5 things you should do right now

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1. check your bank statements 

taking control of your finances is the first step to growing up. check up on the ins and outs of your money so that you can plan efficiently and achieve your goals. mind you, it also helps detect any fraudulent behaviour in your account.

if you are reallyyyy into controlling your finances, and you still see little progress with that car you’ve been saving up for, try downloading a spending app on your phone to log and categorise where your money is going.

2. unsubscribe to irrelevant emails 

how often do you look over on your friend’s phone and see they have 1745 unread emails? or am i talking about your own phone? fair enough you like to stay up to date with the latest sales, but what is the point of subscribing to emails you know you will never read? it also helps to remove yourself from online shopping emails if you want to save money – it’s better not to know!

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3. brain dump 

journalling and writing is a healthy way to unload your brain and is particularly helpful for the over-thinkers. dedicate one of the notebooks you got from aunt betty for christmas to brain dumping. write in it when you wake up to refresh yourself, or at night so that your brain can stop dancing when you are trying to sleep. if brain dumping isn’t for you, try gratitude journalling – this will help you reflect and inhibit more positivity to your day.

4. chug a glass of water 

we all need a gentle reminder with this one. do it now!

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5. unplug

it’s ironic because i really want you to read my blog right now. but in this day and age, it is so important to unplug. not just because it has many health benefits, but it will help you not to overlook some of the more important things – quality time with your friends and family, realising that your instagram-able cake doesn’t just look nice but tastes like heaven, God’s beautiful creations…

-heather sham

yoga in the sky

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there was this one time that etain, kelly and i decided to hit up a yoga sesh up in sky garden in fenchurch. the morning started off at 6:30am with a full hour of mixed yoga positions and tied up with a healthy, aesthetically-pleasing breakfast consisting of natural yoghurt, croissants and fruit salad; not to mention that it was served buffet style too.

(some beautiful images courtesy of kelly!)

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luckily, kelly was situated slap bang in the centre of london bridge and so we crashed at her apartment for the night (i.e. a few hours of sleep) to head out out before sunset the next day.

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this morning was by far the most productive i’ve ever had – and the most relaxing too. as we tried to pose and pretend that we knew what we were doing, the golden sunrise casted itself through the blank windows to radiate a warm heat.

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after a few silly photos, kelly had to head to work (cos why not do an hour of yoga before work?!). and so etain and i decided to head upstairs for a few photos against the minimal architecture.

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a cheeky self-timer one too:

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tell me these photos speak ‘candid’ and ‘model’.

if this post about exercising and ‘zen-ness’ speaks to your lazy soul, head on to the sky garden website to see their next availabilities for yoga and breakfast overlooking the shard.

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and a last one of etain back at kelly’s apartment!

-heather sham

campsite sunset

during my time in korea this summer i was rekindled with my homestay family from last year. they invited me for dinner and said it was about half an hour’s drive away, but little did i know that it would be on a mountain top overlooking the beautiful mountains and a sunset which truly resembled an organic, fresh egg yolk.

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my host family had 3 beautiful children who made me feel right at home last year, and we had the most amazing time sizzling pumpkin slices and wrapping meat in lettuce leaves.

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as we barbecued away, we caught up on our past year and shared how God has blessed us. and as we did, the sun became to set til the most vibrant golden cast of light swept through the trees.

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we took a break from food to catch the sunset. we climbed down from our campsite and approached a clearing where we had the most beautiful, clear view of the horizon. the whole place was literally worshipping and glorifying God – the mountains, the sun, the trees, the water, everything.

we took some group photos to remember this perfect day. and yes, we then resumed to our feast.

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just as the sun had gone down and we were all taking a break from the humid air, all the mosquitos began jumping out. thankfully our host dad was prepared so he burnt some incense to deter the mozzies and we passed around some mozzy repelling stickers to guard ourselves.

the original plan was that we all camped out in the tents for the night. however the mozzies got the better of us and we ended up packing up and driving home. we’ll endorse nature with open hands…one day.

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so so grateful for this beautiful time.

-heather sham

travel diary: copenhagen

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first note to self: you cannot holiday in copenhagen on a student budget.

second note to self: it’s pretty darn cold in january.

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spontaneity always hits us. it was 2 months before we flew off that etain imessaged me one evening saying how her uni friend flew off to copenhagen and back in one day, for a short trip. (short indeed). i guess cos it sounded so easy we ended up booking our flights that day. we stayed for 3 days 2 nights and rented out a cosy airbnb in vanlose, which actually turned out to be a bit of a trek into the city centre every day.

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we didn’t have much of a plan, again. but we played along cos copenhagen wasn’t that big of a city anyway. we stumbled across a food market which was beautifully lit in the evening. i managed to snag some homemade spaghetti in the flavours truffle and ginger as souvenirs.

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the next morning, we decided to splurge a bit for brunch and went to a cafe called kalaset. it was situated on the corner of the street, outlined with colourful and vintage decor, and had a good mix of vegetarian/vegan options.

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well well well…we have a tradition for visiting beer factories. we loved the heineken factory back in amsterdam and decided to a pay a visit to the carlsberg one here. we didn’t have a plan before this holiday, but if we did, the factory defo made it.

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we had a tour around the factory, petted some horses and had some beers and ciders. it was defo fun, but heineken was so much more bigger and had more interactive activities. maybe because it was so cold too, we would much rather have our beers inside and chill.

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i’d say half the time we were in copenhagen we were looking for indoor spaces to dodge the cold, which was coldddddd. our ears always felt like they were falling off. we visited cafes, toyed around at a toy store similar to hamleys, and visited design museums. hashtag cultured?

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oh, and we did get a hotdog.

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-heather sham

the 5 minute hack

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do nothing for 5 minutes.

take a breather, stare into space, reset.

unplug.

yepppp your phone, laptop, tablet, them weird watches that speak to you. in all seriousness, isolating yourself from the endless emails flowing in and the distraction of social media acts like a reset button. realise the beautiful and positive things that you’ve been missing out if you weren’t unplugged. enjoy it for 5 minutes.

compose yourself.

it’s monday morning, you’ve probably got a mountain of work sitting at your desk, your to-do list probably looks like a 7-year-old’s christmas wish list. and you just want to dive straight in and get lost in the stresses of it all. but stop! take 5 minutes out to just compose yourself and reassess your situation – realise that you’ll be fine, and that this is doable. this optimism will pull you through.

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mental unblocking

in this modern day and age, mental health cannot be stressed more. be true to your emotions and take time out to reflect, meditate and find peace. 5 minutes of doing nothing sounds minuscule and useless but if you give it a go you will realise how long 5 minutes really is, and that it’s pretty effective.

self-love

indulge in food you love, go for a walk around the block, get some well deserved rest, play with your dog, get some retail therapy in, explore a hobby you’re interested in, think about things you love. and if you don’t have enough time to do any of this, the 5 minute hack is just as effective in re-asserting some self love. this culture needs more love.

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we are God’s creation and we are wonderfully and fearfully made. love a precious child of God – yourself! 1 Corinthians 6:19 tells us that our bodies are temples of the holy spirit, who is in us. we are not our own and were bought at a price. therefore, we need to honour God with our bodies.

i.e. God says care about yourself. do this by developing talents that God has given you so you can serve others. make sure you’re physically and mentally healthy so that you can fight God’s battles. dwell into God’s word so you can learn of the plans and purposes God has for you. learn to love yourself so that you can love others – the fuller your heart, the more you can give to others.

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-heather sham