Going back to basics|Self Love and Self Care

Image sourced from Pintrest Http://pin.it/21yHChG

I am Thirty One years old.

Yet, often inside I still feel like the frightened, scared, bumbling teenager that I was a decade or so ago.

I have suffered with issues to do with my self esteem for many years. During my life I have dealt with these issues in different ways.

Alcohol. Sex. Drugs. Self Harm. 

Some people may be surprised to read this. The biggest way I have dealt with it is with a Mask. I have always tried to come across as happy and confident. Desperate to be liked. I think this desperation stems from the fact I have never really felt that I liked myself. How many of you can relate? How many of you truly like yourselves?


Image sourced from Pintrest Http://pin.it/hUhTwDg

I have been thinking lately that I don’t do the things I did when I was younger. No Drugs,Sex and Rock and Roll so to speak (I am making myself younger self seem much cooler/messed up than I actually was). My feelings about myself are less angsty than they were. 

I can confidently say I no longer hate myself. I think I am learning to like myself, but I am realising I want more. I deserve more. I want to LOVE myself. That my friends is a big ask and is very hard to say out loud. 

I was thinking about what stops me from loving me? I have come to the conclusion it is something so simple, something that many, many people do. 

I do not value myself. 

AND

I neglect myself.

It’s easy to do. Especially when you have children. Sometimes you almost feel like it is part of the package. You wear it like a badge of honour. “My children come first”, “I don’t have time for me” etc etc.

I have realised I neglect myself on a very basic level. Simple things like not brushing my teeth at night, not combing my hair for days on end, going days without a proper shower. These things all have impact on how I see and in turn value myself. 

Also I limit myself in silly ways. Telling myself silly little lies, these lies just limit me. Telling me I am not THAT kind of person. 

I am not the kind of person who wears perfume everyday. WHY NOT?

I am not the kind of person who is organised. WHY NOT?

I am not the kind of person who spends time on her appearance. WHY NOT?

WHY NOT?   WHY NOT?  WHY NOT?”

I feel like inside I am screaming this?

“WHY NOT ME?”

I am realising I am only going to be this young ONCE. I don’t want to be 40,50,60 and still dealing with these issues. Wishing I had done more. That I had been more.

Last night I sat and thought about the person I want to be. The person I can be and I made a list of very simple things that I want to do daily/weekly. These are things that you probably already do, but after years and years of self neglect I am ashamed to admit I do not…. Sorry did not! 

I am making a promise to myself, to do these things. To value myself and believe I deserve these things too. These are the very basic fundementals and I hope that they will impact on my life in significant ways.

[Daily]

• Brush teeth TWICE daily [Floss]

• Use a face wash

• Cleanse, tone and moisturise

• Grease hair and comb it

• Shower

• Drink at least TWO glasses of H20

• Wear make up/ Cream face

• Walk around the block

• Meditate for 10 minutes

• Wear perfume

[Weekly]

• Groom eyebrows

• Groom finger and toe nails

• Shave

• Wash hair

• 20 mintue yoga session

• Write in a journal

I am going to have a new baby in a few weeks (still haven’t got my head around this). I would like to be doing these things before, so they are habit and if I miss one or two things it’s easy to pick up again. 

I want to teach my boys to value themselves and I feel that valuing myself is a huge part of that. That will be another blog post, though. 


Image sourced from Pintrest

Http://pin.it/u5aGUfJ
Thank you for reading this post. It feels quite significant to post this. I would love to know about your journey of Self Love and Self Care. Are you just starting to learn its OK to value yourself? Have you been on this journey already? Do you have any tips to share? 

Thanks reading

Cherrysnotmyname 🍒

Cherie 💕

[Self Development Series: Post one] •Trying to silence the voice in my head•

That voice in my head. It is always there. Lurking. I try to silence it. Through music, through TV, by hours spent on social media sites. Occasionally even through reading or knitting or ridiculously long phone calls to my Mum. Do I really need to watch the video of a man singing *read screeching* in a supermarket again? No. But I do. These things are louder than the voice in my head. At this point I have silenced her, her being me.

