One Little Happy Thing

Quirky home decor & lifestyle blog

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FOMO – the things you need to remember.

If you’ve read any of my previous blog posts you’ll know that I’ve mentioned FOMO (fear of missing out) several times.

But what is FOMO?

FOMO is defined as anxiety that an exciting or interesting event may currently be happening elsewhere, often aroused by posts seen on social media.

So in a nutshell, it’s that little twinge of jealousy you feel when you see photos of a friend at an awesome looking party, or a family member at the beach, or someone with a cute puppy. And it’s something which if you don’t recognize being a problem, it will consume you.

I don’t make that statement lightly. After doing some pretty extensive googling the facts are a little bit scary. Increased rates of anxiety, depression and body image issues all stem from the dreaded FOMO.

If you are on any social media network I’m sure you know exactly what I’m talking about, even if you’ve never heard of FOMO before. Like “keeping up with the jones’s” it pushes us to want more, to have better things so that we can take pretty pictures and post them for likes. It also makes us want to go to all of the parties and events for fear that we would miss something amazing and life changing.

But just because you use social media doesn’t mean you have to be a victim to FOMO. Here’s a few things you need to remember every time you feel that twinge. Recognizing and understanding is half way to overcoming.

What you need to know about FOMO

Social media doesn’t represent real life.

This is the crux of the issue. Whatever someone posts to any social media network is the glossy, perfectly lit, perfectly posed version of their life. They are the best bits, with all the negative and less than glamorous parts edited out.

Photos of people laying on golden beaches with perfectly blue skies are aplenty on Facebook. But do you ever see the images of someone peeling their sunburned skin off their dry bits? No, you don’t.

Real life is both beautiful and disgusting. But obviously only the beautiful things are going to get likes and shares and follows. So obviously we’re only going to show the best bits!

It’s important to remember this every time you get that pang of FOMO, or even if you don’t. What I like doing is thinking about what happens two seconds after the photo has been taken, normally that the person posting it has gotten bored and started picking their nose or something equally gross.

No two people enjoy the same things.

I’m the kind of person who would much rather stay in on a Friday night, watch a film with my partner and cuddle our dog. But I know that isn’t for everyone. Much like some people enjoy going out drinking with friends.

And do you know how much flack I get for not being someone who enjoys going out and drinking the night away? The answer is a lot. I’m constantly being told that I’m not living, that I’m acting too old for my age, blah blah blah.

But I digress. Just because you have friends that are posting constant pictures of being out, drinking and partying, doesn’t mean you have to. There is a pressure put on us twenty-somethings to be a little bit wild and carefree, but you don’t have to if it isn’t something you enjoy.

And if it is something you enjoy, then remember not all parties are the same. The photos posted can be misleading at best, everyone could be sat on their phones only looking up to grab another drink. I’ve been to a few parties like this. The photos looked amazing, but sadly the party itself wasn’t.

Comparing yourself to someone else is dangerous.

When someone posts a beautiful selfie on Instagram do you start looking at yourself differently? Do you ask why you can’t look that good? If you do, then stop doing that. The human face is a wonderful thing, and it comes in all sorts of exciting and varying forms.

With the perfect angle and the right filters everyone has the potential to look like a supermodel. But like I’ve said before, it isn’t real life. That person probably doesn’t look like that all the time. And you shouldn’t expect yourself to either.

Comparing yourself to another person is like comparing a rose to a lily. Both are completely different colours, shapes and sizes, but both are equally as perfect and as beautiful. You, yes you lovely reader, are perfect and beautiful.

You know why don’t you? Because you look the exact way you are supposed to. Your ancestors’ genes have all compiled together into this wonderful concoction that is your face, and your body shape, and your hair colour, and every little bit about you.

And do you know what you achieve through comparing yourself to somebody else? Absolutely nothing, apart from feeling a bit worse about yourself. You don’t have to do that to yourself so please stop.

On a side note, this is all being written by someone who was recently told that I’d be a great beauty if I lost some weight. I’m not conventionally beautiful. I am in no way slim. But this is the body and face I’ve got so I’m going to make the most of it!

