The Best Tips For Building A Great Home Gym

Like so many other people these days, you might have grown sick of dragging yourself to the gym and grinding through sessions, and decided to bring the gym to you instead! If you’ve got the space and the budget, setting up your own home gym can be a very smart move in getting closer to your fitness goals. Obviously, this is a very big project, and you’ll want to get it right the first time. Here are a few tested tips for building a great home gym.

Get the Décor Right

Okay, the décor isn’t the most practical aspect of how your home gym is going to start out, but it can have a big impact on how motivated you feel when using your home gym, and it’s certainly something you need to bear in mind. To help yourself keep energized and motivated during your workouts, try to make the space as brightly lit and airy as possible. Ideally, you should have a lot of natural light coming in through the windows and doorways. While getting a new window installed may not be practical, you can add as many extra light sources as you need. Tap lights can be a great way to imitate recessed lighting, or alternatively, you can buy a couple of lamps that give off a soft, white light. Furthermore, a few house plants will bring up the oxygen levels in the room, particularly bamboo and spider plants. It’s also a good idea to purge the whole room of any distractions and clutter. Gadgets, devices and general mess that can take your attention away from your workout all have to go.

Stock It Up

You might have been browsing a lot of pictures of other people’s home gyms, and seeing these, thought that you need to spend a small fortune to build a gym that’s going to be any good. This really isn’t the case! You don’t need a truckload of equipment and expensive machines to make your home gym a good place to exercise. In fact, a lot of the best home workout equipment is relatively small and affordable. You can forget about getting a wide range of weights, and instead check out the complete guide to adjustable dumbbells from here. If you’re going for gains, you may need to buy some new weights as you get further into your plan, but in the beginning, a set of small, adjustable weights can be more than enough.

To make your budget go further, you should be prioritizing more versatile pieces of equipment. Foam rollers, for example, can be used for core strengthening, kneading out muscles, and as a prop for various yoga poses. Read a complete list of foam roller exercises at You should also avoid wrecking your bank account on a new treadmill or bike trainer, and instead opt for an easily-stored jump rope (or you may be able to find one at your local thrift store.) Remember, there’s no need to source everything you want for your home gym at once, especially when you haven’t got the layout and storage figured out. Instead, start off with a few core pieces, and gradually build it up from there. You’ll be able to save even more money on your home fitness plan by putting off new additions until birthdays, Christmases, and so on.

Get It Organized

Once you’ve sourced all the equipment you’re going to use in your home gym, the next thing you need to think about is storing everything in between your workouts. This is especially important if you’re going to be using a communal space in your house, such as the living room or basement. If it’s practical, set a few shelves or storage bins aside you can use to organize everything necessary for your workout plan. Wall racks, Ottomans, and so on, can also be great solutions. Of course, it’s your place, and you know the most efficient way of storing your stuff better than us! Have a look around the space you’re going to be using, and get creative. There really are countless ways to keep everything in your home gym neat, protected from dust, and out of the way when you’re not using it. It doesn’t have to be all in one little place, as long as you can access it!


We hope this little guide has made building your home gym much easier. As a final piece of advice: actually use it! Far too many people go to all the trouble of making a home gym and just let it gather dust. Don’t let the convenience lull you into laziness!


Want To Wow This Summer? Eat A Balanced Diet!

Ladies love to look great every single day, but summer is the most important season on the calendar. When the temperature rises, the clothes come off and we tend to spend more time in social situations. So, when you are out with the girls baring more skin, it’s vital to be on top of your game. Plus, there is the beach to think about when you go on an inevitable summer vacation. For these reasons, women have wondered about the best way to wow. Well, The Kashonna Files can confirm it is all about your diet. If you are a non-believer, here are the reasons why. 

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Photo Credit

Nutrients Make Skin Glow

A balanced diet has a range of different nutrients, from L-lysine to cod liver oil and vitamins A to D. And, all of these elements have lots of benefits for a person’s skin. Why? It’s because they contain antioxidants which improve skin tone by reducing damage to the cells. Also, they keep skin less dry and moister, so there is less chance of an outbreak of spots. And, if that wasn’t enough, they can tackle conditions such as eczema and shingles. Studies show that butternut squash is the most powerful food to flatten bad skin.

