Depression, do you know what it is?

I will tell you.

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Depression is:

Being encompassed by a darkness that allows you to see no light, no matter how much beauty is in your life.

Depression is emotionless.

Depression is a feeling of hopelessness.

Depression numbs your senses, robs you of joy, of happiness, of motivation and instead of being grateful for the life that you live (which does always have its beauty) you can barely understand the point of life.

Depression kicks you down even when you want to get up {and its a strong f&*ker, believe me I know}.

Depression is when you feel like youve lost hope, you contemplate why are you are doing all the things you are doing and getting nowhere, when you start to question the very essence of the person you are.

Tears flow for no reason at all, and often (Sometimes you can actually just make a small smile having a giggle at your self being all emotional for no reason, because its ok to cry).

Depression; it feels like the weight of the world is on your shoulders and there is no one to help you.

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Life is not all sunshine & rainbows (thanks Rocky).

Im one of the first to admit that I suffer depression and it freaking sucks.

‘Depression begins with disappointment. When disappointment festers in our soul, it leads to discouragements.’ Joyce Meyer

Sometimes there can be no trigger, sometimes there can be many.

For me, as I build my life around love, my brand about helping other people, when I am let down or disappointed by people I start to lose a little faith in humanity. One of my business beliefs is first help other people get what they want, and then you will get what you want (Zig Ziglar quote) & #sharelove; give more love everyday. Yet, when I get hurt I often feel that I have no love left to give…this is the start of a depression cycle for me. Contemplating when & if ever I will receive love (when Im not depressed I know Im blessed), and have people in my life that truly care (not just in the social media world).

The thing with depression, is that you cannot control it.

But you can create self love tools to minimise the time spent in the darkness.

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What I have found helps me, and Im no expert, simply sharing techniques that help me minimise my own stormy weather;

*Know that it will pass. The darkness will let you appreciate the light, and with every sunset there is always a sunrise.

*Be patient. Just do what needs to be done in your daily life, just get it done. Sometimes thats all you can do. You can be a world changer tomorrow when you feel better.

*Take some time out. Im not saying wallow in yourself, but if you feel like it’s all getting too much, have a half hr rest, maybe don’t go to the gym and go to bed early, get ten hrs sleep. We live in a world of ‘busy’, we work so hard until we actually fall apart or have a complete meltdown. Try get 8hrs sleep EVERY night.

If your laying in bed, wrapped up in terrible thoughts; go to sleep.

*Fill your body with nutrients. Speaking from experience, Ive often used my down times to reach for junk food, binge eating until I feel 100% worse than what I already was feeling, using my emotions as an excuse. Learn this lesson. Instead, know that your body is needing some extra love, get a green smoothie, a rainbow salad, green juices.

‘If you dont think your anxiety, depression, sadness and stress impact your physical health, think again. All of these emotions trigger chemical reactions in your body, which can lead to inflammation and a weakened immune system. Learn how to cope, sweet friend. there will always be dark days.’ Kris Carr

*Minimise caffeine (note to self). Caffeine will only provoke the anxiety that your already feeling, instead try switch to chamomile tea or at least green tea (minimal caffeine).

*Write. Get it out of your mind. I know when I’m depressed, being the control freak that I am I try to figure out whats going on, what I need to do, over-analyse (everything, yes even texts and social media likes), and try to organise myself, free from the clutter that all seems a blur in my mind. This can do my own head in MORE. Writing helps get it out.

If it hurts to keep everything inside, get it out. What I have found with my depression is I generally extract myself further from anyone close to me, another few bricks go on my already well-built wall and I don’t feel comfortable letting someone close enough to speak to; fear of judgement, sure. Writing is my answer. Speaking to someone might be yours.

‘The deepest fear we have, ‘the fear beneath all fears,’ is the fear of not measuring up, the fear of judgement. Its this fear that creates the stress and depression of everyday life.’ Tillian Tchividjian

I feel: write your own (disappointed)

What situation occurred to make me feel this way: write your own (I didn’t get what I wanted)

What I’m really feeling/thinking: write your own (my dream will never become reality, why am I even trying? Ill never be good enough)

Thought change: write your own (This is my life, my dream and I can make it happen. Where there is a will there is a way. I can process these emotions and then move forward, value the lesson learnt and look for new opportunities).

And with that let it go. If you can. Or just go to bed and rest.

*Dont focus on the thoughts. When we are depressed we tend to think things that are not even true; I’m not lovable, I will never make it, Im hopeless, Im a failure, Ill never be good enough etc. These are not true statements at all, yet depression leads us to believe them, and with the thoughts follows emotions, sadness, loneliness…etc.

