I’m okay but I’m not okay, okay?

I’m turning 21 next week. And I have a confession to make.

I do not have my life figured out.

I do not know where I’ll end up in ten years. Or five years. Or even two years.

That’s something that was really hard for me to come to terms with, especially around the time of my birthday. Every year I feel like I’m supposed to be better than I am. Like I’m supposed to have my life figured out already. I’m turning 21 on the 24th of June, and I’m trying really hard not to feel like that this year.

I’m starting college again after the summer, and that was a really tough and scary decision to make. I don’t know if I’ll like it, I don’t know if I’ll finish it. I don’t know if I’ll even end up working in this field, because my previous degree is in a completely unrelated field. I’m switching from journalism to social work, and although that doesn’t mean I’ll quit working in journalism (I love it way too much), who even does that?

But I want to do what feels good. I want to do what feels right, what’s calling my name. It’s really hard for me to listen to that inner voice sometimes, because my conscious brain will tell me something else. I’m a very impulsive person and sometimes that scares me. I’m afraid that decisions that feel good in the moment will end up being a mistake later on. That fear is about much more than just the decision of going back to school. It trickles in my relationships, both in friendships and romantically, as well as my work, blog and YouTube channel. Read More »

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5 Albums That Will Help You Through Any Break-Up

You’ve got songs about love, and you’ve got songs about love.

As someone who appreciates beautiful music even more if I can identify with the lyrics and meaning behind the songs, I want to share five of my favorite break-up albums with you. These songs have helped me through tears, heartbreak and hopelessness. But they’re also great if you’re just in the mood for something that will make you reach for a tissue while staring out of a window wistfully, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Bon Iver – For EmScreen Shot 2017-06-04 at 16.01.05ma, Forever Ago (2007)

Singer-songwriter Justin Vernon released the debut album ‘For Emma, Forever Ago’ independently in July of 2007. The album, known for its raw emotion and honest words, was created from the pain of two splits: Vernon’s breakup with his then-girlfriend and the end of DeYarmond Edison, a band Vernon had been playing in for several years. Vernon spent three months in a cabin in Wisconsin to write this album, and the melodic whistles and guitar riffs almost take you back to that very place.

Fleetwood Mac – Rumours (1977)

Screen Shot 2017-06-04 at 16.06.01‘Rumours’ has been Fleetwood Mac’s most successful albums, but the break-up that inspired it was messy to say the least. Christine and John McVie went their own way after only six years of messy marriage, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham remained on and off and then Mick Fleetwood hopped into bed with Nicks for good measure. But hey, it made for some great music that will easily make you shed a few tears.

 

 

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Personal Update: Happiness, Life Choices And Football

If you’re someone that regularly reads this blog, you’ve probably noticed how awfully quiet it was on here in the past three weeks.

I could start apologizing and making excuses for why that happened, but I really shouldn’t. The truth is that I went through a phase of rapid self-discovery, and my mind was completely occupied with my future, my happiness and my choices.

Sometimes, I struggle putting these thoughts into words, or I’m just not happy with what I write. I’m convinced it’s part of my writing process, and I will always have to deal with that.

My happiness

I’ve always said that I aspire to be happy, but recently I’ve come to realize that happiness isn’t some place that you arrive at, it’s part of the natural flow of emotions. For me, happiness isn’t constant, and I can only strive to feel that way as often as possible, while still being okay with it if I don’t feel amazing.

It’s hard to choose what’s best for yourself, especially if those choices will cause others to feel pain and sadness. But it’s even harder to live a certain way if you know you would be happier if things were different. I recently chose for my own happiness, and although it’s incredibly hard, it’s worth it.

Making life choices

I struggle a whole lot with making choices that will heavily affect my future. I very recently decided that I want to go back to school, and that was a very tough choice to make.

It’s hard for me to make these decisions because I don’t feel qualified to make them, even though they’re about my own life. How am I supposed to make these life decisions if I don’t really have much life experience to help me decide what’s best for me? But in the end, I did it, and I’m proud of myself.