And Thicken Hair

Don’t you get jealous when you see a woman on the street with luscious locks? Well, there is no need to anymore as the same nutrients that affect your skin work wonders on hair, too. It is mainly down to lysine as this is one of the amino acids which boost the production of keratin. Keratin, in general, is a skin protector as it limits the damage of external and internal factors, such as the cold and stress. Quite simply, it is the guardian of hair, so consuming more will increase volume. Methionine, Glycine and Proline are three other amino acids to implement into your diet for hair growth.

Weight Loss

It isn’t a secret, but it is worth remembering that a balanced diet helps to regulate body weight. Of course, losing a few pounds is always a good way to look and feel good, especially in the summer. To begin with, there is less reason to be anxious about because your body has fewer flaws. Also, there is the fact that losing weight is a health benefit. With less fat in your system, all of the bodily systems and functions are more effective. This can affect everything from skin to muscle tone and beyond.

Improves Mood

It’s easy to own the physical benefits, but the mental side of a balanced diet is very important, too. Let’s face it – everyone wants to enjoy the summer. The sun is out, so are the people, and everyone is having a good time. If you are not, it will affect your appearance. To begin with, you will seem as if you have a bee hive in your mouth, which isn’t attractive. Plus, a bad mental attitude can lead to stress.


And, the more you have in your system, the worse your body will look this summer.  

Ways Vanity Can Be Good For You

Everybody’s a little bit vain. Some people are just a little more open about it than others. You can’t help but inspect yourself in the mirror each morning; appearance is something that we give great important. Of course, none of that means anything if you only strive to “look” healthy and not actually “be” healthy. The greatest way to achieve the former is to strive for the latter. You can use vanity as the motivation to start looking after your body better, but the key here is that you should be doing things which are genuinely making you healthier and not just making you “look” healthier. Here are some ways in which vanity can be a good thing for you.

Getting into shape the right way.

Getting into shape is pretty much impossible when it feels like a chore, so you need to think about a way to approach exercise and healthy eating which suits your lifestyle. You could try small tricks such as switching your large dining plates for smaller ones so as to force yourself to prioritize healthier carbohydrates and nutrients in your meals rather than overloading on unnecessary extra food. Everything should be eaten in moderation (even healthy fruits and vegetables), so smaller dining plates could help with that. Making substitutions with empty carbs for nutritional carbs is also important.

 In terms of keeping your body active, don’t force the gym or cycling if neither of those activities are exciting to you. You want a form of exercise that you can stick to because it fits nicely in your routine. Perhaps walking or jogging are relaxing to you because you can enjoy the scenery of your local park as you do so. Perhaps you’ve always been keen on martial arts or swimming; there are so many different ways to get your body moving, so just find something that suits you. Maintaining muscle strength and cardiovascular health is important for your heart and your body as well as your appearance in the mirror.

The smart route to pearly whites.

Everybody wants white teeth, but not everybody cares about whether they’re healthy or not; you may have had them whitened, but does that say anything about plaque build-up or the healthiness of your gums? You should be flossing as well as brushing your teeth; avoiding plaque and tar build-up is the smartest way to avoid gum disease and other health problems with your teeth or mouth in general. You could always consider affordable dental care if you were put off visiting your last clinic regularly because of the expense, as your health shouldn’t be something that you have to put a price on; you should always prioritize it, and that goes without saying.

Sleeping well can improve your appearance.

Those bags under your eyes and your slouching posture are both things which diminish your appearance. Both could be improved by simply sleeping well because better energy levels mean better concentration and better posture in your office chair or at home (rather than slowly sinking into your seat as you begin to doze off). Of course, sleeping well is important for your body so many different ways. It’s not just about getting enough sleep but sleeping in a bed which supports your body and its posture. You don’t want to have aches and pains throughout the day; ensure your mattress is supportive. Ideally, you should change them every seven years.

Looking after your mind.

You might be wondering how your mental state could possibly affect your physical appearance, but there’s a clear link between the body and the mind. Your stress levels, for example, can have a huge effect on your facial appearance. Blemishes such as acne definitely flare up during periods of intense stress, so it’s important to work on taking better care of your mental health. Practice meditating to focus on centering yourself, and you might notice the physical benefits.


Can Work And Wellness Really Coexist?

