December 2018 Life Update – VickiAmaya

So, Hi. I’m back. It’s November (now December) and I haven’t written anything on here for around 4/5 months. I would apologise, but if i’m honest. I’m not really sorry.

A lot has changed for me this past year. I started the year exhausted and I leave it enthused.

So, 2018 was supposed to be the year I ‘Made It’. The year we got the hell out of dodge and saw the world. I held it with such a high regard and then let it all slip away.

The funny thing about dreams is that if you stop believing in them, they stop happening.

But instead of dwelling on the could have, would have and shouldabeens (I’m saving those for a rainy day). I’m instead going to write about what did happen this year. I feel like that’s a way better story than wishing I could start the year again.

Life Update:

I made new friends! I’ve written about this previously, but I feel its worth mentioning again. Jess, Kitty and Emily, you girls are my angels and  love you all so much. I can’t believe I went 28 years without having a bunch of inspiring, creative and caring girls behind me. You gave me a group of friends at a time when I had so few.

Moving away from home is always tough. Out of sight, out of mind… But I can’t complain because by loosing some old friends, I have made some life long ones. I didn’t realise how alone and isolated I had become until I started hanging out with this girl gang. Seriously, thank you babes!

I lost 5000+ Instagram followers and found my clarity. I was OBSESSED with the inner workings, the numbers, the upload schedule, the updates. You get the point. I had been consumed by the app and felt like it ruled my life. That was until I broke a light bulb and couldn’t upload anything new. I then took a spontaneous few months off. Honestly, if you’re trying to carve a living from your own little corner of the internet, then I applaud ALL of your efforts. This shit is hard af.

Since starting to post again, I have only lost followers and you know what… It sucks, it really does. But, I still have an amazing, caring following and I still want to help people so I’m just rolling with the punches. You’ve got to take the lows with the highs. You can’t just throw in the towel when the going gets tough can you. I’ve done that my ENTIRE life and it’s finally time to face the music. I know it will get better, I will get better and I can still make a career out of this. It just takes time.

My darling Adam and I made it to four blissful years together. God, I love him. He pulled me out of the depths of a deep, dark depression and showed me what love is supposed to feel like. I often ask him if he can find me again in the next life because I honestly cannot bare to be without him anymore. Did you know that, I was convinced that I would never meet my ‘true love’? I treated relationships like fashion trends. Fleeting between boys and not really putting any heart into them. That was until Adam came along. If you’re in love then you’ll know how this feels.

I never, ever knew I could feel so whole.

I went back to full time employment. Not a decision I took lightly, I’ll have you know. Within two months of being there I have also been offered one of three promotions. On thing I have always beaten myself up for is my inability to take pressure in a job and work my way up in a role. I have always cracked under the pressure of a full time job. I was convinced the other staff members hated me. Or, my home life was in shreds so I couldn’t handle keeping up appearances of having my shit together.

This time around, I did it right, I worked my ass off and it’s so nice to see the pay off.

I went a whole year without a mental breakdown. It sounds silly but it’s true. Every year prior to this one, I have had to have time off work because I’ve been unable to function. It has felt like a huge achievement to not take time off for stress or anxiety.

Am I a little sad that I’m not a millionaire business woman with all my dreams coming true? Of course I am but I’m also happy. I survived another year and I achieved some amazing things.

Everyone is on their own journey in life. We all peak at different things, in different ways and at different times. So, please don’t feel like you’re playing catch up with everyone else.

Lets see what the next year has in store, shall we?!

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Kitty and the City

A few weeks ago, Kitty (the babe) invited me out for some food and sunny hangs in London. I did actually have plans with my cat that day. However, he said we should start seeing other people because I’m suffocating him. With that, I donned my London comfies and headed out to the train station!

If you’re not from London, the sheer mention of spending a day there is like being told that the all you can eat buffet extends to desserts. It’s just magical, you can always find something fun and exciting to do! The sun was beaming down on us which made the day feel even more perfect.

We met in Southwark and headed to a restaurant called Tibits for the launch of their new summer menu. Kitty is a lifestyle and fashion blogger who finds the best vegan and gluten free eats in cities around the UK so, I trusted her judgement. I can also never, ever turn down free food!

