Life balance manifesto

Manifesto

I believe that my blog has something for everybody. Because everybody deserves to have joy and happiness in their lives. But then there are certain kinds of people who will always automatically put everyone else first, they are sensitive to negativity and will avoid it at all costs by letting too much fall upon themselves to sort out. Because of this they may have suffered with depression or anxiety, insomnia, stress and overwhelm. They may feel taken advantage of and be in a place where they feel stuck and aren’t sure how to get out. When they perhaps fall upon my blog they might not have realised that the key is ‘Looking after yourself first means that everything else will become easier’. When they visit my blog and start to implement self-care and other techniques their life will become more joy-filled and they will keep up the techniques they have learnt in order to hold off the return of the stress and overwhelm they felt before.

The reason I chose to help this particular kind of people is because I am one of those people. If that is your personality, it doesn’t go away, but you learn to manage and you learn how much you can benefit from looking after yourself first. You have to keep implementing these techniques because otherwise you can go backwards. It does happen and we realise that we haven’t been implementing self-care and we have let people take advantage of us or we forgot to not overdo it. Then you keep going. You aren’t back to square one by any means, you learn to see it coming by knowing your own warning signs and then you can re-address what you need to do.

This is why I am here doing this, this is why I can help you, because I am one of you. I write blog posts, I send them out into the world and I read them too. I follow my own advice, I am by no means a finished product. I am on the same journey as you. Learning how to feel better in my life and fill it with ease and joy. I am still exploring this, imagining new ways to help myself, reading endless books and blogs and meeting people and using techniques given to me to make this a happier, joyful, easier life for myself. I want nothing more than to help as many other people as I can on the way because I truly believe that nobody should have to be always stressed or sad or unhappy and that everyone can and should live happily and all the awful things I experienced didn’t happen for nothing, they happened so that I would be in a better position to help you.

If there was just one thing that I would wish for my readers to take away from my blog it is that you deserve to have a life full of joy and peace and not to dread your days, to enjoy being you and living your life. Life is precious and it should be full of love and light and it can be when you take this first step to start looking after yourself.

Imogen x

Weekly Rituals (Self-care month Day 28)

Self-care month Day 28 - Weekly Rituals

Well, hello you absolutely wonderful lot,

Can you believe it is nearly the end of self-care month? We have come so far and we definitely all deserve a pat on the back for taking this wonderful journey to looking after ourselves. Well done love 🙂

Today is a rainy old Sunday here, thats ok, the weather has been getting warmer and were a bit glad of the break. Do you find that on some days of the week that you end up doing the same things? It is lovely to create a ritual on certain days of the week because we often thrive in routine. We know what is coming and we know what we need to do. Cont…

For more click here for the full free download of ‘self-care month’ now all as one handy ebook ‘The Self-care Manual’

Plants & flowers (Self-care month Day 26)

I’m feeling pretty happy with myself this morning. I’ve just sent an assignment for my degree which is always a huge relief so starting my Friday on a very happy, positive note!

Todays self-care task is about plants and flowers. I’m not really great at looking after plants or gardening. I forget about them, they die and then I feel guilty. But did you know that some plants are seriously easy to look after? and they still look lovely! I have a succulent on my desk. According to feng shui, the top left corner of your desk is the area representing abundance and prosperity and so is a great place for a plant. I haven’t actually ever watered it but apparently once every 6 months is enough. The only other house plant I have is my orchid that lives at the side of my bed. After panicking this morning when the flowers starting falling off, a quick look on pinterest tells me that that is normal and when they have all fallen off a quick prune should encourage it to re-flower. Cont…

For more click here for the full free download of ‘self-care month’ now all as one handy ebook ‘The Self-care Manual’

Saying no (Self-care month Day 23)

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Self-care month Day 23
Saying no

Good morning my lovely reader and all my new followers it’s so good to meet you!
Today is my birthday, 29 years ago today I was brought it to the wonderful world and because of that I am feeling extra specially happy and relaxed. I have spent all day cuddling my kitten, Luna, colouring in my new colouring book and watching Disney films. I have felt extra exhausted recently and I have really needed some time to myself to relax and I feel all the better for it.