Your health isn’t a hobby that you can pick up and drop whenever you like. It’s something that needs attention through every part of every day. However, there are times where that focus is dragged away or even actively battled by the other responsibilities in life. In modern life, one of the responsibilities that seem to butt heads with your well being more often that it should is at work. What are the risks and what can you do about them?

Don’t forget to breathe

If you look up the most common kinds of injury caused in the workplace, you might see that slips, trips, and falls are your biggest risk. However, the data often tends to ignore the very real dangers that stress pose. Not just to your mood, stress affects you physically, contributing to back and joint pain, a lack of sleep, and even heart health. If you’re dealing with too much overtime, being thrust into a new work environment, or pushing yourself too hard, you need to know when to scale it back. This includes relaxation techniques such as meditation, aromatherapy, and even exercise to work off that stress.

The toxicity of the workplace

Sometimes, the problem is a lot more acute than general work stress. Hostile workplaces are a huge contributor to the negative effects on mental health. In many workplaces, women are at a lot more risk of encountering this toxicity than men. In a piece written by Benedict Morelli for Huffington Post, it’s argued a huge number of companies fail to protect employees from sexual harassment and discrimination. Two forms of workplace hostility that affect women proportionally more than men. In those cases, knowing your rights and seeking counsel when your boss isn’t standing up for them is a piece of recourse all must be aware of.

Who has the time?

Beyond the stress factors of work, you have to consider what it deprives you of, as well. For most people, it takes away a big chunk of the day. When you’re dealing with work, it’s not always as easy to get your fitness time in, for instance. Many people are tackling this issue by finding the time to work out at their desks. Finding extra exercise time, as suggested by Beth Skwarekci, such as walking or cycling to work for your commute can help you keep fighting for your health, too.

The dangers of the office

There are risk factors in every workplace. But some are less recognized than others. Even if you have a desk job, you could be doing long-term damage. A lack of lighting and constant use of the computer can lead to both eyestrain and problems with migraines. Meanwhile, poorly chosen furniture without a focus on ergonomics is one of the leading causes of back pain and repetitive strain injury, two conditions that are popping up more and more frequently in office workers.

Work and wellness aren’t just about avoiding accidents and injuries. It’s also about the long-term damage that can be done by stress, hostility, sedentary work life and even taking up so much of your day. Be aware of the risks and be aware of what you can do about them.


When Do You Need A Doctor?

It’s a good question, and a lot of people simply don’t have the right answer. Some people think that you should go to the doctor whenever you notice a change to your body and of course, this isn’t true. The human body is a weird place, and it can change without reason or rhyme multiple times through the year. A perfect example of this would be blood spots. Now, if you start to see tiny, pinprick dots on your body, you might be understandably worried. It can be difficult when we see a change and don’t know the cause, particularly if it doesn’t appear to be going away.

However, it’s important to understand that a condition like this can be caused by numerous factors. It can occur due to straining. So, if you’ve been lifting heavy items recently, that could be the cause for these blood spots. Or, maybe it’s just age. Lots of people develop these little spots as they get older and this can begin at age 25. Of course, if you look online, you’ll find one of the top results links petechiae to leukemia, but that doesn’t mean it’s the most likely cause. So, when should you visit the doctor?

When It Hasn’t Disappeared

Most changes to your body will disappear within two weeks. That’s true if you have a cyst on your body that you are convinced is a cancerous lump. If within two weeks, it’s gone, there’s no need to take a trip to the doctor. If it’s still there after two weeks, well that’s another matter. But don’t worry, it’s probably still nothing serious, it’s just better to be safe than sorry.

When It Gets Worse

Yes, some times over those two weeks your condition will get worse, or you will see new symptoms. At that point, you should definitely head to an urgent care clinic. The benefit of urgent care is that there are really no wait times. So, if you are worried about your condition, you can get treatment from a doctor immediately. It’s always best to tell someone about your condition first though so you can get a second opinion before taking a trip to the doctors.

It’s worth pointing out that there are plenty of diseases and illnesses where the outlook is brighter when noticed and treated early. However, two weeks won’t make that much of an impact on a diagnosis, and it can keep you from succumbing to paranoia.

When You’re Injured?

