Australia · Health and Wellbeing (mental, physical, emotional & spiritual) · photography · Travel

5 beautiful sunrise quotes <3

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“When you do something beautiful and nobody noticed, do not be sad. For the sun every morning is a beautiful spectacle and yet most of the audience still sleeps.” – John Lennon.

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“Come sit with me, and we can watch the sun stretch in the sky as our city wakes, ever so slowly, into a beautiful day.” – R.J.L.

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“Forever that girl that gets really excited when the sky is in pretty colours.” – Word Porn.

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“It was sunsets that taught me that beauty sometimes only lasts for a couple of moments, and it was sunrises that showed me that all it takes is patience to experience it all over again.” – A.J. Lawless.

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“The sun is a daily reminder that we too can rise again from the darkness, that we too can shine our own light.” – S. Ajna.

Thank you so much for reading, I hope you enjoyed this post. If you did, please ‘like’ or share the post so I can see! 

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I only ever talk about my own personal experiences and adventures, places and locations which I love and think you will too!

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x C x

 

Health and Wellbeing (mental, physical, emotional & spiritual) · Self Improvement

The Dangers of Distorted Thinking

a9896298605b6d3eebd418fe51c62fe7It has been a long while since I posted on here – I must admit, I went to ground for a while and I have to say, I certainly took the time to reflect and work on my own perception not only of myself, but of others.

I hope you all enjoyed the remainder of 2017 and had a lovely Christmas and New Years period. I avoided making new year resolutions and instead have settled on a few agreements – no strict cut-off dates to achieve, but rather rolling commitments.

My first being to avoid alcohol and processed foods (bar one cheat meal per week – booze free) for at least six weeks. We are now into week three and I am feeling strong in this choice. I certainly am feeling better for it. Things got a little out of hand before/over Christmas and not only was alcohol being used in celebration, but also if I had a hard day, if I was bored, if it was there. Terrible behaviour! I am not unruly or aggressive but I just felt rubbish. Particularly for the next few days afterwards!

My next commitment to myself is to treat my body more respectfully. I want to exercise, not because I am ashamed or hate my body, but because at the wise-old age of (nearly) 32, I have realised that this is my body. These are my organs. This skeleton and brain and muscle and every hair, fiber and pore have gotten me where I am today. Every morning I wake up, get up and get moving. How amazing is that?

So – in the spirit of this – I am now going to be mindful of any ‘distorted thinking’ which I am prone to. Which, we are all prone to but may not be conscious of. As last year was a big year, and physical health issues aside – there were some pretty prevalent mental health struggles as well.

Filtering – this is when you take the negative details – make mountains out of molehills and ignore any positive aspects.

Overgeneralisation – this is when you come to a general (and often incorrect) conclusion based on one or no piece of evidence. You think ‘hey this bad thing happened, and it will happen again. Vicious cycle.

Personalisation – when you suspect that everything people say or do is a reaction to you, personally. You also get stuck in the awful habit of comparing yourself to others.

Emotional Reasoning – believing that what you believe must be automatically true. If you feel bored and uneducated then you must BE boring and uneducated. You cannot have this – this is toxic and terrible for you!

There are many other styles of thinking and associated actions which I would like to tackle, but for now – these are the ones I am going to be working on.

What are you working on? Have you any personal agreements with yourself?

Lucy

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Health and Wellbeing (mental, physical, emotional & spiritual)

Kindness changes everything.

The last week at work has been tough! I know it is normally difficult to come back to the workplace after a vacation, but the last week has really drained me. I am mentally, emotionally, physically and systematically fatigued. It has been an ugly week, a lot of unkind words, unnecessary aggression and prickly / spike-y attitudes. I have received hatred, threats and pure vitriol.

skinIn my role for work I help people and I find it very rewarding and I feel good about what I do. The only issue is that it is a very thankless job, people tend to only provide feedback when it is negative, not positive. You may get an occasional ‘thank you’, but very rarely a piece of feedback which Management will acknowledge, let alone promote.

Anyways, for the most part I am quite resilient, you have to be in this role. Some days though, some days the aggression, lack of appreciation and swearing and attitude becomes a bit much. Yesterday I had someone 5 years younger than me call me ‘girly’ on the phone. Sometimes I can relay a piece of information and I am challenged and without sounding cocky, I know my stuff, I am confident in what I do.