Avoid. Avoid. Avoid.

It really is a simple fix if you find yourself struggling with FOMO: delete all of the apps, and don’t go on social media for a while. Pick a time scale and stick to it. It could be a day, a week, a month. However long it takes to stop you compulsively checking and comparing.

I found a few years back I’d be impulsively checking my Facebook, and feeling a bit down in the dumps because my life wasn’t as interesting as other people’s. So I took myself off Facebook for 3 days. Its all it took to reset my focus.

I’d suggest to anyone to delete the apps from their phones and tablets, or to at least hide them (I make sure my social media apps aren’t on my home screen) and that way you’re putting yourself out of harm’s way.

If you’ve enjoyed this post, you may be interested to read one of my other posts Why you need a no screen night. For some inspiration on how to break away, also check out 10 things to do on a no screen night.

How to cope with feeling unappreciated.

I’m in a pretty rubbish situation at the moment with regards to work. I’m stuck in an office job which doesn’t inspire me, and to be quite frank I feel unappreciated most days. This obviously isn’t good for my overall sense of well being.

We’ve recently had a pay review, and I consider myself a hard worker. I don’t enjoy the job but I put everything I have into doing as much as possible, to the highest possibly quality. The pay review does not reflect this. Pretty tricky to get over working at full pelt and then not getting the appreciation you feel you deserve for it.

But, like everything negative which happens in my life, I’m trying to use this as a learning curve. How can I turn this negative situation into a positive? How can I use these feelings to grow as a human being and become better for it?

This doesn’t necessarily have to be with regards to work either. How many times in your personal life do you feel that someone doesn’t completely appreciate what you do for them? It could be your parents, your partner, your friends. It happens a lot.

But luckily I think it can be pretty easy to overcome. Obviously the spectrum of emotion is massive, and you’ll never stop feeling it, but you can learn how to cope with these feelings and turn them into something positive within your life!

How to cope with feeling unappreciated

Do it for you.

Whatever it is that you’re doing, don’t do it for someone else. Do it for you. In this way your sense of achievement isn’t reliant on how someone else reacts to whatever you have done. You won’t be waiting for somebody else to say “Good job” and give you a pat on the back, you can do that yourself.

Set yourself a goal, and achieve it. Internally you can give yourself a big high five, maybe even give yourself a little treat for doing it. But do it all for you. I’m an absolutely huge fan of To Do lists, make yourself one and feel great about everything you tick off.

Stop caring what other people think.

This is such a massive thing. Being empathetic is brilliant, caring about other people is wonderful, but caring about how they perceive you is pointless.

If you stop caring what your boss thinks of you, you won’t be trying to compete with your colleagues to be the best on the team. I know this is difficult for purely commission based jobs, but you can try it.

Instead of focusing on what they think, you can focus on the task at hand, whether it be creating a spreadsheet under a deadline or doing the hoovering before your Mum comes round for dinner. It is applicable across so much of your life.

And it does strongly link to the previous tip. At first glance it can seem selfish, but it’s not. There is a fine line between self care and self obsession, but with the right tools and advice you can learn to tread that line perfectly.

Take a step back.

So many times I find myself getting far too involved in my work. I have a really high work ethic and I like everything to be totally perfect 100% of the time. But this isn’t practical.

By taking a step back from the situation you’re in you can look at it from an outside perspective. You can see clearly what is actually required of you and can formulate a plan to tackle this.

By doing this you’re also making yourself less personally invested in what you are doing. You can think about things more pragmatically and any response back to what has happened won’t feel as personal. You’re much less likely to feel like you’re unappreciated if you’re not emotionally invested in the task at hand.

Express the fact that you feel unappreciated.

This is relevant for work and personal life. If you’ve tried all the above steps and still feeling unappreciated then you need to vocalize that. It may be that the other people involved are completely unaware of this.

People are not mind readers. If you don’t tell people how you feel how are they supposed to know? It’s completely justified that if you feel unappreciated you should tell the other parties involved that you feel this way, and why you feel this way.

