Tag Archives: Review

How has the first month of this new decade been for you? Helpful tips for moving forwards…

Well friends, tomorrow is the concluding day of the first month of 2020! A brand new year, a brand new month and a brand new decade. How has it been for you? Have you survived and / or thrived through all of the expectations that this ‘newness’ may have presented you with?

What have been your highlights, and your learning points? And are you excited to soon be starting a brand new month?

As you move forwards from here, let me share with you a few things to consider to make for a more fruitful month in February.

1. Be honest with yourself as you look back over the past month.

Oftentimes we feel the pressure from others, ourselves, society and social media messages to be ‘doing great’ at the start of a brand new year. At the start of a new decade, perhaps some of the internal pressures we place upon ourselves to ‘rise and shine’ and ‘live our best lives’ is even greater. Or perhaps such things don’t affect you all that much.

Either way, as we reach the end of the first month of this year, it is important to be honest with yourself. Most people start a new year with new expectations, goals and plans. Take time to think about where you have got to with yours if you had any. Also, be honest with yourself as to how the past month has actually been for you. You can think about things in the following ways:

Circumstances: Overall, were things good or bad this month? Accept what has passed and identify any issues that you need to resolve that have been difficult for you, both practically and emotionally. If things have overall been good, take time to reflect upon these, enjoy the memories of the experiences, be grateful for them and think of steps to climb even higher as you progress through the year.

Mental and emotional health and wellbeing: This is quite a personal one, and you hopefully will best know the questions to ask of yourself. Taking time to assess your mental and emotional wellbeing will help you and others as you move forwards, otherwise you can get stuck in a rut, or even pulled under if you don’t take time to address any issues that you may have that need your attention and care.

Think about how your mental and emotional health has been in January. Are there any triggering factors that made things difficult? Are there any things contributing to your positive mental and emotional health? What can you take forwards from here to build upon as you head into February?

Physical health: Time to think about your well being physically including in terms of activity levels, nutrition and other forms of self care. Are you looking after yourself or are there things that you can be doing better?

Sleep: After the time off during Christmas and the winter seasons, it can come as a bit of a shock to the system to get back into a routine. By now, most people are back ‘in the swing of things’ and sometimes this can mean powering full steam ahead which can be detrimental if you’re not getting the rest and sleep that you need. Check in with yourself and make sure you are not overworking yourself or wasting the precious rejuvenating hours that a good night’s sleep and rest can bring. Don’t worry if you struggle with this, you’re definitely not alone – it’s one of the biggest things that I need to work on!

2. Social connections, priorities and other people.

As well as taking time to think about how well you have been taking care of yourself over this past month (so that you can make improvements as you move forwards through the year), it is also important to consider your wellbeing in terms of a wider perspective. Taking care of ourselves on an individual level is one thing, but we also need to think about how connections with other people affect us whether positively or negatively, and to consider which aspects of these connections need to be nurtured, and which others need to be ‘pruned’ or cut away.

It’s important not to let yourself get swept up in the current of other people’s priorities, demands and activities where they don’t align well with your own. By this I don’t mean shirk your responsibilities and duties. Not by any means! If you have responsibilities to care for other people such as parents, children, dependants and so forth, it would be unethical to simply disregard their needs just because you want something different. No, what I mean is that being part of a society, the people we come in contact with may make requests or demands upon our time and attention and before committing to anything and everything you need to consider the longer term vision of your own life, and year, and not overcommit, especially to things that don’t align with your vision or values. Be open minded, but also be cautious – your personal, ‘free’ time away from work and family is such a precious commodity, you need to use it wisely, so don’t feel pressured into saying ‘yes’ to everything. Equally don’t miss out on opportunities that you need to take.

Further to this, you also need to think about how you are spending time and who you are spending time with. Are there people in your life who are draining you? Are there those who inspire you? Are there others with whom you are mutually encouraged? Think about the specifics of your own situations and circumstances and be mindful of how you relate to people and the effect you allow them to have on you, and make more considered choices as you continue through the year.

3. Plans and projects.

You may have started the year with a whole host of great ideas, some of which you might have hoped to get off the ground or make progress with in January. Let’s (once again) be honest with ourselves. How practical has this been? Have you achieved what you enthusiastically set out to, or do you need to revisit your plans, projects, goals and timescales? Don’t be hard on yourself. Small steps all add up. Keep going, but also don’t tie yourself to something you have started that you now realise actually isn’t the right choice for your life. Take time to responsibly consider whether there are things you can let go of and how without negatively affecting other people as far as is possible.

What has worked and what needs improved upon or changed in terms of how you have approached your plans for this month? What lessons have you learned and what will you take forwards into February?

4. The bigger picture – Faith, and the people you love.

Don’t get so caught up in the minutiae or day to day routines of life that you forget to ‘look up’. Don’t forget to take time to appreciate, to be thankful, to consider the Source of all the good things and blessings in your life. Are you seeking Truth? Are you growing as a person? Are you gaining insights spiritually? And are you making time to simply be and spend time with the people you love?

Be blessed as you progress into a brand new month, and don’t be afraid to start afresh. x

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Photo by Evie Shaffer on Pexels.com

 

Winter Survival Guide (27) ~Re-read your blog! :)

So, it’s a dark, cold and rainy winter’s night. You’ve watched all the things you want for the night, you’ve had some reading time, you want something interesting to do and think about.

Why not read your blog from over the past year? I don’t know about you, but I spend a lot of time writing my blog, in comparison to how much time I ever spend looking back and reading and reflecting upon old posts.

