What I've learned since being struck by a serious illness

"You're gonna be happy, said life. But first I'll make you strong"

Being struck by a serious illness is very eye opening. It makes you completely reconsider everything you were ever taught and believed in. It makes you take a serious look at your life and your priorities, along with the way you were living. I want to share with you, some of the most important things I've learned on this long and hard road. This is a little bit different from what you normally read out there, because it addresses more than "Tell others you love them" and similar. I hope this will be useful for you.

THIS IS MY BLUE PRINT

Pay attention to whom your energy increases and decreases around. It's a sign from your body saying "more of this person" or "less of this person". We all outgrow people and some people are just weighing us down. To fully move onto the next level in life, sometimes you need to let people go. It'll feel liberating.

Some of us like to think that we can do it all on our own, that we need nobody for nothing. In reality, human beings are social animals and we need deep connections and relationship with others. It is very important that all of these connections and relationships are healthy. Having a strong support system in your life will always help you and lift you up, and give you a sense of security, knowing that if things goes to shit, you have something to fall back on. If someone in your life won't support you, that's another type of person that needs to go. You can still support someone even if you don't necessarily agree with them, so if someone won't support you, they are actively choosing not to. Why? That we don't know. But we do know they will always be negative and crush your self esteem and hope of a better future. These type of people don't deserve your love and affection. They don't deserve a spot in your life. You need people that show up for you over and over, the rest can leave.

If someone treats you badly, IT'S ON THEM. Not on you. How someone treats you is not a result of who you are as a person, but a sign of who they are as a person. Read that twice. Remember it. Feel it. Don't forget it.

There is a toxic form of stress

Your emotional health is more important than anything, as it will help prevent any physical illness in the body. Stress is the number one cause of all chronic illnesses in the world. Facts. It is extremely important to know that stress is not only "I have to make it to this meeting in time". There is toxic form of stress that we normally don't think of and it's incredibly harmful. It's stress like "I feel trapped in this toxic relationship and I can't leave" or "I don't like my body. I hate seeing what I see in the mirror" or "I hate where I live, I wish I lived somewhere else. This doesn't feel like home" or "I hate my boss. He/she is so degrading towards me" or "I feel so lonely and worthless. Does anyone really like me anyway?". It's more important than anything to address these type of stresses and resolve them. We don't want to move into the maladaptive stress response which is when the body is in chronic fight, flight and freeze mode. Not only is it extremely exhausting to be in a stress response all the time, but it is also what causes illness and hinders your body from healing itself.

Remember that old situations and people will pop up just to test you. Don't slip.

Don't allow someone to treat you poorly because you love them.

Saying no and setting healthy boundaries is crucial for emotional health. It is what keeps you peaceful inside. If you always put others before you, you teach them that you come second. You're the lead character in your world, so act like it. Put yourself first. (Rule #1, don't be #2). The way you love yourself is how others will love you too.

Giving must come from a place of love and compassion. If it comes from any other state, it will create resentment towards the person/thing you're giving to. Only give from a place of love and kindness.

People only believe what they can see, but it's not your job to prove yourself and your truth to others. What is true is true, no matter what opinions others may have. Others may have opinions about facts, and try to ignore that. The sky is blue, you can't be debating this. It's the same for your truth. However, there is a time and place for everything. Sometimes you will get the opportunity to show your truth to others and that can be healing for your soul. And honestly, sometimes people just need to be put in their place. (But remember that people only understand from their level of perception, and some people will just never change their mind simply because they don't want to.)

If it doesn't open, it's not your door. You can try to force things in life over and over, but if it wasn't meant for you it will never last. 

People don't change unless they want to themselves. Don't hope for anyone to change except yourself. If you want to change yourself, be persistent. Don't give up until you get the results you want. But never wait for anyone else to change. Changes take a lot of time and a lot of work, with a lot of errors down the road. If you're waiting for someone to change, you could end up waiting for a lifetime. You can so easily break your own heart waiting for someone else to be better. If you want someone to change, it means they're not good enough for you, right? And if you let them stay in your life, you'll put yourself through a lot of pain. It is important to remember that yes, people do things to us and it affects us, but in the end of the day, it is up to us to say; this is not okay, and remove ourselves from the person or situation. We have the power to decide how much pain others puts us through. 