You might think that if you have been injured, there’s no reason to visit a doctor. Particularly, if there seems to be no sign of pain or even any permanent damage. Do be careful though because the human body is quite odd. Pain can develop weeks or even months after an injury if it hasn’t been treated properly. That’s why you want the advice of a doctor whenever you suffer an injury.

Hopefully, this advice will help you decide when it’s actually time to see a doctor to stay in good health and when you should just wait for your symptoms to pass.


Drink Yourself To Good Health In 5 Ways

We’ve all heard about the wonderful benefits of water. It’s a clear, pure drink that helps to cleanse our system and leave us feeling both hydrated and quenched. It’s one of the healthiest drinks around because it contains no calories yet has plenty of positive effects on our body. Since our bodies are roughly made up of 60% water, it’s essential that we replenish that water and flush our system of bad toxins. However, for some, they just can't tolerate the plain taste of water. GOOD NEWS- there are other drinks that we can rely on to give us good health.


Vegetable Juice

A lot of people knock it before they try it, but vegetable juice is a surprisingly good way to get some of your five-a-day. It all takes a little getting used to and some specialized equipment, but you’ll find that vegetable juice is flexible, versatile and very tasty. You can easily mix a medley of fruits and vegetables into a juicer to create a powerful and potent concoction that contains all the essentials nutrients and minerals you could ever want in a single day. Juicers may be fairly expensive, but they’re worth every single penny if you want to drink yourself to good health. 

** I bought my juicer from Walmart really inexpensive and I juice and freeze in bulk and it is one of the best things that I have done and I consistently see the benefits.


Green Tea

There are many different types of green tea, but no matter what brand you get or what style of green tea you get, they all come jam-packed with positive benefits. High-quality green tea such as Ashitaba are known for their fat-burning properties that assist weight loss, but they’re also known to stimulate brain activity and even promote long life. Green tea is simple, tastes great, and can even be flavored depending on what your preferences are. It’s best to make your own green tea, but if you’re short on time and need a quick fix then teabags can also work assuming they’re made from quality leaves.

Iced Tea

If hot tea doesn’t suit you due to the heat, then why not cold brew it or leave it to chill in the fridge before drinking it? Iced tea doesn’t lose any of the health benefits, it can help cool you down, and it tastes great with some added extras such as some slice of lemon or honey. Iced tea is best made by yourself due to the amount of sugar in bottled varieties. Try to stay away from those types and make your own instead.


Dilute Fruit Juice

If you’re set on drinking fruit juice, then treat it like a cordial and dilute it a little bit. This is to reduce the amount of sugar in each glass of juice you drink. Keep in mind that even freshly pressed juices have quite a lot of sugar in each serving due to the natural sugars that fruits have.



Most people drink this when they’re younger to get healthier bones thanks to the abundance of calcium. However, as you get older, milk continues to be important and it’s also a great source of protein and healthy fats. A single serving of milk contains the same amount of calcium as several servings of vegetables, making it a fantastic healthy drink to sip on all year round (my favorite is organic vanilla soy milk).


5 Tips For Taking Care Of Your Parents Health

We’re in control of our own health, and when we’re young (at least relatively) mostly all it takes is a desire to be healthy. With the will, we can do it. This is not true for our parents, who have to contend with aging bodies and weakened immune systems, among other factors if they want to stay healthy. When your parents enter their golden years, you’ll have a greater responsibility in ensuring they stay healthy for as long as possible. Below, we outline five ways you can work towards this.


Close Monitoring

It’s rare that a person is struck down by an illness or health issue that materializes seemingly out of nowhere. It’s usually a slow decline. As such, it’s up to you to monitor your parent’s health, to keep an eye on their ability to do all the things they used to be able to do. Of course, if you find that they’re struggling to reach the top drawers, then that’s not an instant cause for concern; bodies can’t stay agile forever. But if you notice a more general deterioration in their health before it becomes too serious, you’ll be able to take steps to give them help.


Stay Informed

Parents can be pretty private, especially as they enter their later years. They’re either private or don’t want to bother people with their problems, even if they know you’re more than happy to help (this was the case with my mother, who although she was still pretty young, passed away from an illness we id not know had gotten serious). It’s important that you keep an open dialogue with your parents, and stay informed about any health conditions they might have, however small they may be. If you’re informed about any health problems they have, you can read up on the condition and see if things are improving or getting worse over time with the help of their primary care doctor.