I know the rules, I know the legislation and I know my job. I am helpful, I go above what is required of me, I try to under promise and under deliver. So when it is challenged disrespectfully or someone brings my gender into it, I get annoyed. My male colleagues should not have to say exactly what I say for the message to be delivered.

Be Kind, inspirational scripture art, hand lettering, from StudioJRUSo, this past week it got to me, I dropped my smile, I was a little more curt over the phone and I was a bit too sarcastic to be the genuinely empathetic and caring person I usually am at work. I am not proud of it, that I let a few grumpy and nasty-mouthed people rub off on me like that. I spent the weekend going around in circles, relieving some of the more hateful words spat at me last week at work.

I look around me and I am convinced everyone else is kinder, more patient, more reasonable and less cynical than me. Some days I feel like I am on top of it all, sometimes I feel like I am scraping the metaphorical barrel, just trying to pull out empathy and positivity for my working days.

Initially I stopped being so empathetic, so understanding – by Friday of last week I was barely saying ‘you’re welcome’ and I certainly was not smiling over the phone. My tank was empty, what a terrible place to be.

This morning I again copped attitude over the phone, the name calling, the suggestion I was ‘dumb’ or ‘ill equipped’ for the job, that I was ‘working for the man’ and looking to ‘screw over hard working people’.I thought about biting back, to defend myself. To defend my position. I was close…but I didn’t.

confidenceI said sorry. I am genuinely sorry for the hurt people in the world are experiencing, I know that some of the decisions I make at work have dreadful impacts on others. I don’t make these decisions to be hurtful, I am following the law. Unfortunately what some people feel they deserve, is not necessarily their legal right. I listened, I offered support, I empathised. I offered advice external to my workplace. I gave my heart, ears and soul to this conversation and you know what? It didn’t change the outcome, but it cost me nothing to practice empathy, to be kind.

We can’t let the actions of others, the poisonous words spoken by others, or our frustration at red tape result in our own actions being cold-hearted or insensitive. I am acutely aware that my own sensitivities will be the downfall of me in this profession, but turning my back on my own natural empathy and genuine care for others would be far more detrimental to my soul.

Be kind, always.

Thank you for reading, please share with me any hints + tips you have for managing unkind words/actions by others…

Lucy

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Health and Wellbeing (mental, physical, emotional & spiritual) · Love and Happiness (and all the fun bits in between) · personal growth · Self Improvement

The clouds have cleared and the sun is shining.

Today marks one month since I changed my medication. I started Lovan on 17 August 2017, after a five day break of no medication between coming off of Mirtazapine cold-turkey.

When I first started Lovan, I caught a cold and was a little worried as I initially thought I was having some reaction (itchy throat and eyes) to the new medication. It turns out it was just a common cold though.

I took the pills for a week and a bit and had my next GP follow up on 25 August 2017. I was feeling more positive, more in control, less clouded by anger, anxiety, rage and paranoia. I understand this is not all medication, as it takes longer than that to kick in – I DO however believe there was an evidenced change from stopping the Mirtazapine, starting the Lovan and generally feeling as though I was in charge of my mental health.

For the two first weeks, whenever I would lose my concentration or feel out of sorts (forgetful or teary), I would remind myself that I was doing the best I could and that I was ‘taking charge of my mental health’, it became my little mantra.

By the third week I was really feeling better. I was less paranoid, I wasn’t suspicious, I was not crying as much. Not finding fault in the actions of others. I was looking at my Husband with clarity and love which I used to look at him with.

I knew the biggest test of all was coming, the anniversary of my Father passing, it was always a tough time of the year for me. Which I have now written extensively about in my previous few posts. Surprisingly, when the anniversary rolled around – I took the day off of work, looked through some old photos and cherished positive and nice memories of Dad. I did have a little cry in the morning but I was not distraught like I normally am.

We then headed off on a ten day holiday, which we returned from yesterday, Our holiday was so relaxing, I read books, ate good food, went swimming and re-connected with my Husband. It felt truly wonderful.

I head back to work tomorrow, which is always sad but I have to be honest – I have only cried once or twice in the past week and a half and it was once when I was thinking about our wedding anniversary coming up (happy tears) and once when we were listening to our wedding playlist whilst getting ready to go out on our holiday.

