In Christmas 2019, I was with my extended family, eating and drinking merrily and playing Monopoly. Presents were exchanged. I got to see my little cousins all excited about receiving the latest new gadget or a sparkly dress. I got to complain to everyone how disgusting brussel sprouts were (Don’t try and change my mind please!) and peel vegetables like it was a communal activity rather than a chore. A flurry of Christmas crackers, dazzling jumpers and talking over Eastenders, it was truly Litmas.
Flash forward to Christmas 2020, we try and keep the same traditions but without the hustle and bustle of all my cousins running around and the adults talking and drinking, it just isn’t the same. There’s less washing up, less food and less chatter. Christmas is Christmas but with a tinge of sadness. I just want to fast forward until Rona has left the building…
Mental Health Awareness Week has approached again and this year’s theme is kindness.
The Coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the vulnerability in some social groups and the difficulties they may be facing. The elderly and people who have compromised immune systems and certain health conditions have been advised to stay indoors for 12 weeks.
But what does kindness mean in a time like this? A lot of people that have been advised to stay at home aren’t able to physically make their way to supermarkets to buy groceries and essentials. Being unable to go outside and see people, spend time in nature and go for walks can have a detrimental effect on people’s mental health. It’s important at this time to show kindness to people that are struggling if you are able to. Offer to drop off groceries, speak to them on the phone/FaceTime etc. A little kindness goes a long way.
It’s pivotal to also show kindness to your self as well as other people. A lot of people have been let off work temporarily and are furloughed which means they will be paid 80% of their wages. This means being stuck at home for an indeterminate amount of time and this can trigger poor mental health in some people. Patience with yourself is key. A lot of people feel pressured to spend this time upskilling, looking for remote/other work and building on businesses. This can keep people motivated with a routine which encourages learning and expanding on skills and career goals. But at the same time, it’s important to use this time to pause and take a step back to work on self-care if you are struggling. Be kind to yourself and give yourself warmth and rest if you are struggling. Read that book that you never had time to read before. Pick up that Netflix show you never quite finished. Use this time to unwind, sit in your garden and take in those smells and sights you overlook. For people suffering from burnout, this is the perfect time to take a step back from the fatigue of everyday life and lighten the load. If you want to know more about the importance of self-care, check out my post here.
I’ve seen a post circulating around social media criticising those that don’t reach out to people who are suffering and belittling those that don’t check up on people who may struggling. I feel that this point of view is one sided as it doesn’t let people take care of themselves. By all means, check in on your friends and FaceTime those that are not coping. However, you must also nurture your own mental health and take time out for yourself if you are not in the right state of mind to be in contact with people. A balance between looking after yourself and others is crucial.
Hope my post was useful! Let me know what you think. Also, to anyone struggling, please message me <3
P.s. Awareness is all good and well, but when are you gonna put some money in the NHS mental health funding Boris hmmm?
Aloha, it’s been a while but I’m here to talk about something super important and that is the concept of Mental Health as it’s Mental Health Awareness Week. There’s lots of things I don’t feel comfortable discussing on this blog and maybe one day I will but right now I’m focusing on this year’s theme of Body Image. Disclaimer: I am in no way a professional and I urge anyone who is suffering with mental health issues to see their GP or go to A&E if you are feeling suicidal. TW: Body image, body shaming, eating disorder, fat shaming,
This figure is shocking and prompts the question: “why are we so critical about the way we look?”. Why is fat shaming/any sort of shaming still a thing? Why is there a body shape that is considered perfect’ and why are men and women constantly pressured to look a certain way. I blame social media for part of it. With apps like Instagram, looking ‘perfect’ is something that is integral to one’s lifestyle. Filters and angles add to the pressure of making one look picture perfect and with the rise in celebrities coming out about the use of photoshop in the media, body image is increasingly problematic in the media. ‘Flaws’ can be airbrushed, lightened or increased or decreased in size and it’s a problem because it teaches us that we must dislike these characteristics of our body. Celebrities such as Jameela Jamil are drawing attention to the problematic side of social media and highlighting issues with fat shaming and body shaming, encouraging us to feel more empowered and love ourselves. Check out my blog post about her here.
