How I Personally Approach Self-Care

Hi everyone! I hope you’re all well and safe. Excitingly, today’s post is a group collaboration with some amazing teen bloggers. I will link them right at the end for you to check out!

The announcement of a national lockdown last Monday sent ripples all across England. It’s been a difficult few months – suffering through the winter of a pandemic with the future being uncertain. My Instagram feed has, thoughtfully, been saturated with self-care posts. The group has decided to hop on to this bandwagon, although some of us are going to be taking a different approach. 

Over a year ago, a post of mine ‘These Aren’t Your Regular Self-Care Tips’ gained a mass of attention. Looking back, there are points to further explain and add on to. Consider this post the ‘sister’ of last year’s. I’m going to share ways I personally practise self-care.

Everyone should accept that they have different perception of self-care. Where a relaxing bath works for one person, a walk works for someone else. Personally, I find ticking off to-do lists and reducing procrastination therapeutic. It’s hard for me to ever relax when there are deadlines to be met. Of course, I don’t over-work myself. By 6pm I try to shut off from all forms of work. I just find getting things done now helps my future self feel less stressed – which is a form of self-care. Occasionally it’s important to not care at all, make your future self cope with the consequences, and have a day off. 

Although I did in the past, now I don’t think I should share ‘self care ideas’ on my blog because it is so individual – and without knowing the circumstances it’s hard to advise what people should do. This post is going to be a little list of things I do to take care of myself, and you can take away what you want, but this is just what works for me. 

  • Have a bath pamper
  • Put on a comfort programme (namely Doctor Who, Miranda, Downton Abbey, Gavin and Stacey)
  • Watch YouTube under a blanket
  • Read a book
  • Journal
  • Do some colouring with an audiobook as company
  • Go for a walk with a friend
  • Have a One Direction dance party (this really boosts my mood – just to dance like no-one is watching)
  • Bake! Trying out new recipes is always fun
  • Watch comedy with my family on the sofa downstairs, perhaps with a fire lit
  • Knitting 
  • Scroll through Goodreads and add yet more books to my TBR
  • Video call a friend
  • Go for a solo walk
  • Explore a place I haven’t been before

There is no routine to my self-care, I just do these things whenever I’m feeling anxious or overwhelmed. Normally I take Saturday as a complete day off social media and schoolwork. Although throughout the week I will do something for ‘me’ every day so I never hit breaking point. Of course I absoutely love being on social media and interacting with everyone! Fortunately my feed is such a postive space, and I have cultiavted to be that way. However, being costantly updated with 100s of people’s lives does get exhausting. Taking a step back allows me to appreciate my return. But from a health perspective, online school increases my interaction with screens so there is a certain point where I just need to say ‘no’ and be less digital for a day. I have had frequent problems associated with blue light in the past, even white paper and lights makes my eyes water sometimes. I don’t know why they’re so sesntive to light (I’m a vampire?) but I put precautions in place – like my day off social media!

I really hope you enjoyed today’s post. To see more self-care related posts as part of our group collab, simply click below!

Beth Lucy Blogs

Infintely A Day Dreamer 

Imaan Aziz (her’s will go live as an Instagram post!)

Meghan’s Teen Life

Pati Cool

Christina And Camera

Isabella Kate Blog

Zainab Chats

I love these girls so much and their blogs are (in my opinion) some of the best teen blogs out there. Enjoy your visits to their awesome websites!

How are you going to care for yourself today? 

Catherine x

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50 Things To Do In Winter | 2021 Prep, Getting Cosy, Being Present

Winter really excites me. The turn of a New Year is on the horizon and it marks a new chapter for us all. The weather doesn’t allow for socialising and the time spent alone can be isolating but, if used correctly, can be a time of self-improvement. I wanted to make a list 50 things you can do in Winter. Some of them are Christmas oriented, but the majority can be applicable for anyone no matter their religion! They’re all supposed to make you feel good, cosy, and confident.