Outside Help

You can’t be expected to do everything on your own. You have your own life, after all. If your parents are struggling with their health and require more specialized care than you can provide, then look to experts like Riddle Village nursing services for help. By bringing in outside help, your parents will be able to get the level of treatment and care they need, while you’ll be able to rest easy knowing they’re well taken care of.  


Taking Care of the Basics

As we get older, it becomes more difficult to complete the many daily tasks that make up life. Older people can sometimes forget to eat properly, which can weaken their immune system and make them more susceptible to minor illnesses. A simple thing you can do is to perform their weekly shop for them so that they have everything they need to feed themselves through the week. If they’re unable to make the meals, prepare them yourself and put them in the freezer.


Remember Their Needs

You’re worried about your parents, but you shouldn’t forget that they’re still functioning adults. Be tactful when you’re trying to give them help, and be sensitive to what they need as individuals. They won’t like losing their autonomy if they think it’s being snatched away from them, so tread lightly and remember that you’re doing this for their benefit.


Oral Hygiene: Four Ways To Take Better Care Of Your Mouth

Hands up if you've ever been on a diet, or been worried about your weight? That will be most of us, then. Body image is such a contentious issue in the modern day, and women, in particular, can often be on the receiving end of any societal pressures. Of course, being concerned about your weight doesn't just mean that you are hung up on the way you LOOK. Plenty of people change their diet and lifestyle to simply be healthier - any aesthetic changes merely come as a plus. However, with so much focus being on our weight and our bodies, other aspects of our health and beauty can often get pushed out. Take our faces, for example. The face is the first thing you see when you meet a new person and is integral to forming new relationships. Expressions are so delicate that many of us are not even aware we are making them, but we can give away a lot of how we are feeling just from our faces!

The mouth, in particular, is a critical aspect. It is our primary communication tool and also goes through plenty of other things on an average day - whether that is eating, drinking, or kissing! Therefore, it's often crazy to think how much many of us overlook both our oral and our dental health. If you start to ignore this area, you could be opening yourself up to some pretty nasty future health issues. No one wants to be the person who looks back and thinks 'I could have done more to look after myself back then.' So, with that in mind, here are some top tips for keeping your lips, gums, teeth, and tongue in tip top condition.

Photo Credit

Photo Credit

Dental hygiene

We all know we should brush our teeth twice a day - but are you doing it right? There is quite a lot of contention about how you should brush; whether you should dampen your toothbrush prior or not, how much toothpaste you should use, and whether you should use a manual brush or an electric one. With all this conflicting information, it can get a bit confusing knowing what or what not to do. However, the best course of action is to speak to your dentist personally and ask for their advice. Only they know your teeth better than you will, so they will be able to point you in the right direction. Typically, though, try and get into the habit of using a fluoride toothpaste, along with a non-alcoholic mouthwash and floss a couple of times a week, if you can.

Your tongue

Our tongue is a muscle - although you'd have to try something pretty out there to pull it like you would your bicep or your quads! However, that doesn't mean to say that it still isn't safe from damage, sitting safely inside your mouth. Certain lifestyle habits can have a derogatory effect on the health of your tongue, leading to some pretty nasty symptoms. Take, for example, 'black hairy tongue.' This gross-sounding condition is what can sometimes occur when a person has been smoking tobacco for many years. The gradual build-up of smoke in the mouth causes discoloration to appear on the surface of the tongue, which in turn, gives the appearance of the tongue being hairy. Attractive, no? If you are addicted to smoking and quitting cold turkey to avoid this issue is not an option, you could always try switching to e-cigarettes instead. Electronic cigarettes use 120 ml e juice rather than tobacco, as well as containing far fewer chemicals. Therefore, you still get your nicotine rush, but without all the added nasties (and no black tongue!).

Your gums

Gum disease is one of the most common oral disorders people are treated for all over the world. Ironically, it is also one of the easiest conditions to protect yourself against. So many people forget about their gums when brushing their teeth, but remember, that part of your mouth needs attention too! If you find that your regular toothbrush is too rough or harsh on your sensitive gums (remember, you never want to draw blood), find a softer one to use. Flossing or using a plaque pick is again, integral to dental hygiene overall, but particularly for your gums. A plaque build-up is one of the leading causes of gum disease, so if you notice that the gaps between your teeth are yellowing, take action right away. If you notice that when you spit your toothpaste back into the sink, there is blood there, this could be an early sign of gum disease (even if other symptoms haven't arisen yet). Make an appointment with your dentist straight away, and he or she will be able to diagnose you and put a treatment plan in place.