Reinventing my love for football

This might be a weird one to include here, but I’m currently reinventing my love for sports, and football (soccer for you Americans) in particular. As a teenager, I loved the game and the culture around it, but because of a few unfortunate events, my love for football died down a little. I still liked it, but I wasn’t nearly as invested in it.

Recently, I’ve been trying to reinvent my love for the sport, something I feel weirdly excited about. It almost feels like I’m finally allowing myself to enjoy it again after such a long time of pulling myself away from it. And that’s something that makes me really happy.

I’m constantly feeling like I’m on the path of self-growth and self-discovery, but in the past three weeks this feeling has been especially strong. But I’m back on the blog and I’m finally feeling inspired again, so I hope to get back into the swing of things very soon.

20 Ways To Instantly Reduce Stress And Feel Better

It’s incredibly difficult in today’s day and age to find time to wind down and relax. However, it’s super important to relax if you wish to live a long, healthy and happy life.

Because I know you’re short on time, I’ve created the list of all the lists: 20 activities that will instantly reduce your stress levels!

Get more sleep

Believe me, getting enough sleep doesn’t make you lazy. Sleep is the body’s natural way to heal it, and you also allow your brain to get some rest. Allow yourself to rest and get at least 7, but preferably 8 hours of sleep every night. You’ll notice a huge change in your attention span, energy levels and food cravings.

Write your thoughts and feelings down

We all have things that we don’t want to talk about with other people, yet they still occupy our minds. When you start getting into a journaling habit, you’ll notice that the little notebook will become your new best friend.

Take a drive to nowhere

I’m among the people that enjoy taking trips to nowhere: whether it’d be driving or taking a train. Sometimes you just need to do that to declutter your mind. I like to go to the beach and watch the sunset all by myself, or go into the city to watch people walking around enjoying themselves.

Check in with yourself

We get so distracted by work and taking care of others that we can forget to check in with ourselves. Ask yourself ‘what do I need today?’ and you’ll find an answer. Be sure to schedule whatever it is that you need. Self care is important!

Get dressed up for fun

I believe ‘dressing up for the job you want, not the job you have’ is one of the best pieces of advice out there. Dressing up makes me feel good, and you don’t need a reason to doll yourself up! It’s also a great excuse to take some selfies.

Drink some tea and read a book in bed

Tea makes you feel warm inside, and reading a novel or a good non-fiction book has tons of great benefits. Bonus points if you listen to a relaxing playlist and light a scented candle at the same time. So cozy!Read More »

Why Women Apologize More Than Men (And What We Can Do About It)

A while back, I started keeping track of how often I actually apologize in my daily life. It was brought to my attention by a friend after spending some time with her at the mall.

”You always apologize” she said.

I wanted to get defensive and tell her that it really wasn’t that bad – until I realized I really do apologize a lot. In just two days, I apologized for the following things:

  • I’m sorry for being in your way
  • I’m sorry for getting back to you so late
  • I’m sorry for having to ask this
  • (In a meeting) I’m sorry, before we move on..
  • (On the phone) I’m sorry, before you hang up..

And once I even said ”I’m sorry for apologizing so much” which took the freaking cake.

Can you relate? Do you wish you could stop? I certainly did. I did a little research to help understand this habit better, and then experimented with my way of speaking a bit, and I think I found a good solution!

Women apologize more than men

If you think you hear women apologize more often than men, you’re completely right.

“Men aren’t actively resisting apologizing because they think it will make them appear weak or because they don’t want to take responsibility for their actions,” said study researcher Karina Schumann, a student at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada.

“It seems to be that when they think they’ve done something wrong they do apologize just as frequently as when women think they’ve done something wrong. It’s just that they think they’ve done fewer things wrong.”

The threshold for what women think is offensive is lower in general, which is why we apologize a lot more. We tend to think we’re a lot more offensive than we actually are, even if the person we’re communicating with isn’t even offended in the first place.