Talking about emotions can be a minefield. Intentions can be misconstrued, but if you discuss your feelings rationally and without judgement everyone will end up feeling better. I’m sure if someone told you that they felt you didn’t appreciate what they did for you, you would possible feel a little upset with yourself about that.

By discussing how you feel openly you’re creating an honest dialogue. It could be that they don’t feel your contribution was significant to warrant any gratitude, but that they will work harder to make you feel appreciated in the future.

Just make sure you don’t get upset, and never personally attack another person for your own emotions. That’s a sure fire way to cause an argument. No one wants that.

Walk away.

If all else fails and you cannot get to a point where you feel comfortable with your situation, leave it. You don’t have to work with a company who doesn’t appreciate what you do. Much like you don’t have to stay with a partner who doesn’t appreciate your efforts.

I know this is a pretty strong response, but if you can honestly say you have tried everything else to deal with how you’re feeling, then what other action can you take? Feeling unappreciated is a pretty glum place to be emotionally. You have a right to feel like what you do is worth something.

This is something I’m strongly considering in my work life. It’s not easy leaving a job, especially if you’ve been there a number of years, but when it comes to your long term happiness I consider that a small hurdle to jump. Wish me luck in the comments guys.

The easy way to find your passion in life.

Having something in your life which you are passionate is important for several reasons: it will keep you going through the tough times, it will motivate you to improve yourself in many ways and it will have a positive effect on the people around you too.

But it’s not easy finding something to be passionate about.

Modern life is difficult. It can feel like we’re being pushed from pillar to post and forced into a little mould. But finding something to get passionate about will set you apart.

I’m currently the grand old age of 25, and until recently I wasn’t really sure what my passion in life was. I studied photography at college and thought that may be, but that fizzled out when I realised trying to make a living from it was damaging my happiness. Then it was horror films which I thought were my passion, but now I realize as much as I love horror films, I don’t want to spend all day everyday watching them.

But then a few months ago I decided to start blogging again. I originally started this blog as a way of coping through a tricky time in my life. It never gained much ground and I soon forgot about it. But I decided to come back.

And since then, I think I can say I have definitely found my passion: writing. I love writing. I love thinking about things to write. I love researching for something I’m interested in.

And by a lot of standards I’ve found my passion fairly young. Some don’t realise what really motivates them until they’re retired. But that’s not a problem. Finding your passion is the most important thing, not when.

So, I’ve been thinking about ways which the process of finding it could be broken down into manageable chunks to give those of you who are still searching a better idea of how to find it.


The easy way to find your passion

Introvert or extrovert?

Whether you are more introverted or extroverted is important to narrowing down what you may be passionate about. Introverted people tend to prefer lone tasks, like writing or general crafting. However extroverted people tend to prefer team endeavours, like sports or public speaking.

Are you a sitter or a mover?

Would you rather spend 6 hours sitting at your desk tapping away at the keyboard, or go for a 10 mile hike through the wilderness? Regardless of whether you are introverted or extroverted this is another super important question.

If you prefer solitary stationary pursuits then something craft based probably is for you. If you like being around people and moving around then sports would be for you. Now, there will be cross overs. Being an introvert but loving to move means something like hiking would be perfect. Being extroverted but enjoying sitting still could mean maybe cooking then hosting a dinner party after?

Do you want to create?

Arts and crafts is such a massively broad genre of hobbies and one that is increasingly popular. Narrow this down first. If you want to create things then immediately you know you need to start looking into hobbies based around the arts, whether that be crochet, writing, cooking or upcycling.

If creating isn’t for you, then maybe people are more your jam. You could consider volunteer work, joining a sports league or maybe even creating a group effort with some friends if you share some similar interests.

Not keen on either of those ideas? It would be that both creating and being around people isn’t really for you. Consider hiking, outdoors swimming, maybe even dog walking if you like animals.

Try things out!

