My Workout Essentials

3 August 2017

About a year ago, I did a post called “My Workout Essentials” and featured some of my favourite gym accessories and must haves. Well, now that time has passed, I still have some faves, but the list has changed for the better.

Bluetooth Headphones
They were featured in my last post, but they’re number one now. Music is so essential for a good workout, it’s truly everything. I considered these KitSound headphones for the longest time, going back and forth between brands before finally deciding to just go for it. I’m very fussy when it comes to technology, as I like to have something that’s actually going to work. I can honestly say, KitSound headphones are the way forward for me. Style is important, so I chose the black and rose gold pair, but I also think good quality is vital to. The Harlem headphones are of a very high stand, especially for such an affordable price. I adore them!

Deodorant and body spray
So essential. The very thought of bad body odour makes me feel nauseous, so the smell has me running. Of course, there’s not much I can do about other people, but I can certainly do a lot for myself. I have a love for deodorants anyway, and have always used Nivea because it treats my skin so well. But I’ve also been loving So…?’s body mist line and didn’t expect to be so obsessed. I grew up with So…? body sprays and Charlie Red so naturally I gravitated back towards them. I really love water-based sprays because I feel like they stick to clothes a little better than the aerosols.

A Small Towel
I would have never considered a towel about a year ago. But now that I like to go H.A.M. in the gym, and try to work so hard I want to nap, I sweat… a lot. And sweat is great I guess, but it’s also super irritating and itchy if it dries. I like to have a small towel or flannel with me in the gym, to wipe away the dirt and sweat, ensuring it doesn’t get into my pores. Sweat dripping down your face is certainly a sign of hard work, but also a great way to break out. Not great.

High quality clothes
Obviously, clothes are an essential. But it’s very easy to buy super cheap threats that disintegrate in water or fit poorly. It’s very important to me to avoid ill-fitting clothes because it feels uncomfortable and kills my confidence. Splashing out isn’t what I’d usually do when it comes to clothing, but I neeeeeeeed to have good workout outfits. TK Maxx is the perfect middle man, as they sell branded clothes for amazing prices. Think: fit over fashion. Running on a treadmill and pull up leggings or pants is not okay. Plus, squats that result in ripped clothing isn’t cute either.

The right shoes
I once saw someone running on a treadmill in sliders. SLIDERS. That’s a perfect example of picking the wrong shoes. I still can’t wrap my head around it. You don’t have to go all professional to find the right trainers to work out in, they just have to be supportive and comfortable. Fit over fashion comes in once again, as it’s important to take care of your feet and ankles before they become damaged.

My phone
I have an iPhone 7, and there are a huge number of apps that help me in the gym. Not only is Spotify essential for my beast mode tunes, but I use MyFitnessPal too. This app is great for logging all my workouts and totally up how much water I drink each day. The app works great without having to go Premium and there are still a wide range of features to make use of. I also use the app to log the food I eat throughout the day which helps me keep track of calories. Endomondo is also really great for logging times, plus it’s linked to MyFitnessPal as they’re both owned by Under Armour.

And a couple more must-haves, or rather, I-needs:


YouTubers I’m Obsessed With | Volume II

31 July 2017


I published a post over two years ago featuring some vloggers I just can’t get enough of. Well, the list truly is endless, so it’s time I share some more top YouTubers I think should be appreciated and celebrated. I struggle to only fit five into this post, so we may have a little serious of blogposts on our hands...enjoy!


I’ve followed Danielle for a few years now, and the more get to know her, the more I realise how alike we are. We have a very similar personality which means I look forward to every video. She struggles with anxiety and depression (like me), she lives in the UK (like me), she loves to play Sims from time to time (like me) and she’s also hilarious (which I like to think I am). Her videos are always entertaining, and always honest! For example, the video linked above is one I recently watched, and loved because she was so open with her subscribers regarding earnings and the YouTube lifestyle – plus, she has a PUG! She’s been through some drama online, but comes out stronger and more positive every time!


Kalyn is one of those vloggers that makes you want to get your life together. She’s so motivated, strong and positive, it’s uplifting to see her channel grow. She too, has struggled with mental health and is very open about this in her videos. Over the past year, her editing skills have improved so much, I really love to watch every second of her vlogs and routine videos. She’s all about organisation, productivity and getting on with life; a great attitude for everyone to have. Plus, she puts her happiness first and has the cutest little pup!