Our lips are one of our most aesthetic features - and keeping them healthy is what help to keep them beautiful, too! Try and think of your pout a bit like a sponge (not the nicest metaphor, we know). When they are hydrated, they are soft and supple. When they are starved of moisture, they are dry and rough. Lots of people struggle with chapped lips during the winter and burnt lips during the summer. To avoid both of these scenarios, make sure you are taking the necessary protective precautions. During hot weather, always use a lip balm with an SPF in it - if you're a lipstick lover, just apply a small layer of balm over your color of choice. Similarly, in winter, make sure your lips are hydrated with a moisturizing balm that will prevent them from the icy temperatures. You can also take another measure towards getting your lips pucker-perfect, such as using an exfoliating lip scrub to soften them - just don't rub them too hard! Finish with a slick of lipstick or gloss, and you're ready to go, knowing that your lips are both beautiful AND healthy.


Tips For Living With A Mental Illness

Most of you may know that I am currently working on my doctorate in Clinical Psychology, so it is only right that I touch on the subject of mental illness because although we are living in 2017, it is still a subject of taboo for some, especially when it comes to different cultural groups. Dealing with mental illness is hard, not matter the degree. It's a very difficult issue to deal with because unlike other problems that are physically visible to the people around you - struggling with mental illness is very easy to hide, which makes it even more dangerous.  

It was once overlooked because people just put it down to attention seeking, and because of this people tend to be really frightened about opening up, but it's the year 2017, there's no need to feel like that anymore. There are so many different ways to get help, manage and improve how you feel on a daily basis.

While there are many severity types that span the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, for those who are able to cope with their symptoms a bit better than others, here are a few tips that will help you to keep a healthier perspective on things.


Focus on your strong points, but be aware of your limits.

You may not get as much done as maybe other people would, because you will be facing a lot of different things that cause you stress. But this shouldn't be seen as a negative thing. Because of all this, you are most likely very good at being patient, and patience is a great skill to have.

When having a mental illness, for some reason people tend to be quite creative. It doesn't always work out that way, but in some cases of Autism especially, people usually have great attention to detail and use their brain to store it full of knowledge and information. You would be surprised as to how many actors, musicians, and artists are actually Bipolar (manic-depressive.)

Don't look at yourself as being strange. You are unique in your own way, and that isn't because of your mental illness - it's because you're a human being. So put your attention and energy onto all the wonderful traits that you - and only you - can offer this world.


Get yourself the treatment you need.

There are far too many suicides that go on because people feel as though it's the only resort. The pain that it causes to feel that alone, dealing with such an issue that makes you so low that you don't want to be in this world with the people that love you. - That's a very dangerous spot to be in. That's why it's so important to seek medical help and discuss what the best treatment will be for you. - You don't have to suffer in silence or go through it alone. There are plenty of support that will give you all the information that you need to find what's best for you. You may find that going on medication that balances your mood is necessary, or talking to someone about exactly how you feel everyday is a more suitable option. Some people even find that herbal vaping or aromatherapy for health issues can help sooth and relax things like depression, anxiety, and even mood swings. So it really is just about discussing options and finding something that you agree to.


Get support but don't let it consume you.

It's very easy to feel like the odd one out when you're with a group of people, whether you know them or they’re just complete strangers - you know how you're feeling, and that’s pretty much all you’re able to focus on. Your mind is most likely racing with one thousand and one different things going on in your head all at the same time. If you're anxious, this will be ten times worse. Even if no one is looking at you, you will feel that this is specifically for a reason, and you will be analyzing everything like crazy!

Going to support groups for your illness can be amazing, because you're essentially in a room with all other people dealing with the same issue. Although it may feel as though you're on your own at first, the more times you go, and the more you open up - you will learn so much, not only about others, but yourself too. Groups are there to remind you that you're not weird, and you can find comfort in the idea that you will always have a place to go.