So you’ve narrowed it down slightly, you know whether you want to be alone or with other people, and whether you want to be sat down for it or moving. Now, you’ve gotta try things out.

Pinterest is a fantastic source for hobby ideas, and I’ve written another post 101 hobby ideas for people who have no idea. Check it out and find 3 things that you might enjoy. Then make time in your diary to try each out.

You will know immediately if the hobby you’ve tried is for you. You’ll enjoy it. And be thinking about when you can do it again.


Hopefully after going through these steps you should have an idea of what kind of thing you may be interested in, with some ideas of things to try aswell. I’d love to hear in the comments if you’ve found something to be passionate about after reading through this post!


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Having a hobby will improve your life, find out how.

Hobbies are brilliant. It’s not work and yet we can still be productive and get things done. In fact I quite often feel like I get more done with my hobbies than I do with my paid work. Don’t tell my boss though.

Now, what is a hobby? A hobby is something you are passionate about, but don’t make a living from. You do it for the pure enjoyment of it.

Some people take their hobbies and turn it into a career, but for most of us that’s an impossible dream.

Hobbies can be something you do on your own, or do as part of a group. It doesn’t really matter which, but I guess it depends on whether you’re introverted or extroverted.

If you don’t have a hobby, then you’re missing out. They’re fun, relaxing and most of all they give you something to get passionate about. Finding the right hobby for you may take a little bit of time, but it is worth it.

Here’s how it will change your life.


How having a hobby will improve your life.


You will feel happier.

Breaking away from the daily grind for even just an hour a day will reduce your blood pressure for sure. It doesn’t matter what it is. High impact sports will have the same effect on your sense of wellbeing as crocheting a blanket.

You will feel more passionate.

The interest you have in your hobby will naturally roll over into your day to day life. You’ll feel more focused at work, your relationships will benefit, and you’ll find it easier to enjoy other aspects of your life.

Your days will go quicker.

With something in your life you are passionate and excited about, all of a sudden your days will pass quicker. Slogging your way through work becomes easier because you can think about all the fun things you can do outside of work.

You’ll never be bored again.

All of your spare time will be consumed with the hobby, and all of your spare thoughts too. Find something you are passionate about and you will never ever be bored again. Whenever you do find yourself with a spare hour you have something you can do to fill the time.

Learning new things will become really really fun.

I have a passion for learning new things anyway, but it can be daunting for some. But with your chosen hobby learning new things will become exciting! Through my love of photography I’ve also learnt how to use Photoshop and other design software. Not something I’d be interested alone, but mix the 2 together and it’s all fun.

You can apply your new skills to your daily life.

Regardless of what your hobby is you could take aspects from it to bring into your daily life. Big fan of team sports? You’ll become better at working with others. Fan of knitting? You have concentration skills my friend. There is tonnes you can take from any hobby.

Not sure where to start?

I’ve created a list of 50 hobby ideas for those of you have may not be sure where to start. It’s over here. Give it a read through and try something for yourself.


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50 hobby ideas for people who have no idea.

Fancy getting yourself a hobby but have no idea where to start? Check out my list of potential hobbies you could try. Pick a few, try them out, and let me know in the comments how you get on.

Hobby ideas for people with no idea

1. Knitting.

2. Crochet.

3. Cross stitch.

4. Embroidery.

5. Quilt making.

6. Decoupage.

7. Upcycling.

8. Scrapbooking.

9. Pencil drawing.

10. Water colour painting.

11. Oil painting.

12. Adult colouring books.

13. Writing short stories.

14. Reading novels.

15. Reading comics.

16. Drawing comics.

17. Photography.

18. Graphic design.

19. Photo manipulation (photoshop).

20. Silk screening.

21. Lino cutting.

22. Calligraphy.

23. Litter picking.

24. Volunteer work at an animal shelter.

25. Cooking.

26. Baking.

27. Watching documentaries.

28. Watching films.

29. Watching anime.

30. Dog walking.

31. Hockey.

32. Basketball.

33. Football.

34. Rugby.

35. Tennis.

36. Badminton.

37. Table tennis.

38. Netball.

39. Yoga.

40. Pilates.

41. Zumba.

42. Spin classes.

43. Cycling.

44. Hiking.

45. Speed walking.

46. Glass blowing.

47. Pottery.

48. Sculpting.

49. Leatherwork.

50. Wood crafting.

List of 50 hobby ideas for people with no idea


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10 little things you should be doing more of.

