50 ideas for your own Self Love Dates

50 ideas for your own Self Love Dates

When completing my monthly reset this month, I decided I wanted to schedule some self love dates.

By now we all know the benefits of a little self love… taking the time to do the things that bring you joy, put a spark in your heart and light your fire is literally good for your health! Its a fact! 

So without going over all of the reasons why self love is great (which I am sure you have already read about), I wrote a list of 50 things I plan to do on my self love dates! I hope they inspire you to take the time to go on some of your own self love dates!  

50 ideas for your own Self Love Date

  1. Go see a movie by yourself

  2. Go somewhere and read a book

  3. Watch the Sunrise with a breakfast picnic

  4. Go on a solo road trip

  5. Have a solo photoshoot

  6. Go for a solo paddle board

  7. Do a puzzle with wine

  8. Self care day – face masks, nails, bath etc

  9. Have a sensual selfie date! Put on your sexiest undies and take some sensual photos or hire a professional to make you look killer 

  10. Go to the markets and buy yourself flowers

  11. Sign up for a class e.g. pottery, painting or cooking class 

  12. Spend an hour browsing in a book shop

  13. Make a vision board for one of your goals 

  14. Make a fort, get snacks and binge watch Netflix
  15. Download a meditation app and go to town (as in just do the meditations.. I’m not being literal here)
  16. Go to your local coffee shop or a park or somewhere new and get lost in a good book
  17. Find a spot outside and take out all your art supplies and just make art in nature! 
  18. Go on a hike 
  19. Get up early, prepare some tea or coffee in a flask and go somewhere to see the sunrise
  20. Get a tattoo! 
  21. Set up a magical candle lit bubble bath
  22. Put on a playlist you love and have your own disco! Dance till you can’t wipe the smile off your face
  23. Book a spa day or visit a salt cave 
  24.  Redecorate or rearrange a room in your home
  25. Clean out and create the pantry of your Pinterest dreams 
  26. Write a list of all the things you want in life 
  27. Figure out what your values are 
  28. Get a mani pedi, a facial or a massage
  29. Start a herb garden or go plant shopping 
  30. Go to a yoga or meditation class or go to a trampoline park or skating rink
  31. Take a tour of your city and take photos like a tourist
  32. Go on an adventure – e.g. find your towns closest land pillow and go there!! They are so fun! 
  33. Create your own personal sound tracks for different moments in your life e.g. Cleaning montage playlist
  34. Write in your diary / journal 
  35. Listen to some good TED Talks on topics that interest you… or that you know nothing about 
  36. Go on a walk and listen to podcast 
  37. Go to the beach for a swim
  38. Volunteer doing something that’s meaningful to you 
  39.  Go buy yourself a sex toy and play with it! <3 
  40. Light all of the candles you can find and play with some tarot cards or affirmations
  41. Write a list or a list of lists you want to create! 
  42. Draw a mind map of your life
  43. Google a topic you know nothing about but are curious about
  44.  Find a cute diner and order a milkshake 
  45. Get dressed up and stay home – I mean take some selfies too so it’s documented how good you look
  46. Cuddle your dogs or visit someone who owns dogs so you can cuddle them (unless they are not cuddly dogs… then maybe play fetch or just pat them) 
  47. Go to an art exhibit or museum
  48. Have a tea party for one – use your good china or go find a cute tea cup and saucer from the thrift shop first and then drink tea (or champagne) in your fancy tea cup
  49. Read in bed 
  50. Write a letter for yourself to read in 10 years  

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Project: Create Daily

Project: Create Daily

Project: Create Daily

January is done and we are now well into February! Can you even believe it… For me January was spent focusing on big goals and dreams and loosely structuring out my year. I wrote out a big list of all of the things I want to achieve in life and then circled all of the goals I wanted to achieve in 3 months, 6 months and within the year! The rest I have left in the list ready to refocus on next year, I then went through all of the goals I had circled to achieve in 3 months and merged some that were a similar theme, once I had all of my goals that I want to achieve in the next 3 months set, I then went through and set out action plans and steps to reach all of them within the next three months. I also created 1 mini goal related project to focus on each month.

As February passes by I will be working through my action plans and ticking off each step as I go along in my journal, as well as completing the mini project I have set myself. Each mini goal is of course related to a bigger goal! I will be sharing each monthly mini goal here and of course share my progress along the way in my Instagram stories and posts.

So lets get straight into it!

