Sunday, 4 February 2018

February Goals


I don't know about anyone else but for me, January has felt like the longest month ever, I have done so many things to get myself back on track after the Christmas blues hit in - even though Christmas feels like a million years ago now - I have really been working on myself helping to get more confident, reduce my anxiety and create some big plans for 2018 which I definitely hope continues throughout the year. I started setting myself monthly goals in December and so far they have really been working out to help me stay organised as I use them as a to-do list so its very satisfactory when I know I have achieved one no matter how big or small they are.

Keep on top of e-mails and phone calls

I am that person who's inbox has to reach about 100 email's before I even think about looking at them as I just forget but then I feel overwhelmed with having to read so many. With phone calls, I just put them off so much as I never know what to say and stumble over my words - anyone relate? But with the nature of my work and blog I really really need to get on top of this. In fact, I'm going to start right after I have written this!

Exercise Daily

In no way am I going to be jumping to the gym every day as that just isn't my thing but light exercise is so important and I have really been trying to put it into my daily routine. I recently bought a weighted hula hoop and it is by far my favourite thing at the moment. 20 minutes using that a day is great for your abs but also I find it so fun! I also throw in a few squats, sit-ups and a walk which suits me perfectly as I don't go for intense workouts. 

Spend less money

Recently I have realised I have been spending more and more money on things I don't even realise and as much I want new clothes, endless outings and meals out to enjoy myself I think I need to slightly control myself and start to save half of my monthly income for the future.

Don't wear makeup 7 days a week

This is something I have wanted to do for a while and I am definitely going to start only wearing makeup 6 out of 7 days a week and then as I get more confident and my skin gets clearer maybe only 5 days a week etc. As it is becoming a chore sometimes to apply my makeup as I feel like I have to rather than I want to.

Do things for me

I think I included this in my 2018 goals but I am finding it so so hard! In January I already found I was agreeing to things even though they were seriously negatively affecting me. So February is the month I am going to start to get myself back on track and stay positive and do what I want- in a completely unselfish way of course!

Make more effort with the people who are important to me

As I just said I have been saying yes to things that have seriously made me step backwards with my mental health leading me to not doing things I want to so this month I am going to start making more effort with the people I sometimes take for granted specifically my grandparents and a couple of friends I know I haven't really seen recently. 

Improve this blog

You might or might not have noticed I have my own domain of www.katielou.co.uk instead of being .blogspot.co.uk but there are some big changes coming very soon so keep your eyes peeled!


What are your February Goals?

♥︎ 

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Gooey Puddle Brownies




Brownies are by far my favourite type of cake so any new recipe I see I put at the top of my list to bake and this was definitely no different. It is a very very simple all in one brownie mix but then jam dropped in before cooking to create a gooey indulgent centre. This also works gorgeously with chocolate spreads or even a thick caramel. It really is a recipe you can play around with. 

Ingredients:
4 Eggs
375g Caster Sugar
275g Butter
100g Self Raising Flour
75g Cocoa
12 spoonfuls of jam (Or substitute with a chocolate spread etc.)

Method:
Before beginning the brownies preheat the oven to 180°c 

Measure all ingredients (except jam) and place in one bowl and mix. I prefer using a hand mixer just because it's quicker as there is so much mixture!

Then simply pour the mixture into a greased and lined tray

Smooth slightly so the mixture covers the whole tin and then dollop teaspoons of jam where each slice would be - so each slice has a dollop of jam.

Bake for 40-45 minutes. Mine took 43 to get the perfect bake which was cooked but still soft and slightly sticky.

Leave to cool.

And ENJOY!

♥︎ 

Sunday, 14 January 2018

Follow Your Dreams


If you can imagine it, you can achieve it. If you dream it you can become it.

I have always been ambitious. From a young age, I have known what I wanted and would never settle for second best. You could say in this way I am a big dreamer but also luckily a big believer meaning I find it incredibly hard to give up. This quiet determination has pulled me through the ominous failures but also made the highlights even better. 

When thinking of following dreams its instantly thought of as a career path; with people following the natural progression of school through to university to get to to their dream  job but sometimes a dream is something more personal or that dream job isn't what you expected and the dream changes but we are on an ever-changing path that we keep following to reach the ultimate goal. But can we ever reach the ultimate dream as the dream will be forever growing bigger and bigger. But this is a whole other matter.

I have so many dreams, a family of my own, to have a cute little dog, a beautiful house in the perfect setting, and the ideal career to name a few. In many peoples cases, the dreams won't vary from what I have said but the minor details such as the type of house, the type of dog or type of career will make that dream individual and leads to people taking different paths. 

Now to draw on personal experiences I will use my career so far as I find its possibly the thing many people struggle to not give up on. Since I can remember I dreamed of jobs that were things I knew I would have to work for. First, it was a superstar (every little girl's ideal) then the first female Formula 1 driver (I know you wouldn't expect it) then an architect which I often confused with archaeologist (something very different) then finally something in the media industry, first a journalist, a publisher and editor, tv production then finally a radio presenter. All of these jobs in the media still appeal to me along with much more but I have worked my socks off with each of these to reach a place I am proud to be. Five years ago if you told me I would have a relatively successful blog, work for a radio station and much more work experience under my belt I would laugh. I have had unbelievable experiences specifically throughout the last year but it's not down to luck it's down to hard hard work. I have sent more emails to companies that I could possibly remember. 95% are ignored; 4% declined; and the lucky 1% which make it all worthwhile. 

