28.4.17

Let me entertain you a little this weekend.....CHIT-CHAT+Weekend Vibes

Hello! Hello!! Its the weekend again and I am just so grateful for how quickly the week has flown by. Plus its the bank holiday weekend  .... Wohoo!!
I have not got anything planned just yet but I could easily do with a lie in or perhaps visit my local dessert parlour to feed my sweet tooth cravings.

Anyways! so, I stumbled on my old IPOD yesterday, which was a pleasant surprise as I had searched all corners of my house, inside the sofa and everywhere that served as a potential hiding nest for the kids toys but gave up when it finding it became mission impossible.

That Ipod is like a little treasure to me, I mean it holds most of my favourite noughties classics. I can't begin to tell you how much I love the classic old vibes. That era churned out the best songs in most genres,why don't they make clean and good music like that anymore?!

 Anyways,in the absence of my Ipod ,Spotify and Youtube have been doing a pretty good job but now that dear Ipod is back ,we going to be glued together this weekend baby! 

Shall I take you on a quick trip back to memory lane as I share 10 random tracks from my favourite noughties playlist ? Look out for my little commentary on each one too!

Happy reminiscing! 


10. R.Kelly - ''Step in the Name of Love''

Yeah! c'omon shuffle your feet! waltz into the weekend with this lovely track from R.Kelly.  I absolutely love this track and it never fails to get me dancing... ok...catch your breath and we'd be on to the next one! 




9. Ashanti - ''Foolish''

OMG! Ashanti babe where are you?  Like seriously, does anyone knows if she still sings anymore? Ashanti+Ja Rule dropping those vibes! those were the days...






8. Mary J. Blige - ''Be without you''

I absolutely love Mary J. Blige ! She is an absolutely strong lady who has like literally risen through the ashes and made a better woman of herself. Really thinking of going to see her perform in London this July.  





7. Mario - '' Let Me Love you''

I give this song the  award for the most effortlessly classic song, I mean its absolutely appealing and grows on you. Its just beautiful! 


6. Sade - ''By your Side''
...Just no words! her voice gives me so much goosebumps and leaves me speechless. such comforting voice to listen to... 


5. Amy Winehouse - '' Rehab''
....and just how can i forget Amy? Unique, mysterious and absolutely beautiful!


5. Usher - ''Confessions''

OH Hi Nostalgia! is that you?! This song was lit in the days! Not sure Usher can churn out songs this good anymore #just saying 




3. John Legend - ''When I used to love you''
Well! How can I not have John Legend on my fav list! Music with him has been consistent and has matured over the years. Absolutely aces it everytime!


2. J.HUD - ''Spotlight''
Yeah, I meant Jennifer Hudson but doesn't everyone call her J-HUD now?! She's my total diva package plus her voice is totally lush! This song I have listened to so much, I can sing it in my sleep! Love me some J-HUD! 


1. Whitney Houston - '' I look to you''
There's only one person who will always take the number one spot for me and it has to be Whitney Houston.  Boy! could that woman sing or what?! She was music itself.... As for this song how can it be so powerful yet leave one so weak and lost for words?!  Its beyond me.... Keep resting Whitney .



Ok..... I think I am going to have to stop myself otherwise am never going to end this post! You already know the noughties was the era of good music across several genres so help yourself to some feelgood music whenever you can and I hope you have a good weekend and bank holiday too!

Ta ! x

19.4.17

Couch Chat: Coping with Depression, Anxiety and the related



Google image
Dealing with Depression
Image Source:Google
A couple of weeks ago I read about  the demise of Amy Bleuel a promising young lady and strong advocate for mental health issues. She was the founder of project semi colon ; a not for profit mental health initiative. She was also the brain behind the extremely popular semi colon tattoo that trended on social media for quite a significant period of time, to stir a further awareness of mental health challenges bordering around depression, suicide and self harm.

Amy drew strength from what would ordinarily have drained her will to live, her father's demise(and the circumstances in which he passed away) and other personal life struggles she had contended with and overcome. She started project semi colon as a mark of respect to her father, providing what became a strong advocating platform for various mental health issues. Just like the semi colon in writing (or Literature if you prefer)  the semi colon project reiterated the fact that whatever situation you find yourself, its not the end of you.  No matter how clouded things may seem its ok to definitely keep going because hope, love and comfort can and will abound. In Amy's words ''In literature, an author uses a semicolon to not end a sentence but to continue on. We see it as you are the author and your life is the sentence. You’re choosing to keep going.”