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Colouring in bed with Luna this morning

Today I give you permission to say no to something. Whether it is something that you aren’t comfortable with, or are anxious about or whether somebody is demanding too much of your time or energy. To really take care of ourselves we need to be able to say no in these situations. We sometimes say yes out of obligation or because we are too kind to let people down. Cont…

For more click here for the full free download of ‘self-care month’ now all as one handy ebook ‘The Self-care Manual’

Self-care Month Day 22 (Treat yourself!)

Hi all!

Welcome to day 22 (!) of self-care month! Sorry todays email has come a bit late, I’ve had a very hectic weekend and day which involves a new member of our family;

Luna

So this is Luna, she was abandoned in a very cruel way and we have taken her in and she’s so cute and lovely! Feel really lucky to have had to opportunity to rescue her.

Well tomorrow is my birthday! So today I want us to figure out a little way we can treat ourselves today. Here are a few ideas; Cont..

For more click here for the full free download of ‘self-care month’ now all as one handy ebook ‘The Self-care Manual’

Friday Roundup #2


I’m making the Friday roundup a regular thing you see..I think its a good way to have another look at what I’ve been writing about and also tell you a little bit about what has been going on for me personally. I try not to write too much personal stuff because i’ve heard that its bad for a blogger….I don’t know though I quite like reading things about people’s lives, it makes them seem more human…what do you think?

Anyhoo on Monday I posted about Warning Signs for Stress because when describing my blog to somebody they asked me, ‘What are the warning signs for when you’re getting anxious or stressed again?’ (i’m paraphrasing) so I thought it was an important subject to try and cover.

On Wednesday I posted about Most Important Tasks which is a really cool way of setting tasks and not getting too overwhelmed by a huge list so worth a read for tips on the organisational front.

Things that have been happening this week for me are

  • A meeting about a talk I am going to do for a charity which supports people with pre and post natal depression on self-care. They are called Pandas and I’m excited to go along and hopefully help give them some ideas about self care
  • Speaking of which, self-care month sign up is still on. A whole month of daily emails with self-care tasks in throughout June so sign up here
  • On Wednesday I got hypnotised for the very first time ever. It was a pretty emotional experience but so worth it. I think it has probably changed my life actually
  • I went out for tea with a friend which was nice. Gave me a chance to feel like a proper grown up. Something other than parenting and sitting in front of a computer to fill my time
  • Writing an essay. I am studying an architect called Pugin at the moment. He likes medieval gothic churches which is nice! Also there is a Pugin Church literally over the road from my Mums house so I was very excited to find that out (I know I’m a geek) anyway the essay is due in while I am away at the end of the month so it’s got to be done ASAP so I won’t be sat in a static caravan in Wales somewhere trying to finish it while everyone else is playing on the beach.
  • Hula-hooping. My exercise of choice again at the moment, so much fun!
  • Not eating meat.
  • Reading The Mists Of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
  • Expressing Gratitude
  • Doing a photography challenge over on Instagram

 

I found this on Pinterest actually but have no idea where it had come from unfortunately!

  • Having really good responses to my first ebook Balance your Life Today available worldwide on Amazon and free if you are on Amazon unlimited or £1.99 (or equivalent)

And I think that is about it. Today I am going to paint something, hang out in the sunshine with the kids and do some reading.

Hope you all have a spectacular weekend!

Hope & joy,

Imogen x

Balance Your Life Today!

Balance Your Life Today by Imogen J Hope

This is the title of my ebook. It is now available on amazon for the very small price of £1.99 ($2.99)

To get it you can click on the link above, or search in amazon for Life Balance (kindle store) or Balance your life today or Imogen J Hope.

I am pretty proud and pleased with myself for getting this book out there and I know it is going to be the first of many books and services aimed at helping the world create better balance in life. So watch this space!

Book cover

6 weeks until moving day!

In 6 weeks we are moving house. We will be downsizing 😦 But! The new house has a lovely big garden! Woohoo!