My mini goal for February is to ‘Create Daily’ to make sure I succeed with this, I have written myself a list of all the things that define create (to me) and I have set a daily reminder to check in with myself on if I have created yet! So firstly, why is the mini goal ‘Create More’? A lot of my BIG goals are creatively focused so firstly, I want to strengthen that muscle and secondly being creative makes me happy, it gives me joy and it sets my vibration on high! 

My 'Create' List

Write a blog post

Write a journal entry

Use some writing prompts

Write a chapter

Write a poem

Create art

Create a playlist

Create a system

Create a new habit / routine

Work on a craft project

Film a video

Play your ukulele

Create content

Create joy – dance, sing or full belly laugh

This is just a list of ideas that I created for myself to look at on the days I’m not really sure what I will create, but i hope to come up with lots more ideas along the way! 

Make sure if you want to follow along you head over to my insta. Hope to see you there! x 

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5 ways to work with your goals

5 ways to work with your goals

5 ways to work with your goals

Last week, I spent a lot of time dreaming up some big scary exciting life goals! These goals were anything but SMART, they were ideas, words, feelings and dreams not bound to my current reality. I have to admit, my list is pretty badass and something I really have struggled to do over the years… When I have tried to dream big in the past, I have found it really hard to think of the things I may I want, but this year was different, I’ve been doing the work on myself and each day my ideal future becomes clearer and more and more extravagantly amazing! 

After years of setting the goal post to low, not knowing what to strive towards and honestly just letting life happen to me, I finally decided I needed to work more on myself so I could start letting life happen for me! I’d love to say that the moment I started creating mind maps, setting my values, being grateful and working on figuring out the things that light me up, that I instantly figured out what I want to do in life… Nope… But doing that work on myself and practicing (yes the buzz word) self care and self love I find it easier each time to come up with ideas on my dream life as well as appreciate how amazing my life already is!

In this post, I wanted to share a few ways that I am making my goals work for me!

Photo by DESIGNECOLOGIST on Unsplash

Write them down

There are plenty of different ways you can do this and reasons why you should… writing down your goals gets them out of your mind and out into the world, it helps you focus and assemble your thoughts from something abstract to something real, a statement, a plan or a new story!

How you write them down is up to you and personally I suggest trying as many methods as possible and then going with what feels right at the time… or with whatever works for you. I don’t think you need to pick one method and just stick to that, play around with it!

Verbalise them

Now there are many views on if you share your goals with others or not… some say sharing your goals with others gives you accountability while others say physiologically your getting the satisfaction of completing the goal… without actually completing the goal! Now I am not sure exactly which side of the fence I sit on here… BUT what I do believe is, that you need to make your goals feel real! So whether you find a close friend to talk about your goals with or if you just talk about them with yourself out loud in the mirror, talk them out! Clarify what they are and why you want them, dream about what it will be like when you reach them, connect with why you want to reach them and get excited about the possibilities of them becoming reality!   

Forget about failure

This is a big one for me, its something I am constantly working through! Why do we see failure as something bad? Something to be ashamed of? It is absolutely crazy to think we can achieve anything without a bit of failure! Something I have been working on in altering my thoughts, patterns and reactions to failure… I have been re-writing my stories around failing and disconnecting shame from the equation all together! We have all read the motivational quotes about learning from failures or it being apart of the journey etc… but seriously they are all true… I mean most cheesy quotes are! Failing is just one step towards your damn goal… so if you are one step closer… why is that shameful? Why aren’t we celebrating the fuck out of it or at least just re-assessing and moving on?!

Work on your habits

Something I am obsessed with reading about is habits and routines! How habits work, how to change them, what other peoples routines are and testing different routines out for myself! Something that changed the way I thought about all of this was when I realised our thoughts become our feelings, which in turn affect our actions… so…. If my thoughts affect my actions… I need to make sure my headspace is in the right place… and to do that?! Yep I needed to work out which habits made me feel good, which habits to ditch and how to fit all of those good ones into my days/weeks/life! I still constantly work on this, but I am in a much better place than I was in my 20’s and to tell you the truth I learn something new about myself every time I explore a habit or change up my routines. This may seem like it has nothing to do with achieving your goals… but I am telling you, the amount of research and self help books out there that suggest working on your habits and routines get you closer to reaching your goals, it aint a new concept… just make sure that your habits and routines align with where you are heading  and you will reach your destination (Slowly puts lid back on can of worms… for now!)