Its very sad to know that Amy lost her own battle with depression but its reassuring to know that her story and the legacy she left behind will continue to live on and I write this post in memory of Amy. Thank you for being such a strong voice and source of inspiration people struggling with their emotional and mental wellbeing.

image source:google
your story isnt over;not yet
Image source:Google
Over the past few weeks as well, I have continued to come across several personal stories, many of whom have found the courage to seek help and others who have sadly lost the battle.  I really felt compelled to talk about my own personal struggle with depression perhaps not so much in details but as form of respect and support for anyone going through the struggle alone. I understand that it might feel like a personal struggle no one understands but please know you are not alone. I realised that quite a lot of people struggle with depression, anxiety and other mental health issues but there is already so much stigma associated with these conditions making it such a battle to reach out for help support. However, its about time we all understood mental wellbeing is just as important as physical well being which is why I feel its important to share my personal experience as well.
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Google Image


Coping with Depression:My Experience
Its been close to four years but it always feels so fresh in memory. I recall those ''cloudy'' periods in my life  when everything seemed like a haze and it just felt like it had to end. I had no inkling of what had to end but I knew something had to give. I knew what it felt like but I struggled to put it to speech even though the words constantly played in my head.  Sometimes it felt like I was stuck in a maze and there was just no exit. Other times ,I felt like I was trapped in a can of bubbles, I wanted to be free but I didn't know how to set myself free. Other times, i felt like recoiling into a world I had created in my head,the feelings were emotional draining and left me empty most times.
I was surrounded by so many people most especially my beloved family but I felt extremely lonely and alone, I struggled to share how I felt but I dreaded the hurt, fear, backlash and mockery that would come from it.I feared I would be misunderstood. To the rest of the world,I functioned as a normal human being,capable of loving, living and achieving but within me I fought a silent battle;every minute, every hour,every day. I couldn't bear to speak out for fear of letting my loved ones down, I had quite a handful of people who looked up to me, how dare I portray myself as a weakling!
Because as I came to understand it there was a lot of misconception around depression and mental wellness.  I remember once having a conversation with someone along those lines which broke me further but ironically strengthen my resolve to continue to suffer in silence.  Over several nights, I kept playing the conversation in my head. I tossed in bed, I shed a lone tear and silently questioned my emotional and mental capabilities. I thought of the many times, I would take toilet breaks at work and spend all the time crying and questioning the will to live but would step out afterwards all smiles and ''refreshed''. I thought of my commute back home and how I often longed for a window seat so I could look out of the window and drown myself in tears. I thought of how my mood alternated from happy to sad and often remained that way for a long time, I was unstable, low and on the edge; These unexplained feelings never went away, it was a constant companion. I searched for answers in books, the internet ...just something to help me understand how and why I felt the way I feel and I found the answer. I realised I was depressed and I could fare better with  help, support and guidance..........

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Today, I am in a better place and faring well and am grateful for the help and support I had that made it all possible . Things might not always seem the way I want them to be but I am getting a grasp of life and coming to terms with the fact that sometimes it will get rough  before it gets better and sometimes its plain landslide victory- easy peasy! Such is the beauty of life.
I am learning not to wish my challenges away or recoil into a corner, rather I choose to put in some effort no matter how minimal and I find satisfaction in knowing  I tried,its hard sometimes but still I keep trying!  I am not going to lie by saying its been all pure bliss and happily ever after! Sometimes the past still lurks in the shadows and on days when it feels like am ''slipping'' back I find strength in my personal mantra ''Some days are sunny, Some days are rainy and some days are just a mix of both;I will endeavour to get by''
I am not ashamed to share my story, on the contrary I find comfort in the hope that someone reads this post and realises that they shouldn't have to suffer in silence. If that person is you I want you to know that you are not  a loony, odd, abnormal or alone, there are lots of people going through similar so don't be too hard on yourself.

A few more things you could take away with you:

-You are not WEAK: No matter how you feel,  or however much insensitive comments you have to keep up with be rest assured you are not weak.  You are simply going through a period of life you have no control over. No one has the right to judge you for being human or make you feel less of yourself  just because of what you are going through.

Google image
Image source: Google
-Don't  be afraid to seek HELP:  I can understand if you choose to suffer in silence especially if your life seems to be the picture of perfection to the outside world. There is so much misconception about depression and anxiety and its not uncommon to hear people say things like ''oh you'd be fine'', ''snap out of it'!'' ,''...but you don't look depressed'' and all other insensitive remarks.
Still! don't let that deter you,  when you feel like you could do with some help and support don't be held back by anything and if you do find help please don't feel like you are burden. There's people out there who genuinely care and are more than willing to help.

Image source:Google
Please speak to someone if you experience any of the above more often than usual.
Image source:Google

-Its not about who YOU are! : Your appearance, social,financial and academic standing ,race,gender or abilities have absolutely nothing to do with depression,anxiety or the related. Its simply no respecter of who you are or what you have achieved. Its doesn't play out like the lottery, or cherry pick so please don't consider yourself a victim. You are going through a phase perhaps not pleasant but definitely through no fault of yours so don't be hard on yourself.  Things will get better with time.