It's really important to look back at memories and think "Wow, that was amazing, I'm happy I experienced that" rather than being upset or resentful because it's gone. 

Practice gratitude. There is ALWAYS something to be grateful for. No matter what your situation looks like. There is always something.

Life is only as good as your mindset. The thoughts we think can either make our lives beautiful or it can completely wreck everything beautiful we have.

Lastly... pain makes beautiful people.

...

Note

I've never talked openly about this subject before. But I wanted to share this because it is something so close to my heart. If you are healthy, remind yourself every day that there are no limits for you. You don't have a body that stops you from doing anything. You are free. When we are alive and healthy it is so easy to take our health for granted, to take our life for granted. Please take a moment every day to connect with all the good things in life. Be grateful for all those things and all the possibilities you have. Every time you run, run a little bit for those who can't. Every time you dance, dance a little bit for those who can't. And every time you live, live a little bit for those who can't.

The personalized old english choker

Kim wore a personalized choker in silver a while back (see here) and since then I've seen similar ones show up everywhere. I'm completely in love with these edgy chokers, so I thought I'd tell you about all the legit places you can get one of your own.

 

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At $295, you can get this customised choker at JNB style which have been worn several times by the gorgeous Madison Beer. You can get it in silver, gold or rose gold. Check out their Instagram here.

$135-$155 in gold or silver by Lensia The Label.

£62 - £70 depending on if you want sterling silver or 14k gold filled. Ships from the UK.

$195 for gold/silver/rose gold. 

This one by Windsor Store is by far the cheapest one, price landing at $9. It spells out "savage" and is not customisable and is not gold filled or sterling silver. 

For 2017

Column by @bydianehoney

2017 is starting very soon and as I am writing this, it has already started in some part of the world. 2016 was…...tragic at best, and many of us are excited to make the most of this year. In numerology, every year has a number that describes the universal energies of that year. 2016 was a 9 year, and that is a year when many things come to an end, conclusion, or resolution. 2016 was my personal 9 year, so many things in my life came to a resolution. While many of it wasnt easy, its intent was to give me a clean slate for my coming 9 year cycle. 2017 is a universal 1 year, it marks a new 9 year cycle for the world and a year of change. Many of us are relieved to be rid of 2016, with good reason! Here are some of my tips to make the most of 2017 and a new beginning:

FREE YOURSELF FROM DEAD END SITUATIONS

Don’t wait to let go of people and places that keep you stagnant and don’t encourage your growth. Whether it’s family members, friends, acquaintances, lovers, your school, or job. Certain circumstances can be like bricks tied around your feet, making taking steps forward unbearable or even impossible. This is not the time to be held back by anything.

TAKE NEEDED TIME FOR YOURSELF

You don’t have to disconnect from everyone in your life, but don’t be afraid to set firm boundaries and take time to yourself. Treat yourself like your best friend. Take yourself out to try new restaurants and venues, treat yourself with walks, trips or other types of getaways. Most of all, take the time to get to know yourself and develop trust in your intuition and self.  This is a good time to develop your personal identity and truly find yourself.

ACTION

This is a year of change. On a grand scale, the world as we know it is dead, and so it’s time to accept change and adapt. Personally, I notice that a fear of change is the main culprit of inaction. It’s time to take action to change your circumstances and your life. Make those first steps to start your own business, go for that internship, ask for a promotion, or even go after the potential love you always wanted! The worst that can happen is that it doesn’t pan out the way you want, and that is much better than being left wondering “what if?” Another thing to do is keep an open mind. Accept all avenues as possibilities, and develop the courage to tackle challenges and adventures head on!

Take no prisoners this year! I hope that in 2017 you are all blessed with positive growth, success, and resilience to handle anything that may get in your way. Happy New Year!