This post is made in collaboration with my dear friend Meg, but you may know her as The Blog Girl or! We collaborated before, way back in summer. It was absolute pleasure working with Meg so we’ve decided to collaborate again, this time on a 50 things to do in winter post! Surprisingly, it wasn’t that hard to come up with so many ideas. But, if there isn’t something here that floats your boat, Meg has another 50 things on her blog. Click here to see the post! Please also follow Meg’s Instagram, she is the most wonderful baker and you will surely enjoy her content.

Let’s get into it!

  • Create a really extravagant, over-the-top hot chocolate
  • Have porridge for breakfast 
  • Make a Christmas Pinterest board
  • Read an entire book in a day
Photo by Any Lane on
  • Blankets
  • Make some wintery wallpaper for your phone, laptop etc
  • Bullet journal Christmas movies you want to watch
  • Write out your New Year’s Goals and how you will achieve them
  • On a frosty morning, brew a cuppa tea and drink it outside
Photo by Ivars on
  • Drink lots of hot water – but make sure you don’t burn yourself!
  • Go for an early morning walk
  • Cook up a big breakfast: hash browns, egg bread, beans – the lot!
  • Practise calligraphy so you can impress people with your Christmas cards
Photo by Anthony Shkraba on
  • Make a Pinterest board for your 2021 manifestations 
  • Do a series on your Instagram (12 Days Of Musicmas, Takeover Tuesday, What I Wore Wednesday)
  • Bake gingerbread 
Photo by Nicole Michalou on
  • Go for an afternoon walk to see the early sunset
  • Watch the sunrise 
  • Learn how to knit
  • Sort out your emails and unsubscribe from unnecessary mailing lists
  • Unfollow people who won’t bring your positive vibes in 2021
  • Plan content ahead of time!
  • Prioritise revision for end of term tests
  • Sort out your wardrobe 
  • Determine what gifts you’re getting for people for Christmas
  • Bake mince pies
  • Get a nice planner for 2021 or set up your bullet journal for the next year
Photo by Ivan Samkov on
  • Watch telly in your duvet on the sofa
  • Sort out your room thoroughly
  • Sell things you no longer want
  • Video call your friends
  • Do a Secret Santa
  • Change your bedding to something more seasonal
Photo by Jan Kopu0159iva on
  • Decorate your room
  • Go for a walk with your friend
  • List out everything 20 things you learned in 2020
  • Spend time with your family
  • Play board games
Photo by cottonbro on
  • Try some interesting new tea flavour
  • Bake something unusual
  • Listen to the birds
  • Whip out your colouring book and settle down for a cosy afternoon with a good film and get colouring 
  • Learn different zentangle patterns 
  • Set a Goodreads goal for next year
  • Make pom-pom room decor
  • Start a scrapbook
Photo by Lisa Fotios on
  • Read through old letters
  • Find a penpal to start writing to
  • Go through a recipe book and tab things you want to make
  • Sort though old photographs 

This list has a balance of looking forward to the New Year, and being grateful for the moment. Let me know if you try any of these! I’d love to see your pics on Instagram.

What do you want to do this Winter?

Catherine x

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Interview With Life Begins At Twenty | Chatting Self-Care, Growing Up + Embracing Life

Hey everyone!

I’m so excited to share blogmas day 14 – I can’t believe we’re past the half-way point already. Today’s blogmas is really exciting since it’s an interview with Monique from the wonderful blog Life Begins at Twenty.

Monique reached out a few weeks ago wanting to interview me which was such a pleasure. You can check that out here. She has a series called ‘5 questions with…’ and I’ve adopted that style for this interview. There will only be 5 questions and their pairing answers. I do hope, however, that you enjoy reading despite its length!

Hi Monique! Thank you for allowing me to interview you today. For my followers that don’t know who you are, tell us a bit about yourself. Where are you from? What do you study? 

