I’ve been thinking a lot recently about what people do when they leave work or school. In that part of the day where we are supposed to unwind from any stress we have had in the day, forget about the email that didn’t send and left you in a whole pool of trouble with your boss, or the fact that you found out your best friend was bitching about you behind your back. Are any of us spending time to truly relax and detach from the daily anxieties or are our bodies in a permanent state of stress? I think it’s an important issue to address because not only is it leaving people feeling sad, exhausted and overwhelmed, stress releases the hormone cortisol which has been linked to a number of illnesses, as well as weight gain!
The Internet and our 4G smart phones means we are in constant communication with our friends, always able to read the latest showbiz gossip, and our eyes are permanently glued to our phones, rather than being mindful about what is really happening in the moment. I’m the first to admit I am totally addicted to my iPhone. I find myself looking at my Instagram when I’m at a dinner with friends, checking my phone in the middle of the night and talking on the phone to a girlfriend when I should be enjoying the most of the little time I get to spend with my parents. You just have to look at a group of friends out at a restaurant to see how obsessed we are with our phones; every single person has the phone placed on the table next to them, and half of them are probably staring at their screens. If we’re not careful, we’ll be ruled by our inboxes and the number of followers we have on Twitter. So, instead of walking in the door and allowing ourselves to relax, we get out our laptops and spend hours on social media looking at everybody else’s seemingly perfect lives on Instagram, and by the end we feel exhausted and maybe a little bit more insecure than we did before. Sound familiar?
More than ever, we need to set our boundaries for when we’re ‘on’ and when we’re ‘off’.
I’ve suffered with self-esteem issues for a long time, and as I get older, when I should be being able to become more confident in myself, and more relaxed in who I am, it seems to be getting worse. I can’t help but think that the constant bombardment of beautiful women with perfect bodies on social media has something to do with it. Or being able to permanently see what my friends are out doing, while I’m at home in front of the TV with a massive bowl of ice cream, having just demolished a Domino’s take away. While we know that social media only shows the best of someone’s life, you can’t help but think they permanently live in this perfect bubble and that can make you feel like yours just doesn’t live up to it. It also means that your mind is just constantly racing, and hence, we never get a chance to relax.
I recently decided that I needed to make a change for my own sanity and my main aim was to take at least an hour every day where I say goodbye to the outside world and let my brain get some peace and quiet. My first rule was to turn off my phone at least two hours before bed, and my sleep has literally transformed from being erratic and disturbed, to more blissful and constant. I also made a real effort to make sure my home is my haven. I truly love anything that makes my routine feel more cosy and homey, I think it reminds me of that feeling you have when you’re a kid, in your pyjamas in front of the TV with your family around you making you feel warm and safe.
Simple things can make all the difference when you’re creating a calm space – lighting a scented candle, using lavender spray on your pillows, indulging in a cashmere throw or clearing a nook where you can curl up with a stack of magazines and some hot tea is sometimes all you need. I’ve also just discovered ‘colour therapy’ – my sister bought it for me telling me it was ‘all the rage’. Essentially, it’s a colouring book for adults – and although my first reaction was to laugh, once I got into it I realised it’s surprisingly therapeutic. The point is, indulge yourself in something that doesn’t involve a bright light shining in your eyes, and that takes your mind off whats going on in your life, even if just for an hour.
Of everything though, for me, one of my favourite things to do in the evening is to have a warm, luxurious shower, make myself smell nice with creams and moisturisers, and then put on something exceptionally soft, comfy and cosy. We spend so much time thinking about what we wear outside but clothes are more than about how we look, they change the way we feel. Having a gorgeous set of sleepwear is as essential as your thread count for a blissful night dreaming.
One of my favourite bed time brands is Wild Fox Couture. Wild Fox is a vintage inspired womenswear brand, which have fun and quirky swimwear, daywear and loungewear and they have the most amazing sleep styles – cute camisoles, bralettes and big comfy full sets all in light, SUPER SOFT fabrics that make you feel like you’re wearing a hug to bed. For bedtime underwear, I cannot tell you enough how in love I am with Cheek Frills. They are the comfiest knickers in the world and they look so cute! Here are a few of my favourite bed time must haves:
I wear these Cheek Frills knickers every day! Shop Here
This Works products are perfect to help you relax and sleep blissfully, I love the pillow spray which is infused with lavender and camomile which have been proven to help calm the mind. Shop Here
I love a bed time read, this one by Lena Dunham is funny, honest and heart warming. Going to sleep in a good mood is important, so read or watch something that will make you giggle.
And remember, home is where the heart is <3
Lots of love,