After a quick speech from the chefs about the inspiration behind the new menu. We were asked to sample EVERYTHING and give an honest opinion (Thanks Kitty). All the dishes are Vegetarian and most are also Vegan which Is brilliant. It’s SO important for restaurants (and chains) to acknowledge the intolorences and choices of others nowadays.

I went a little bit crazy but it was totally worth every extra pound I put on.

As mentioned, Kitty is Vegan and GF but as you can see, there was no shortage of food for her to sample!

Kudos to you, Tibits!

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My Plate

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Kitty’s Plate

 

Spoiler Alert – I  will be running back ASAP with my boyfriend!

The interior was also pretty incredible. I was blown away by the cuteness of the bathroom which had a big industrial vibe. There were succulents everywhere, an indoor/outdoor courtyard area and window seating for those that love to watch the world go by (guilty). Did I mention the succulents? I’m such a sucker for plants so I was in my element!

VickiAmaya

After filling our stomachs, we headed through southwark to get some ‘Gram photos and then onto Tate Modern to kill a little time and because I’ve never been before. The Bruce Nauman exhibition was pretty incredible and insane all in one go. We also took some awesome photos for the ‘Gram while we were here too. I am such a sucker for a good museum and the Tate Modern is definitely one to revisit when I have a few hours to spare.

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Side Note: I REALLY want to visit the London Transport Museum and The British War Museum too!

We finished off the day with an unexpected wander through Borough Market. If you’ve never been, I really really do recommend it even if it’s just a sweeping visit! After grabbing some GF cake for my homegirl and a fruit smoothie each we sat down to enjoy the last bit of sunshine that the day had for us.

This New Year – A Revival

Vicki Amaya

Two Thousand and Eighteen

A new year, a new start. Three hundred and sixty five opportunities to learn and grow. I enter at the age of twenty eight, with gratitude, knowledge and love. I’m not sure why, but I have such a euphoric buzz about it. Everywhere I look it seems that people are calling 2018, the best year ever! Weirder still, for once – I believe it will be.

Lets Recap – 2017

At the start of 2017, I felt hopeful. There were dreams of a better life, dreams of big change and a glimmer of optimism. I had been working for an Alarm Installation and maintenance company for a little over 12 months and felt stable (for the most part). Gone was the pressure of learning how to do the job. Forgotten was the mid-year melt down of ’16. I was ready to start anew and refreshed from the Christmas break. I could go to work every day of the week, for 52 weeks of the year. No longer did I need to have time off for anxiety or depression. It was gone.

I had made two promises to myself for 2017. The first was to play more guitar and the second was to go on holiday. Fairly easy on the ol’ resolutions list, I’ll admit. Yet, these were big accomplishments for me. Never have I felt able to complete or achieve anything of note. A stable income was foreign to me. I had always needed money to pay my way. Had always needed a job to survive. Why would I spend money on a holiday, when it was needed to pay rent and bills?

Though, I felt If I wanted to see changes, I had to make changes. With a swift decision and a box of peroxide, my hair was transformed from dull blonde to bright yellow, then silver. A small decision that shaped my life for the better (As you all know)!

As January passed by, I decided to take my Instagram account and Blog more seriously. I started uploading pictures five days a week and on the 11th February 2017 my little Instagram account hit 1000 followers! Around the same time, one of my photos hit 2000 likes.

“The Highs Are So High”

In May I made the brash and ballsy decision to quit my full time, stable 9-5 job and go it alone. Diving straight into the world of the budding bloggers and Instagram influencers. Whilst, I cannot regret the decision to leave forks (just kidding, I’m not Bella Swan) the longest job role i’d ever had. Looking back, I know I could have handled the actual leaving aspect a lot more gracefully.

I think I left prematurely and without a plan but my god, I was determined as hell to make this work. One of the problems that comes with entrepreneurial endeavours is that there isn’t a step by step guide. There may have been thousands of blog posts, infographs and YouTube videos explaining how to “become a successful blogger”, but very few give the actual breakdown. The nitty, gritty need to know information.

Though I hustled, I girl bossed, I pushed through the doubt, worry and fear of failure… I was still making no money. (Side note- I’m still not)

Penniless and fearing debt, I applied for a part time role in a fashion store called Allsaints. With my wage halved but my free time overflowing I felt renewed and slightly relieved.

August brought an opportunity to backpack through Germany and Austria. My Partner, My Mum and My Nan all put forward a small loan to fund my tour. Not that I have many holidays to compare it to, but it was one of the most beautiful and liberating trips I have experienced. If you’re looking for a place to spend a few days, please visit Berchtesgaden and Salzburg.