Flow with your seasons

Something I have learned about myself is that my life has seasons, I don’t mean like summer and winter etc, I mean I have ups and downs and patterns and moments where I am on fire along with moments where I want to hibernate. Over time I have learnt to listen to them, accept them and do my best to work with them instead of judge them or shame myself for having them. In the moments of fire your hot and ready and motivated, but in the moments of hibernation, its easy to get down on yourself… Which honestly just spirals you further down… Learning to accept, give yourself grace and finding the things that can make you feel good in those down moments, will get you closer to getting back up and being ready to face your goals again.

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Good Intentions

Good Intentions

Good Intentions

When coming up for the idea of this blog, I had set in my mind that one month at a time I would be able to focus on one area of my life and focus on finding love, joy and magic in that area, I would make some tweaks, do a few projects and then start living my best life in that area, then move onto the next! I would work on my self, my habits, my finances and relationships and I would share my bright colourful life with the world… then the universe was like… mwahaha!! All of a sudden the rug was pulled out from under me and was like, oh you want to solve problems here have a whole heap more! Here’s one for every area of your life at once! Unfortunately instead of saying thanks and continuing on with my plan I pretty much just got overwhelmed… I still shared my bright colourful life most of the time and tinkered with a few ideas and projects, but I let doubt, anxiety and fear overwhelm me and I forgot that I was in charge!

I am in charge of my thoughts, feelings and actions and how I choose to show up.

I am not saying this year I am planning on being perfect… finishing everything I start, putting out a blog post every week or smiling 24-7, but I do plan on listening more to the universe, accepting where I am and believing with all my heart I am on the right path! I plan to dance more, sing (yes off key) more, wake up with intention more, be a little less hard on myself more, check in with myself more, play more and celebrate life more and here’s the big one… just be myself more! 

Now, yes, this is all fine and dandy to say… But is harder to practice… Not to worry, I have some tools ready to keep me on track and help me stay connected to my goals! 

Law of Attraction Diary

This year I have bought myself a Law of Attraction planner from Freedom Mastery! It is freaking magical! At first a little overwhelming with all of the information and tasks, but a great tool to help keep me on track for the year. It has a lot of journaling prompts and has daily and monthly check ins. If you want to see inside keep an eye out in my stories on instagram! I will be doing a little walk through soon.

Radical Radiance

Late last year I bought Gala Darling’s latest book Radical Radiance, now it’s not your normal buy it read it book… each month I get a written and audio chapter sent to me by email along a tapping video and other stuff! We are up to chapter 5 and I cannot tell you how much this book has already helped me! It is great to have a monthly reminder to focus and make sure I am staying on track.

The end of 2017 and 2018 was a bit of a weird time for me mentally, emotionally and physically, I had some great times but I also had some difficult events which threw me out of whack! My ego, confidence and body were all put out and I really didn’t feel like myself.. I struggled with my mindset and found it really difficult to get back to a place where I was happy with me… but the last few months I have been feeling a shift, I am working through it and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

January really has kicked off amazingly and I am looking forward to what else 2019 has to bring! 

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Word of the Year – 2019

Word of the Year – 2019

Word of the Year - 2019

This year I wanted to approach my yearly review and goal setting for the year a little differently. Usually I sit down with a few review questions for the year, do the wheel of life exercise and then write out my goals for the following year. Last year I decided to set my values and I came up with a few goals that matched the theme of my values! This year I have done the same, but I want to add on a few more steps to this years plan! Firstly having a word for my year! I have read about this before and for some reason just never really tried it! 

Why choose a word of the year?

Now I am not writing this part with a whole lot of experience (obvs cause its the first year I am doing this), I am approaching this post more so from what I’ve read, what feels right to me and how I interpreted the process.

Choosing one word that represents your goals and your focus for the year is supposed to be your secret weapon! When you are unsure on a decision or loosing your focus, wham! Remember your word and back to your why you go! 

How I figured out my word

Choosing a word may seem hard! I mean its a lot of pressure for just one word! Picking one word that represents all of your goals and the theme of your year! Yeesh! But to tell you the truth after following the below process the word pretty much chose me.

♥ First I reviewed all of my goals for the year, I read through each one and thought about the reasons I have set them e.g. Why do I want to spend less money online? Because I want to save money, why? Because I want security etc etc…

♥ After I went through each goal, I then got a piece of paper and wrote down every single word that came to my mind (without really thinking about it)

♥ Once I had all of my words, I went through each word and thought does this word represent all of my goals this year and my why’s?  