But having said that, don't use your illness as a crutch or an excuse to hold you back, or take the easy option out without having to push yourself. Sure, it may be a lot harder for you, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't try.


Don't allow anyone to treat you badly.

For some strange reason, a lot of people that deal with a mental illness are deemed weak by other people. For example, if people are aware that you're a little different, unfortunately, most people will treat you different - even though you never asked them to do that. People may also try and take advantage of you because you are seen as an 'easy target'... Don't let them do this to you, however much they try. You're not someone that can be messed with, or someone that should just put up with silly things because 'you're different'. Don't ever feel like you need to settle in a relationship, or be silent in a conversation because the other person is trying to enforce some sort of power over you.


Finding work isn't impossible

If you're generally quite up and down, then searching for a more flexible job will be best. This may be freelance work, working from home, or if you're lucky, working for someone that is able to give you clear instructions, somewhere quiet to work in, and time off when you need it.

It's very easy to think that not mentioning your illness is a better route because it won't restrict you from the kind of work that you get offered - but don't do this. Your employer needs to know if you're not well. - Not so that they can judge or pity you - but just so they have a better understanding of things. Especially if you do have to take multiple days off, or shorten your hours.


Take responsibility for your actions.

Just because you may be a little different, doesn't always mean you get special treatment. For example, if you're in the company of others, whether that be family, friends or even strangers, - if you have a really bad day, and you lose your temper and get quite angry and aggressive - once that is all over and done with, you have to think about the possibility that you may have affected anyone while they were in your presence. Yes, it is horrible having to deal with emotions like that, but it's also horrible to see someone unraveling and losing control right in front of you, and you are not able to do a thing. So ask them if they're alright, and apologize for breaking down like that.

The same thing goes for if you made plans with people, and then end up changing your mind.  Don't just bail on them, let them know in advance so they're not left looking forward to something all week for nothing. You would like someone to take your feelings into account, so do the same for others.


Find the people that will accept you for you.

Friendships can be very hard to keep when you are dealing with a mental illness. We can all have the odd ‘good day’, which is great, and your friends may love to hang out with you. But then the day will come where you feel as though that dark gray cloud has positioned itself right above your head, and all you can feel is the weight of the rain hitting down on you. On days like this, your friends may not want to be around you, because they can't deal with how you are. - Let them feel this way. If they don't feel comfortable with you on your 'off' days, then you shouldn't want to feel comfortable around them either. That's why we have so many different people that come into our life - they all have different purposes. You just have to either be patient, or find someone that can be with you on a good or bad day regardless.

Relationships can be a lot trickier, not so much to find - but to maintain the relationship. Whether it be a few days, few weeks or few months of trying to act as 'normal' as you possibly can, you are sooner or later going to have to breathe and be yourself. - It's very scary, but how do you know you've met the right person if they haven't yet met you properly? You don't want to find out later down the line that you wasted eight months of your life, hiding a big part of yourself, trying to be the 'perfect' partner, only to find out they were a super idiot!

What about the people who are selfish and only like the sound of their own voice, or people that always think they're right and are never willing to compromise? - If they can all manage to find a relationship and keep a healthy one going - then you have absolutely nothing to worry about!


The Top 10 Minerals And Vitamins We're Not Getting Enough Of

In a world where the focus on our health has dramatically shifted towards it, it’s hard to comprehend why we’re still not getting the vitamins and minerals that our body needs. Partly, we are not to blame; a change in how we grow our food, from the vegetables to the animals, has meant that some of the essentials are lost without us totally realizing it. Our need to eat foods which have been processed and our desire not to wait for meals (hello, drive thru!) has also lead towards a deficit.

So what are we actually missing out on - and how can we go about reversing this?


This inorganic mineral is responsible for a lot happening within your body. It helps conduct the structure of all of your bones, as well as being required for the synthesis of DNA. It can be found in green, leafy vegetables and legumes, so if you’re adding these to your diet then you should be getting your RDA in abundance. Some cereal brands have also started adding it to their product to ensure that you’re getting a healthy dose in the morning.



Once upon a time, when organic farmers were the norm and you would rely on your pet cow for both dairy products and the manure to spread on your crops, sulfur was a regular part of our diet. Nowadays, with the introduction of fast farming and a whole load of change to where our food is coming from, we aren’t getting as much as we need. Sulfur helps with disease resistance, increasing enzyme production within your body to fight off any unwanted illnesses. You can buy sulfur crystals to help your body get back right, or start tracing your food; knowing exactly where it comes from and the process used to create it is a good first step to take.