“The Lows Are Killing Me”

In early October the cracks started to show. Although I had more free time, it came in the form of one day on and one day off work. Also, I had pulled my back muscles just prior to my backpacking adventure and two shifts back at work, I did it again. This meant having some time off to recover, which is where the negativity bias that once ruled my every move started to creep back in. Resentment for the job, physical pain and a lack of direction left me putting a mountain of unnecessary pressure on myself. Could I really quit another job just because I don’t like the hours? Were the staff really that mean to me? Was I playing out my old habit of job hopping yet again?

After many tears, a drive into the middle of the woods and an emotional chat with my manager, I took some time out to figure out my mind. I wrote a blog post about this time called An Anxiety Catch Up (Diary Post).

I returned to work in early November. The deal was I would work a four week notice period or if they could find a replacement sooner, I could leave. Although relieved, the same uncertainty of my previous abandoning ship encounter wouldn’t drown. With an equal medium for me and my manager, I asked if I could reduce my hours in order to get three consecutive days off. We both agreed that this would be better than quitting and since then it’s been a pleasure to work there.

Praise to the positive – a reflection.

If there is anything I have learnt from 2017, it’s that even the smallest indulgence of negativity can disrupt the entire infrastructure of your life. One throw away comment can shape your outlook, change your mood, thoughts and feelings all for the worse. The remainder of last year was spent focusing solely on positivity. Embracing the good in people, helping others as much as I could, reaching out to more people and giving without a want to receive.

In return, I got perfect clarity for the remainder of that year.

December

On the 13th December, I celebrated my twenty eighth birthday. I was taken for afternoon tea at Ting restaurant located within The Shard. Looking out at the bustling city below whilst sipping a flute of ten year old champagne I came to realise that I’m doing just fine with this living malarkey. Whilst it may have taken others a lot less time to figure this out, for me it is such an achievement to feel it at all. Not to dampen the tone of this post but there is a reality in which I do not exist past the point of 22.

The remaining hours that encapsulated 2017 were filled with my partner and his family. As couples, we watched films in separate rooms then joined to see in the start of the best year ever. We drank champagne (A new celebratory drink of Adam and I), we watched the hootenanny and we relished every hand tick until Big Ben rang out twelve strikes.

The New Year

Which brings us nicely back to this new year. There can be no doubt that I am still a student to the ways of the world. I still have much to learn and experience. However, I feel that I’m able to just crack on and get this year underway without any of the stress and doubt that last year brought. I haven’t made any promises to myself this year. I don’t feel that I need to set myself to targets and achievements. Instead, I have decided that this is the year that my life changes for the better, the year that everything I ever dreamed of comes true.

If you know me now, you know that I am one determined mother-lover. Watch this space lovelies, the times they are a changing’ and they’re changing me.

As always,

All My Love

VickiAmaya.

xx

An Anxiety Catch Up (Diary Post)

Hey Lovelies, these past few weeks have been a bit strange for me. I’ve been dealing with a lot of stress, worry and anxiety and I want to tell you some of the things I’ve learnt as they can help you too!

As you know, I’ve been making some big changes in my life the past few months; this is to counter the unhappiness and lack of fulfilment that has plagued me for years. The journey has been a whirlwind but I’m happy to finally share my experiences.

I left full time employment in May of this year and since then I have been working part time at Allsaints and spending the rest of my time doing the following:

• Running my Blog
• Researching and scheduling my Instagram posts
• Drafting and finalising blog posts
• Trialling new ways to combat bad habits
• Maintaining existing friendships
• Working out where my anxiety stems from
• Researching new trends
• Taking photos for Instagram
• Addressing and implementing new life strategy
• Worrying
• Constantly battling negative thoughts about myself

All of that is without adding basic self care like eating three meals a day, exercising and sleeping seven hours each night. Furthermore, it definitely doesn’t include trying to think of ways to make my millions, conjure interesting blog posts and spend time with my boyfriend. The odds were stacking against me and something had to give – and it did.

I got myself a note from the doctor and have taken a few weeks off work to recalibrate my frazzled brain. The days that followed have been a rollercoaster of emotions but I feel like I’m getting to grips with life again. I have a reclaimed my ability to complete items on my to-do list. And most importantly, I’ve been taking these small, easy steps to refocus my brain.