♥ Then I picked my top three and then just went on about my day! Whenever I found myself with spare moments to think the three words just kept popping up with reasons why this one is or is not the word, or my mind would play out scenarios of when I was stuck and how the word would make me feel…

On the bus I finally decided my word! It had a lot going for it… And I had actually written it down on my piece of paper twice! So maybe I always knew this was the word.

So... what is my word?

CONNECT / CONNECTION I have chosen the word connect because it aligned perfectly with all of my goals. I want to connect more with my why, in my daily life and the activities I am doing (less mindless scrolling and more being present), I want to connect more with the people I love, I want to connect more with each of my values and the goals I have set. I want to connect more with my body, my health and my habits, I want to connect more with our planet and how I am responsible for how I show up in the world, I want to feel connected with my creativity and I want to remind myself of that connection on days I no longer feel connected. 

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The last 5 books I read!

The last 5 books I read!

The Last 5 Books I Read

I am obsessed with devouring self help books! I usually listen to them on Audible, but if I love the book and think it is worthwhile I also buy the hard copy! Here is a list of the last five books I have read and loved. 

You are a Badass at Making Money

I have read and re-read this book a few times in the last few months… yes I even bought the hard copy. You are a badass at making money is written by Jen Sincero and is all about mastering your mindset on money! This isn’t a save this much and invest in this type of book, this is the background work… this is the work you do on the little girl in you who believes she is to irresponsible with money to make it! Full of mantras and writing activities this gem is worth listening to in audio AND buying the hard copy! This book is slowly but surely changing my freaking life (just throwing that out there into the universe)! 

My key take away from this one is we can live whatever life we want to, the energy and thoughts we put out there are the shaping the way we see the world! so why not see a world where you are kicking ass being a bad ass bitch and making all of the money! I mean with all that confidence behind you how could you NOT succeed!  

Who Moved My Cheese

Picked up this gem for $1 on my op shop rummage last month! It was a simple and quick read about two mice Sniff & Scurry and two little people Hem & Haw, they all live in the same maze and have one goal… Cheese! 

The book is basically about fear, moving through it, accepting and anticipating change! It only took me about an hour to read, but was a good little reminder to not take myself, my so seriously and not get caught up in my own personal dramas (which are totally made up by the way!) and just keep moving forward! Keep striving for that cheese baby… whatever the “cheese” is for you! For me right now that cheese is money honey! Striving for more, knowing I deserve more, knowing I can make more and save more! Breaking the cycle of having just enough! Pushing through barriers I know I have created for myself, forgiving myself for making them and moving the fuck forward! 

I feel like this book would make a cute book to read to your kiddos! 

The Willpower Instinct

I don’t know if I am really feeling the guy who reads the audio book version, but the book is packed full of great ideas and willpower experiments!

Neuroscientists suggest that we have one brain, but two minds! “There’s the version of us that acts on impulse and seeks immediate gratification, and the version of us that controls our impulses and delays gratification to protects our long-term goals. They’re both us, but we switch back and forth between these two selves” this book has heaps of great information on studies conducted on willpower and at the end of each chapter a willpower experiment for you to try!! I willbe buying the hard copy of this book for sure! I LOVE a good experiment! 

Key take away from this one, was I am so not alone when it comes to struggling with willpower! Your thoughts and actions have so much power and your brain can wire certain pathways which makes certain behaviors almost automatic! This book has given me a burst of motivation to turn off auto pilot and start rewiring some of those pathways in my brain!  

The Law of Attraction

Ahhhhhh this book blew my mind! I did not expect this book to be… well to be what it was… I’m not gonna ruin it for you, but damn the author of this book… had me feeling like I wanted to give away all of my earthly possessions and join a cult! I was up for whatever she was selling! Ha! Annnnyway! The ideas and practices in this book are not super new to me, even before I read this book I already knew a lot about the concept of The Law of Attraction, but I REALLY enjoyed listening to this book! Abraham took everything I knew already about manifesting and the law of attraction and just gave it a whole new meaning to me… believe the concept or not, I think the principles of this book can change your life. 

My key take away from this one was I am an amazing being who has the power to manifest anything into reality!! Yeah baby! Every day I am doing my best to believe this for at least a moment. 