Hi, everybody! I’m Monique, a 20-year-old college student taking up journalism and blogger based on the Philippines. I talk about my struggles and experiences as an aspiring writer who just finished writing my very first novel last October. Aside from that, I also spread motivation and advice to young adults my age. Even more, I share my thoughts on relationships, adulting, and everything that goes along my life in my twenties. I talk about all of this in my blog called I’d appreciate it if you spare a few minutes of your time to visit it and read one or two articles.   

Your blog is called ‘Life Begins At Twenty’. What inspired you to come up with this username and why do you believe that, ‘life begins at twenty’?

Well, maybe for one, like most of us, our twenties is one of the most exciting and daunting periods of our life. And since I’ve thought about getting my own blog when quarantine started, I thought it would be the perfect chance to make my blog niche about my life as I enter my twenties. In fact, my first blog post was about things you need to learn before you turn 20. You can click here to read it. Besides, I think the name is quite catchy and can be easily remembered. 

I believe that life begins at twenty because it’s the time when we finally explore ourselves and seek for our purpose in life. Life begins when we take the first step to reaching our dreams even when we don’t know how we get there. 

Some people say your twenties are the most difficult decade. Why would you say this is the case? And how do you enjoy these years of intense personal growth?

Yes, twenties is the most difficult decade since we are all trying to be the best that we can be (a part of this reason is to satisfy expectations). Read more about this here. In your twenties, you feel like every emotion is magnified to the highest level. You make it a goal to be consistent with your habits but sometimes you feel like you’re not progressing in any way. It can be really frustrating without the proper mindset and if you don’t surround yourself with people who are good for you. 

I would say my outlook in life is positive (thankfully) because for some reason, I’m not ashamed or afraid to make mistakes because I don’t see them as mainly mistakes. I see them as opportunities to grow, and that’s why I embrace them fully. I enjoy these years of intense personal growth by not taking it for granted — the freedom, energy, time. These are things we often overlook because we think we will always have them. Throughout my journey, I strive to achieve my dreams and to help my family by investing in these three things. 

What would be your advice to anyone, of any age, to live life to the fullest? 

Step out of your comfort zone because there’s more to life than what you choose to be in. It would be such a waste if you fail to see what the world has to offer for you. If you haven’t done what you always wanted to do, start doing it now and not some other day. You can do that by not caring what other people will have to say about your choice and it shouldn’t matter to you what they think. It’s better to live life with failure than with regrets.

Being a student and hosting a blog is a lot to juggle. What signals it’s time to take a break, and how do you practise self-care? 

Yes, it is, without a doubt. I take a break when I think I’ve done more at a specified time and when I feel like my body needs it. I don’t overwork because I aim for quality results and not something mediocre. A tired mind and body produces mediocre results, so I am careful not to abuse both. I practice self-care by eating food that I love (although I don’t necessarily eat healthy food always, I set my limits carefully), getting enough sleep, cuddling with my nieces and nephews, and staying away from drama. 

Thank you so much for answering my questions today. I’m sure my followers loved getting to know you a bit better. Just before we leave, is there one final thing you’d like to say to my readers? Maybe an interesting fact they don’t already know? 

I don’t know if this is interesting but I’m a fast typer (let’s make a bet on TyperShark, I challenge you haha). Also, I love singing and writing songs. I’m open to my taste in music. 

Thank you so much for the opportunity, Cath!

It was so wonderful interviewing Monique. She is a wonderful personality and her advice centred blog is full of everything you need to know in your twenties. I have inserted a link to her blog here so that you can easily go to give a read.

How do you practise self-care?

I’d love to here your responses to this question in the comments below. Self-care is individual and I love to here how people perceive the idea of looking after yourself. I will be sharing my perspective on self-care in a Chats With Cath post later this week – so do stay tuned!

Best wishes,

Catherine x

Instagram: @cathjaneblog

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5 Effective Ways To Be Productive on Dark, Rainy Days | Collab With Zainab Chats

Winter in the Northern hemisphere is kinda tricky. As soon as you get back from college/school/work, it’s dark. And since your mind associates dark with sleep… you feel less energised to complete work. It’s hard enough as it is, never mind pitch black outside. That’s why I thought it might be useful for any of my northern friends, to share ‘how to be productive while it’s dark’. Some people work at night anyway, which is so credible. However, on a recent Instagram poll, most of you preferred to work in the daylight!

