Monday, 6 July 2015

Posted by Ordinarily Quirky On 05:46
What I've Learned In 2014

There's a lot of change that has occurred for me in 2014 and lessons well and truly learned that I'm delighted to have in my back pocket. These are my 3 main life lessons of 2014 that I hope can benefit you guys for 2015:

1. People Actually Don't Change, But Our Perception Of Them Does (It's Not You, It's Them!):

As time goes on, people walk in and out of our lives. Some stay longer than others, but what if they don't walk with us to the New Year? What happened? Well the reason for this is that most likely you began to understand and learn more about the person in a way you didn't like, or vice versa. We could know people for years and be blinded by the bond we have with them that we don't realise we're in a toxic relationship or friendship. The good thing about this is that you learn from their loss in your life that no matter what, it's not you, it's them! 


I say this because in 2014 when I think back, I've either lost contact with someone I thought would always be around, fought with them or basically got fed up of their bullshit and deliberately don't talk to them anymore because I'm tired of it. And at the time when it happened, I did think 'Shit, I'm after wrecking this up for good." But then I remembered my reasons for not being happy in that bond and now I find it a relief to know that anyone I leave behind in the New Year are behind me for a reason.

No one, regardless of how they appear to be, eventually, you will see if they are benefiting your life, because if not, what's the point? Be selfish in your journey because it's exactly that, YOUR journey! Think of it as a path and a line of people along that path. You choose if they come with you or not, because if they do, their life becomes apart of yours and what they bring, whether it's their own drama or baggage, you in turn have to lug it around with you too. So be smart in choosing what other luggage you bring that isn't yours because it can weigh you down. But never feel you have to stay with people just because you always have done. New Years' is a time for change, and it might seem hard at first, but it's happening for a reason, and change is always for the best, especially when it comes to who you pick to be in your life.

2. Yoga Twice A Week And 2 Litres Of Water A Day Will Help You Lose Weight (I Swear!):

It's not a secret to say I've always been conscious of my weight, a lot of us are. Name any diet or trend and I've tried it. From doing the Warrior's Diet (eat one massive meal a day and that's it), to starving yourself (and end up binging later on and feel super shit and fat!) to just eating better and exercising more. But to be honest, at some point even that is hard to keep up. Look, I'm a chocoholic and I can't go to rehab for it so I choose to live and love it! But yes it makes you very, very fat.

I should really take my advice from the previous point and see chocolate as a toxic friend I should get rid of, but hey, I love our time together to much to make that happen! ;)

So back to the water thing. This year on December 15th, I decided fuck this shit, I hate my belly and I want rid of it! So again, I did my usual scrolling through the internet to find out a seriously simple way to lose weight without having to do anything really! And I've always seen how much emphasis water is given when it comes to weight loss but because I never really liked drinking water, I normally brush passed it. 

Yet, for some reason, I took notice of it this time and got myself a large 2litre bottle of River Rock and emptied it (because it tastes like shit!) and refilled it with my own tap water (it's filtered 'cos we live up the mountain so it's reeeeal nice!). I then left it in the fridge to make it extra cold and for about a week I stayed consistant with eating what I wanted and making sure, no matter what, that the bottle was empty by the time I went to sleep.
I drank a little before dinner and some more during and after, but other than that, I just drank it to get rid of it and make myself feel better when it was gone. Then I got to the stage where I was REFILLING THE 2 LITRE BOTTLE! This showed a serious change because at the start I struggled big time to finish it the first time round, like doing this:


But when I got into drinking the full 2 litres properly, what were the results? I'm still chubby, BUT my stomach has flattened so much more, it's actually a little scary. I don't fully understand the science of it but basically the main point of it is:

- Water will help you digest your food better, making your body less cloggy (and fat! Can't forget fat!).

- It gets rid of everything shit in your body through waste which will make you pee a lot of the time but it's worth it if you think all those toxins are definitely better out than in.

- It really will make you eat less food over time. It makes you feel fuller (give it until your 4th day of drinking) and you'll notice those big meals you could eat without breathing between bites become harder than you ever would of thought. You even begin leaving more food and not wanting as much sugary sweets and junk!

So I know it's a common saying to always drink water. But because I've actually tried it, and now I swear by it, just fill a 2 litre bottle of water, incorporate it into your life, and I can guarantee by next New Years' you won't be making the false promise of losing weight because the water will be doing it for you! 

The reason I added in the yoga aspect is because personally I love it. All I did was copy some yoga poses from the internet onto my phone that I know I can do (not wrapping myself into a pretzel anytime soon!) and I do them when I feel I want to. After only 25 minutes of doing some yoga stretches, I would always feel a little more toned than before I started.

 It sounds like magic, and maybe yoga is, but I can't stress enough how simple it is. Just do what I do and tell your Dad not to come into your room for at least 30 minutes because you're transforming yourself into a supermodel. If your dad is anything like mine, that piece of information would go in one ear and out the other, 'cos he's used to me at this stage and my random concepts!