Just say ok. Im feeling (insert your word here) anger, hurt, frustrated. And then let it go. It will pass.

*STOP with the negative action. If your re reading someones messages, replaying someones words, actions, and it causes you to hurt. STOP. Just delete (yes the delete button is ok to use). If you are over eating that causes you to hurt/feel worse, STOP. If you turn to self-destructive alcohol or drugs, STOP. After all of these self sabotage practices we ALWAYS feel worse, so try give yourself a break (and yes, I am well aware as I write this Im speaking to myself).

*Earth. Have you heard about this? earthing is when you walk barefoot with nature.

‘Basically, the theory is that our bodies are meant to come into contact with the Earth (a “grounding” force) on a regular basis. Positive electrons in the form of free radicals (ever heard of those guys?) can build up in our bodies and direct contact with the ground balances this out as it is a negative grounding charge.

Our bodies and cells have electrical energy, and especially with the high prevalence of Electromagnetic waves, Wi-Fi and mobile phone waves, many of us have a high amount of positive electrons built up in our bodies.’ Excerpt Wellnessmama.com

Interested? Read this: Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever

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*Breathe. As funny as it sounds, we all to often we forget to really breathe. Notice your breathing right now, in this moment, shallow, just filling the top of your chest, fast, small, rapid. Breathing is the best way to calm your central nervous system so just take a moment and practice a breathing technique I use often from Deepak Chopra. For the count of 1, 2, 3, 4 breathe in, retain your breathe at the top of your inhalation. Then for the count of 1, 2 , 3, 4 exhale and retain at the base. Repeat x10. Youll soon feel a sense of calm.

“Maybe you have to know the darkness before you can appreciate the light.” Madeleine L’Engle

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My words to you, and to myself, is that when you are feeling this way, just know that its ok. Dont beat yourself up about not being 110% motivated, chasing after your dream or having the best day ever. Just do what needs to be done, be gentle, kind and loving with yourself. Retract from anyone that makes you feel bad…perhaps (and I am trying to do this) minimise your time spent on social media and just read, write, listen to music, be still.

Love & light, Charlie x.

Know that because you have a bad day does not make it a bad life.

Diamonds are a girls best friend…

Not the ones you buy as a status symbol or statement (don’t get me wrong, diamonds are beyond beautiful); diamonds; of the true friend type…precious and rare.

 ‘A single rose can be my garden…a single friend, my world.’ Leo Buscaglia

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Recently I have been overwhelmed by the pure kindness, support and love from some special people in my life.

Today’s inspired writing is for them in hope of sharing a smile and some magic and perhaps to inspire you to show your appreciation for the love in your life.

True friends are like diamonds, precious and rare. So rare, I can count them easily, the people who I know will always be there, the ones that love me unconditionally, and hold my hand and support me (even when they know what I may be doing could be a huge mistake, recent journey to the past, point).

‘A friend is one who knows you and loves you just the same.’ Elbert Hubbard

As I returned home, a genuine feeling of belonging, a complete sense of being washed over me (as I crawled into my much awaited bed after an emotionally exhausting weekend).

A sense that everything would be ok, I was home, exactly where I belonged and I would figure it all out on my own (I do admit independence can sometimes be my downfall) filled my mind, body and soul (this feeling of complete contentment is priceless).

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As I reached out to my close friends; I was filled with genuine love for the support they provided me. The true love. How did I get so lucky to have such amazing wonderful, kind people in my life?

Some people bring out the best in you. My diamonds (true friends), bring out the very best in me. Somehow they make me want to be more, to be better, for you see, these special people in my life are held on pedestals, I love them, cherish them, worship them and would do anything I can to protect them and support them. I genuinely believe they are beautiful people (inside & out).

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 ‘Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience; this is the ideal life’. Mark Twain.

Having friends you look up to and aspire to be like is one of the greatest tools of success (I believe).

Be with people who bring out the best in you and you will go places you never thought possible.

Be with people who bring out the worst in you, and you will find your dreams will just remain dreams. Life isnt designed to be easy, and to truly find our success we need a support system greater then self-love, sometimes we need a shoulder to cry on, or a hand to help us up when we fall down (and we all fall down, including myself, often actually).

As I contemplated my luck; feeling my heart full of love, I realised that I had created this life, I had created this circle of trust, respect and love.

When you choose to act morally correctly, the people with the same values will be attracted to you, like attracts like.