This post is brought to you in collaboration with my main man, no.1 supporter, incredible blogger Zainab! We’re both delivering a post about studying/producivity. Her’s is a Productive After School Routine – so they both tie in together which is perfect. I would have done an after school routine but I’m not going into school right now due to COVID isolation. That’s the reality of so many of our lives right now and I hope you find this post relatable and informative!

Let’s jump into it!

Nice lights

Working in the dark requires a light on, that’s agiven. However if you can – jazzing up your space with ‘nice’ lighting such as strings of fairy lights, candles, LED lanterns makes the late night working much more appealing! I enjoy lighting a candle or having my fairy lights turned on to feel extra special. It makes me look forward to studying/being productive.

A small to-do list

The last thing you want is an overwhelming to do list! That is why I strongly believe in weekly planning. Dump everything you need to do into one mammoth list. Then pick a few to do each day. If you’re working after school, set a max of 5 tasks. The more you add the more resistance there is between starting your task and getting it done.

Take breaks when something becomes mundane

If you’re getting bored by your task, take 20 minutes to do something completely different then return. I might want to tackle a biology paper, but then get bored in the middle. At that point I might start writing a blog post, then return to the biology paper in a couple of minutes. Or tidy your room! Something small, not too distracting. You could call it procrastination but it’s effective, right?

Do two things on rotation

This one works for two large tasks, and doesn’t necessarily apply to working in the dark. For example: I have a history assessment to write and an English presentation to pull together. I do the history for half an hour, then switch to the presentation for half an hour, then switch back to the history. Then you’ll never reach a point of boredom! I think this is a more efficient way of doing something, as opposed to doing one after another.


TW: food. If you’re suffering from any form of disorded eating and food triggers you, please do what is right for yourself and skip reading the next paragraph. 

Food = energy. Energy / work = productivity. The more energy you have, the better your productivity will be. It might not be dinnertime yet but you still need a boost to carry you through. Listen to your body, have that snack, and feel much more confident in completing your work. You deserve a snack and you probably need one after all of the effort your brain has been putting in!

I hope these tips help you to be productive while it’s dark outside. I know I need these tips every now and again! Working with pitch black outside isn’t that fun but you gotta do what you gotta do. Let me know if these tips make it easier for you to work in the dark!

Please check out Zainab’s half of the collaboration! She’s so wonderful and amazing, and would dearly appreicate a follow from you. Her blog is linked here, her Instagram here and if you want to be friends with her on Goodreads you can do so here. 

Thank you for reading!

What’s your favourite time of day to study?

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10 Casual Magic Moments This Week | Collab With Ella’s Rambles

Casual magic? What is it?

Casual magic is a term cultivated by the successful conscious living/wellness blogger UnJaded Jade. Her successful YouTube channel based on self-improvement is a huge part of my life. Jade is an inspiration to me and one habit she implements that I took into my own is casual magic. Casual magic is synonymous with gratitude, but it’s more about the small simple pleasures in life than larger concepts (as you will see in this post).

Casual magic makes every day different. In times like lockdown it is especially important because other wise the days never differentiate. I’ve had severe cases of ‘every day is like the one before’ but casual magic does set it apart a little!

I apologise for the appalling quality of these photographs. As the laptop still isn’t working, I have to take photos on my phone and can’t export any I take on my camera 😭

My beautiful blogging friend Ella is also a casual magic advocate; today we bring you a collaboration! I will share 10 moments of casual magic with you, then you can click here to see Ella’s ‘casual magic’.

Appreciation for the little things is an essential part in your mindset. It sets you up for success, keeps you grounded in overwhelming moments and allows time to pass ‘slower’.

The concept of casual magic has kept me sane this year.

I hope reading my moments of thankfulness will inspire you to take a few of your own. 