The yoga poses I do are random ones I found online and you can do these simply at home as much as you want, but along with the 2 litres of water, I'd recommend doing some yoga twice a week so you don't force yourself into doing it and it doesn't feel like exercise when you do get around to doing it. I do each stretch for 30 seconds and release and then stretch again for 12 reps, but again, stick to what you're comfortable doing.

 Do each pose for as long as you want. I recommend doing it until you do feel a slight twinge or burn in your muscles because it makes the stretch is working. No pain no gain! 

3. If You're On The Dole, Go Do A Course. If You Don't Like Your Job, Quit! (I Did Both And It Changed My Life Forever!):

I hate the dole system. When I was sitting at home doing nothing, my motivation for job searching plummeted because I was fed up of being turned down, mainly for lack of experience in the jobs I was applying for. I felt I had nowhere to turn and that my life would forever involve a weekly trip to the post office collecting 100 euro. It also made me one grumpy ass bitch because I was so bored and fed up.

 I swear, life is so shit on the dole and the one aspect I hated most about it was how it made me feel like there was no way out. It's a vicious circle that appears to help you, but then when you get up to try and do something, the dole can pull you back in various ways.

Luckily, I decided this time last year to apply for a course and it was the best decision I ever made. For the first time in my life, I actually feel like I'm working towards not just a job, but a career. I've only been doing it since September, but realistically, I'll be finished majority of the whole course by the end of March, and for the sake of getting up and doing something, whether it's costly or not will be so worth it by the end because once I'm qualified, I'm now more open to job offers in the Education and Childcare sector, which is great.

January is the perfect time to look through courses online and find out what is in your area that suits you. Whether it's part-time, full-time, evening courses or weekend courses, it doesn't matter. If it's only for 12 weeks, still go for it! It keeps you busy, you feel like you've accomplished something, but best of all, you realise you're capable of much more than just collecting money every week from the post office.

Any course can give you back your sense of independence, and if you're unsure of what to do, start off with a one year course (that really only lasts from September until April as well as 6 weeks holidays inn between) because then if you don't like it, you still have that area as an option and you can try a different course next time without being contracted into staying with that course for another 3 years.

The dole is a helpful system, but once you're on it, it's so easy to stay reliant on it, and before you know, you're 35, still collecting money and thinking this is shit, I wish I did something with life.

I know as well as anyone else that it has it's problems. But the great thing is, the Social Welfare do give plenty of grants and money schemes to people seeking to start a course. Once they know you'll stick at it and that it's what you want to do, they'll help you on your way. I'm currently on a social welfare money scheme for my course and without it, I wouldn't be able to afford going. But because of that extra bit of financial help, I'm happier in myself, I'm doing something to benefit my future and I'm not wasting away my youth watching television and sitting on my arse feeling sorry for myself.

So if you think the dole life isn't what you want to stay at forever, I definitely would advise you get looking for some sort of course that you feel you will enjoy. Because at the end of the day, it's up to you how you spend your time, it's no one else's job to hand things to you for nothing.

When I was working and living in Dublin, I can honestly say I hated my job. I hated most of the people I worked with and the environment was completely toxic. It turned me into a miserable person and one day, I had the courage to put in my notice and quit. I was so scared and nervous because at the time I was the only one in my family who was working and I felt a lot of people depended on me for financial support. I didn't want to let anyone down. And you can feel like that when you're in a job for so long. 
But the best feeling was when I had my leaving session with all the work people I loved and to be able to come home and say I quit was amazing.

I turned my back on 13 euros an hour 40 hours a week minimum to be happy.

This shows money really can't make you happy, as I was more miserable than I was being on the dole. Quitting gave me a sense of freedom that allowed me to think fully on what I wanted to do with my life, which in turn is how I chose my course and am now on my way to being a Montessori Teacher.

I feel bad for those who are stuck in jobs because they feel they can't get anything else. But you won't know that until you try. It takes a lot to turn your back on a wage, but if it's not for you then why keep going? On your death bed, the first thing you'll think of is 'Why did I stay working there for so long? I wish I had quit.' It's fact (and you can look it up!) that when people were asked on their death bed what regrets did they have, the most common one was that they wished they didn't work as much as they did. Work can be a blessing and a curse, but one thing I have learned is:

Find a job that you love and you'll never work another day in your life!

You just have to be brave and research what you will do with your time once you've quit so that things won't seem as scary when you have a plan. But think about it first, as it took me months of thinking while working to realise I needed to leave.


So those are my 3 main life lessons that I feel helped me for 2015. I hope they helped you guys with any conflicts, worries or choices you have to/want too make for 2015.

Just remember, whatever you chose to do in 2015, I hope it makes you happy! :)

See you all next year! <3


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