• Eating three meals a day
• Drinking plenty water
• Showering daily
• Brushing my teeth (twice daily)

Believe me, I know that sounds gross and obvious but in my bad patch I used to spend all day in bed doing nothing for weeks on end. I feel that going back to basics has really helped to stabilise my mind. It’s crazy how we will overlook the necessities of simple self care to try and get everything else completed. The problem I had was focusing too much on my big goals and as a result, the idea of doing them all had shocked me to paralysis.

 

To stay level, from this point onwards I’m going to focus on doing small actions every day and build from there. Honestly, if all you can manage in a day is to eat three meals, drink enough water and not cry then that’s an accomplishment to be proud of!

 

One of the reasons I started back at the beginning with treating anxiety is because it was recommended for me. Mel Robbins is the best selling author of “Stop Saying You’re Fine:” and “The 5 Second Rule”. I first found Mel when her “How to stop screwing yourself over ” Ted talk video popped into my suggested feed and I followed her on Instagram for daily doses of inspiration.

 

Just recently, Mel posted a story on Instagram asking people to send problems they have been struggling to overcome. I sent my own (after a few revisions) and was fortunate enough to get a response from the lady herself! I mean, come on… Mel Fricking Robbins, Best Selling Author, Most Booked female motivational speaker and an absolute babe actually replied to my message! Mel then asked if she could record an answer to my question for a video. It has been uploaded onto her YouTube channel so that it can help others too! Be warned though, she is very to the point and direct with her words. (You can click here to watch it)

 

Receiving a personalised message like this was an incredible boost for me. This was massively significant, as I have been such an admirer of Mel and her work for such a long time. That said, I had greatly underestimated the power of taking action and the message definitely gave me the kick I needed.

With all of that said and done, let’s talk about the elephant in the room, shall we?

“Vicki, I thought you said that depression and anxiety doesn’t affect you anymore!”

Weeelllll, it doesn’t. At least it doesn’t bother me the way it used to. I’m over sitting on the floor all day, rocking back and forth and thinking of all the problems I had. Now, I’ve learnt what my mind and body need to do to reset – and I honour that, instead of fighting against it. Not to get too scientific but it is our brains job to protect us from harm. It stems from our primitive beginnings and having to survive a much harsher world than the one we live in today. The important part is to find a harmonious balance and healthy relationship with this part of the mind so that we can grow with it instead of fighting against it.

So, here’s to the little steps. The small actions in the right direction that have slowly built me back up to level foundations.

If any of you are interested in a more in-depth article regarding any of the points raised, please drop me a comment and I will be happy to delve into it for you.

Thursday 28th September

Hey Lovelies,

How are you?

I wanted to pop up a tiny little diary entry tonight just to say a few things to you all. I’m currently in the process of trying to beat a huge procrastination problem. I seem to have all of these great ideas and plans in my head but can never seem to fabricate them into anything more than just thoughts.

Do any of you ever have this? What do you do to combat it?

I’ve been listening to a book by Mel Robbins called ‘The Five Second Rule’ which in the simplest of explanations means that when you have an idea you count down from five to one and then move to act upon that idea. Which seems like an amazing premise, I just can’t even seem to get the motivation together to do that. I don’t know what’s wrong with me lately, I’ve just been in this slump.

I’m upset that my blog and Instagram aren’t making any money (through affiliate links and adverts), and by worrying about that I know I’m pushing it further and further away from me. I mean, how do you trust that the universe has your back when it’s not delivering the things you want.

I’ve also been listening to an audiobook called ‘Get Rich, Lucky Bitch’ which talks about how to overcome your money troubles and move your mindset into a money making magnet. Again, this seems like a great premise but I just never sit down and listen to it. It’s like I have this problem with actually changing my life. Why, oh why can’t I be a doer.

It’s really getting to the point where I’m starting to feel sad, dissatisfied and distant from my blog and Instagram account.

The thing is, I LOVE writing, I love creating content that people enjoy, I really do. I just can’t seem to shift myself into that mindset and change anything about myself.

☹️

I want to do more, I want to be more. I’m just not sure how to overcome this issue and get into the mind frame of ‘Get Shit Done’

I’m sorry this isn’t a very positive post, Loves. I think sometimes I just need to let a few things out.

xo