Wellbeing is a broad subject area. There is mental, physical, spiritual, emotional and so much more to it. But so many of us (myself included) can sometimes forget to look after ourselves as well as we should.

I’ve written longer posts before outlining simple things we could do to improve our lives, but I’ve been thinking of tiny little changes this time. Things so small they won’t take any effort to change, and should be easy to keep up too.

These are little things which should help with your overall sense of wellbeing.


10 little things you should be doing more of


1. Drink more water.

A really easy peasy one! Get yourself a nice water bottle and keep it constantly filled up. I have a water bottle I keep on my work desk which I normally fill up twice a day. When I’m at home I always keep a glass of water handy too.
Keeping the drink within eye sight makes it more likely you’ll remember to drink it. Always have something to hand.

You could add squash or even fresh fruit to it to improve the taste, but don’t be tempted to swap that healthy bottle of water for some fizzy pop!

2. Add fruit and vegetables to your meals.

Regardless of what you’re planning on eating, add some fruit or veg to it. In the morning I tend to either have toast or overnight oats for breakfast. Adding some chopped up strawberries or some grapes on the side is easy.

Same with lunch and dinners. Eat whatever you would normally eat, but add a side salad. Or a fruit salad for dessert.

Keeping your fridge stocked up with fruit and veg makes it easier to add these items in. Same with the water, having them readily available and on show reminds you that you need more.

3. Go to bed 30 minutes earlier.

It’s a pretty simple one? I think we can all be guilty of staying up way past bedtime. There’s only so many hours in the day and so much to do! But setting yourself a bed time which is 30minutes earlier will force you into getting all those things done quicker.

You’ll also be likely to be more tired if you’ve had a busier evening rather than one sat lazing around in front of the TV or tapping away on your phone.

4. Get up 30 minutes earlier.

Aha, you thought you were going to be getting more sleep didn’t you? Studies show that getting more than enough sleep isn’t actually a good thing. Generally we need somewhere between 6-8 hours depending on your activity levels and age. Make sure you get enough by adjusting your bed time, but still make sure you wake up early.

Waking up early will give you more time in the morning to get yourself prepared for the day ahead. This could be making lunches for the family, or allowing yourself 30 minutes worth of reading before the onslaught begins.

5. Exercise.

Whatever exercise you like. I love yoga, some people love running; find what works for you and put together a routine. Ideally this should be every day, but at the very least make sure you’re doing it 3 times a week.

If exercise is an unfamiliar concept to you (which isn’t surprising, before finding yoga I never did any exercise) break yourself in gently, and do some research on warming up and cooling down.

Also, you need to find the right time for you to exercise. Some prefer morning, some prefer night. Figure out when is best and make it happen.

6. Alone time.

Make time in your day for you. Forget the kids, forget the friends, forget the partner: this time is for you, and you alone. I know this is difficult when you have kids or a hectic social life, but spending time alone is important for your wellbeing.

Like with the exercise routine, you need to find what works for you. It could be that waking up 30 minutes earlier means that time is for you. Or you could go be alone in a park during your lunch break at work. It could even be something small like taking an extra few minutes in the shower to collect your thoughts.

7. Cultural indulgence.

Bit of a different one, but one I think is important. You need to find as much time as possible to indulge in a bit of culture. This could be as small as visiting your local library and browsing through the books, or planning a visit to a big city for a day of exploration.

This can be difficult if like me you live somewhere fairly rural with not many attractions nearby. But you’d be surprised, check out Trip Advisor and see if they have any points of interest listed. There could be a sneaky art gallery hidden in plain site or an obscure museum a few miles away.

Life can sometimes feel monotonous, but this breaks that monotony. It’s also quite nice to potentially find a new haunt!