Girl Wash Your Face

This book had a lot of flack (reviews wise), I am not sure I would of bought it if I had read the reviews first… there is a lot of God talk (which usually puts me off) and there were a lot of rich white girl comments in the reviews… but after listening to it, I really enjoyed it and I am glad I forgot to check the reviews first! This chick is a super cutie and there is a lot of good advice in this book! I loved how each chapter was headed with a lie she used to believe and even though there are parts of the book that get a bit religious and some of her beliefs are different to mine (mainly her view on porn and being a christian etc) but I am big on accepting others beliefs and not holding judgement when they differ from my own. I actually really enjoyed her story, thoughts and life advice and boy can that girl sling a good quote! A few of my personal faves: “You will get through this season. This too shall pass. Don’t set the rest of your life up on a downhill slope because of one hard season.”  “You, and only you, are ultimately responsible for who you become and how happy you are.” “Our words have power, but our actions shape our lives.” and I think I” leave you with just one more…

“What if the hard stuff, the amazing stuff, the love, the joy, the hope, the fear, the weird stuff, the funny stuff, the stuff that takes you so low you’re lying on the floor crying and thinking, How did I get here? . . . What if none of it is happening to you? What if all of it is happening for you?”    

 

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The Sensual Selfie Challenge 2018

The Sensual Selfie Challenge 2018

Sensual Selfie Challenge 2018

Day 1 of @evyan.whitney#sensualselfiechallenge kicked of with an email and a stunningly pink sensual photo of the gorgeous @galadarling 💖✨
~
I have wrote and rewrote the caption of this photo more than once, its hard to not downplay my presence and talk up the gorgeous @thesoulecho who took this photo in this caption!! I wrote jokes about wondering if I’m cheating because it’s not a selfie, I wrote about all the other gorgeous sensual selfies I have seen already today… but I noticed I wasn’t writing one thing that was actually about me… the me in this picture!! I don’t think this is because I dislike my body.. I don’t! I love and appreciate every aspect of my body! I love my legs that allow me to walk, I love my arms that allow me to carry, push, pull and high five!! 🙌 I think what makes it difficult for me to share and caption this picture is my thoughts and beliefs about what others will think… 🤔 Will they think less of me for being vulnerable will they laugh at me for thinking I’m sexy will they see the goofy kid instead of the grown bad ass women… like I do..? So I wrote, deleted, wrote and then deleted all of the other fluff and now am laying it all out, taking this space, my space and saying with love, confidence and conviction: “I am a dazzling beam of light. I celebrate myself and bask in my divinity. I am a gift to and from the universe.”

Day 2 of the #sensualselfiechallenge kicked off with another email and sensual selfie from @ethereal.1 💖💜 The email and her words had me pondering all day!✨ Relationships can be hard work, making sure you listen, appreciate and work together is so important! This is what I have been pondering on today when thinking about the relationship I have with my body… It has taken almost my entire life, but I am not overly self conscious when it comes to my body, I don’t stress about being the perfect media biased women, I actually love all of the things I hated about my body as a teen… I know it may seem easy for me to say because I’m tiny… I haven’t had children and I’m relatively healthy… yes I hear this all the time… but seriously I hated my height, my thighs, my stomach, my butt… and different parts of body for the longest time! What I have realised though is, I’m not always the best partner to my body… i forget to listen to what it needs and sometimes forget we are a team! After thinking about the journey I have had with my body, I thought it was about time I wrote it these vows… ~💖 From the moment we met, you have been by my side, you have supported me in every possible way you could, you hold my heart and soul and you have always functioned in every way I need. I know have not always been the best partner, I have hated on you openly, I have hidden you, poisoned you and have recklessly put you in some crazy situations… but you always stick by me… when I broke you, you healed, when I made you sick, you stuck it out and got better, when I pushed you, you never gave up… you performed, even when I didn’t even think you could! Over the years we have had our ups and downs, but we have worked each day to grow, together and I could not imagine my life with you! I love you and with these vows I promise to always love you, respect, cherish and celebrate you each and every day! I cannot wait to spend the rest of our life working together as a team! 🌸

Ok… shit is getting real… 😬 Day 3 of the #sensualselfiechallengehosted by the kick ass @4locrow today is all about the unflattering angle!! 🙌 Time to get a little more uncomfortable! 😅 When I received my photos back from my sensual photo session with @thesoulecho I LOVED my photos!! All of them… except 3… (this photo is 1 of them) The lighting is beautiful the colours spot on but in this and the other 2 photos, I found imperfections that made me feel uncomfortable… so I started planning my feed for the 5 days of the challenge and chose the ones that made me feel good!! Don’t get me wrong they are all still hard to share (I’m in my undies on the internet 😳) BUT I had NO plan on sharing the ones that made me actually feel embarrassed! Then I started the challenge and realised isn’t that what it’s all about! Getting uncomfortable so you can then push past all of that perfect body nonsense!! ~

So after some time reflecting on today’s theme, I spent this morning looking… really looking at myself again in this photo… In this photo I see a strong, confident woman who knows how to have a laugh and not take life to seriously! ~

I see that I am beautiful from every angle, but I do not need to be beautiful to be of value!