I remember Daniella from her Victorious days, and always followed her Instagram posts as she lives the ultimate Cali lifestyle. It was actually Daniella who inspired me to start yoga, and now has me working towards a vegan diet because she always promotes a healthy and happy lifestyle. I adore her channel, simply because she’s a big TV star but at the same time, a normal human. Daniella vlogs her daily life, as well as her trips around the world and 5-star recipies. Plus, her sense of style and interior design skills are so on point, I feel like stealing everything!


I have followed Aspyn for the longest time, I think she may have been one of the first YouTubers I ever subscribed to, and I still enjoy her videos just as much today. I became even more invested in her videos, when she posted her engagement and wedding video online, and realised we have a very similar style. On top of that, her home is absolutely stunning inside and she now owns her own store (goals) featuring the most super-stylish pieces! Despite having a large following, I love how humble Aspyn has remained, and how her channel has never wavered – plus she has no time for haters!


I only subscribed to Laura in the last week, after following her blogs for over a year and have been binge watching her videos ever since. Like Aspyn, I was drawn to Laura after seeing photos from her wedding (which is literally the exact way I would like mine), and decided to give her vlogs a watch. I’m so happy I did. Laura is the loveliest, bubbliest YouTuber I’ve recently followed, and vlogs her day-to-day life, as well as makeup tutorials and fashion tips. She has an amazing sense of style, and is so sweet in her vlogs – you really start to feel like you know her!

Who are your favourite YouTubers?

The Playsuit: A Summer Essential

27 July 2017

There have been many occasions, where I’m attending an event, going out, or heading to a party and have no idea what to wear. It’s 300 million degrees out, it’s super sweaty and I’m too lazy to find a top that pairs with my favourite shorts. What’s the best option? A playsuit.
Playsuits are very much like Marmite. Some people absolutely love them (me), and live by them (me), and will wear them at any given opportunity (also me). And some people can’t stand them. I must admit, it can get a little tricky when you’ve had one G&T too many and you can’t quite work out how to go to the bathroom properly, but despite this, they’re perfect for me. I’m quite a tall chic, so sometimes shopping for playsuits that hit the right spot can be hard. Some suits have awkward elasticated waists that are too high/too low, and some have the shortest shorts ever – and I’m not about that life.

I bought this piece from TK Maxx in one of their everlasting sales, and saw it sitting (or hanging) there all alone, so I had to buy it. The great thing about playsuits, is that they’re always comfortable, and often pair well with loads of different items in the wardrobe. In the winter, I’ve even worn an all-black playsuit with tights and a cosy cardigan. For summer, I tend to stick to a tropical print, something that’s bright and summery, but never over the top.

Playsuits have become a summer essential, not only because they’re so easy to style, but also because they look amazing on different body types. I used to be really self-conscious and think I could never pull off anything short, so the playsuit became my answer. It keeps me confident, it keeps what I like covered and it keeps me cool through the UK heatwaves.


What’s your favourite thing about playsuits? Or, what’s your summer essential? 


Nutri Advanced Magnesium Glycinate Tablets | Review

24 July 2017


I’m always open to anything that will improve my health. After all, good physical and mental health are incredibly important, and both have to be maintained! When I got the opportunity to try Nutri Advanced’s Magnesium Glycinate tablets*, I jumped with excitements because it’s a mineral I’ve never tried before, and experimenting is always fun.

ABOUT MAGNESIUM AND THE TABLETS
I didn’t know much about magnesium before trying the tablets because I didn’t pay much attention in science, and had no idea the body even needed it. But I found out, magnesium is essential for the production of energy within every cell in the body, and it contributes to the electrolyte balance within the body. Shocked? Same. Magnesium is also an essential for the normal functioning of the nervous system, the psychological function and the muscle function.

The tablets I tried were high-strength magnesium glycinate which is a superior form of the mineral that is well absorbed. Plus, it’s very easy on the digestive system and wonderful for those with a magnesium deficiency. Fun fact: almost 100% of people in the UK are not meeting the recommended daily allowance for magnesium, mainly due to poor soil and processed foods, so pretty much the whole UK has a deficiency. Magnesium deficiency can result in poor mood (from anxiety to insomnia), low energy (like fatigue and poor memory), and bad physical performance (such as very low energy and even muscle cramps). I’ve struggled with fatigue and tiredness, as well as anxiety so these tablets could not have arrived at a better time.