‘The only way to have a friend is to be one’. Ralph Waldo Emerson.

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I am no longer a ‘want to be the centre of attention’ party girl, in fact I cannot recall the last time I was in that scene, but I do recall, there were no diamonds, just fake friends (leaves, found everywhere) based on how pretty you looked and what designer you wore.

‘Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.’  Oprah Winfrey

Everyone is entitled to live their life as they choose, by their own moral standards. You will attract people who live by the same ethical code as you do.

I choose to live my life based on integrity, gratitude and love.

I will wear my heart on my sleeve, I will radiate love, and I will make a conscious effort every day to be kind and to simply; smile.

To do this, I will keep my priceless diamonds protected and safe with the loyalty of my Love.

True friendship cannot be brought in a store, true friendship will only be available to you when you yourself are a true friend. How do you treat the people in your life? Are you supportive of their dreams? Their desires? Do you listen? Are you truly ‘there’ when they may have needed you?

Taking this time to send my love to every (amazing) person in my life right Now. You may not realise, but whilst I have been reflecting on the changes occurring, the very thought of the gentle feeling of your hand holding mine, drives me to succeed.

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I believe in myself, but why do it on your own when you can enjoy the journey of life, of creating a dream reality in the pleasurable company of friends? Life after all is a journey, not a destination, laugh at the confusion, smile at the madness and love with all your heart.

‘Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.’ Marcel Proust

Love & Light, Charlie x.

I am feeling blessed, supported and wrapped up in your love (thank you). This is for my true friends (diamonds) who are precious & rare.

The ‘no excuse, anytime, anywhere’ Workout.

If I mention exercise, how do you feel? Are you excited, energised or do you feel nervous, apprehensive?

Like most people I have a love/hate relationship with exercise…when I’m focused and in the zone, I’m good, really good. When I have no goal, unfocused, I’m just turning up to the gym…Im a bit blaze, not So good.

phgreotoMy general approach to any form of exercise, anything that gets you moving, is that there is never any excuse not to! Never!

It’s to cold, it’s raining, I’m tired, it’s to expensive… Just some of the excuses that I hear every day. I know I have definitely tried to use each of these as justifications for myself when I simply could not be bothered to get myself to the gym. Excuses are pure laziness.

I’m sorry to be a bit realistic, but I speak the truth. The moment you hear any of these thoughts in your own mind, challenge them. Think deeper. Are you committed to change? COMMITMENT, DEDICATION & PERSERVERANCE are the KEYS to SUCCESS.

Exercise…all the reasons WHY you SHOULD get yourself moving…

1. Exercise increases circulation and your HDL (good) cholesterol and lowers your LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, therefore is beneficial in prevention of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cardiovascular problems.

“Some exercise is better than none and more is better than less.” Dr William Krauss, The New England Journal of Medicine.

2. Exercise enhances your Mood; Endogenous (internal) opiates are secreted when we exercise.  Endorphins, (your feel good hormone) adrenaline, serotonin, and dopamine create a feeling of wellbeing. As exercise increases the feel good hormones, it also decreases the stress hormone, Cortisol. *Studies show physically active people recover from mild depression more quickly.

3. Exercise increases Energy, Stamina and your sex life; physically and psychologically this has been proven as the fitter you are the more desirable you feel. According to the American Council on Exercise (ACE), being physically active can be “a natural Viagra boost”. “Men and women who exercise regularly are going to have increased levels of desire. They’re going to have enhanced confidence, enhanced ability to achieve orgasm and greater sexual satisfaction,” says Cedric Bryant, the council’s chief exercise physiologist.*

Increased energy production happens on the cellular level, beginning in the Mitochondria, the energy producing organs within your cells. Whilst some energy is derived from your diet, it is ultimately relevant to the number of Mitochondria you have (your ability to produce energy). Mitochondria activity is affected by daily activity.

4. Exercise improves sleep quality; ”Exercise is great for sleep. For the millions of people who want better sleep, exercise may help,” says David Cloud, CEO of the National Sleep Foundation (NSF). Exercise is a stressor. The brain compensates physical activity by more time in a deep (Stage 4/Delta) sleep.

5. Exercise assists weight loss (this one we all know); exercise will promote calorie consumption and build muscle. Muscle requires 3 x more metabolic activity (energy) compared to fat. Consult with a Health Coach, Gp or Personal Trainer to find out the best form of exercise for your individual requirements and goals.

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Now, after reading some of the reasons why and how exercise is beneficial for you…

The no excuse, anytime, anywhere full body workout.