Day 4 of the #sensualselfiechallenge todays host @blacklorelei7 shared an amazingly sensual selfie this morning with the affirmation “My sensuality is mine to own” ~

So today I share a more sensual side of myself, a pose that is hard for me (especially when in front of a camera) my go to pose is a smile or a laugh, I tend to show and accept the silly fun side of myself more than the sensual side… but today I affirm that this side is also apart of who I am and I am not ashamed! I celebrate, love and do my best to accept this softer, sensual side… even though visually seeing it makes me want to laugh out loud at this face…

Today is day 5 (the last day) of the #sensualselfiechallenge 💖 Today the gorgeous @evyan.whitneyfinished off the challenge with the reminder that it may be the end of the challenge… but it does not have to be the end of your self love and sensual expression! ~

I have lived in many versions of my body, from a super skinny mini to a boozy booby bartender to now… somewhere in between… and I have to admit… I hated my body most when I was super skinny! But not because I was super skinny… because in my head I was fat! 🙄 yes you guessed it, I was also very young!! In retrospect I realise my body was bangin and I was a fool to not buy this sequin hot pants and matching midriff!! But luckily with age and taking the time to work on myself my perspectives and views on my self and body have changed… Today I’am much more loving and comfortable with myself… and who knows if I find a version of that outfit again you may not get me out of it! 😂🌈💖 I guess my point though is even though it came with age, I don’t think age is the defining factor.. I really believe being comfortable in your own skin is first a decision and then a practice! There are days you catch a glimpse of your muffin top or days that your face breaks out… and you feel like shit… and those are days you remind yourself that it’s a practice! Nobody is perfect at being kind and loving to their body… but the more you practice… the easier it becomes! 💖 ~
✨ 
But I am sure it’s clear (if you read any of my insta novels over this challenge 😂) being ok with my body has not been the area I am healing with this challenge… the challenge has made me realise The part of my body that needs healing the most is my thoughts on self expression! The thoughts running through my brain throughout this challenge have been quite revealing! With words like narcissism and vanity along with a barrage of self deprecating thoughts about my creativity (or lack of) exploding in my head every time I drafted, saved, deleted, drafted and posted each day… I have more to say, lol but IG has a word limit 😂 I guess if you are interested look out for my next blog post!! 💖

These photos were all taken by the gorgeous Steph from The Soul Echo Social, her work is stunning, her presence is calming and her passion in her craft and in life is contagious! Check out her amazing work here and read more about the sensual selfie photo shoot here!  

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I had a Sensual Selfie photo shoot and it felt amazing!

I had a Sensual Selfie photo shoot and it felt amazing!

My Sensual Selfie Photshoot

A few weeks ago I participated in the Sensual Selfie Challenge on Instagram, for five days I shared a sensual photo of myself each day! This challenge was something I came across while scrolling the gram… I was in a trance (an Instagram glaze) and endlessly scrolling when I saw a pic I liked, a line drawing of a woman, I stopped, double tapped and read the post, the post was from Gala Darling and she was hosting the first day of the Sensual Selfie Challenge! I was in! I saved the pic and thought “I’ll come back to it”… But i didn’t, when later came along I was out of my Instagram trance and could not think of anything worse! Sharing sensual selfies of myself on the internet!? Was I crazy? Who knows what weirdos would see them, what would people think of me shamelessly parading around… Then embarrassment at the thought that I had for a second thought I could even pose sensually and be sexy! Ha nope… Not me… That moment there was the first real feeling I had from the Sensual Selfie Challenge. 

A few days or so later, I was laying in bed, watching stories and there it was again, the sensual selfie challenge, but this time as an invite for a photoshoot a sensual photo shoot for the challenge! Was this the universe talking to me! Could it smell my fear and self doubt!? YES right then and there I said YES and organised a Sensual Selfie shoot for the following day! I was on fire! I felt energised, excited and powerful… For like 10 seconds…. Then I thought oh god what have I done!