I know from personal experience that saying sorry is something I do out of habit, ‘just in case’ someone is offended: I’d rather say sorry then to be seen as unmotivated or lazy. But what this research doesn’t tell us is why women are so much more apologetic than men. Read More »

6 Ways Becoming A Minimalist Will Change Your Life

When I first started experimenting with minimalism two years ago, I had no idea that it would change my life as much as it did.

I thought I would declutter my space and just feel slightly better, but that’s not what happened. Instead, my entire life changed for the better, and if you’re contemplating becoming a so-called ‘minimalist’, your life will probably change in a similar way.

The minimalist community has grown exponentially in the past few years. I believe this has everything to do with worldwide financial turmoil, concerns for the environment, high levels of debt, and just the general realization that there’s more to life than just possessions.

Minimalism is everywhere around us. Ever since smartphones became popular and widely available, many people have ditches their address books, MP3-players, separate camera’s, books and more.

The same things happens in the drug store. Lots of brands are buying into the minimalist marketing approach – brands that used to package their products in glittery, colourful bottles are now going for sleek, simple design with clear call-to-actions and promises of the products. That’s what the people want these days.

Screen Shot 2017-04-23 at 17.58.08

Of course, then there are people like me who like talking about being a minimalist as much as being one – this lifestyle has truly changed who I am as a person, and I would love for other people to experience the same thing I did. Here’s how my life changed

Financial freedom

Being minimal means having to spend less money, because you feel the need for less things. But not only that, my minimalism journey completely shifted my perspective on consumerism. Suddenly, clothes, purses and expensive make-up didn’t seem that important to me, especially if they aren’t ethically produced.

I learned that cheaper isn’t always better, and now often opt for a slightly more expensive option that will last me for a longer amount of time. I still buy what I need, but only what I need.

If you like fashion and make-up, that’s completely fine to spend money on, but for me, those things don’t bring me a huge amount of joy.

Being aware of the environment

Minimalism made me realize that consumerism really does have a big impact on our planet. By having a more minimalist lifestyle, you avoid (overly) contributing to landfills and you’re decreasing the demand for products. Minimalism seeped into many different aspects of my life, including the food I eat, the products I buy and the way I choose to travel. 

Of course, not everything I own is ethically produced – you could even argue that nothing is completely ethical – but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to use fewer resources. When fewer resources are being expended, less pollution will be entering the ecosystem – and every little bit counts. Read More »

how to go braless

Why I Stopped Wearing Bras And How You Can Too

I vividly remember the first time I truly considered going braless. I had been talking to a friend who has much bigger boobs than me – she’s a D cup – and she goes braless all the time.

”It’s fine, a bit uncomfortable at first, but I wouldn’t have it any other way now.”

What intrigued me, was that I never even noticed she didn’t wear bras. She’s one of those people who always dresses well, has a distinctive style and perfect make-up. At that point, in my mind going braless was still something only sloppy people did. Something I’ve changed my opinion on since.

And the funny part was, I have much smaller boobs than her. I sport a small B cup, to be exact. I’ve grown to love my small boobs, and came to the realization that I only wore bras because it was normal to do so. With my size, I don’t need the support of a bra and I personally don’t care a whole lot about a nipple poking through every once in a while. Not to mention that there is some scientific evidence that wearing a bra can actually be bad for you.

So, I decided to stop wearing bras. In the beginning, it felt like everyone was staring at me. Even though they weren’t, well, except for a few people.

An older lady at a restaurant.

A guy when I was waiting in line at a bank.

A friend saying my girls looked so perky.

But I liked it. And I continue to go braless about 90% of the time. If you want to go braless but you’re worried about nips, your self-esteem or you just feel a bit uncomfortable, I have a few tried-and-true tips for you!

How To Start Going Braless: 4 Tips

Wear thick fabrics or layers: I like wearing layers in the spring when it’s not super hot outside. I pair a tight, thinner shirt with a jacket or cardigan that falls over my boobs so my nips don’t show. If you just want to wear a shirt or top on its own, try to look for fabric that closely resembles the fabric of a sweater, as it’s usually a lot thicker.Read More »