MY THOUGHTS ON MAGNESIUM GLYCINATE
I took the tablets for three weeks straight, twice a day (with meals) and continue to take them today. At first, I didn’t notice any different. But that was expected. After a week, I started to feel a difference in my muscles and athletic performance – bear in mind, I am not an athletic person. As I’ve recently started running and jogging multiple times a week, my body is developing and getting a lot stronger. Magnesium itself helps keep calcium within the bones and teeth, and so far, my bones haven’t suffered in the slightest – and I know the tablets have aided this. Similarly, I usually feel drained throughout the day and was worries running would amplify these feelings. Luckily, after a week, the effects of more magnesium began to kick in and I had energy through the day, as well as post-workout.
By week two, I was actually feeling extra energy, not just enough to get me through the day. I also felt an improvement in my sleeping pattern, in the sense that my pattern basically fixed itself. A couple of weeks ago, I used to wake throughout the night, which is incredibly annoying when you’re as lazy as I am. Then I was feeling lethargic and cranky during the day as my sleep was constantly disturbed. Now, after weeks on the tablets, I’m feeling waaaaaaaaay better.

I decided to continue with the tablets after loving the benefits over a fortnight, and even another week before writing a full review. By week three and four, I was feeling a complete difference regarding my “everyday” anxiety. I’m a natural-born worrier, or a “chronic worrier” as Rebecca puts it ;) Stress always triggers some form of anxiety for me, whether it’s social or OCD. I’ve found the tablets have truly helped with day-to-day anxieties. It’s no cure, but things that would usually make me irritable or distressed aren’t that big of a problem anymore, which in turn is helping me on my quest to be more positive. And more, I’m feeling a lot calmer each day.

For example, a customer started effing and jeffing down the phone at work, which would usually result in me feeling like I’m on fire, before wanting to throw-up or cry… whichever comes first. Yet, over the last week (when an incident like this happened), I ended the call thinking “eh, whatever” and continued with my day. It didn’t play on my mind, I wasn’t feeling tense, and I didn’t feel the need to self-combust. A huge improvement for me.  The tablets have helped many others too, check out the results on the product page!

OVERALL
I really like the tablets and found them very soft on my system. My body can be quite sensitive, but these tablets haven’t cause my skin, attitude or muscles to suffer. They also haven’t affected my asthma, which has happened with other supplements. Nutri Advanced’s product came is brilliant time, and arrived with a whole load of information for me to read beforehand. The only downside to the tablets is the size, they’re quite large, but can be broken in half for easier swallowing. I’m very happy I got the chance to try magnesium glycinate and feel even happier with the outcome. I’m so glad I discovered Nutri Advanced! 

Have you ever tried magnesium tablets? How did you find them? 

12 Habits of a Successful BOSS.

21 July 2017

Girlboss, Nasty Gal, habits of a girlboss, fashion blogger, anika may, successful girlboss, dream job, fashion stylist, blogger flatlay, pinterest photo, fashion stock photo, lifestyle post, yorkshire blogger
I'm all about being your own boss, or bad-ass, or killer-queen. Anything the means taking control of your life and letting the world know who's in charge makes me happy. Plus, anything that encourages self-love and positivity also makes me very happy. There are some people out there who may think: "She's not a BOSS." But funny thing, I don't care. Because I know I'm a boss, the only approval I need is my own. So here are some of the top tips I live by, as my own bad-ass BOSSSSS.

DREAM BIG
A true boss will never think inside the box, or dream small. It's simply having that all-or-nothing mindset that fuels fiery determination. Ambition is everything when it comes to dominating life. From romance to your career, it's always best to aim high if you want those awesome results. 

STAY FRUGAL
As my own boss, I literally never spend money. Unless it's treat yo self day and I'm splurging in the latest season's sale at Trinity Leeds. It's a very hard habit to get into, but saving is so key in every aspect of life. Watch that bank account grow!

CHILL OUT
Stressing out is not cool. We all do it, I do it 99.99% of the time, but it's not a good habit to have. When the pressure gets too much, it's important to remember that a boss will keep her cool, remember that she's a BOSS and continue to be a BOSS! 

