The Joys and Benefits of Open Water Swimming

Last year my husband spent every Sunday morning of the entire winter swimming in the sea. He estimated that water temperature got as low as 8C. Apart from three weeks when we visited Vietnam, and one weekend when we were away at the snow, he went for a swim in the sea.

I’ll be frank, I thought he was mad. While I lolled about in my pjs with my hot cup of tea, he’d change into his boardies and head into the water (with only a swimming cap for warmth). He’d return half an hour or so later, with purple lips and a shiver that only a hot shower would calm. But his eyes would be sparkling and you could see he was electric with adrenalin.

Then one day in October 2017 I read a really interesting article on The Conversation on the benefits of swimming in sea water. You can read it here if you’re interested.  Something turned in my brain after reading that article. [Read more…]

Self-Actualisation: Pushing Through the Hard to Find the Sweet

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I’ve never been interested in self-actualisation through my career. Business is too cut throat for my liking. I’ve seen people whose entire identity is invested in their job suffer enormously because of it.

It can never end happily. Indeed, a woman I knew was so invested in her work that a shock redundancy left her so blind-sided she had a breakdown and then joined the ranks of the long-term unemployed, simply because she couldn’t find the strength to put herself back together and get on with things. It stripped her of her confidence, her sense of self, and her self-worth. She became a shell of herself. [Read more…]

“Embrace”: Why Everyone Should See This Film

This week I saw the documentary “Embrace”. It was profound and shocking, and sadly, all too familiar. The documentary looks closely at women’s relationship with their bodies and why the predominant response is self-loathing.

The vox-pops were full of clips of women of all shapes and sizes describing their bodies: revolting, disgusting, droopy, I hate my hips/thighs/boobs (insert any body part you like right here).

Not one clip showed a woman saying strong, beautiful, curvy, functional, reliable… there was nothing positive.  [Read more…]

My Morning Routine – In Real Life (this is a ‘no aspirational high-achievers’ zone).

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We read so much about morning routines and not much of that has sunk in for me – except for a couple of things. Who are these cray-cray get up at 5am for a cup of calming herbal tea, bum on cushion for meditation, then out for energising run types? I’ve never met one.

But I am really interested in other people’s routines, what works, what doesn’t – and I’m just a bit of a sticky beak for details really. I get my fix of other peoples routines through Madeleine Dore’s ‘Extraordinary Routines’ blog. She writes about all sorts of people’s routines and rituals – perfect for a sticky-nose like me.

This week she wrote about Ken Done’s routine, for The Design Files. I just find these tiny details about other people really fascinating. Who would have thought that Ken Done swims every day? Or that he has a gnome in his studio that farts when the door closes? I love that I know this about him.

But, if the truth be known, I get a bit depressed about other people’s routines because mine is just all over the shop. I have actually implemented a couple of lovely things that have made a significant difference to the way my day is framed. I’m going to share my morning routine, warts and all, so you know for sure that I am not one of those ommm-ing while the sun rises.  [Read more…]

Slowing Down: Walking the Walk – Not Just Talking the Talk

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I posted recently on the benefits of Slow Living and I am making a concerted effort to slow things down. Sometimes it’s just not possible, but being considered and factoring in time to just hang out can make a huge difference.

So I thought I should show you that I’m trying to walk the walk, not just talk the talk. Here are some of the things I’m doing to live a more considered life. [Read more…]