I’ve definitely fallen prey to the wicked ideals of body image on social media a few times. I decide to upload a picture of myself and then scrutinise myself, scanning my entire body for flaws that I can crop out or add filters to so I appear more desirable. Or there’ll be times where I’m getting ready and I look at myself in the mirror and I hate what is looking back. Why is my stomach so bloated? Why are my eye bags not going away? Why is my skin so discoloured at times? These questions constantly go through my head and I end up going through my entire closet until I feel comfortable with what I’m wearing/covering, or putting on enough make up until I look ‘ok’. Or making plans on how I can change my appearance so I’m happier with how I look (hah that gym membership still needs to happen)
I have to remind myself that everyone experiences certain characteristics and as I’m not a celebrity with access to a personal trainer, plastic surgeons and a dietician, it’s not gonna be as easy as snapping my fingers and shapeshifting into someone I prefer to look like. Yes I have eye bags and discoloration but that is something a lot of Indians experience and comes with my heritage. Yes sometimes my stomach swells in size even when I haven’t eaten anything but that comes with having Crohn’s Disease which has messed up my intestines so much that I need to have surgery in order to fix this and there’s nothing I can do otherwise about this. Being Indian doesn’t always help because Indians love commenting on people’s weight (lol) but I’m learning to ignore that and accept my body is changing and no one needs to comment on it. Yes sometimes I hate the way I look and I’ll put some make up on or skip meals and then hide behind big clothes because I feel disgusting when I look at the mirror but I’m reminding myself that I have a normal body and I deserve to nourish myself and not care about what others think. There isn’t always bad ‘body image’ days. Sometimes I’ll dye my hair and feel empowered like a punk princess. I guess it’s because my hair is something I have control over and I don’t have a lot of control over things related to my body but I’m slowly learning that it’s okay. With so many positive body empowering women I follow in Instagram and Twitter, I’m slowly realising that there are lots of body types out there and instead of focusing on the flaws, you gotta remind yourself of the positives and ‘werk it’. Instead of following celebrities that endorse weight loss teas (cough cough Kartrashians), follow empowering women such as singer Lizzo, Jameela Jamil, Cupcakke rapper and lots more!
No matter your sexuality, race, gender, ethnicity etc you don’t have to let anyone dictate how you should look. Remember, you’re amazing and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise <3. A “hells yeah” to all my fellow beauties who aren’t comfortable with the way they look, I gotchu.
Hello Perkirinos! (I have no idea why I’ve given you guys a fangirl name but hey ho)
How was your Christmas? Was Santa generous? Did you manage to spend a whole evening in the vicinity of your family and manage not to murder anyone? If the answers are amazing and yes then congrats, you’ve managed to have a decent Crimbo. I would have done a lovely festive little blog post on the big day but I was too busy procrastinating and buying last minute presents obvs 🙂
Instead you get this lovely Pre New Years post which is actually on time for once, atta girl!
it’s been a year of transitioning, feelings, change and memes…
I am ready for 2019.
Writing this post is probably the best thing for me right now. Having done an intense three weeks of group therapy (that’s 9-5 everyday, talking about your feelings folks) means I’m more focused on what I need to do, who I need to be and who I need to do it with next year…
Or maybe this is all bullshit from a raging 22 year old with a detrimental sleeping pattern and unhealthy coping mechanisms…but I can only take it with a pinch of salt 😀
I tried making a set of very unrealistic goals in September 2017 and only achieved one (to graduate lol) and that told me that I put way too much pressure on myself and need to take things one step at a tiiiiime…(cue Jordin Sparks acapella)
I’m hoping that 2019 becomes the year of the grind. I have no idea what to do with this blog, I wish I could make it a ‘thing’ but its a crazy mix of personal shit and I’m not sure I’m comfortable with my very own stream-of-consciousness to be made public. Considering making an active travel and lifestyle blog but I have no idea what I’m doing.
If you have any advice on what I can do or even about my current life state then feel free to comment and send memes etc.
I just realised I titled this post “Life lessons” but I didn’t actually offer any lessons. I am a certified dinkus
One thing that really stood out for me this year is the absence of self-love and confidence that leads to my depressive funk and inability to place the blame on things other than myself. I need to figure out how to give myself self-love, believe in myself and stop doubting myself. Not sure how much of a grip I can get on this in 2019 but I’m gonna try!