BREAK THE RULES
Rules are totally meant to be broken. Why else would they be there? The glass ceiling, or that invisible barrier that's holding you back demands to be broken. A boss would never allow a silly set of rules to stop her from achieving her goal, unless they're for safety of course. 

BE INDEPENDENT
I definitely struggle to become independent from time to time, but as the successful boss I strive to be, I know that working life out on my own is a big part of growing up. Leaning on people for support is natural and always helpful, but if a boss wants to do something on her own, she'll do it on her own!

KEEP CREATING
The ideas never stop coming. A dry spell happens every so often, but it's never the end of the world. The bright ideas notepad is never too far away and full of creative concepts, whether they will be the winner or not. Drafts are the stepping stones to success. 

LOVE ROUTINES
A solid routine is the way forward. It's how the day gets started and how it ends. Plus it keeps the day going and everything in order - just the way a boss likes it. There's something about knowing what's coming that brings peace to the mind. 

REMAIN ORGANISED
Pretty much needed at any given time, but especially for a boss. To create a successful routine, you have to be organised in the first place. Developing this skill takes time and training but it's always worth it.

WORK HARD, PLAY HARDER
As much fun as success may be, having fun is way better. There's something about hard work that makes the pay-off ten thousand times better. The greatest part? Loving what you do and doing what you love. As the weekend rolls around, have fun!

EDUCATE YOURSELF
Bad-ass bosses are smart. They're smart in whatever field they want to feel smart in. It could be any topic or activity under the sun, but education is incredibly important. Not only is it an enormous luxury to be able to learn, but also beneficial for future boss adventures. 

STAY FOCUSED
It's all fun and games until something goes wrong and you lose the will to continue. That's a big no-no for a boss. Nothing throws them off, no one puts them off. If a boss wants to achieve she WILL achieve. Say this out-loud every so often, and keep your eyes on the prize. 

LOVE YOURSELF
A boss certainly isn't bothered about the opinions of others. Success looks different to everybody. You don't necessarily need to compete with or copy people to do well. Just be confident in you. Love yourself. And you'll become the next big BOSS!
anikamay
A couple of my BOSS must-haves:



5 Ways to Stay Healthy This Summer

17 July 2017

The summer is upon us and it is the perfect time to get outdoors and have fun. Already on Anika May we set out 5 achievable summer goals that we believed would make the summer that bit more special. In this post we look at 5 ways to stay healthy this summer.


Avoid Sunburn

Sunburn is one way to really put a dampener on your summer holidays and day-to-day activities. Vitamin D is very good for you but too much sunlight and you could end up spending a lot of the summer indoors. Studies show that sunburn increases the chances of certain skin cancers. The easiest way to avoid sunburn is to make sure you apply plenty of sunscreen throughout the day. This way you will get all the benefits of being outdoors without having to worry about the sun.


Eat Healthy

Make the summer the start of your healthy eating diet. The summer months will be full of food markets and you can use these as an excuse to try new and exciting foods. The summer days are also perfect for outdoor cooking along with salads and other healthy dishes. If you need any inspiration Good House Keeping made a list of over 60 summer dishes. Make this summer the one where you change your diet. 


Make Plans With Friends

Long summer days are perfect to spend with friends at the beach, parks or even at the local pub. Sometimes it can feel that our lives are too busy to make plans and we can end up isolating ourselves. Use the summer as an excuse to spend some quality time with your pals. Activities like camping are a perfect way to take advantage of the warm weather and the great outdoors. 


Take Up a New Sport

Why not use the summer to try a new sport. Getting the motivation to exercise can be challenging and sometimes you need a fresh start. The clear weather is great for playing outdoor sports with your friends and family. If you’re feeling really adventurous you may want to head to the beach and try a water sport like surfing or body boarding. Nothing says summer like surf culture and to get you in the mood you could watch a film like Blue Crush. Surf culture is an important part of pop culture with different types of media using it to enhance the summer feel. One notable company is digital gaming platform Spin Genie who promote the lifestyle through their Wild Water slots game. Be sure to try something adventurous and make your summer is truly something to remember. 


Visit a New Place

Don’t stay at home during the summer. Use the free days to visit somewhere new. This could be a new country or even a new part of the UK. For example, The Guardian ran a list of the six best festivals on the UK coast this summer. Why not take the leap and visit a new place with your friends or family. Not only will it give you something to do but it will get you outdoors. If you need any more encouragement, Positive Health Wellness made a list of 8 reasons why travelling is good for your health.