I assume we all have a voice in our head? I guess it our conscious? Mine is on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. She gets louder the quieter my surroundings become. She is very selfish, she basically talks about me all the time. Constantly comparing and criticising. Nothing is good enough. Nothing is right and everything I do is wrong. Sometimes she tells me “well done for making sure all the kids bags are packed ready for the morning” but she quickly snatches it back as she snaps back “Oh my God, how pathetic, as if you actually need to congratulate yourself on packing the kids bags. You are such a crap Mum. It shouldn’t be such a big deal, it’s your JOB!”.

She tells me I am a rubbish Mum, a terrible Wife, a bad Friend, a horrible Sibling, Aunt, Cousin etc. I try to justify it that there just isn’t time to do everything I want. She says “That may be true, but you would have more time if you weren’t so lazy, if you prioritised, stopped being so selfish and putting yourself first”. Then in the same breath, she moans that I have no time for me, that I don’t know who I am anymore. Sometimes I want to run and hide. Sometimes I wish there was an off switch. To stop all the negativity. Sometimes I think I could get so much more done and I could achieve more if I didn’t constantly have her belittling me, judging me, berating me, once again by her, I mean me.

I decided to do a little experiment. I put a request on my Facebook page, for people to Personal Message me , with either a word or a short paragraph that they felt described me and if possible a little explanation. I did state it didn’t need to be positive, I was more than willing to receive some constructive criticism. I got a few responses and they weren’t necessarily from the people I thought would respond either. The responses were all really lovely. My sister in laws was probably the one which was most accurate ‘clumsy’ I know she meant it in an endearing way. She did also send me another more serious message too.

Anyway, the purpose of this experiment wasn’t to give myself an ego boost. It was to see how people see me and how that differed from how I see myself. My instant reaction was that they only know half the story, they don’t see the what goes on in my head, some of the less positive and kind thoughts, people said I was ‘kind and caring’ yet my response was ‘I don’t support any charities, I don’t give money to the homeless and I can’t remember the last time I bought/ made a gift for a friend’ my response was they think I am kind and caring, but they don’t really know me

However, I began to try and think why people think I am caring. My friends have told me in the past that I am good at listening without passing judgement. I don’t see this as anything special, but apparently not every one is like this. I am an encourager and a supporter. When looking at other people I can always see the positives, I can see how they can achieve and how they can make the changes that they want to. I support them in small ways if I can.

I had a few which said I was ‘Quirky’ this really surprised me. Had it been 5-10 years ago or so then I would not have been surprised at all.  I was the crazy one who cut her own hair, dyed it a range of colours, wouldn’t even blink at the thought of having a mowhawk, piercing her lips and tongue and often wore inappropriate clothing.

{This is when I just decided to shave half of a head of hair off and I didn’t even bat an eye lid}

I used to get my family to dress up like this at Halloween, now we are lucky if we have pumpkin and the kids have a costume on.

I was the rebel. When all the girls did their best Britney impressions at the school uniform disco. I was the one who said FUCK THAT. I got a flat cap, some boys school shorts and drew freckles on my face and went as a boy. It was a great night.


Now I don’t feel ‘Quirky’, I don’t really feel I am anything. I am just here. I think part of that is because I am such a people pleaser that I daren’t find out who I really am. I know some of the things that I am writing about will shock people. What I will say is sometimes the people who are the most confident and socialable are the ones that struggles deep down inside. The ones who try to be liked, hoping that if everyone else likes them then maybe they can begin to like themselves.

The ones who seem like they don’t give a shit about what everyone else thinks are the ones who spend stupid amounts of time analysing what they said and how someone might have interpreted it. These are the people who are so caring and thoughtful yet berate themselves for being so selfish and self absorbed. Only seeing what they haven’t done, rather than what they have done. I know this describes me pretty well. What was surprising and also in a strange way liberating were the following responses.

I think you are a kind thoughtful , funny and caring person who is often far to judgemental about herself & expects too much from herself

I also think you have your own wacky yet trendy style and you are unique , but also I feel that to some people you may come across as very outgoing and carefree when really I think you are quite a quiet, setback and possibly shy person at times
Hope this helps and you didn’t think I was being harsh cuz your a wonderful person and none of these points are bad xx

– Kerri

Sincere.
You are always honest. Even if it means acknowledging something you may have done wrong. You are sincere and always true to yourself xx

– Charmaine

You’re a kind, loving, hard working person (and mother). You put others before yourself, which at times seems to be your downfall to a certain degree. You’re also too hard on yourself.

– Tommy

It’s a funny feeling to hear positive things about yourself, especially when it isn’t a special event like a birthday. I must admit it is nice to hear. I do try to be kind, honest and caring, but I am only human, sometimes I snap, sometimes I forget, sometimes I just get darn right angry at the world and its Dog. I hate thinking that any of my friends could think about themselves the way that I have felt about myself. It’s a lonely, soul destroying way to feel/live and it is exhausting to have to pretend that everything is OK. When really inside everything is feels broken, deflated, defeated.

You feel defeated.

Defeated by life.

Defeated by yourself.

Now do not get me wrong what I am writing about here is not depression. It’s somehow different, you get angry angry at it, you feel trapped and scared. You know there is a way out (unlike depression) but it means change and putting in effort and that voice is shouting loud and clear “DON’T BOTHER” “YOU CAN’T DO IT” “IT’S ALL LIES”

I am fed up of being ruled by this voice. I started thinking what if I started to have a different voice in my head. A positive voice, one that encouraged me instead of berating me. How would that change my life?

This is PART ONE of my self development series of posts. The posts in this series will span the past six months and I will be talking about what I have learnt about myself and how I plan to change. If you would like to follow me on that journey then keep an eye out for my following posts. I would love to know if you have been on a journey of self discovery or if you too have a voice in your head.

you can also follow me on Twitter and Instagram too.

Thank you for reading

Cherrysnotmyname

[Project Life Overhaul:Part One] •Freaks Welcome, especially clean and neat ones 

  
As one of Previous posts said. I am going to be making some serious changes. I need to overhaul my life. So I have decided that I am going to tackle it head first. 

I have decided that I need to be more organised and if I can do that it will spill over into other areas of my life and have a positive impact on my marriage, family and myself. 

What I hope to eliminate from my life

* Stress

{ I feel like stress is my default emotion as of late, apparently I am pretty good at hiding it, when I have confided that I feel stressed people have been surprised}

* Choas

{ I feel like I don’t know if I am coming or going, I get easily confused and distracted. Everything is alway slap dash and last minute}

* Feeling out of control

{ I love and adore my children, but it has got to the point where I feel they dictate everything and we need to take the reins back for everyone to keep their sanity}

* Clutter 

{ Oh my gosh, the clutter in my life is getting into dangerous terrority. Of course I always have an excuse, the house is too small, we don’t have the right storage and of course I need everything we own 😁 I also want to get rid of the clutter in my head. All the pointless thoughts worrying, panicking and stressing }

This is where I NEED YOU!

I need you to share with me all your hints, tips and tricks. All the things that help you to stay on track. I need to organise all areas of my life. I feel like if I can get to grips with the house and the children, then I will have the time and the energy to start spending time focusing on my health, having time for me. 

I have started a Homefile which I will share with you soon. 

What I want are tips, pics, hints and links. 

Nothing is too stupid, or too small to have an impact. 

Some ideas friends have shared in the past are 

• Not having a hot lunch (only having cold finger foods) means kids are hungry for their tea/dinner and also not pots and pans to wash up. 

• Spruce up your kitchen whenever you boil the kettle

• Creating and following a meal planner

• Buying children’s birthday and Christmas presents through out the year to save money.

I also want to know why products can you NOT live without. Do you use a specific brand of cloths? Find a certain type of product is great for one type of cleaning? Do you make your own products? Do you have a cleaning caddy? What is your cleaning routine? What tea towels do you use (this is a genuine question – I need ones that don’t just spread the water around). Show me pics of hacks you have done on your house. Where do you file paperwork? How do you organise your important documents? Do you have a budget? 

Please note

• I do not have a dishwasher

• I do not have a tumble dryer

• I have limited conventional space, but am willing to try hacks to create more

Come on out to play all you neat freaks… Come and help a mama out!!! 

I am genuinely counting on getting hints and tips from you guys. For the rest of this month I plan on de cluttering and gathering ideas. Getting lists together of recommended products etc. then in September I plan to attack! I plan to put into place as much as I can to ensure I finally crack this problem. 

I would love it if you would join me either to support me or even to make some changes to your own life. I will be creating a list of some of the best/ most useful tips and writing a post all about it. Get your ideas in and you could feature on this page.  I will be using the hashtag #ProjectLifeOverhaul2015 on my Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Come follow me and join in too!!

Thanks for reading 

Cherrysnotmyname 🍒

The Fear

When I decided to start this blog, one of the things I wanted to achieve was to be as honest and open as possible. That means not everything I post is going to be all sunshine and roses because well sometimes life sucks. 

Do you ever wonder if you are normal? Do you ever wonder if other people feel their emotions so intensely and get so caught up in their own heads it’s hard to focus on what is happening right in front of them? If you do, then thank God, it means I am not alone. If you don’t then I guess you can only try and imagine how annoying it can be. It is so frustrating to be that self absorbed. To be spending so much time thinking about yourself, generally in a negative way. It’s really emotionally draining too. I have briefly danced with depression in the past (that’s a whole other post) and I wonder if this is some sort of remenant of that? I am generally very good at hiding how I feel and the unlogical turmoil I have going on inside. I think part of it is down to me being a people pleaser.

There are many things that I worry about, I generally do not feel that I am good enough for many things in life, but one thing that surpasses all of that is the FEAR that I am not enough for my boys. That they deserve so much more. I FEAR that I know how to talk the talk, but I fall short when it comes to walking the walk. I know my friends would say this is silly, but I am a comparator. I compare myself to every one and anyone. I always fall short. I know I am my own worst enemy. 

I have often found that I feel this at its strongest when I am alone at night, lying with one of my children. Whether it be feeding, soothing after a bad dream or just sneaking an extra cuddle before I go to sleep. I lay there and watch them and my mind goes into overdrive and it feels like their preciousness and my inadequacies are amplified ten fold. I have found that something that helps is to write my feelings down. In the form of a poem. So today I am going to share two poems that I have written in these types of moments. My poems never have titles (I don’t know why) and I just write what comes into my head, I never go back and re edit and try and make it better. It is what it is at that moment in time and I don’t want to change it or try and perfect it. 

Poem A

As I lay here feeding my baby
I know all will be fine
even though walls fall around me
our hearts, they stay entwined
for the bond with my children
is precious and strong

Each journey has been different
with their highs and their lows
my heart beats for each of them
how much, they do not know
my heart was caged, but now it is free
no longer consumed with misery

Sometimes the love is overwhelming
and it devours my soul
then the fear sets in
and it swallows me whole
Am I ready? Do I dare?
to be their constant… Who is always there

My throat tightens and my head spins
and I have to dig deep within
to keep on fighting
to keep trudging on
to be an inspiration
to my sons

© Cherie Lewis-Quinn       13/11/2013


Poem B
As I lay here and watch your eyes close
as you fall into a deep slumber
I worry
I worry that I am not enough
and deep down
in the pit of my stomach
I want to run
its fight or flight
thats what they say
and that is the only reason I stay
I have to
to be there for you
to teach you
to guide you through
this battle that they call life
its like balancing on the edge of a knife
trying so hard not to fall
trying to keep a balance of it all
don’t go too fast, you can’t go back
But keep going forward and you will see
the blade in a funny way
is really quite pretty
watch the lights twinkle
as it reflects your glow
allow yourself the time to grow
so as you slumber
I hope you dream
of all the things you want to make reality
I will do my best to change my heart
To keep the darkness from creeping in
I just need to keep reminding myself
I was made for you
what more could I want to do
I’m sorry I can’t be all you need
all things, to all three
but everyday I will start a fresh
Everyday I will do my best
to give you the love and life you deserve
so slumber away as I hold you still
and gaze upon your beautiful face
I will lie here until I sleep
and I know I will sleep in peace

© Cherie Lewis-Quinn     11/04/2015

I know these poems aren’t perfect. They are not meant to be. They express how intensely I can feel this at times. I hope that this reaches someone who might be feeling the same, so they know they are not alone.Ultimately  these poems talk about the fear, but also about how I am going to use it to motivate and inspire me. If you have made it this far, well done 👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽 
Thanks for reading
Cherrysnotmyname 🍒

The Confessions of a People Pleaser…*I really hope you like this post*

so

A few days ago, something LIFE CHANGING happened. I got OLD!! Well not really, but I did turn • T H I R T Y •

I posted the picture of this quote on my Instagram account ‘mynamesnotcherry’ I said how this basically summed up my 20s. That horrible feeling of being STUCK. I’ve always been a people pleaser and I think it just makes you get stuck faster. In this life we have so many roles to play

• Mother •

• Daughter •

• Sister •

• Aunt •

• Daughter in Law •

• Wife •

• Best Friend •

• Friend •

• Colleague •

• Employee •

The list continues and never seems to stop. When you are a people pleaser you want to make everyone happy. This is fundamentally impossible, but your brain just bypasses that information and the bit that says “ummmm this is stupid, you’re gonna end up emotionally drained and probably unhappy and no one will be none the wiser” and instead says  “maybe if I can be half the person they are I will feel like I am worth something, let’s please all the people, all the time. No Pressure

note: this may not be how your brain works but it certainly how mine works.

Anyway, it got me thinking about how much time I spend trying to please others. I realise this needs to stop and this is a huge factor, in why I cannot say I am truly happy. I am the person who can never decide what to eat, where to go or what to do. It infuriates my husband, sometimes to the point we won’t do things as he gets so cross that I can’t seem to make a bloody decision. I don’t know why I have this innate desire to please everyone else. Maybe it stems from my childhood? Or from my desire to always be the good guy? Or maybe because I think everyone else’s happiness is of a higher priority than mine? Don’t get me wrong I can a selfish cow (which is ironic as I am pretty much petrified of cows…go one laugh, but I assure you it is true and not a laughing matter, ok maybe it is!).

So after having this realisation I decided that I my 30s are not going to be dictated by this. I will no longer allow myself o be STUCK. I am going to spend time on ME, I am going to put myself first and do what I really want to do deep down. So Just over a week in I am learning, it is hard to change. People pleasing is easy, I know how to do that and I am relatively good at it. I made a sweeping statement on my Instagram page about how I was about to enter my cocoon and I would emerge free, no longer held captive by insecurities and deep rooted self loathing. I thought my cocoon was going to be a beautiful place. which would be filled with birdsongs, tropical rain, gentle ocean tides, flowers and it would be somewhere I could just relax and sleep and  I would wake up with my wings ready to fly. I was wrong.

Learning to let go of what other people might think of me is hard, I guess its kind of become a blanket. It is funny really how I say I think I am not really important, yet think people are constantly looking at me and judging, as if they haven’t got enough shit, stuff going on in their own lives. I will tell you one thing, its funny how the human brain works, evolution made us a tiny bit crazy. Anyway this beautiful cocoon isn’t beautiful, it is not soft and warm…its cold, wet and uncomfortable the perfect storming is happening right here. It is somewhere you have all your bones broken so that you can be re shaped, moulded into the person you want to be. these are ’emotional’ bones I speak of… I am learning to say ‘No’ such a small word, but it packs a powerful punch. I am having to think about what I really want to do, which I am not used to, I am having to think about thing as, basic things most people just know about themselves… Favourite types of music, clothes they like, Now, this is very hard to write and instantly my people pleasing senses are tingling…I am even learning to put my needs before my children’s… I feel deep down that this makes me some sort of barbaric, horrid and selfish mum, but at the same time I know I need to do this for them as much as for me. They deserve a mum who is happy, who has energy and who is enjoying life. Small sacrifices such as attending a friends birthday meal and missing bedtime, is OK. It is OK. I often miss bedtime due to work, but that’s a neccessity for us not a choice. I choose instead of thinking of all the people that would disagree with me (mainly me in my own head) and instead think about the positives, Some time out for me to me with my good friends, whom I haven’t seen without at least one child strapped to my hips in years. A content and rested Mama coming home, some time apart to miss each other and sneaking in hugs with the boys.

I have a lot of work to do, I have started keeping a journal to keep track of my thoughts and feelings and where I am in myself. I’ve been listening to classical music and music that is calming. I really want to try meditation and it is something I will be trying in the next week or so. I cannot imagine my mind being still, free from all the internal criticising, the questions, the worry, the stress and general craziness that goes on in there.

Things for me for 2015

• Train for and run a 5K

• Get a new job

• Learn to meditate

• Keep a journal

• Maintain this blog

2015 is going to be the year, I stop being a people pleaser and I become a me pleaser. Here’sto 2015  *clink clink*

 

Thanks for reading

Cherrysnotmyname🍒