This will be the 4th time we have moved house in 5 years. Thats really crazy i know but what can i say we have been looking for something we haven’t quite found yet!

I love this house. I really seriously love this house. But there is no garden just a few flag stones and actual stones. This house is a hundred+ year old weavers cottage. Its over four floors including the cellar and our magnificent bedroom is the whole of the top floor with en suite bathroom and beautiful view of the cheshire countryside. But as i poked my nose out into the world of rentals to see if we could get something with a garden i found one. Its a beautiful garden with a smaller house attached. With 2 floor and smaller rooms. But less money so hey, let look on the bright side. As i went to see it i pondered where i would put our masses of belongings and then PANIC ‘there’s a few people interested’ ‘we’re waiting for a phone call right now from a lady who wants to take it’ ‘if you want it you’ll have to do it now’. And these statements were all true. I could tell. Its a nice area and a bit of a bargain by all accounts so next thing i know i am signing, paying and mr.H hasn’t even seen it yet! But it felt like the right thing to do i went with my instinct and flowed with what was happening. So were off. And I am now 6 weeks away from a big down size. So first things first. Before we start to think about packing we need to declutter like there is no tomorrow!

So here is my lovely declutter to downsize in 6 weeks checklist (note; also works on general house clutter, space clearing, feng shui-ing you way to a clearer clutter free house and mind)

Week 1
Yard/garden, cellar, garage
Week 2
Clothes, shoes, coats
Week 3
Bedrooms/other, general bric a brac and furnishings
Week 4
The biggy for us-the kitchen

That will leave us with 2 weeks of packing fun and plenty of time for trips to charity shops, the tip and returning things to where they belong.
There will be more detail to follow on each area.
Thanks for reading!
Imogen x

Day 3 in the sick house

Well weirdly enough today has actually been, well, nice! First day since Friday with no sickness so that’s obviously a bonus. I have been pottering around with the kids again playing, making, giggling and it’s been lovely. I asked my lovely sister to take baby out to the park in the afternoon because she was ill first so recovered first and has been fine for a few days. It’s so important to have a support system that is there for you and you can ask for help. I know it’s awkward to ask and you feel like you’re putting people out by asking but you’re not. You’re looking after the best interests of your family and they can only say no. If you’re not lucky enough to live near your family, build a network of mummy friends and ask one of them, ask a neighbour you trust or find the money to pay someone. If only once a week you need that time especially if you are a single mum or like me spend time alone while daddy is away.

So while baby was out the boy watched the Lego Movie and I actually got to write for an hour. I am trying to write a novel. It’s experimental but I’m enjoying it! When I sat down I just had one of those kinds of sessions where it just seemed to flow and I got a chapter and a half written before bubs got home.
Then we did this

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And played Lego and snuggled and laughed and played games and it was special. I wasn’t rushing trying to do other things and got some sneaky unexpected quality time with the kids.
A stolen day of quality family time.
Imogen x

Sometimes things just have to stop for a while

As of Friday the Hope household has been struck down with a stomach bug. All of us. Me, the boy and the baby. Littlest started first closely followed by me then J. Lucky Mr.H is as far away as possible working in the states.
And lucky for us my mum/super grandma is around the corner and was here first thing to look after us. I spent the day in bed drifting in and out of sleep while J snoozed on the couch watching Disney films.
Vi made a pretty miraculous recovery and spent the day pottering around being her usual cheeky little self. While grandma cleaned up sick like the superstar legend that she is.
So no packing got done, no trips to the dump, no karate lessons, no tidying, no kids parties.
It doesn’t matter though. We’re all on the mend now and we are so grateful for that. This morning we are feeling brighter and keeping food down. Opening the curtains this morning and letting some light into the house was an absolutely joy.
So today it would be easy for me to run around trying to do all that needed doing over the weekend but I will remind myself constantly that I need to be kinder to myself today especially.
The agenda for today includes reading, cuddling, films, tea and toast, gentle board games and painting.
I would be lying if I said I didn’t have to do some cleaning as I’ve got a letting agent taking photos of the house first thing in the morning 😖 but bare minimum will be the motto of the day!
Imogen x