We hope this list has encouraged you to have a healthy summer. The most important part of any summer season is that you stay happy.
This post is a guest post. 

Dear Teenage Me

10 July 2017

dear teenage me, anika may, winter style, winter coat, blogger style, winter fashion, ootd, floral dress, winter florals
Dear Teenage Me,

It’s officially been two whole years since you were a teenager and so much has changed. Let’s just say I’m writing this from the future, and I have some tips to help you through those rough years.
So, you’re thirteen. You’ve been in school for about a year and a half and so far, you’re loving it. Here’s my first tip: stay positive, because there are numerous factors that will try to dim your light. Friends, teachers, family and even your surroundings. Don’t let those negative vibes get into your heart. One more thing… do not create a Facebook account and set a pair of Converse as your profile photo.

Now you’re fourteen. Your first crush just passed you in the hallway and he’s dating your best friend. Don’t stress about him, boys are trash. Actually, don’t stress about anything. You’ve already completed your first proper exam and to be honest: they all feel like that. They’re not that big of a deal and in five years you’ll look back and laugh at how silly you were.

You made it to fifteen. Life is shooting by, and you’re desperate for it to slow down. Right now, is the prime of teenage life so make as many memories as possible. Friends will come and go, but those memories will last forever. You’ll finally invest in that camera you were desperate for, and start up your first blog: Mannequin Mode. Oh, and you’ll discover Tumblr – that’s loads of fun.
dear teenage me, anika may, winter style, winter coat, blogger style, winter fashion, ootd, floral dress, winter florals
Hurray, sixteen! Bebo is long gone, and Facebook is pretty dead to you too. Now a couple of things are legal for you, but it doesn’t mean you have to do them all. I’m begging you, stop flirting with your science partner and focus on your GCSE’s. You know what you want to do, fall in love with it. And try blogging again, I really think you’ll like it.

So seventeen has rolled around and you feel no different. Although that whole adult thing is starting to set in. Don’t be scared! Remember when I said negative feelings have no room in your heart? That still applies. Sixth form is in full swing and it’s truly your time to shine. You may only have a few friends, but don’t lose that confidence. Don’t let anxiety win.

Congratulations, you reached eighteen. I guess you ignored my previous advice because it seems anxiety is ruling your life. But not to worry, you’ll start taking the steps to fight it, you just have to accept it. Everyone’s pushing you to go to university but you hate school and know you don’t want to go. Don’t bother with UCAS and don’t let anyone bully you into it. Now that you’re legally an adult, you can buy alcohol – not that you weren’t drinking it like orange juice before. Chill out with that. You know that blog, Anika May? Keep going with that.

Nineteen! Last year of being a teen and the time you want to mature and become more independent. You’ll get your first job during this year and hate it. But that’s normal. There’s people there that will trigger your anxiety and those down days. But focus on the good, and it’ll be over soon. That doctor’s appointment you booked? Go. Forget the opinions of others and you’ll soon start to see that confidence shine. Be happy with your body, your face and your mind. Once you believe it, you’ll see it. I promise.

There’s Just Something About Nature

6 July 2017

I can’t put my finger on it, but there’s something about being outdoors that does wonders for my mind. And the weird thing is, I’m not an outdoorsy person at all. I’ve been camping once in my entire life, and it was for a Year 9 school trip… it was compulsory. And my experience wasn’t great, I was forced to eat Quorn (I hate Quorn) and had to take part in orientation: basically an activity which involves 14-year-old children running around a field looking for signposts – not fun.
I’m also terrified of most insects. In fact, all of them. Autumn-time is great, because they all disappear (apart from September which is known as #ScarySpiderSeason). Basically, I don’t love being outside. I can be a bit of a couch potato and once stayed in my room for 18 hours straight.