What I am trying to say is... If you want something. Get it. Do things you love, do things that make you happy and no matter how many times you get declined, how many times you fail. Keep Going. It's worth it.

I have in no way reached my dream and like I said it will forever grow bigger and bigger.

But I'm going to keep trying and so are YOU!

♥︎

Sunday, 7 January 2018

Keeping the New Years Blues Away



Over December everything is looking up, there's the parties, the food and all the preparations that goes along with it. It's very easy to get caught up in it all so when January hits and all the chocolates have been eaten, the Christmas decorations are put away for yet another year and work begins it's obvious that many of us feel slightly deflated. I always see a New Year as a clean slate and always promise myself to get my life in shape. This optimism works for me but at the same time, these unrealistic pressures make the New Year blues even more obvious not to mention your social media feeds full of inspiration and others 'new year new me' statements. However no fear, I have some tips on how I combat this and keep your 2018 on track.


Do More of What Makes You Happy

Let's start with the cliché, but it is unbelievably important an I can say that from experience as much of the start of last year I spent pleasing others doing what made them happy and not so much myself. I have also found it has made me more optimistic and has led to so many changes in my life and myself for the better shaping me into the best version of myself

Be Realistic...

Keep your aims, goals or promises realistic. The pressure of suddenly having a perfect life overnight is too great and is never going to happen and hence will leave you giving up before the years began.

Have Fun

 Who says that just because Christmas is over you can't continue having fun? See friends, family and have a great time. It's important to realise they are all still there even when the festivities aren't.

Take Time For You 

It's easy to get caught up in all the work you have to do but we all take very little time for ourselves like the first point does things you enjoy or even just relax with a pamper session or simply a bubble bath.

A Fresh Start 

As I said at the start just the idea of the year being a fresh start gives me slight optimism especially if the previous year has been specifically rubbish. It's a time to leave in the present and only use past experiences to show you the way forward ensuring you don't make the same mistakes.

♥︎ 

Monday, 1 January 2018

Goodbye 2017 Hello 2018!


Every year I like to recap on all the moments that made the year and my goals for the next and this year is no different. Let me tell you now... 2017 was a rollercoaster! I had highs and lows and twists and turns at every corner. It was full of achievement and failure, love and loss and learning to step very far out of my comfort zone. As I sit here now on the 1st January 2018 (like WHAT?! Time flies!) I can say I am proud of myself.

Beginning with the not so good, the year began with a rubbish start, my anxiety  hit with vengeance which I didn't quite realise how much until I looked at photographs and I had absolutely no photographs before Olly Murs' concert in late March and this isn't because I forgot to take any, its because I was stuck in a rut of anxiety. I went out and did what I had to such as sixth form where sometimes I wouldn't even make that and then went home. However, I went to Olly Murs' concert - something I booked when I was not suffering from anxiety as bad and something I didn't think I could make - but I did and had an incredible night, from here I realised I was stronger than I thought (cliché I know) but I changed as a person. I fought anxiety with every ounce of strength and had to make choices for me. I changed my friendship circles, I went out and did some amazing things and had the summer of my life!

All of a sudden the year took an amazing turn, in June I celebrated my 18th Birthday which was such a lovely day (despite a Geography exam in the middle of it) and everyone spoiled me so much and I had the best night out. I finished my exams, left sixth form and had prom - another amazing night - that's when i felt the summer really began. I was working most days but doing something I absolutely LOVE every day was different, I met the most amazing people and many will be life long friends and a few celebrities I snapped a photo with. I now have friends I can count on, that I know I can rely on to be there. I went on numerous holidays with family and then friends where I didn't stop to think what I was doing I just went for it.

Then came A Level results day where I opened the envelope to find C D D something I never expected and disappointment was an understatement I had no idea where to turn. So after there was no other option I decided to resit. Then a month into starting back at sixth form I had my A Level remarks back with C C C going up 15+ marks in each subject. Here it goes to show the exam boards messed it up, in one way they held me back a year but in other ways, it gave me more time to think and evaluate what was going on. I had already began my Photography A-Level so the school offered to let me carry on with that on its own even though usually in sixth form it's full-time education meaning 3 subjects so I have plenty of time for work experience and furthering my career as university has never been my first option. I then managed to get a job broadcasting for radio's which I couldn't be happier with so everything has begun to look up.

The year has taught me to never look back, surround myself with people I love and jump into every opportunity. Most importantly I have learnt to have fun and if I want to do something I will do it!

MY 2018 RESOLUTIONS:

Be More Organised: I currently struggle with this a LOT

Further my Career: This is something I need to work hard at but if I dream it I can do it

Expand my Blog and YouTube: I started Youtube earlier this year and really enjoy it (link at the bottom of the blog post) and I am determined to keep this and my blog going and expanding sharing what I am passionate for. I also want to change the blog posts I do a bit to show more of me.

Pass my Driving Test

Continue to Manage my Anxiety: I know I will always have lows but I want to make sure they come a lot less often

Experience New Places: I began to do this in 2017 with many amazing holidays and experiences but I want to continue as I have definitely not seen much of the world.

Meet new people: Something I love is making new friends and learning about other people lives. It's not something I can make happen but I very much hope it does.

Have Fun and Embrace Life!

HAPPY 2018! 

♥︎