1) Moonlight shining brightly through my window

The other night I woke up, around 5am, and the moolight was beating down on my bed like sun. It’s rare that light gets into my room as a beam so this was very precious and special. It felt like I was in a horrow film, Twilight, or a being reborn like a werewolf in a fairytale. This was pure magic – literally. My friend who lives nearby also recognised the wide and bright moon and put out her crystals to bathe in it. How cool is that?

2) Washing my hands with a really nicely scented soap

Molton Brown soap to be precise – very boujee! I don’t want to complain about hand sanitiser because it is a convenient way to stop us getting corona. But the constant application thorughout the day gets a bit boring, especially with the stinky hand sanitisers (if you know you know). Washing my hands with posh soap was so *cleansing* and I loved it. 

3) My Instagram DMs

Today I flicked from my personal account to my blog account. The personal account was dry and a bit depressing, but my blog one was full of lovely messages down to even your colourful profile photos. You make me so, so happy. Thank you – even if you just say hi ❤

4) Vibing to ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’ as I replied to blog comments

It’s probably my favourite Christmas song! I was in my dad’s ‘office’ space spinning around on his chair because spinny chairs are superior, singing to Band Aid. Considering all the stress of end of term assessments, this moment felt extra happy. I’m drowning in schoolwork and even more worried about these tests. But we can do it. Turn up that Boy George!

5) Heavy duvet

This makes no sense, really. But you know how sometimes your duvet feels heavier than normal and you’re compltely sunk into your bed? I had one of those moments one morning. I had to get up early haha, but knowing I’d slept well was defintely *casual magic* because it made me more confident in conquering the day ahead. I had slept well. There’s no better feeling.

6) Sunset at 4pm

A magical moment – the school bell ringing and walking towards the bus park while sunset colours adorn the sky. These last few moments of daylight are really magical, and also important to remember as the nights get colder and darker. There is beauty in darkness!

7) Getting my Christmas decorations early

On Friday I was sent home from school due to a positive COVID test in my year group ‘bubble’. We were ushered out of the school around 12. There were no lessons in the afternoon, no set work at all. So mum brought down a few Christmas decorations! We’ve not got the big tree up yet, but my mini one went up and I strung some multi-coloured fairy lights all along my picture rail. It was very magical and I’m so grateful I can spend Christmas with my family this year.

8) Conversations with friends

Talking with my friends is so lovely. They’re kind, patient, funny and the perfect company. Linking back to be sent home from school, there were a few moments when we were talking that I really felt grounded and happy. As we were walking out of school, I was so surprised by the events of the day that most things felt surreal. Except this. I’m so glad I had a final in-person conversation before my 14 day quarantine. 

9) A drizzle of snow

As I was putting up my decorations that Friday afternoon, a bit of snow started to fall! It didn’t stick because it had previously rained but that doesn’t excuse how special it felt. Christmas music, Christmas decorations, Christmas weather!

10) Helping my mum set up her business Instagram page

Last night I was helping mum set up her Instagram page for her business. I ran through what needed to be in a bio, how to attract customers, why your profile photo and headline is like your ‘store-front’. It was fun! And it’s something that I’m good at – at least she thinks so – and that was very reassuring. A nice boost of confidence 🙂 Now I’m locked up for 14 days, I’ll be spending more time with family and I’ve got to appreciate those little moments.

Writing this post was really refreshing. Thank you so much to Ella, the person who is collborating on this post with me, for the idea. When I did my face reveal, I refreshed my niche to ‘conscious living’ so that I can focus on topics I am really passionate about such as wellness, lifestyle and sustainability. 

One thing I advocate is gratitude. Gratitude for the little things. It is so important to appreciate where you are now, in spite of your difficulites or goals. Through practicing thankfulness you can truly fulfil your potential, and reach mental wellness. 

This post was beneficial to me, but I also hope you enjoyed reading it.

What is your casual magic today?

Catherine x

Instagram: @cathjaneblog

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