However, recently, I’ve been doing a lot more yoga and trying to get out more, especially because it’s summer. I live in one of the most scenic areas of West Yorkshire, so I’ve always loved exploring the woods and moors. But exercise is incredibly important to me too. I’m still working on the diet side, but taking a walk is easy and effortless. I’ve even started running! Since stepping out the door a little more, I’ve noticed how much clearer everything is when I’m surrounded by nature. A natural environment provides a clear mind and it’s astounding seeing the benefits. Not only on my physical health, but also my mental.
As we’re already into July and well into summer (how?!), I’m making it a goal to get out at least five times a week. You should join me, it’ll be fun! Now that I have my Snapchat up and running, I like to document basically everything. There truly is something magical about nature. The sound of birds singing, the way trees light up in the sunlight and even the smell of cow manure. It all delivers a fresh outlook. If you’re ever stress or struggling with something, I would totally suggest taking a walk, a jog or a run. Even if that means driving a little while to get somewhere quiet.

Hiking will be next for me. I’m definitely looking for some nice spots to explore around the UK, so if you have any suggestions let me know!


Have a great week!

3 Reasons Why Rejection Is a Good Thing

2 July 2017

Rejection is definitely a bitter pill to swallow. It’s not something that many take lightly, and certainly something many take personally. I’ve had my fair share of rejection in life, from quite a few angles, but it doesn’t always have to be the end of the world. Whether it’s from a job, a loved one or your pet cat – sometimes rejection can be a good thing.

It’s a chance to grow
Once rejection hits, you have the opportunity to let it destroy you, or make you stronger. Everyone’s heard the whole “what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger” motto, and it’s true. Self-doubt can be converted into self-reflection and provides the motivation to change those little things that would make you a better person, to your own standards of course. Sometimes, all that’s needed is that kick up the bum or slap in the face to alter an outlook on life or create room to grow.
It’s a chance to start over
Ever look back at rejection and think: “Thank goodness that happened”? I do. There’s been jobs I was desperate to have, thinking it was going to be the greatest step in my life. Then when I didn’t get the position I wanted, I thought “…oh well”. Now looking back, I truly feel grateful the opportunity wasn’t handed to me because I got the chance to start over, and find something better. It’s good to remember there’s always something better around the corner.
You took a risk
Life gets a little boring if you only ever play it safe. Although it’s good sometimes to refuse to gamble, at the same time, it’s important to take a risk and put yourself out there. That’s how we learn life lessons and figure out the type of person we want to be. No matter what form the rejection comes in, you still took a risk, even if it didn’t pay off. It’s something to learn from and something to remember.
Let downs make victories feel better
It’s known that you appreciate something more, after losing something first. Well, losing out on something, or being rejected in some way makes acceptance taste that much sweeter. It’s like the giant payoff after a long wait, or countless failed attempts. I always think of it as playing one of those basketball arcade games. I’m terrible at them, and hardly get any in, but the minute one ball falls through the basket, I feel awesome and I’m on a roll. The same applies to rejection! You may have faced your fair share of no’s in the past, but that one yes is going to mean so much more.


5 Achievable Summer Goals

28 June 2017

Eldwick, UK
Summer is well underway at the moment, and I’m loving every minute of it. Despite the sudden heat in the UK, which everyone seems to be dealing (struggling) with in their own way, I’m welcoming the rise in temperature. Summer for me, is the time to get stuff done. The days are longer, much lighter and easier to handle. As much as I love the cosiness of winter, waking up when it’s dark and coming home when it’s dark makes me want to curl up with a film, rather than run the world.

01. Put on a new personality.
Personally, I’m a little negative. I always say it’s me being realistic but actually I’m just being a bit of a downer. After taking inspiration from new friends, bloggers and public figures that I admire, I’ve decided to switch up the way I see the world a little bit. I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts that my aim is to be more positive, and summer is the perfect time to do so! It’s bright outside, and I’m like 80% sure that affects mood. I know all I want to do is sing, dance and have a good time when the sun appears, which means much more optimism.
Not that there’s anything wrong with my current personality, I’ve always been taught there’s room for improvement. Grab a mirror and take a look, what do I want to change inside. Maybe the sarcastic comments? The snappy attitude? The negative outlook? They’re just a couple of things I want to get rid of. I think in the long run, a little self-reflection is incredibly beneficial. I’m 21 and still growing, so summer’s the time to get that kick up the bum.
02. Take thousands of photos.
I feel like this goal is a very “just girly things” kind of goal, but it still counts. As a freelance photographer, I’m always taking photos. Like, constantly. But most the photos I take are for work or as a hobby. I have a DSLR, and I want to pick it up, get out of town and take a bunch of photos with my friends. Not some weak Snapchat videos with frilly filters and fuzzy audio. Some real photographs that I can look back on in thirty years and tear up at (awwwww). They say you should live in the moment, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, but I also think it’s important to capture the moment the best way you can.
Some are happy with the mental image that lasts forever. I have the memory of a goldfish and can’t even remember what I had for breakfast this morning let alone what I did with my friends last summer. Photos make me happy, so I wanna take waaaaay more.