This can be done in the privacy of your own home (then it doesn’t even matter what you wear), or, if you don’t mind looking a little silly but perhaps inspiring others, outside is great. (I do believe I have mentioned my neighbours probably think I am the ‘crazy’ girl doing sprint HIIT, walking lunges, fire escape stairs).

Just do it, get it done.

‘I really regret that workout’ said No one ever!

Chances are you will feel better after you have exercised then how you felt before. 481257_261706440631943_1007583714_n

Anytime, anywhere. No gym. No weights. (Even no shoes) required.

Walk 15 minutes.

*20 x Squats (as low as you can go)

*20 x press ups (I dare you to attempt some full press-ups/knees OFF the ground)

*20 x Lunges each side (stationary or walking)

*20 x Tricep dips

* 20 x Sit-ups

Repeat x 3-5 (you can also increase your sets to 30 or 50 of each depending on your level of fitness)

Walk 30 minutes.

The best bit: Endorphins are released, your feel good Hormone, your Circulation is flowing, oxygen and nutrients are being delivered around your body, your Lymphatic System is working; toxins are being removed, and your burning fat….

Tell me again, did you have a reason not to? Was there an excuse?

Make it FUN…

If you have stairs close to where you live (like Me I use my fire escape, again, Im probably deemed the crazy/obsessive/fanatical workout girl) throw in a couple of sets up and down and then, do 1 more (best booty or ‘bubble butt’ builder there is).

Add this in to your morning routine 3 x weekly, commit and create change.

How much do you want to change your body? How much work are You committed to doing?

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Create healthy habits and you will be on your way to living a life of wellness. Exercise is an essential aspect of Being well.

Find balance, exercise with friends, make it social and you wont even realise how much good work you’ve done, the time will pass so quickly.

Love & light, Charlie x.

NBB tip: Find a role model, someone who actively lives there life and practices what they preach.

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Guilt Free Clean Caramel Slice

A Caramel Slice with no guilt? Is this possible?!

Well, as I am getting a little creative in the kitchen, I made a RAW, Sugar free, Gluten free and Diary free Caramel Slice over the weekend, it wasn’t too bad but my creative mind was thinking; how could this be better

The answer…Proto Whey Protein!

A Caramel slice including Protein, Good Essential Fatty acids, antioxidants and natural sugarsMAGIC (excellent energy source before a workout)!

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For those that know me, I have had a love affair with the protein that is Proto Whey (BNRG), and have actually had to break up with the delightful deliciousness that it is! (But, just for you my lovely readers, I revisited my love, and wow, still as good as it always has been!)

So, the Guilt Free Clean Caramel Slice Recipe….

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Ingredients:

*Try to use Organic where possible.

Base:

3/4 cup organic Walnuts

3/4 cup organic Almonds

1 Medjool date

2 Scoops Vanilla Proto Whey (I used The Pept 1 version for Thermogenic effects)

3 Tbsp Coconut oil (Good fats)

1 Tbsp manuka honey (or Rice Malt syrup)

1 Tbsp water

Caramel filling :

10 x Medjool dates

1 Pinch of Himalayan Salt

1 Tbsp Manuka Honey or Rice Malt Syrup (Sugar free)

2 Tbsp Coconut oil

Chocolate topping:

2 x Scoops Chocolate Proto Whey (again, I used the Pept 1 version for thermogenic qualities)

1Tbsp Cacau (Antioxidant)

1 Tbsp Coconut oil

1 Tbsp water

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Method:

Base: throw all ingredients in a food processor, mix until well blended. Press into a lined tray or plastic moulds (available in cooking stores or online, you can even get cute shapes).

Caramel: throw all ingredients in the food processor, mix. You will need to stop on several occasions to break up the caramel, until you get a nice even consistency. Spread over the base.

Topping: in a bowl, mix all ingredients until well blended (add more water if the icing is to thick, I am a chocolate lover) and smooth over the Caramel layer.

Place into the freezer for 30 minutes and ENJOY.

NBB: don’t forget to share your lovingly made creation with friends and family (sharing is caring), and sometimes we all need a sweet treat.

*I nominated myself for best Area Manager and delivered these little goodies to some of my clients (gets me periodically in the good books).

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Love & light, Charlie x.

P.s Thank you. Every day, you inspire me to be more.

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Please note: Images and recipes are Copyright to Nourish.balance.breathe. Im more then happy for you to share this recipe, but please ensure it is accredited to Nourish.balance.breathe. Thank you 🙂 x.