8. Being creative.

I believe everyone has a creative streak somewhere in them. My Dad is a big burly bloke, he likes tractors and raising chickens, but is also a surprisingly good artist when he tries. He may only draw practical plans but they have a certain artistic quality to them, which he’ll deny, but secretly love.

This could be doodling on a notepad, buying some wool and some hooks and attempting crochet, or even making collages of family photos to hang in your living room. Think about something you could maybe make rather than buy for a shop.

There are so many potential creative outlets, but being creative gets the juices pumping in our brains. If you successfully create something which you are quite proud of it’ll be one help of a boost to your mood.

9. Smiling.

This is probably the smallest one on the list. Smile a bit more! Don’t force it, let it come naturally. It seems odd to me that some people avoid smiling because of their teeth or wrinkles or anything. I’ve never met anyone with an ugly smile.

Next time you walk past a stranger, show them a smile. Next time you hear a funny joke from afar, smile away. It doesn’t cost anything and honestly really does improve your mood.

10. Acting like a kid.

This one is my favourite one. Who else misses being 5 years old and being responsible for nothing more than reaching the toilet in time? Yeah, me too. So as often as possible I like to indulge and act like a little kid again.

Finger painting. Getting my hands muddy. Pulling funny faces. Taking silly pictures. The list is endless. Think of something you really enjoyed as a kid, or would enjoy even more as an adult, and go crazy with it. You’ll feel better for it, guaranteed.


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10 little things you should be doing more of

Why honesty is always the best policy.

Click here!

I’m a firm believer that no matter how difficult the truth is, it is always better than a lie.

I was recently in a situation where I had to either tell the truth and potentially upset someone, or lie and make the whole situation go away. And you know what? I told the truth. And the other person was appreciative of that. It wasn’t easy, but it had to be done.

And I know for a fact that if the shoe was on the other foot I would always appreciate the honest truth than an out and out lie.

Obviously the world isn’t completely black and white, so sometimes evading the truth can be easier, but again in the long run I do think it is better to be honest. But I guess if you aren’t asked a specific question you can’t lie if you don’t answer completely? It’s a very grey area, I guess it all depends on your own moral code.

This doesn’t mean you have to be mean with the truth though. First and foremost keeping the situation positive and as happy as possible is necessary. You will feel better for it, and so will the other party involved.

Also, being mean gets you nowhere in life. “You catch more flies with honey than vinegar” rings pretty true doesn’t it? Keeping the people in your life as happy as possible is much more constructive than being known as a mean person.

Honesty is the best policy

People will respect you more if they know you tell the truth.

This one is an absolute fact. Those who lie get known to be liars, and no one wants to be known as a liar. Those who tell the truth are immediately more trustworthy. You know any information you pass to them won’t be passed on else if they say it won’t.

Gaining trust from another person is vital to building and maintaining friendships. We all know a few drama llamas, and surprise surprise these people tend to be liars. And people don’t tend to trust them with their secrets.

You won’t get caught out telling stories.

Another biggy. The more you lie, the more stories you have to tell, and you can easily get caught out in the details. Even something small such as declining an invite somewhere because you’re doing something else. This leads onto further questions: what are doing? Where are you going? Who are you going with? Better to be honest and say you don’t want to go.

Getting caught in the act of lying is hurtful to the other party. And guaranteed they won’t trust you anymore. And that’s a horrible feeling. Also, if you get caught lying it is really uncomfortable and embarrassing for you too. Remember that next time you’re thinking up excuses not to go somewhere.

You will feel less stressed.

Lying is stressful! Even small lies hang over your head like a big black cloud. They drain your energy away through worrying. What if the other person finds out? Will I be in trouble for lying? You don’t need those kinds of thoughts in your head, better to speak the truth and remain stress free. Or as stress free as possible anyway.

The upkeep of the lie is also terrible. It may not happen within days, but eventually someone will ask a question and you’ll be caught out. Who needs that looming over them? Not me.

