In defence of Valentine’s Day

I do not know who St. Valentine was; I know nothing about him – what he did, when he was, or if he was even a real guy. All I know is he has a day named after him. Like a lot of other holidays and celebrations, this one has most definitely lost it’s meaning. I’m not sure what it started out as, but I have always known today is the day where we celebrate love. This day is generally recognised as the day couples get together and be all lovey-dovey while us single pringles are all alone and miserable. But I disagree with that.

I have never been in a relationship. I have never been anyone’s anything and that’s okay with me. I don’t feel like my life will only be complete if I have somebody to call my “boyfriend” or “girlfriend”. I’m just not interested in going out of my way to find that. What I am interested in, is love. Love is such an important emotion; it makes the world go round. I have so much (probably too much) love in my heart and I love every single person in this world, no matter what. I always see the good in even the worst of people.

A lot of cynical people want to claim that Valentine’s Day is just another reason to spend a load of money, “it’s propaganda”, they say. “You should do nice things on a random day and it will be more special”. That’s all true but the same can be said for all other holidays and occasions. We have this day because what other day of the year do you walk out the door and see hearts and chocolate everywhere you turn? Why is there a problem with celebrating love? You don’t need to spend money to have a good time. You can do DIY decorations, cook a nice meal, snuggle up on the sofa and watch a movie, the possibilities are endless. It doesn’t always have to be a grandiose gesture.

The message I want to deliver is that Valentine’s Day is a day to love. Whether that love is towards your significant other, your parents, your children, your family, your friend, your pet, or yourself – celebrate it. Even if it’s just to say how much you love them.

Love Each Other


QOTD: Do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? What do you do?

The Perfect Diet?

I know I’m not alone when I say this: I don’t really understand portion sizes. I’m not sure how big one portion is, I’m not sure how many portions go in each meal, I’m not even sure how many portions to eat in a day.  So I googled it.

I found this website called ChooseMyPlate and it basically breaks it all down for you. All you have to do is find out how many calories you are supposed to eat per day. To do that, just use a simple calorie calculator (like this one). It will tell you how many calories to consume whether you want to lose 1lb p/w, lose 2lb p/w, maintain your weight, gain 1lb p/w, and gain 2lb p/w.

This link will take you to chart (image below) with age groups and calorie amounts for that specific person (if you are under 18, you should really consult a doctor before doing any change to your diet, even if just to let them know).

weight track

From there, you will be taken to a .pdf page. The 2 pages below are for the Ages 14+, 1800 kcal. It tells you how much you should eat, and a tracker with some ideas.

p1p2

 

The last thing I did was create an account with ChooseMyPlate’s partner website thing called SuperTracker. I didn’t want to mention this site because it will be closed down on June 30th this year but I found it so incredibly helpful so I’m mentioning it anyway.

You can create a weight goal and when you want to reach that goal, as well as a calorie goal, and an exercise goal. But the best part of all of it is it gives you sample meal plans which is exactly the thing I was searching for:

st

I am hopeless at organising my meals like this. So if you know any websites or apps that will set up a meal plan for me, please comment!

I hope some of this information helped you because it has definitely helped me.


QOTD: What has helped you reach your weight/fitness goals? What advice would you give to other people?

Getting Through a Panic Attack

Sometimes panic attacks are caused by overthinking and sometimes, you have no idea why it’s happening. These are some techniques to reduce anxiety and, hopefully, stop a panic attack in its tracks.

Disclaimer: Everybody is different so all of these might work for one person, while none of them work for another person.

Technique #1: Deep Breathing

Inhale for 3 seconds, exhale for 3 seconds. Repeat that 10 times. Regulating your breathing, lowers your heart rate, and automatically calms you down.

Make sure you breathe using the whole of your lungs. To do that, lay on your back and take deep breaths. Your tummy should expand as you inhale, and shrink as you exhale.

Technique #2: Redirecting Thoughts

What many people try to do is distract themselves with TV. The reason this doesn’t work is because watching TV doesn’t require a lot of brain activity, so you still think about the problem. You are telling yourself not to think about it, so you think about it more.

Redirecting thoughts is different. Instead of trying not to think about the problem, do an activity that requires your full attention. This way, your brain doesn’t have a chance to overthink things.

Some ideas: writing, painting, playing an instrument, sports, tidying the house.

Technique #3: Grounding Techniques

Grounding works well because most panic attacks are a worry about the past or the future. Grounding tries to bring you back to the present. There are 2 good methods.

The first is the 5-4-3-2-1 method. It works like this:

  • 5 things you can see
  • 4 things you can touch
  • 3 things you can hear
  • 2 things you can smell
  • 1 thing you can taste

The other method is to list 5 things to do with a certain category. The What’s Up – Mental Health App is good for this.

For example: 5 football teams, 5 colours, 5 songs by Madonna, etc…

 

QOTD: What method(s) do you use to get out of a panic attack?

 


 

Sources and further reading: