It’s the little things.

Following from my last blog post I thought ‘well I can’t really dish all of that negativity (yet realness) out and leave it there’.

So here are my tips for keeping positive.

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1.Let yourself off the hook.

It’s okay to have “those day”. Why wouldn’t it be? I don’t understand why anyone can judge a person for not being fine and having no reason, or even a reason that doesn’t seem worth it. We’re human. And life… well it can be crappy. So let yourself be. Accept your crappy mood. And to hell with everyone else. If you want me time then have your me time. Sometimes it does us the world of good to have a shut down period.

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2. A clean space is a clean mind.

Sometimes the best thing for us is to put a playlist on and get to work organising and cleaning our bedrooms. This gives us time to just be with our thoughts. Dance around. Sing into the deodorant or hairbrush and clear out any clutter. It’s no science that a clear space is a clear mind. It’s a day where you reflect. Or maybe even forget what was bothering you in the first place and by the time you remember you’ve either figured out a solution, you’re ready to face it or better yet, you don’t care anymore.

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3.Music to my ears

Is it really shameful that certain songs can be really insightful and actually make me feel better? Well that’s the truth. Honestly. Going for a walk while playing the likes of London Grammar, Coldplay, Hans Zimmer and other, does me the world of good. Again its that simple me time. Shutting off from social media and just being with my thoughts. I’d recommend going for a walk somewhere quiet. I’m lucky enough to live in the countryside so a walk is always refreshing. Cities can be good for people-watching but then there’s always the issue of running into people you know and that interrupts me time.

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4. Dear Diary

Do what I did. Write down what’s bothering you. What you’re feeling. What’s going on in your life. You don’t have to share this publicly like I did, that’s the best part, it can be completely private. Your deepest thoughts tucked away in a notebook hidden away even. Or write a draft email if you prefer the new age technological form of journalling (I’m old school and appreciate the humble pen and paper). This might sound strange too but you could always write your thoughts on a sheet of paper and then throw it in the fire or rip it up and throw it away.

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5.Cooking (or baking, whatever floats your boat)

You need to eat so why not use this as a way of distracting yourself. Challenge yourself by not going by a recipe and picking out random ingredients from the cupboards. It could be a complete disaster but at least it’s something.

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6. Reading

Fall into another world. Get inside someone else’s head. I love how characters can feel like real people in your life. Their situations can be relatable and insightful. Don’t underestimate the power of a good book.

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Ahhh the power of a cuppa and a mag!
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Bonus points if you know what book this is!

So there we have it. I can’t promise this will change your life and extinguish all sources of bother, but they might help for a little while. It’s all about distractions, until the mood passes and you’re all good again.

“Being positive in a negative situation is not being naive. It’s leadership”

-Lead your life in the direction you want.

 

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Is there an answer for everything?

Sometimes I’m not fine. And sometimes I can’t explain why. It’s not that I’m saying I’m depressed, it’s just that there are days where it feels like there’s a dark cloud following me around.

I don’t want to face anyone, talk or be around people. All I want is to be in my own company, maybe lie in bed all day.

That might sound bad like there’s something wrong, but this is just-some days.

It seems that saying I’m not fine but can’t explain why isn’t good enough so it’s easier just to pretend when asked.

Why is it there always has to be some kind of explanation? Why does there have to be a reason for feeling low?

Today is one of those days.

I’m not depressed. I’m just not feeling so high and happy today. Is that wrong? Why should it be wrong? Why can’t that just be acceptable? Without someone uttering the word “hormonal”. Putting down how I feel, and the justification of that.

I’m not the type of person who likes to confide in people, share they’re deepest thoughts and look for support. A lot of the time when I do share things it’s either I’ve forgotten myself or I’ve just scratched the service of what’s really going on in my head.

Trust is a hard thing for me. I feel like it’s just easier when you rely on yourself. Push myself forward, deal with life myself and get by on my own accord. I have a wonderful family who are there for me, and I do talk with them, but even they can’t always be the ones I turn to.And even they don’t always accept the lack of reason for a mood.

I’m not really sure what I’m doing here. Funny how I can say all of this here and not to the people in my life that are closest to me.

I guess in my head I’m the only one reading this. After all I haven’t really told anyone I have a blog.

Sorry if this feels like I’m bringing the mood down. But honesty is real and I do not want my blog to be a place where things are sugar coated. This is life after all, my life. I’d consider myself an optimistic person, but everyday can’t be great.

I guess that’s one reason I’ve written this post and the other is because maybe someone will read this and hopefully understand what I mean.

Here’s to a happier tomorrow.

What are you looking forward to this weekend? Let me know in the comments!

Me Before You

-Review-

Hello lovelies.

Well this is finally getting posted!

Here is my first book review on the blog. I promise with these reviews to either avoid any spoilers or at least give fair warning of them, go in depth about the story line (more than the blurbs) and give you my honest and critical thoughts.

I’m so excited to do this review. I’ve read so many myself and now its my turn to have my say.

So let’s start with  ‘Me Before You’ by Jojo Moyes.


This novel introduces us to the main character and narrator-Louisa Clark. A 26 year old going no where in life who suddenly lands a job she never imagined after becoming unemployed.

The job is essentially acting as a companion to a man named Will Traynor who is a quadriplegic. As you can predict this is a romantic story but that’s all I’ll say for now.

Here’s my first problem with the book. It’s quite predictable. Sure from the blurb you can tell she will have her life ‘turned upside down, have a major epiphany and of course fall in love- but a sort of forbidden love’. Typical easy read rom-com read.

My next issue is the the context of the characters circumstances. I mean seriously Jojo Moyes. You decided to write about a 26 year old no where near ready to walk down the aisle with no degree and basically living her life through her boyfriend before letting her be controlled by another whom she falls in love with but can’t have a future with. This man being the one who pushed her to step out of her comfort zone, use her brain and actually look at her life and all the possibilities it contains.

I don’t necessarily love the idea of allowing someone to make you happy or to tell you what to do with your life etc… but I can get past it if I feel that this person makes you a better you, and Will Traynor did just that for Louisa.

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The other problem though is that he couldn’t stick around,he couldn’t reciprocate the feelings, not truly. It’s like she’s a dog, he put the lead on her but didn’t take her for a walk. (weirdest reference i know but stick with me here!)

This book was good. But just that…good, not great, not inspiring not a spectacular profound change your life read. It wasn’t a complex read. It was written well though. I appreciated getting inside Lou’s mind and getting to know the characters from her point of view.

I can’t completely shut it down though. I did skim through it quickly and I did laugh at parts. This is a heartwarming story-line, and for that I would still recommend others to give it a read. There were moments where Lou was sassy and I loved it! This is where the character really shined, in my opinion and Moyes’ skillful writing showed.

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I’ll even admit I teared up at the end, well not quite the ending but rather the epilogue. I won’t say much more hear just that if you’ve read the book you’ll understand what I mean here.

Despite my critic I was looking forward to see what comes next for Lou in ‘After You’. I’ll be doing a review on this novel too, it’s only fitting right?! And actually I loved this book, so much more than the first so keep your eyes out for that!

With all that said I give this book a solid 3 stars ***

Until next time!

xo

-G

P.s comment below what you’re currently reading or what’s next on your book-list

*photo credits to google images and myself, edits done by me*

Fees are still scarier than clowns

Hello lovelies!

Recently I had a right of passage experience as a college student. I attended my first protest/march…. and it was pretty amazing!

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Over the summer an evaluation of third level education took place and a report was drawn up- The Cassells report. I’ll try and keep the details brief just so you understand the context of this post.

The report essentially suggests three methods of funding third level education in the future in Ireland. The first option is to continue with the current method. Fees are 5,000€ but students only fund a total of 3,500€. I say only but this is still a large sum of money for a lot of people. There are also grants available but as it stands this grant system known as SUSI is flawed and quite difficult to avail of.

The second option would be publicly funded education. This would be the best option because it would remove the financial strain on students and their families. It would mean that people will not be unable to attend college because they cannot afford to go.But this seems to be more of a dream than an achievable reality.

And the final option that would cause great damage to the education system in Ireland and would greatly affect Irish society negatively is to implement a student loan scheme. Students would be required to pay for their entire fees with no government levy. These fees would start at 5,000€ and there would no longer be any form of grants available.

Maybe you can see now why this issue is so important to me. It is my issue not just because I am a student but because I have a responsibility as an Irish citizen for future generations who will want to receive a third level education without being faced with debt at the end of this period.

How can the government think its realistic to expect students to come out of college and be able to cope with an estimated debt of 20,000€ (average debt level for most 4 year degrees)?!

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I’m a passionate person who loves a debate-as I’ve mentioned before- so the opportunity to go up to Dublin with the Students’ Union in my college was something I couldn’t miss out on.

Taking over the streets of Dublin, Yelling out and demanding to be heard, actually taking a stand on something I believe was an unreal experience- excuse the corny here.

College is a time in your life to try new things and feel like you’re waking up and doing something with your life. This is what I’ve heard from so many people when I first started college but it’s really only now in my second year that I feel this.

Guess this is definitely something to tick off my bucket list: Attend a protest-CHECK

While I may have had to take the day off work and skip the library study sesh it was totally worth it. Despite getting to stomp around Dublin for the day, I had such a laugh with the gang that was there.

Maybe this seems like a really pointless and boring post but I wanted to bring more attention to this campaign even to my tiny corner of the internet.

If you’re a student in Ireland and want to know more here’s the link to the USI (Union of Students Ireland) page: http://usi.ie/education/national-youth-council-of-ireland-equate-and-inmo-back-usis-national-demo-in-favour-of-publicly-funded-3rd-level-education/

Also check out the campaign on all social media outlets with #educationis

Until next time

Xo

-G

 

Italian Loving!

Hello Lovelies!

Recently I went to Bergamo in Italy with my mom. It was a surprise trip organised by my parents as a birthday present. We flew from Dublin on Thursday morning (6th October) and returned Sunday (9th).

It was such an amazing trip, I almost didn’t want to return home. I loved getting the chance to have a good catch up with my mom, explore a new town, do a bit of shopping and best of all eat some incredible food!

It’s definitely a place I will be returning to. The town of Bergamo is so stunning, the pictures below definitely don’t do it justice.

With college being so busy (as you can see from the lack of blogging) I really needed a shut off period, I even went hours without looking at my phone.

If you’re looking to go somewhere that has it all; stunning location, lovely people, great food, shops, places to explore etc.. and to relax, I would definitely recommend Bergamo.

It’s a place that most people I spoke to didn’t seem to know much about. The credit always seems to go to the bigger cities like Milan, but this place was like a hidden gem.

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Let me know if you’ve ever been to Bergamo, or anywhere in Italy. And also if you have any travel plans for the future?

xo

-G

Freshers.

Hello Lovelies.

Spring Vignette Hop + Free Watercolor Printable:

Congratulations to you all who are starting college! I can’t believe how quick my first year went and now I’m going into second year.So crazy!

In my first year of college I learnt a few things that they don’t tell you about during Orientation week. My friend actually just asked me today if I had any tips for her. So here it is; my first year/freshers survival guide.

(In no particular order)

1.THE TECH TIP

Get a laptop that has a long battery life. I don’t know about all colleges but NUI Galway has a serious lack of sockets on campus. Even the library; not all of the desks will have a place for you to plug in your phone/laptop charger so make sure when you go in you have your laptop fully charged and/or that it has a long battery.

The lecture halls don’t have any sockets which in 2016 I can’t fathom. The students union office continue to petition for more but we’re still waiting.

2. THE CAFFEINE FIX TIP

OK so college will a lot of the time involve coffee. Chilling out between lectures with your friends is where you will socialise the most over cups of coffee. However, we’re students, we’re on budgets so getting 2 cups of coffee a day starts to add up. Well here’s a tip. The coffee spots across the campus on NUIGalway all have a cup charge. So, if you buy a cheap reusable cup e.g from Penney’s and hand that over to get a coffee you’ll save at least 30c. Not much but every little helps for the nights out fund!

Coffee Mug - Ceramic Coffee Mug - Tea - Quote Mug- Tea Lover - Gift Idea - Tea Cup - Tea Time - Adulting Is Hard:

My preference is Americano’s so usually I pay €1.30, or flat white’sand its good quality coffee too! Teas are €1 but less again if you use your own cup!

(comment below your typical coffee order)

3. AND ANOTHER ONE FOR THE COFFEE LOVERS AND TEA DRINKERS

Again with the reusable cups but they are life savers. The library won’t allow you to take drinks in unless their liquids in plastic bottles (water bottles) or coffee cups-not the cardboard ones.


So while you’re studying have your cup ready and then run out for a quick coffee break and get back in no probs.

4.THE SOCIAL LIFE TIP

Join clubs and societies. I know you probably just wan to go to your lectures and go out at night but seriously the extra curricular’s have so much to offer. I’m not going to lie it’s hard to settle into college sometimes, depending on your circumstances; living at home, type of course etc. But by putting yourself out there and into situations where you’re mixing with loads of people will really help.

Besides the social factor there are also great opportunities to come from joining these groups for example, it adds to your cv. Recently when I went for a part time job interview they ignored my lack of experience and instead were really interested about my time writing for the college paper and my position as events manager and treasurer in the Style society.

Remember great things never happen in comfort zones.

4. THE ORGANISATION TIP ((((((((‘USE THE DAMN PLANNER!’)))))))))

Meredith Grey didn't become a surgeon and get to marry McDreamy by not studying…:

O.k so you got by in school without writing in your planner or using multiple or any folders at all but behavior like that won’t fly in college. The difference there is no teacher standing behind your shoulder reminding you when your project’s due or what night to do your homework. You’re on your own.

In college you won’t be doing homework every night, you’ll have assignments due every few weeks so you need to make sure you stay on top of stuff and this is where your planner comes in handy!

The college even provide you with free ones so there’s no cost-no excuse.

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College is pretty much the end of the academic road, after that it’s into the workforce. This is pretty much the last time in your life to let loose and have fun without a tonne of responsibilities so make the most of it.

http://www.gideonmathandreading.com/math-mistakes-can-add-up-to-success/:

Let me know where and what you’re doing after school I’d love to hear from you.

xo

-G

 

A lady of literature.

“Reading is dreaming with open eyes”

So this weekend I have had a revelation of sorts. I stumbled upon booktube. For those that aren’t aware there are a multitude of youtube accounts created by booklovers dedicated to sharing their opinions and recommendations on the literary works they have read. And it’s quite magical.

I can’t believe I never knew about all of these videos. I honestly feel like an idiot for never looking up a review to a book I had read or intended to read before now.

This is definitely a place I want to be a part of.

Tea is amazing Think about it. China, some of the best inventors; The Brits, some of the best authors. It could be the reason. Well whether it is or isn't don't forget to take time out for it. Tea ... Tea Time: janeaustenrunsmylife.wordpress.com:

If you don’t know I am an English student. I am a lover of books and thoroughly enjoy the experience of delving into a new world on the comfort of my couch with a cup of tea.

Since finding booktube and also joining Goodreads (How and I mean HOW did I not sign up to this app sooner?!) I have a looooong list of books that I’m more than eager to read.

So I’ve decided that today I’m going to share with you the list of books I intend to read in the next few months. This is just the start though,  the list will surely continue to grow!

1.After You by Jojo Moyes  (I’ve already read Me before you earlier this summer)

 

2.Only Ever Yours by Louise O’Neill

3. The Secret History by Donna Tartt

4.  We don’t know what we’re doing by Thomas Morris

5. A little Life by Hanya Yanagihara

6. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

7. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

8.Ctrl Alt Delete by Emma

9. It’s kind of a funny story by Ned Vizzini

10.The Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll

I plan on doing reviews on all of these books as soon as I finish them. I really want to introduce these type of opinion posts to the blog as well as film reviews.

If you want to follow me along with my reading then you can check out my Goodreads account at gurlthinking.

https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/58601492

Happy Reading!

-G

p.s… Please let me know in the comments what books you love and recommend, what you’re currently reading and what your Goodreads username is, I’d love to follow more accounts.

Everything happens for a reason.

Hello Lovelies.

August. It’s a tense time. For some it acts as the Sunday version of the year-a painful reminder that our free time is on countdown as the return to school/college is looming.

Then there’s the other more pressing matter of Leaving Cert results which August also marks.

After a grueling year of trying to swallow your textbooks to remember everything; lugging around a pound of exam papers and countless sleepless nights dreaming about going blank in the exam. You did it and you sat the exam- that was hard.

The next part though is for many just as hard, if not harder.

Results. It feels like this letter you will be given will literally determine the rest of your life. Since leaving school I have realised how much of a big deal I though school was. Of course for educational purposes yes it mattered but I thought it was it. Everything that went on  all the fuss the drama the blood sweat and tears.

Here’s the thing though, and I promise you this; school isn’t everything. There’s so much more out there that matters.  Getting the points doesn’t mean everything will be perfectly lined up in your life after this. There’s so much more you can do.

You have options, many actually.

So if it turns out the three digit score you get doesn’t add up to what you wanted or you don’t get the course/college you want then here’s what you do.

First take a moment. Have a little moment, a good cry if needs be. And then pull yourself together. You are no longer in the safety net that is school. You have to carry yourself. This is your life. You can either let the rejection eat you up and be miserable or you can be positive and take control.

Everything happens for a reason. Maybe this is the path you’re meant to take. If it turns out you didn’t want to go to college but don’t know what to do, pick a random part time course, get a job, start a hobby or pursue a passion of yours.

You can get to where you want to be and you can be happy. Just because you don’t get the points you aimed for or don’t receive the offer you wished for doesn’t mean that it’s the end of the world.

I actually didn’t get my first course application, I got my second. And looking back now it was the best thing. It’s hard to know exactly what you want to do when you’re 17/18 and have never really experienced life. Turns out a year later what I had picked and thought i wanted isn’t really what I want anymore. In fact I’m planning on pursuing a completely different career.

Hope this helps a little. Just remember you have options, and everything does happen for a reason.

Regardless of how the results are, go out and celebrate with your friends. I balled my eyes out when I got my results because I had aimed higher. But I still picked myself up and went out and I’m so glad I did. Completing the LC is an achievement in itself and deserves to be ended on a high note!

Xo

-G

Taking Inspiration.

Inspire and BE inspired.

As a creative person I would say I have a sort of dreamy outlook on life. I kind of like to think of it as chapters from a book, songs from an album, one scene that will follow many more.

When it comes to the blog I feel like I overthink myself sometimes, instead of doing what I should and just grabbing my laptop and typing away,no plan just natural thoughts.

I do find, however, it helpful to look to other outlets for inspiration sometimes.

I find that late at night, when I should be getting some zzz’s I instead can’t seem to settle my brain which is in overdrive with the amount I’m thinking about. I get my most creative thoughts at nighttime, sometimes even as I’m drifting of to sleep which can be a pain because I don’t always remember the idea the next morning.

I also love watching television shows/documentaries and vlogs and getting really inspired. What happens here is I’ll watch something and become totally immersed in it and binge watch the entire season, if there is one, within 24-48 hrs.

Don’t you just love it when you watch something and become really eager and motivated to get sh*t done. Like when I’d watch ‘Bridget Jones Diary’ or an episode of ‘Sex and the City’ and I’ll immediately want to start doing some writing, jotting  down my thoughts as the process flows.

Recently I found that seasons 1 and 2 of ‘Fashion Bloggers Tv’ have been uploaded to Youtube under the same channel name, link; https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChpCpZeauJUdpZXDTwwi64g

If you’re like me and fashion obsessed then you’ll fall in love with this show and be totally obsessed with these bloggers. The reality show follows Australia’s top bloggers.

Kate at http://katewaterhouse.com/

Sara at http://harperandharley.com/

Margaret at http://shinebythree.com/

Zanita at http://zanita.com/

Amanda at http://oraclefox.com/

Nadia at http://fairfaxjournal.com.au/journal/

Each of these digital influencers brings something different to the internet world. I love Sara’s concept of a minimalist wardrobe of greys/whites/blacks, so chic, simple and stunning- defo my kind of style.

And Nadia’s fashion journal contains stunning photography.

It’s so impressive to watch these ladies build their empire’s, especially in the case of Margaret who while filming season 1 and running her blog and working as a freelance photographer was also a student at law school.

I was so intrigued by their business savvy behaviour and self belief and work ethic. I don’t know how you can’t be inspired by these gals after watching. I know that as soon as I finished, all I wanted to do was go off with my camera and get creative with my own blog. I haven’t yet really introduced any fashion pieces yet (besides the Alexa Chung post) but you never know what’s to come in the future.

There’s definitely more to come from gurlthinking! I’m determined to inspire as many of you as I can.

What inspires you? Let me know in the comments.

✖️G

Friendship.

Hello Lovelies!

We all want to have people that stand by us; make us laugh; create memories of drunken nights out with; travel with and above all just make life more enjoyable.

Each friendship will add something new to your life. You’ll learn something new about yourself and about people/life in general. You’ll gain new experiences and above all you’ll grow as a person,because we can always learn things from one another.

There are also the friendships that fail. The ones that just didn’t make it. And this I know a lot about.Unfortunately.

In the last two years I have really been let down by people I thought I could count on. What hurt the most was that I knew I had been giving the friendships so much effort. I was there for them.But the same wasn’t done for me.

Recently I was very hurt by a person I thought would never. I don’t want to go into detail but I will tell you that it was a serious falling out over absolutely nothing (significant), I was disrespected and hurt.

What I learnt from this was that I don’t need this sort of friendship in my life. I realise now that the effort I was making was wasted because this friendship didn’t add anything positive to my life. The old me though, definitely would have been bothered about this for ages.


I’ve also drifted apart from a lot of people. I used to get really bothered when I didn’t speak to/hear from people in ages and if it looked like we might be growing a part. I’d try to push our friendship back together. It’s good to make an effort, it’s important to be active in your friendships but I’ve learned that sometimes (a lot) I need to just let go of these people.


I’m sick of being let down. If you’re my friend then I’ll do what I can to be a good friend. And yeah I give second chances. But I’m not going to let myself be burned over and over again because you know what I deserve better.

On the other side, I recently got in contact with someone who used to be my best friend. And I mean BEST friend. The issues in this friendship were that I neglected some of my other friendships and I’m not proud of some of my behavior. But here’s the thing. Those things were in my control. SO… after a year out of a bad environment (all-girls school), a year of new people and a year of maturity I’ve realised  that I’m not quite the same as I was and she probably isn’t either. So maybe it’s time for a second chance?

So the girl I thought I shouldn’t be friends with is the person I want to get to know again and the girls who told me not to go back there “that I deserved better” turned out to be the ones to let me down the most.

I’m moving on from the childish nature some people express. I’m ready to go back to college and start fresh. I’m going to put myself out there even if I’m really nervous and scared of trusting people and being let down again, but I’m going to try anyway. I’m going to go try new things and just loosen up and little and enjoy myself.

Here’s to being done with the bitches and making REAL friends.

xo

-G.