It is actually easier to tell the truth.

Concocting some story or reasons behind the lie is difficult. Being honest about whatever is happening is easy. No making things up, no having to think through the consequences or the details. It takes time and imagination lie about certain things. Time is precious.

The actual telling of the truth can be difficult, especially if someone’s feelings are involved. But it is how you tell the truth which softens the blow. Same with all my blog posts I feel that a positive spin can be put on anything. Someone has an awful new haircut and asks your opinion? You don’t have to tell them it’s horrible, find a positive aspect to that and work your response from there.


I guess I’m a bit of a dreamer. I wish life was easier for everyone. There would be no lies. There would be no stress. Everyone would get along and we’d all live happily ever after. I know that’s not possibly, but I do know that people can make the world a better place through their own actions. We are all responsible for creating a world which we want to be part of. Even if it is something small like telling the truth a bit more, this makes a difference.


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How I minimize overspending with these easy tips.

For many years I’ve been a chronic overspender. I used to “treat” myself regularly buying tonnes of books and DVDs, and then I had too many books and DVDs so had to buy another bookcase just to house them. An endless cycle of spending.

But, I’ve now realised I need to start saving my money. We want to buy a house (eventually) and we also want to get a dog. All these things cost money. I’d also like to give up my day job and work from home. All these things mean I need to start being more frugal.

We’ve done well with some other tricks I’ve found online: putting the heating on less, buying second hand clothes etc. We’ve also found eating a mainly vegan diet has been brilliant for the budget. A tin of chickpeas is 30p whereas a pack of chicken breasts is £5. No brainer there. Check out my Pinterest board for recipes if you’re interested.

This all only goes so far when you’re still spending too much on things you don’t need. So I’ve been thinking of ways I can train my brain into wanting to spend less money. And so far it seems to be working. Last month I didn’t spend any unnecessary money. Which is a big deal for me.

How am I doing it, I hear you cry? A few ways actually.


Easy tips for money saving through better mental health


No longer buying things as a treat.

This is my biggie which has helped me stop spending so much. Instead of buying things that I don’t really need to treat myself I do things I enjoy instead. For instance, I love going to the cinema, and through my work we get cheap cinema tickets, so instead of spending £20 on books I’ll spend £12 on cinema tickets.

Obviously, that’s still spending, but at least it’s being spent on an occasion rather than just an object. So if I really feel like treating myself but don’t want to spend money, I’ll either go visit my niece (who is 2, completely adorable and makes me happy) or we’ll go for a walk somewhere lovely. All free things and make me feel ten times happier than any book ever could.

Break the emotional attachment you have to things.

Another biggie. Things are just that: things. Apart from a few items which hold true sentimental value, like the Bible my Grandad gave me and a beautiful photo of my Great Grandmother, I’m trying to hold no emotional connection to an object.

I keep telling myself every time I walk past my bookshelf bursting with junk that it doesn’t matter. And every day I’m getting closer and closer to getting rid of the lot. I now see that space as wasted rather than filled with items I care about.

Persistence is key with this one. You have to keep telling yourself that these things don’t matter. Especially when it comes to throwing anything away. Goodbyes are always hard.

Ask yourself 3 questions before buying.

Obviously there are certain things which we need to buy to live, like food and replacement clothes. But before buying anything else I ask myself:

· Do I need it?
· Do we have space for it?
· Is this the cheapest price?

If I answer no to the top 2 questions it doesn’t get bought, and it gets forgotten about. If I only answer no to the bottom question I’ll check it out online and see if I can get it cheaper. At least that way I’m making sure I’m getting the best possible price for it.

I also like to ask myself if I’m likely to ever see it again, but this only really applies to art and sculptures. I’m a bit of a print fiend, I love having beautiful images on the walls, but I know I’ve got too many. But if I see something completely unique that I’ll never find again I will contemplate it, but try to avoid.

Continual self care.

If you maintain a steady level of self care the urge to “treat” yourself through spending will diminish. I’ve written another blog post about self care 10 simple self care ideas in 10 minutes or less which explains why self care is so important, and also another post 101 ideas for simple self care with plenty of ideas of what you can do to improve your self care.