-Identify the CAUSE - tackle the EFFECT:  Whilst the same might not be said for everyone, from personal experience I found that identifying  and come to terms with the ''triggers'' helped me a great deal.  By triggers I mean the root cause of whatever it is you might be going through. I realized that my situation at the time was embedded in a particular situation I thought I could not get over, constant nagging fear and worry is all it took to get me spiraling down. It was such a relief to face my supposed fears just by speaking to someone about my deepest worries in therapy over a period of time. As you get better you might find yourself experiencing those ''trigger moments'' or similar that can cause you to go spiraling down again, don't feel overwhelmed or scared. You have got to remember that you have been through a phase, you can get help, you can get support so don't feel afraid to ask.

Help doesn't necessarily mean Medication: Most people think opening up about their fear, anxieties and depressive feelings automatically translates to either being sectioned or being placed on heavily sedating medication.
NO! No two people are the same just as no two situations are the same. I for instance benefitted from a lot of counselling therapy where I was able to express myself freely,talk about my present worries and concerns for the future. As I slowly eased out of therapy, I buddied up with a very friendly lady who often checked up on me at regular intervals. It was a smooth transition. I found a great support system in my family as well too as I was finally able to open up and carry them along with me during the process. All of the help and support was based on specific assessment and relevance to my individual needs. The first step is seeking help and being rest assured in the fact that whatever help is being offered is of your best interest and wellbeing so please don't feel hesitant to reach out.

 I end this post on a positive note because I feel fulfilled to have spoken about an issue so delicate yet important . I want to thank you for letting me share my thoughts and experience with you and I hope you find one of two things useful. I might not know you in person but I care about your emotional well being and I wish you the best for life's onward journey.
 Allow me to leave you with this last few words  '' Flip over to the next page because your story isn't over;not yet!'' <3


Image result for project semicolon
*Post written in honor of Amy Bleuel:  Founder - The Project Semicolon*
Read more about The Project Semicolon HERE
(Image source:Google)

*For free confidential emotional support contact the SAMARITANS HERE

* For help,support and advice with mental health issues contact MIND UK HERE

*Please also get in touch with your GP/Doctor/ health care professional for medical support,advice and help.

                                                                                                                             You are not alone x

20.1.17

Feel Good Friday: My Music Playlist Faves


Happy Friday! Happy Fri-YAY!! Happy Weekend!!!

How is it going with you? Any plans for the weekend yet?


Well, am just going to freestyle on this post as dictated by my mood only because I am not sure if I should be looking forward to the weekend. There's tons of household work I need to get through, I would rather not think about it now.

 *eyes rove towards the stack of laundry piled high in the basket*.   
*Exhales Sharply and Sighs ! *

However, I am not going to worry myself about all of that for now. Thank Goodness, the kids are away at school, giving me just about enough time to have some lazy stay indoor moment whilst listening to some good feel good Friday music which is absolutely giving me all the positive vibes! Music never felt so good at the moment, allow me to share my top 5 songs on my playlist at the moment with you.


5.Love me now by John Legend
For me, there aint no playlist without at least one John Legend song.There is a personal uplifting I feel when I listen to him sing. Lets just say its a matter of channeling my inner energy with an uplifting voice.
Love me now- John Legend
Source:Youtube


4. So I can have you back by Joe
When I listen to Joe sing, I often imagine myself running my hands through fine silk. He has got the voice I would describe as flawless and smooth. Why don't they make music like this anymore?

So I can have you back -Joe Thomas
Source:Youtube


3.Butterfly By Omawumi.
Omawumi is a Top Nigerian Singer and songwriter who never fails to deliver both in lyrics and vocals,she makes it seem so effortless.  This song is all shades of beautiful. I love it and I absolutely love Oma-wonder(Omawumi) too.


Butterfly - Omawumi
Source:Youtube
 
 
2. Can't stop the feeling by Justin Timberlake
The first time I heard this song  was when I watched the movie Trolls. There could not have been a better song for the movie because it complimented the theme of the move perfectly!  I'll let you in on a secret: I cried watching Trolls because it held such a powerful message '' Happiness is in everyone of us''
Can't stop the feeling - Justin Timberlake
Source:Youtube

1. Intentional by Travis Greene
Oh my goodness!! Why didn't anyone warn me about this song?! I just cannot get it out of my head! However, I wont complain because I have come to find solace in this song, it helps me get along even in my lowest moments. You need to listen to know why!
Intentional -Travis Greene
Source:Youtube



So there you are, my top five feel good songs at the mo'.

What catchy tunes are you listening to now?

Have a nice weekend and see you soon x
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