And yet, I feel like having this is such a blessing in my life, because it captures my thoughts about life as I live and go through my days. I think it’s wonderful that I have this record to look back upon and see what I’ve been learning and not just what I have done.

Maybe you haven’t blogged as much as you have wanted to this year, and that’s ok, but if you have written a few posts, why not spend one of these winter nights in just taking the time to read what you have written and get an idea of how you have grown and changed over the year and what you have learned.

You might actually find some really helpful and insightful ‘nuggets’ from what you yourself have written to share with other people. Give it a go, and enjoy the journey! 🙂

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Photo by bruce mars on Pexels.com

Lush Product Review – ‘Charity Pot’ Hand & Body Lotion

Last week I wrote an overview of some new ‘Lush’ products I had purchased. You can read my overview, and more about the company and its ‘cruelty free’ and natural ethos, here.

I mentioned that I would follow up with reviews of the individual products. I have now sampled all of them, so I will begin with a review of the ‘Charity Pot’, as pictured below, on the right (the tub of cream with the hedgehog lid).

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I chose this product after speaking with a shop assistant. After searching their website, I had initially thought of buying the Lush ‘Lemony Flutter’ cuticle butter. I had thought that it may be able to double up as a hand / body lotion, and was keen to try it especially because of the lemony, citrusy scent which I personally like. However, when I asked about this in the shop, the lady told me that because of the texture and consistency (it was quite thick and a bit coarser than a body cream or lotion would be), it probably wouldn’t be suitable to be used in that way. She did allow me to try it and showed me how to rub it into the cuticles, but thankfully I had asked about it before just buying it as it wasn’t really suitable for what I was looking for.

I asked about hand and body lotions or creams and in particular something that would be helpful for eczema. She said that the most suitable product was the ‘Dream Cream’, particular beneficial in treating eczema due to the oatmeal content. Another cream was the ‘Charity Pot’. I tried both of the creams, and chose the Charity Pot over the Dream Cream for a couple of reasons. Firstly it really appealed to me because of its scent, which is quite light, bright, sweet and soothing, and it felt a bit softer when applied. The Dream Cream, although lovely on the skin, did not have much of a scent or at least not one that particularly appealed to my personal tastes. The other motivating factor was the price. The Dream Cream was sold in a medium and large size at the price of £6.95 (100g) and £13.50 (240g) respectively. This seemed a little on the pricey side for me, so I opted for the Charity Pot.

Here’s what Lush says on its website about its rather appealing charity pot:

“Charity Pot is a hand and body lotion with a difference. 100% of the proceeds (minus sales tax, which goes to the government) are donated to independent, grassroots charities that support human rights, animal welfare and environmental protection. At the same time, you enjoy softer, hydrated skin (it’s a win win!)”.

Being a Charity Pot there is the additional option of buying a smaller sized tub of 45g, selling at £3.50, so this is what I decided to go for. There is also an even smaller 10g trial size tub which sells at just £1.00.

So, what did I think?

I must say, I’m a big fan of this little Charity Pot for the reasons explored above. However, I did find a couple of downsides. I’ll start first by sharing what I liked about the Charity Pot, and then explain what I didn’t like so much.

First of all, for a Lush product, I think the price is great and I like the additional option of a smaller tub size, especially if you are trying something out for the first time and want to test whether you like it or your whether it agrees with your skin or not (however, Lush also offers smaller free samples if you ask), or if you are buying it for a friend to try.

The cream is lovely, light, gentle with a nice fragrance and is easily absorbed by the skin. It smells lovely, and is soothing and I felt that it was helping my skin to settle, heal and repair itself as well as relieving itchiness and dryness.

In terms of ingredients, the Charity Pot contains 22 ingredients, including Fairtrade shea butter to nourish and hydrate the skin, rosewood oil which has antiseptic properties, moringa oil and ylang ylang oil. I will include a full list of ingredients at the end of this post.

Overall it felt lovely to apply this cream to my skin, and I did notice a significant improvement in the skin on my hands which had been quite aggravated previously. However, the skin on one of my fingers later became a bit ‘flared’ up but I can’t necessarily conclude that this was because of the product. I did use it on my face as well, and it has been gentle and soothing and hasn’t caused me any problems there.

Another positive thing is the little tubs that this cream comes in are very sturdy, in a nice mat black with a screw top lid. I can already see a use for mine for storing jewellery in.

Which leads me to the main downside….I don’t have to wait long to be able to use it for another purpose. Although I need to hydrate my skin very regularly due to having eczema, this is not the main reason that it hasn’t lasted long – the cream tends to evaporate quite quickly even in a tub with a screw top lid. I don’t think there’s any real way of getting around this, and I would say for me this was the biggest downside. I bought the Charity Pot last Friday, and it is Thursday now. I have literally the tiniest drop left which won’t last me beyond tonight or tomorrow morning, which is a real shame. However, I am glad that I bought a smaller size tub, and for £3.50 I can’t really complain as these days this is the average price for a sandwich or a coffee in some places, so all in all I am quite pleased.

Would I buy the Charity Pot again?

Yes! Definitely. I love it, it smells lovely and is soft and kind on the skin and feels great when applied. I would probably still go for the small size and remind myself that although it doesn’t last that long, it is a happy experience for my skin, I have a cute little recyclable tub at the end of it that I can use for storing small craft items or jewellery, and most of all, the money from the sale of Charity Pots goes to a good cause.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this review. If you have any thoughts you’d like to share on Lush or other cruelty free products, please comment below. And as promised, here’s a list of the ingredients, and a link to the website

https://uk.lush.com/products/charity-pot-0:

List of ingredients