A lot of the things on the list are free, or very cheap. The thing is with self care is that it’s really simple to pay more attention to looking after yourself, and doesn’t have to cost the Earth. Once you’ve tried it, you won’t forget about it again.


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How I used Hygge to survive winter

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How I used hygge to survive winter

Winter is a struggle. The days are shorter, the nights colder and life just seems a little grey. With all the positive thinking I can muster I manage to make it through, but this winter was slightly different. I stumbled across hygge.

If you’ve been on my blog before you’ve probably seen my other post, My top ten tips to bring Hygge into your life, but now as winter is starting to draw to a close I thought I’m summarize just how hygge has helped me cope.

If you’re not sure what hygge is please read my other post as I explain in some detail what it is, and what it means. Its a total buzz word at the moment, and those who have embraced the spirit of it can testify as to the difference it can make in a person’s life.

I’ve still struggled with the winter blues somewhat, but it hasn’t seemed as hard. Here’s just some things I’ve found which have helped.

Always have a comfy blanket to hand.

We have a tartan blanket, not too thick, not too thin, which stays on the arm chair in our living room. It is always to hand. Whenever I start feeling chilly I pull the blanket over and snuggle up. It’s pure comfort and cosiness, and getting wrapped up makes me feel safe.

Plenty of cups of tea.

I’m not much of a coffee drinker, I’ve always preferred tea, whether that be PG Tips or something fruity. Something we invested in was a teapot, which is pretty amazing, and makes the process of having a warm drink just a little more special. It kind of reminds me of being at my Nan’s house. She always makes tea in a teapot, no exceptions. I don’t think she’s ever bought tea bags in her life! And it is the best tea. After being outside for any time during the winter a hot beverage is essential for warming the bones. Love it.

Alone time.

I’m an introvert. I used to hate saying that, but I’ve learnt to accept it about myself. I find spending time around people tiring, even close friends and family. Normally I also struggle to say no to social events (life’s too short am I right) but this year I decided to say no, to saying yes. I made sure to give myself plenty of time alone (or with my partner, his company isn’t tiring ever) doing what I like doing the most, drinking tea and reading books. It has been invaluable time to re-charge my batteries, and also gave me the time I needed to start this blog, something I’ve been wanting to do for a long long time.

Christmas scented candles.

I know, I know, Christmas is only one part of winter. But, the best kind of candles are Christmas scented candles. We bought a huge gingerbread scented candle and left it burning for pretty much the whole season (it had a much longer burn time than I expected, brilliant!). Every time I walked in the house it smelt like freshly baked ginger bread men, I couldn’t think of anything more comforting or homely. Even just thinking about it makes me want to get a new one.

Simpler food.

Since meeting my partner he has gone vegan, and I’ve mostly followed in his footsteps. This has opened our eyes to a whole new outlook on food. The meals we prepare together are generally much healthier, heartier and satisfying than anything I ever cooked before. I’m not going to preach that veganism is the answer to all of life’s ills, but it is definitely something you should look into as the food is so much simpler to prepare. Check out the Vegan Cookbook for beginners, it gives you a lot of information on the important questions people worry about, like where do you get your protein and calcium from. It has some pretty tasty recipes too.

A more basic home.

Back in November we moved into our first place together. We both had bits and pieces of furniture and art but nothing particularly cohesive, so we’ve had the basics but have expanded a lot over the last few months. We’ve stuck to neutral natural tones, dark wooden furniture and a few cacti and succulents. The place feels more homely than any other place I’ve lived in. We’ve kept everything basic, only “splurging” on a new sofa and arm chair (it barely counts as it was over 50% off, with a 15 year guarantee and fits in like it was meant to be).

These are just some of the ways the spirit of hygge has impacted my life over this winter, and has genuinely helped bring some sunshine into some pretty gloomy days. I genuinely believe everyone should take some of the basics and bring them into their lives. It really does make all of the difference.


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