Stay Sweet,

Diane Honey

 

Hair Love

Column by Diane Honey

@bydianehoney

The pursuit and maintenance of healthy hair easily soaks up a nice chunk of our time, effort and paychecks. Many people are confused about where to start to reverse damage caused by heat, chemicals, and general neglect. Most people I meet always ask me a ton of questions regarding my hair, and my personal journey to getting healthy hair was long, and it wasn’t always easy. So, I wanted to do a column shortly answering questions that I’m most frequently asked about hair.

“How do I repair my damaged hair?”

You can’t, at least not permanently. When hair is damaged by heat and chemicals, you can’t reverse that damage. If you have curly hair you may be able to easier notice damage, as curls become mashed, stretched, and lifeless when it is damaged. Curly hair should have some amount of shrinkage, as it’s quite physically impossible to have curly hair that is the same length curly as it is straight. Shrinkage is also a measure of elasticity in hair, so when your hair doesn’t snap back, its damaged. The only way to get rid of “fix” damaged hair is to cut it off. You can shirk the damage for a while by doing protein treatments, but it’s not a permanent solution. Let those ends go girl!

“How do I get hair like yours?”

You cant! LOL. You shouldn’t want to either. There have been times where I wished my hair curled the same way someone elses did or had more effortless volume. But, when it comes to getting healthier hair, you have to work with what you have, because that’s what looks best on you. Everyone’s hair is different, so the practices that work for some people may never work for you. (Example: my hair is chemical resistant, so I can dye it 5x and experience little, if any, damage. So people who are chemical sensitive can’t gain much from listening to my experience with chemical processes) In the end, listening to your hair, figuring out your hair “type” and learning what ingredients and products your hair loves and hates, will get you the most beautiful results that you’re looking for.

“What is my hair type?”

Andre Walker, hair stylist to Oprah Winfrey and many celebs, created the hair typing system as a way to differentiate between curl patterns and waves, and try to find the best products for each type. Straight hair is type 1. Wavy hair is in the type 2 range (2a,2b,2c), Curly hair is in the type 3 range (3a,3b,3c). Very curly and kinky hair is type 4 (4a,4b,4c). While personally, I like labels as a tool for recognizing differences and acknowledging different needs + experiences, the hair typing system falls short. First, there are people with many hair types in one head (I have 3b and 3c). And that system focuses mainly on texture and curl pattern as opposed to many other things that affect hair (density, porosity, strand thickness, sensitivity to protein, genetic hair concerns). Two people with 3a hair will likely have completely different hair care regimens because of the differences in their hair. Finding your hair “type” means taking all of these variables into account so you can find the best products and practices to foster your hair health and growth!

TO DO

If you’re revamping your hair regimen + want to start taking better care of your hair, here’s how to start:

1. Eat right!
- foods like salmon, spinach, almonds, eggs, and avocados are great for hair health and encouraging growth.

2. Test yourself or visit a stylist
Give yourself a porosity test, density test, or thickness test for your strands. There are many websites that detail how to do each. You can also visit a professional hair stylist for a consultation and find out. This is an important step in figuring out how to care for your hair

3. Incorporate standard healthy hair practices into your routine
Shampooing at least once a week, deep conditioning every week, hot oil scalp massages, trimming or dusting your ends regularly, sleeping on satin pillowcases, and detangling gently with a conditioner that gives hair “slip” are all things that have been tried and true when it comes to hair, and are staples in any hair care regimen.

I hope this column helps you guys show your hair a little more love!

Stay Sweet,

Diane Honey
@bydianehoney

 

AIN'T NO TIME FOR THAT

 

This week’s article will be educating you on the dos and don’ts of a breakup and how to finally throw him or her away – for good! I mean we all ask for our friends and families advice but it is never really what we want to hear, and even if it is we still don’t listen to the advice anyway. In fact some don’t ask for advice at all, and I’ll put my hands up and say this is something I did wrong and I bottled it up.