I have really decided to pay attention to my mental health, to listen to my feelings and to lend my ears to those who need help. The journey is not over, it will never be over, however I do feel as though the fog is clearing & I am going to do my very best to be more in tune with my loved ones.

I am forever grateful to those who have read along here and supported me along the way. Much love to you all x

And after the past 18 months of torment, it was truly magical to shed happy tears.

Lucy

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Health and Wellbeing (mental, physical, emotional & spiritual)

I let my heart & mind rest, for a while <3 My Mirtazapine Story (Part 1).

Hi there – thank you for reading again!

Okay, so my last post ended with when I started Mirtazapine for my depression. Mirtazapine is an atypical antidepressant and is also known as Remeron/Avanza and works to correct the neurotransmitters in your brain (which mine were most definitely Out. Of. Place).

I am no chemist, but if you would like to know more about this medication please see following link from the PBS: MIRTAZAPINE.

The Dr who prescribed this for me understood I had depression and anxiety but when I said I had insomnia as well, I think this is what swayed her decision to prescribe this for me. I remember the only side-effect I was told was ‘you will be drowsy and maybe dizzy – so take it before bedtime’. I remember laughing to myself thinking, yeah right – I don’t sleep.

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Sleep was the first thing I noticed about this medication, I could take it and be asleep within 20 mins – eyelids heavy, thoughts slowing. I could sleep for 5 hours at a time, it was my miracle pill. Within 2 weeks the panic attacks were lessening and I felt a little better, but that early in that might have been the sleep rather than a change in my depression.

It took a couple of weeks to feel any effects emotionally, but it definitely helped with the sleep straight away. I could sleep, I was not crying as much during the day. My anxiety was more manageable. I COULD leave the house to go to work. I was in control. I was able to choose how I would react (to a certain degree).

I still had sadness, I still had depression I was still anxious but I could leave the house. I could get 5/6 hours sleep a night. I could make plans. See my friends, travel the world, manage and excel in my career, have a rewarding relationship and finish my Degree. Thank goodness.

My relationship took its natural course and I suppose too much damage had been done and we had grown apart. Or perhaps I had more clarity about my life – what I deserved and what I needed in my life. Which was structure. I felt more in control.

When I felt brave enough and ready, I went overseas and had a phenomenal holiday as part of a tour group and I met one of my best friends whilst doing so. I changed my degree, I applied for a new job – I had a career in mind.

Within 12 months I had my life back on track. I was still having anxiety and depression and I was still taking the time to feel my feelings and cry when I needed to. BUT I was leaving the house. I was a better friend, a better Daughter/Sister and a better employee/student.

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I guess looking back, there definitely were some effects to note. The first being, I lost motivation for a lot of things. I used to be completely in control of my eating and physical exercise. I had a pretty good appetite, in that it was manageable. I didn’t really need to snack throughout the day – don’t get me wrong, I could binge eat on the weekend but I could handle eating a relatively normal amount of food on a day to day basis.

My energy levels definitely dropped as well. It felt like a relief though, when I had been operating at this constantly anxious – go-go-go level. I figured I was just sluggish because of the medication but after a few years I think it went from being a chemical effect to being just ‘me’. Slow, low motivation, low levels of interest and packing on the weight.

When I started Mirtazapine I think my weight was around the 74kg mark (I am 5″9). I would say by the end of 2011 my weight was around the mid80kg mark and by the end of 2012 I was up past 90kg. Now, I am not blaming the medication at all for all of my weight gain, but when I was 74kg – that was heavy for me and I could go between 65kg – 75kg, maybe 78kg if I was fluctuating. The 78kg being quite heavy. I could lose it though, with diet and exercise.

Mirtazapine was my anti-depressant, it is what I took every night. It helped me sleep and I assumed it was helping my depression and my anxiety. I had an insatiable appetite, I never felt full, I was sluggish and slow and before my period I would be absolutely melancholic, miserable and felt quite hopeless.

If I am honest, I can say that for the next 6 years it helped me with my anxious mood and deep depression. However, with the nightmare which the Mirena IUD brought me, it’s impossible for me to pick when it stopped working. It did though, and it had some pretty nasty consequences when it did stop working.

Mental Health Australia

SANE Australia

Beyond Blue

Headspace

Lifeline

This is a several part blog, so seeing as I am still recovering from the events last week, I might leave it there for now :).

TBC

Lucy

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