The next day rolled around, I prepped in the best way I knew how, I washed my hair with pink shampoo, I tanned, I plucked my eyebrows and painted my nails and then I waited… Steph from the Soul Echo Social arrived and the Sensual Shoot was about to start! EEEP! We small talked for a bit while Steph sorted her bags exposing like 5 bags of glitter (my only regret from that shoot was not thinking to ask to use that glitter!)  Once the small talk was done Steph asked me if I had any ideas I said no (even though I had saved Pinterest photos for ideas the night before… I don’t know! I guess I was nervous as hell!) So then we began. We started in my bedroom, Steph assessed the lighting and I nervously joked about taking my clothes off… Except it wasn’t really a joke… I just mumbled something like okaaaaay…. I guess I’ll take of my clothes in a weird voice… Then we began, posing was difficult, I felt nervous and a little stiff, but after great direction and a bit of a laugh I started to feel more and more comfortable, by the end of the shoot, it felt almost completely normal to be walking around with no top on in front of someone other than my boyfriend! The shoot was done and I felt great! I was excited to see the photos, it had been fun pretending to be an underwear model for a bit and I was excited to start the challenge!

Waiting for these photos I felt pretty confident, I knew there would most likely be things I would not like about the photos… well about my body more specifically but I had prepped myself for that! I received the photos in the morning… and for some reason felt I needed to wait until I was home to look at them… looking at them at work just didn’t quite feel right… when I got home I potted around for a while and then suddenly (while on the toilet) thought yep it’s time, lets check it out! As soon as I opened the folder I could not believe how pretty they were the colours were amazing and I felt genuinely happy with how I looked in most of the photos (WIN) I literally was glowing! 

Then I waited… the long day or so till the challenge started, I have to say over this day or however long it was… I felt physically ill to my stomach! I had so many thoughts running through my head, so many reasons not to go ahead with the challenge… what will people think, what will my boyfriend think, what about my career (you know cause I am totally thinking of running for prime minster one day lol) what will this make me… Vain, narcissistic,  ridiculous… I mean when having the photo shoot done, I felt like none of these things… but the idea of sharing them, had changed my whole view on it… I felt anxious and sick, like if I posted them my world was going to change, everyone would hate it and I would just be alone and embarrassed… OBVIOUSLY none of that happened… I posted them, felt a million feelings and everything pretty much stayed the same… except now I feel slightly more of bad ass bitch who ain’t afraid to take up this space in her skimpy pinkies yo! 

Read more about the feels I had throughout the challenge in my Sensual Selfie 2018 recap post! 

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5 Ways to Boost your Budget

5 Ways to Boost your Budget

5 Ways to Boost your Budget

Let me start by saying I am no budget expert! I have been budgeting for over 10 years yes, but sticking to it… I find that a struggle. That is what kind of bought on my interest in budgeting actually! I have not been sticking to my budget and I have not been successful this year in any of my saving goals. That is why I decided to start my Race to $5000 challenge and how I ended up writing this blog post. I have just finished the first week of the challenge and that involved a deep dive into my own budget and a review of where I may be going wrong! After a few days and many hours, I have found, I have a good set up, but a few areas just need a little tweak… one of those being my mindset!

If you are finding yourself a little unsure on this whole budget thing, don’t worry! I’ve made a list of the top 5 ways I am going to boost my budget!  

Accounts / Automation

A friend of mine explained the whole ‘multiple bank accounts’ set up to me a while ago now and I have continued using the method since! Its a pretty simple set up and if you are clever you can even automate all of your transfers and bills! The basic idea is that you set up multiple bank accounts that serve different functions. 

Below is a quick run down of my set up (hover over each account to see what I use it for):

Everyday Account

This is where my pay goes and the account I spend from.

Bills Account

Once a month I transfer money to cover all of my bills for the month

Joint Bills

Every pay I transfer my half of the bills my bf and I share

Joint Savings

This is where my bf and I both add our spare cash and will be where the $5000 that I save in my money challenge will go once I save it!!

The next step is to figure out how much money you need to put in each account. For the bills account I used a spreadsheet and took note of every single bill that I pay, I then figured out the exact amount I would need to transfer into the bills account each fortnight so I am covered whenever a new bill comes in (the first few times I added a little extra into the account as a buffer). Once you have figured out how much money you need to transfer each pay, it’s time to set up the automation! Get your bills set up so they can direct debit from this account, then you no longer need to stress if you remembered to pay that bill! The more transfers and bills you can set up as automatic the better, but make sure you get this right… if you don’t set your dates right it can be a bit of a mess!  

