I came across a quote last week that stated: “If you watch how nature deals with adversity, continually renewing itself, you can’t help but learn”, and it really made me think about how different areas of life change and adapt in conjunction with nature. It also made me feel quite empowered and encouraged to deal with life’s adversities with a fearless, more resilient approach.

It’s safe to say we can finally give spring a warm welcome as the trees are full and the weather is good- hopefully for long! Just as nature renews itself during spring, we too should seek to renew ourselves inside and out. From our hair, skin and bodies, to our minds, social lives and all aspects of life that shape who we are, it is a great time to extend the notion of “spring cleaning” into these areas. In addition to encouraging us all to be more resilient in times of hardship, hopefully spring teaches us to also be mindful of the things we allow to enter our precious spaces (mind, body and energy). Whatever you do this spring, let the trees full of blossoms and the brimming flower beds remind you of renewal, resilience and positive change.

Spring products I recommend for renewing skin, hair and energy:

  • Sanctuary White Lilly & Damask Rose body wash – smells like spring and leaves your skin feeling completely revitalised
  • Sanctuary 5 Minute Thermal Detox Mask – refreshes and renews skin, and is perfect for all skin types
  • Pantene Pro-V Perfect Hydration Conditioner- highly moisturisng but lightweight, perfect for warm weather
  • Jo Malone English Pear and Freesia Candle – light, sweet scent that creates a relaxing vibe in your space

 

Love

Some of us have great support systems, some of us are a those support systems and some of us are lucky enough to have/be both. Anything in this world that needs to be held upright needs some type of support, including us.

I strongly believe everyone you meet in life has the ability to offer you a gift that will contribute positively to your own growth, that could be a new perspective, a new skill, a new idea, anything! So being supportive of one another should be second nature.

Don’t ask? Won’t get. 

Not everyone thinks the way you do and the only way you’ll receive the support you actually need is by being clear. Some people, including myself at times, find it hard to outright ask people for support (especially when you’re used to being independent) but sometimes splitting the load is essential for being more effective. 9 times out of 10, people will be happy to use their skill to help you, especially if they can see you’re driven. (There’s a difference between asking for support and being a bit lazy)

Be realistic

Most people are under the misconception that being supportive or receiving support should be a 24/7 process, but in actuality, we all have lives which can be busy or hectic at times. Giving your support wherever you can is OKAY. (you’re still giving!) Being supportive to others does not mean you must compromise yourself or feel guilty for not providing constant support, the important thing is to provide it when you can.

Be mindful

Make sure the people you lean on  genuinely care about your well-being, development and life ambitions, (YES) but most importantly, make sure they are strong enough to support themselves (and vice versa). Sometimes we expect the world from people who are only capable giving us an island at that point in time, and rather than burning bridges, maybe think about whether you may need to step up and offer your support.

Be the person you need

Equally, if you are relying heavily on others for support and not receiving any, it might be time to reassess your situation and start giving yourself the support you desire. There will be times when you’ll need to be open to receiving support, and there will also be times where you’ll need to be your own number one fan/support system. Be someone who can do both.

photography by : @Keishakfrancis [Instagram]

Study struggles… we’ve all been there!

When it comes to studying for something, whether it’s an academic exam or driving test, things can escalate QUICKLY and become stressful (if you’re not prepared). Here are 3 easy ways to relieve pressure and make studying more enjoyable.

AM or PM?

Get to know your study habits. Are you someone who works best early in the morning? during the afternoon? or late at night? If you know when you work best, dedicate a time slot (within that time period) strictly to studying. You’ll be much more productive and want to work harder – of course sleep is important for your brain so if you do study at night, catch up on your sleep.

MEAL PREP

Studying on an empty stomach can feel like one of the most unproductive tasks ever (after procrastination) because 95% of your attention will be on FOOD. I’m guilty of studying for hours without preparing a meal and I always regret it! Set time aside prior to your ‘study time’ to make a quick meal/prepare some healthy snacks that will keep your brain fuelled.

METAPHORICAL LEGO

This may sound strange, but treating your work like individual blocks of lego can make it a lot easier to get through. Breaking up a huge task into smaller ‘lego blocks’ and focusing on each one, can ensure you do a thorough job as you wont be constantly overwhelmed with the idea of completing a huge task.

Been helpful or could help someone you know? Comment/Like/share with your friends!

IMG_6640

Photographer: Olanike. P, Instagram: olaaxo

For the most part, the majority of us do seem to be comfortable in our own skin but this is tested once we are forced outside of our comfort zone. I wanted to write a post about being confident and comfortable in your own skin for those of us who sometimes compare ourselves to unrealistic ideals, doubt ourselves or lack confidence from time to time.

Although there’s no problem with basing your self around modern beauty ideals or the latest trends, to be comfortable in your own skin it is important to step outside of those guidelines every now and then, taking the time to appreciate yourself in all your uniqueness. No doubt, you are beautiful but the point is you are beautiful in more ways than one. An easy way to start the process is to look at the part of yourself you consider to be the most different, interesting, or perhaps the part you are least comfortable with (physically or mentally) and embrace it completely. Taking the time to appreciate every little thing that makes you, you, is the quickest way to become more confident and comfortable in your own skin.

Christians believe that we are all made in the image of God, which I think is a powerful message and a constant reminder that we all possess incredible qualities. If you ever doubt yourself, that is something you should definitely consider remembering. Today I challenge you to step out of your comfort zone and do something that requires a new way of  viewing yourself.

Take a few minutes out of the day before you get dressed, before you style your hair or do anything to your already beautiful face, and use that time to appreciate yourself in your most natural state. For non-physical attributes, take the time to appreciate what you may usually hide, by being still, meditating or even writing yourself a letter. This doesn’t have to be done for the world to see, but as long as you share the moment with yourself you will find that you gradually move closer towards confidence, self acceptance and happiness.

Hey guys!

After reading an article on natural hair and the apparent ‘low self esteem’ it brings about, I felt quite frustrated and annoyed because I found the article to be counterproductive (in terms of purpose). Although the research was valid and the people interviewed were expressing their true feelings which I can respect, the article in general seemed to raise a number of issues without providing any solutions. In an age where theories, solutions and answers are always in circulation I felt the article to be a lazy attempt at addressing an issue. I personally felt the article was solely to reinforce the point in question, so hopefully I can provide an alternative opinion and by any means, a solution!

These photos of Angela Simmons and Keke Palmer I came across are two of the many fresh-faced celebrity photos floating around the internet, but I was more interested in sharing how effortlessly both ladies radiate confidence while posing with their natural hair!

My point is, focusing on the positives is great, which is why I am so enthusiastic about posting my hair crush of the month, but like Keke Palmer and Angela Simmons’ #NoWeave #NoMakeup selfies, we should be comfortable in our skin (and hair!). We shouldn’t look to the media to validate anything we were born with, we should be confident enough to show the world who we are without worrying about anybody’s idea of ‘perfection’ but our own, therefore, the first place we should look to for inspiration or validation is in the mirror.

So, admire your unique kinks, coils, curls, and be confident in your skin. No-one else will benefit from this as much as you will!

Lots of love SMF