03. Be an adult.
I guess this is an odd one, but a truthful one. I’m 21-years-old, which is classed as an adult pretty much everywhere in the world. But sometimes, I live like a 12-year-old, depending on my mum and not wanting to face a very fast-paced life. That’s got to stop, or at least chill out a bit. Being older definitely scares me, and I know I’m not alone in that boat. There’s something about being independent that’s empowering but terrifying. I’m always crazy shocked when there’s a 18-year-old living on her own, with a job, a car, and a dog named Bentley.
Comparison can certainly be a mood-killer, but not if I use it for inspiration. Sometimes I need to grow up a bit, and aiming to be a little more independent and being open to growing is the way to do that this summer.
04. Party hard. Work harder.
As I’ve said 300 times, I’m 21, which also means I can drink all over the world (whoop)! I’m a bit of a party animal when I want to be, so every opportunity to have a good time is going to be taken this summer. It’s an easy goal to have and one that’s definitely achievable. Whether it’s a one-woman rave or this season’s coolest after party – I’m there.
At the same time, I also want to dominate my secular game. I currently work for a Yorkshire-based charity that’s kind of like my baby. As its non-government funded, I work my bum off with the staff to keep us afloat and it’s very rewarding when we receive a donation for our hard work or an extra like on Facebook. That feeling is only felt after working hard, so even though the sun’s out, I might not always be. I totally want to have fun, that’s part of being young, but at the same time it’s important to build a foundation for life and something to be proud of.

05. Read a ton of books.
Maybe not literally, but close. I bought a whole shelf’s worth of books in the spring, with the intention of finishing them all by then end of August. So far, I’m three books in and have quite a few to go but I couldn’t be happier. One of the main reasons I read is for entertainment, but I also love to expand my vocabulary and have something else to think about rather than the mess the world is falling into. One thing that’s different about my choice in books this year, is that I’m reading them for me. A lot of the time, we’re influenced by other people into what we think we should be doing.
Well I’m done with that, I’ll read whatever I want to read and do whatever I want to do. Maybe I don’t want to read 13th century literature while I lounge in the sunshine – doesn’t mean I’m any less of a person or book-lover and the same applies to everyone else.

One thing I noted while writing this post, is that it’s my summer. And your summer is your summer. Set your own goals, achieve your own dreams, and imagine whatever makes you happy, because without that, it’s very hard to have a hope. Happy summer!

Ten Thoughts for Thursday

22 June 2017

Leeds, UK
#1 You are not alone
It’s always good to remember there are other people in this boat with you. I often put myself in my own little bubble, and it’s not the best way to deal with things. You’re never alone!

#2 There’s room for improvement
I always like to think there’s a chance for something to get better. There’s growing space in most situations, so it’s time to notice that space and use it.

#3 It’s not the end of the world
Although it may certainly feel like it. It’s difficult to find comfort in the mess of today’s world, but it certainly isn’t the end.

#4 Smile back
There’s something really special about smiling back when you make eye contact with someone. In Yorkshire it’s a normal thing, but I think the whole world should do it.

#5 Just do it
Quoting one of the biggest brands, but one of the best sayings. That thing you’ve been avoiding all week – get it over with.

#6 Do what brings you joy
I hate anything that feels like a chore as much as the next person, which is why it’s vital to save some time for the joyful things in life.

#7 Watch some cartoons
I’m a big girl but SpongeBob will always make me smile. It’s an odd fact, but I know I’m not the only. Throw on an animated series and have a laugh.

#8 Forget the past
What’s done is done. Just take the lesson, accept the principle and move on. You only ever move the direction you’re facing, so turn around.

#9 Value everything
Sometimes it takes a shock in life for us to focus on what’s really special in life. Why not just value those things, or people, while they’re there?

And finally, #10 Pizza is awesome

Unless you seriously hate pizza, pizza is the best. I had a Domino's this week, and it brought me so much joy I just had to add it to today's post. 
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