Get an App

The best thing I did was start using a budgeting app! I downloaded Pocketbook earlier this year and have been pottering away, categorising up a storm ever since! It doesn’t really get how my joint account works… But I just left that account off and just manage whatever is in my personal accounts. I have tried a few different ones, Money Brilliant, Pocketbook and a few others, however Pocketbook works best for me! It seemed to be the one that was able to guess my categories the quickest.   

Review your spending

This is where the app comes in handy! Once all of the necessary accounts were attached and I had categorised the stragglers (any purchases that were unrecognised), I started to analyse which areas I was spending the most in (health & beauty – thanks braces)… What I noticed when I started this was that in some areas, I always stayed in budget… but in others I am always waaaaay over (hello food & dining / entertainment). Being aware of my spending is going to be so helpful on this little saving challenge of mine and is a great way to see where your money goes and adjust your budget and spending habits! What I noticed from reviewing my Food & Dining spending, was that I eat a lot of take away lunches and dinners. This is now an area that I can focus on improving, which in turn may help me stay on track with my budget!  

Work out your priorities

I feel like in every area of life, it always comes to this! What do you want, like what do you REALLY want? What are your priorities, do you know? It may be time to set yourself some money goals! I spent some time last week working through a list of what I actually want money for and have now set my priorities in order! Before figuring out my priorities and setting my money goals, I took some time to look at my personal values and align these with my life goals, then after looking at my life goals I figured out the money side of them. Then decided which needed to be my priority.  

Accountability

This is currently where I struggle the most with my budget… keeping myself accountable! I have been looking at different ways I may be able to improve on this and have found quite a few fun ideas to help me stay on track… and even have a bit of fun with it at the same time! They say to get yourself an accountability partner when you start a new workout program at the gym… So why can’t you do the same for your saving goals! Find a friend that you trust, talk about your goals with them and let them know your plan, then check in with once a week or each pay, having someone else to celebrate your wins with and to feel accountable to will do wonders, you could even plan spend free activities together to keep you on track! Another option could be to start or create a money focused challenge (this is how I have decided to stay on top of my current saving goal). Another cool idea I have seen on Instagram is having a specific saving or paying off debt account! Both of these are great ways to keep yourself on track and find your own little community to keep you motivated and accountable. 

As I have said before, I am no budgeting expert, however I have (or am trying) all of these steps myself and so far I am finding them extremely helpful. I think the key take away that I have (and have only just started realising myself) is budgeting and paying off debt does not have to be a negative experience… and if it is, it may be time to take a look at your money mindset and instead of viewing the whole thing as a chore, start having a little bit of fun with it! 

 

Why not check out the book I am using to get my money mindset straight – You are a bad ass at making money by Jen Sincero 

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Race to $5000

Race to $5000

Race to $5000

If you follow me on my Instagram, you may already know, in the past I have been a little bit rubbish with my money! I mean I have the basics down, but I just cannot seem to find a spare dollar to save! This is the reason I picked up (well purchased on audio) Jen Sincero’s book ‘You are a Badass at Making Money’ and it has lit a firecracker up my butt! I want all the money!! That is why I have decided to set myself a little bit of a challenge… And I wanted to share it with you guys!

The Challenge – Save $5000 as quickly as possible. 

So far I have planned 4 weeks of tasks, from the book and some I have come up with myself to help nudge the saving along and keep me motivated and focused. 

The work – I have set each week up with 2 key areas to focus on. 

Take Action

Taking action as in... like actually saving my money, I have set up a few weekly tasks to do this! (Flip it baby)

Week 1 - Analyse/Prep Budget

Week 2 - Reduce emotional spending - Week 3 - Spend free week - Week 4 - Declutter for cash

The Book Work

There are so many good activities in Jen's book on money mindset and beliefs and I plan to tackle different sections each week!

Week 1 - My Why

Week 2 - Visualization - Week 3 - Money Beliefs - Week 4 - Money Language

The Rules – I didn’t want to set too many rules, cause I break them yo! BUT I have set a few

* Every morning I must say my Money Mantra! (some I will use from the book and others I am going to create myself * Once a week I must announce the plan and have at least 2 social check ins (watch out insta stories) * I must track and share my running $$ total here * I will blog along the way* 

So there it is! Follow along on my Instagram here  @inburstsofcolour and here #pinkparrisraceto5000 

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