We are actually getting more access to fluoride than ever before, with certain water companies adding it to our regular flow so we don’t even notice that we’re getting it. However, a lot of people are purposely not ingesting it as it’s not an essential nutrient. It helps to protect against things like tooth decay, which can be a real concern later on in life. You don’t need a lot of it - too much fluoride is definitely a bad thing, but allowing a little into your water and toothpaste will really help with the condition of your teeth and bones.

Vitamin K

This is the vitamin that is most well-known for the effects that it has to the clotting of your blood. Our blood needs to be able to clot once we bleed, else we just won’t stop bleeding - it’s as simple as that. It works hand in hand with Vitamin D, and if you have been tested for deficiency in either Vitamin K or D, you will be deficient in the other one too. It is a fat-absorbed vitamin, so you need to be eating a good amount of fat in your diet to feel the benefits from it. If you have eradicated fat from your diet entirely, then there is a high chance that your body is operating on a deficit. Vitamin K is important for the prevention of such diseases as cancer and Alzheimer’s, as well as osteoporosis and diabetes. It is naturally occurring within green plants, so ensuring that your plate is full of them either at lunch or dinner time is a great way to go about getting more of this vital nutrient in your system.



Potassium can be found in so many yummy foods that it’s actually harder to avoid it than it is to remind yourself to eat foods that contain it. If you have been experiencing things like dehydration, headaches and menstrual cramps that are hurting a bit more than they normally would, this can often be attributed to a lack of potassium within your diet. It is required to keep your vital organs functioning, so the more you can get, the better. It’s famously found in bananas, but the levels of potassium in this fruit compared to avocados, sweet potatoes and wild-caught salmon is considerably lower. That doesn’t mean that you should stop eating bananas, though - they’re a natural mood-booster as they help to release the dopamine hormone, giving you a buzz.



More commonly known as salt, sodium is something that we need in our diet. However, too much of a good thing can turn into being bad for your body with this mineral. The more potassium that you take in, the more it will help with the breakup of sodium in your body. We do need a certain amount of salt to help our blood flow, as well as helping our nerves and muscles to work as they should. It can be easy to go overboard, as a lot of our food already contains the RDA for salt intake. If you know that you’re not getting as much as you need, the symptoms can be quite clear; you may just be having headaches, but more severe cases can see a drastic reduction in the stability of your mental health, as well as seizures.

Vitamin C

A lack of Vitamin C can cause a condition called scurvy to occur; typically associated with 18th century sailors which resulted in bleeding gums, intense bruising and blood spots appearing on the skin, it had appeared to have been completely eradicated … until cases were reported in Australia last year. Our diets are lacking in the fruits - such as oranges - which are big providers of this natural disease-fighter.  We definitely need to be trying to get it into our systems as much as we can.



Iron deficiency anemia is unfortunately on the rise currently due to poor diets. This means that your body isn’t producing as many blood cells as it should. The result of this is that those who are suffering from a lack of iron are more prone to become fatigued quickly, becoming pale in complexion and having an increase of headaches. The less common symptoms include a desire to eat non-food items such as paper or clay; this is due to your body reacting in a way to get you to ingest more iron from any means possible. There are certain tablets that you can take for it (especially within pregnancy, where you may be prescribed medication by your doctor), as well as drink supplements that contain a good amount to get you back to rights.


B Vitamins

There’s no such thing as Vitamin B - just a whole host of vitamins that fit under the umbrella! Each one plays a very important role, mainly centered around the nervous system and the functions of the skin. Folic acid counts as a B vitamin, which pregnant women are recommended to take to help with the development of their baby. These vitamins can be found in everyday foods like dairy and cereals.


Vitamin E

Not much is spoken about Vitamin E, but it’s still an essential for your body. You don’t need to eat it every day, as your body is clever enough to store it for the future on the days that you have ingested a lot. It can be found in foods such as seeds and nuts, so snacking on these throughout the day can really help to boost your Vit E levels. It helps to keep your eyes and skin healthy, as well as teaming up with the other vitamins to help fight against diseases - so what’s not to love?