When I was in my early twenties I thought I was invincible. Nothing was too hard, nothing unattainable, nothing impossible. When I was in my late twenties I figured out that life is actually pretty damn hard and it scared the living daylights out of me. You can actually end up being made redundant?! You can actually have things stolen from you?! You can actually screw up your taxes?! In my early thirties I finally realised that even if things do get hard and you lose your marbles over everything, you know you’ll figure everything out eventually and it’ll be all peachy again. Here are 4 things that I’ve learned in the past two or so years that I’m insanely grateful for, because they made me see things in a brighter, calmer and more confident light.
It’s okay to let go
I come from a tiny village in the middle of the Bohemian country. As a child I was never surrounded by people, shops, money or things. So when I moved to the second biggest city in the UK, got a decent job, started hoarding my first beauty products and pretty summer dresses, I felt like I could never let go of anything. That felt so… ungrateful and wasteful. I started slowly but surely drowning in a pretty big case of overwhelm. I had so much of – everything. 5 unfinished deodorants. 1 terrible boyfriend. 6 fake friends. 3 broken hair straighteners. Cookie had 4 cat beds at one point. Yet he slept in my bed.
Not gonna lie, it’s pretty exhausting to live like that. So eventually I eased myself into the mindset of “Does this spark joy?”. I started asking myself whether I preferred keeping things and people in my life together with the uneasy feelings, guilt and even dislike that came with their ownership. Or whether I just got over that one moment of feeling ungrateful and wasteful but grit my teeth and eventually felt better long term. The latter was a clear winner.
I’m by no means a minimalist but I Marie Kondo’d my wardrobe, my relationships and even the dreaded external hard drive full of photos with all my exes. It’s okay to let go of that one friend who’s making you feel crap about yourself. It’s okay to let go of the dress you splurged £100 on but doesn’t suit you. It’s okay to let go of things and people that make you feel anything other than happy and beautiful.
The importance of skincare
Skincare doesn’t exist just for your skin to be more plump and less wrinkly. Skincare is a ritual, a vital part of your self care regimen and expression of your love for yourself.
I’m ever so grateful to be able to celebrate the 35th birthday of Jurlique with them. They are one of my favourite skincare brands that care for their sustainability values and offer a range of no BS skincare products that are full of high quality natural active ingredients.
It was only in my early 30’s when I discovered that my skincare routine doesn’t need to include a £300 algae eye cream (or 10 £30 a pop snail infused hydro gel patches, you name it) to be effective. Today my skincare routine is full of simple products such as oils for nourishment, active acids for exfoliation and gentle cleansers to remove my make-up.
My recent favourite is Jurlique’s Lavender Body Oil. It’s a beautiful non-greasy and quickly-drying body oil which contains extracts from lavender, birch, rosemary, horse chestnut jojoba, safflower, calendula and matricaria. It has absolutely incredible skin healing properties and its herbal extracts give it the perfect therapeutic quality. This is the kind of product that I treasure and truly enjoy using.
Don’t live to work
I’ve always been a very hard worker. For years I used to go to work in the day and work tirelessly on the blog at night and on the weekends. In my late twenties this turned into a very unhealthy routine which impacted all spheres of my life negatively. I had no hobbies (but blogging which turned into a job). I was constantly tired, always striving to have more followers, more interesting content, more photos. I didn’t enjoy my day job because I wanted to spend more time blogging. It was a vicious cycle.
Breaking free from this cycle of doom helped me realise that it’s okay to earn slightly less money but have spare time to enjoy the money you actually make. It’s okay to not turn on your laptop all weekend. It’s okay to lose followers. It’s okay to say no to a sponsored post. It’s okay to finish your day job at 5pm, go home and read a book without thinking about that damn spreadsheet.
Realising that you work to live and not the other way round is one of the most precious things I’ve ever learnt.
Everyone can make an impact
You don’t need to be no Greta Thunberg to make an impact on the world. Honestly. The world makes us believe these days that your actions matter only if you’re ZERO waste. If you create NO carbon emissions. If you use NO packaging and NO plastic. And that’s a terrible misconception.
Living with intent and creating low impact is where the future of our planet lies. Can’t always buy fresh milk in a glass bottle? That’s fine. Buy it as often as you can, and if you get it in a plastic recyclable bottle a few times a month, you’re still making the world a better place. Bake your own bread, buy locally grown flowers, feed your cat a raw food diet, walk to work. Think about your purchasing behaviour and decide who you want to give your money to.
The world doesn’t need a handful of perfect people, it needs billions of imperfect people doing their best to make a difference.
Jurlique were kind enough to send me some of their products to try – thank you so much! All opinions and values in this post are my very own.