry

Spiritual poets, such as Rumi, a poet from the 13th century, can bring you into the world of the divine if you want to get in touch with some mystical truths. His poetry is not only spiritual but beautifully written, and he was the guy who originally said: ‘Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field. I’ll meet you there.’ Sometimes just reading one line of something that speaks true about the bigger picture can really provide some perspective.

Give to others

This one sounds like it’s based on some good ol’ karma, and it probably is something like that. But if you give to others, and help them, you’ll see that positivity coming back to you. Not only this, but you’ll just feel really good knowing that you’ve given someone something that helped them out. Especially if they mean a lot to you, but helping a stranger is also pretty wholesome.

There are so many different ways of looking after our minds and maintaining a healthy outlook on life. I hope that a few of these ideas spark some sort of inspiration if you’re looking for a bit of enlightenment.


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Adopting Healthy & Mindful Lifestyle Habits

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  • Tuesday, 27 November 2018

The end of the year is approaching fast, and it is usually a time of indulgence and bad habits, as we get ever closer to Christmas Day. This year however I want to be a little bit more mindful. Rather than reach for all of the festive treats, stay in every night and drink hot chocolates watching Christmas films… I want to be a bit healthier, get myself to the gym and walk into the New Year without that feeling of guilt about how naughty I’ve been during the festive period!
So I started to gather a few ideas together and have a think about how I could have more of a healthy and mindful countdown to the New Year - I think the list below is a perfect starting point…

Create A Healthy Meal Plan

"Pretty much everyone could eat a little healthier. That's something we should all do. But the notion is a little abstract without the means to put it into reality. Therefore, do something practical, such as creating a healthy meal plan. This is your basis for looking at those recipes that will help you to lose weight, and is the starting point for eating more of those foods that will preserve your health. So don't just say you will 'start eating healthier,' but commit to creating a plan, and then pin it to your wall so you can refer to it. It needs to be realistic; adhering to your budget and culinary skills. And it needs to be based around foods you will actually eat, and not those foods that you think you should eat but secretly hate. To help you in your planning, use this automatic meal planner at the start of the year, and stick to it as far as is possible in the weeks and months to come.

Learn how to cook

Perhaps through a lack of confidence in the kitchen rather than our lack of skill, we often resort to the easy options with our food choices, such as grabbing a takeaway on the way home from work or stocking our refrigerators with processed meals instead of the healthier options. So book yourself onto a cookery course to learn the basics. Or head over to YouTube and watch a few cookery tutorials. And use sites such as ours, practicing your cooking with a few simple recipes that won't take long to learn. Once you are well-versed in cooking techniques, and when you have grown in confidence, you will be able to stick to the meal plan that we advocated and feel healthier to boot.

Quit a bad habit

New Year's resolutions are all about kicking bad habits, but it may be more beneficial to tackle a few before January to start the New Year feeling motivated.  From smoking too much to drinking one too many glasses of alcohol, you will also be hurting your bank balance as well as your wellbeing. Setting yourself a target to quit your bad habits is something to think about. However it may be a good idea not to try and quit everything all at once. While you could certainly try, your better bet is to focus on one of your bad habits, taking steps to conquer it before moving onto something else. It might be less stressful for you if you do. Smocking is a popular habit to quit and although you could follow these steps, it’s important not to beat yourself up if you don’t manage it straight away. When quitting a bad habit, I think it is important to celebrate the small victories and take each day as it comes.

Find an exercise activity you will enjoy

If jogging or going to the gym seems like a chore to you, then don't. Give them a try by all means - you might actually enjoy the activity - but don't force yourself to do something that gives you little satisfaction. While exercise isn't only about enjoyment - you are ultimately doing it for your physical and mental wellbeing - you are less likely to give up on something if you actually have a good time taking part in the activity. Therefore, think about the sports you used to enjoy as a child. Join a group that has both an activity you might enjoy, and other people to have fun with such as a yoga class or something at the gym. And consider the ideas listed here to inspire you into starting something that falls under the category of 'fun.' By committing to something you enjoy, you will start to feel healthier, boost your happiness levels, and possibly enhance your social life as well, should that be a motivating factor for you.

Book your medical appointments

Instead of making a mental note that you really should get around to booking an appointment with your doctor, dentist, optometrist, and any other medical professional that will aid your health... Booking appointments now is your best way of staying healthy, even if there is nothing wrong with you, there is still that peace of mind that comes from knowing you are okay. And if there is something wrong, it's better to find out early, as the issue may be resolvable. Therefore, cut out your excuses. The financial aspect may be a reason for you putting off your medical appointments, but you may be eligible for a concession, so check with your local bulk billing medical centre. And if you are fearful about going for an appointment, especially if it's at your local dentist - we know how scary it can be - you might want to consider these simple tricks to overcome your anxiety. Just remember, ultimately, you may have to pay out more money if any medical issues you have aren't resolved early. Your health matters, so book those appointments as soon as.

Turn off the television

A sedentary lifestyle can create all kinds of health problems, so if you are prone to spending more time in front of the box than you should be, you are going to suffer in the long-term. And it's not only your physical or mental health that will suffer. Your social life may suffer too, with setbacks to both family and friend relationships. There are tones of amazing shows to watch but sometimes it’s good to hit that record button and then spend more time doing something else. A new hobby will prove more fulfilling. Spending time with the people closest to you can boost your happiness levels. And you will benefit your health if you can find something active to do with your time, be that pottering around in the garden or going for a walk somewhere interesting. So, set aside time in your weekly calendar to do other things, and at the start of each week, record anything you want to watch later.

Start a gratitude journal

Life isn't perfect. There will be things that get you down. But the more you dwell on these things, the unhappier you will be. And that can affect both your mental and physical wellbeing. Therefore, plan to take some time to sit and reflect on all those things that you are grateful for. Remind yourself of the moments, people, and other aspects of your life that are positive. By doing so, you will shift yourself away from anything that might cause you anxiety and depression, and into a mindset that is happier and more content. Sure, you might need to deal with the things that get you down, but you also need that positive balance to ensure you don't suffer unduly."

I hope that you’ve enjoyed having a read through this list of mindful and healthy lifestyle habits, I know that I plan to adopt a few over the next few weeks. I’m really looking forwarded to the build up to Christmas and the countdown to 2019 and want to head into each feeling as positive and happy as I can.


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