The unexpected break up can cause great confusion and panic, not only short term but long term. The most common behavioural habits are neglect/pain, obsession, stress and shifts in our behaviour. Although a break up is painful it does however have a great outcome. It allows us to see a new perspective and allows personal growth – I know this because I am proof.

Obsession is something that we cannot avoid especially as we live and promote our lives on social media. It’s a fact that love is associated and activates the same part of the brain where we experience and act out on cravings. Imagine that you have a jar full of your most favourable food, but that food is representing love. Once that jar runs empty you normally go hunting and raiding the cupboards for more, correct? But let’s just say you can’t find your favourable food and you have run out – what do you do next? You go out and find more. Now relating this to love, once you run out and its gone you reluctantly go hunting and searching to hopefully get it back or find it – this is obsession. (This was the best way I could explain it)

I’ve known many who try to reconnect with those who they have recently broken up with in any way they can. They’ll stalk that persons Instagram every few minutes to see if they have started to follow anybody new, hunt down their twitter to see what they have been talking about, go onto their facebook to see when they were last online and where they have been or even make up a tinder account and start swiping to see if they pop up. This is all bad bad bad, and it needs to stop! It needs to stop before it even begins.. so how do you do this? Well this is how..

 

DON’TS

·         Define yourself by your ex. You are someone’s child, sibling, cousin, best friend, colleague and more importantly someone’s future partner. Don’t let them tell you what you aren’t.

·         Stalk their social media. No, no, no, STOP! This is such a dirty habit and will encourage you more and become a routine. What will you gain by stalking their social media? Not an awful lot, even if you get that urge maybe consider watching an investigation series online, let that mind want to investigate into something else!

·         Binge or self-medicate or starve yourself. Some people choose to stuff their faces, some choose to starve themselves and refuse even their favourable foods. You have to force yourself, start off drinking plenty of fluids and begin the soft diet before going back on the hard diets.

·         Rush into a new relationship. Don’t try and play Mr and Mrs, Mrs and Mrs or Mr and Mr – it’s not fair on them, and it’s certainly not fair on you. What you need to do before getting into any other relationship is to ask yourself what can you do differently in your next relationship?

·         Drunk text/call. It’s all natural that we neck down the strongest drink or wanting to hear their voice again. They’ll either be ignoring or answering that call or text so cold heartedly that you’ll make things a whole lot worse for yourself. Call a close one instead, even if you feel like you don’t want to harass them they’ll be there for you, like you would be there for them. You never know, you may be going through the same thing at the same time and may not know. So speak out, let them hear you.

·         Second guess the whys. Hey its normal to want to know why? But why does it even matter anymore? Tell yourself that relationships do just sometimes end with no reason at all. F**cking annoying I know but that is how it is sometimes. Everything happens for a reason, I am a big believer in that.

 

DOS

·         Get rid of all their belongings – Their belongings have no right to be in your precious presence any longer so get rid! Burn it, tear it, bin it – who cares just get rid.

·         Think of all reasons why they weren’t good enough for you. It’s natural that we think why we weren’t good enough, but you have to start thinking why they weren’t good enough for you! I’m sure you can come up with quite a lot of reasons. It’s their loss! In fact, create a new ending in your mind where you rejected them! It’ll change the dynamic and the way your mind thinks. It may even fool you.

·         Be around your loved ones. Even if you do not want their support, they will naturally be there for you when you need them.

·         Feel sh*t for a few days -  We all try to bottle in our feelings by putting on that fake f**king smile. I mean you can try faking it to hopefully fool yourself but this isn’t long lasting. The sooner you face those god damn awful feelings the sooner you’ll become better, stronger and whole again.

·         Learn from the experience

 

I will address that you may not get over the break up. But from my experience I can promise you that you will move on, with time. As each week goes by you’ll start noticing things about yourself that you need to take care of and you’ll give up on the bad habits you have picked up on. Starting again won’t be easy if you’re not ready. You’ll know when you’re ready when you aren’t tempted or purposely hunting.

 

Floss