Friday, 18 January 2019

Get Your Sh*t Together With Sarah Knight

Get Your Sh*t Together With Sarah Knight


If ever there were a time, when I needed a metaphorical and quite literal self-help survival guide (by an anti-guru might I add), on how to 'Get Your Sh*t Together' then Sarah Knight's book would most definitely be the one I'd reach for. Author of the bestselling book that is 'The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving A F**k', Sarah gives us the run down on how to stop worrying about what you should do, so you can finish what you need to do and start doing what you want to do. It also goes into depth on how to organize the f**ks you want and need to give in order to help you quit your day job and move abroad, not to mention save - sounds promising am I right? 

Well, it was for me... particularly since I've already experienced my existential crisis and quit my day job. I just need to work out how I'm going to become a full time freelancer and move to sunny Perth within the space of a year, a bit like Sarah did - ironically. Reading the book made me feel as though I was in the right place at the right time, it helped me understand why I was in a rut but it also helped me understand that small, manageable goals can honestly really take you places like ASDA or you know, the Caribbean. 

Brimming with inside jokes, the book is life affirming and thought provoking. It's basically a step by step guide on practical, easily applicable advice alongside copious real-life experiences - it's a breath of fresh air to read a book by a writer that just simply gets you. 

Chapters include:

#1 - WHAT WE TALK ABOUT WHEN WE TALK ABOUT GETTING YOUR SHIT TOGETHER 

This is where Sarah introduces the core concepts of the 'Get Your Sh*t Together' book and her revolutionary 'Power Of Negative Thinking', where you essentially use all of your annoyance about a particular circumstance in your life to effect change. It's also where Sarah opens up to us, talking about her struggle with mental health and the breakdown that led to her epiphany on life - especially how it's too short to be giving a sh*t about things that are minuscule. It really elevates the book from a self-help guide to something that's a little more meaningful. She even included an adult colouring in page to help you calm the f**k down when you need it and if that sh*t ain't effective, then you need a refund.

#2 - SMALL SHIT: NAILING DOWN THE DAY-TO-DAY TO BUILD A BETTER FUTURE 

Sarah goes back to basics in this chapter; discussing time management, basic budgeting, prioritizing your to-do list or your must-list, taming your inbox and controlling urges and impulses through sheer willpower - what a f**king trooper. Essentially it's a chapter all about laying the foundations, focusing on the small sh*t so you can deal with the big sh*t like actually quitting work at 5 o'clock or making the sober decision not to eat kebab tonight or any night for that matter. P.S there is flow chart on page 81 which actually tells you if you have your sh*t together or not, I do not. 

#3 - TOUGH SHIT: GETTING OLDER, GETTING AHEAD, GETTING HEALTHY AND GETTING BETTER AT LIFE IN GENERAL

In chapter three, Sarah discusses relationships - both romantic (whit woo) and professional, including how to extricate yourself from a real bad one. It also discusses how to excel at work without putting in overtime, pensions (featuring some nifty charts), looking after your health, taking care of your home and rewarding yourself with much deserved down-time. I really enjoyed the self reminder Sarah provided when she told us that me-time is a right, not a privilege - take notes. 

and finally...

#4 - DEEP SHIT: MENTAL HEALTH, EXISTENTIAL CRISES AND MAKING BIG LIFE CHANGES

Sarah  really saved the best for last with this one I think. Here she openly discusses getting out of your own way, anxiety aka. mental dust aka. the shit we hoover up and then inexplicably dump back on the floor again. She also discusses the fear of failure, defeating perfectionism with her twelve step program that would be a great basis for any Perfectionists Anonymous, looking at the smaller picture and well; hello from the other side.  Sarah really taps into the competitive streak that runs through many of us, as well as our desire to tick things off our mental and physical to do lists - because who doesn't love a good list. 

Have you read 'Get Your Sh*t Together' by Sarah Knight?
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Rebecca Ellis
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Tuesday, 15 January 2019

How To Get Over Your Creative Slump In Twenty-Nineteen

How To Get Over Your Creative Slump In Twenty-Nineteen


Let's not pussyfoot around it; slumps are a thing and they happen. It's very natural as a writer to encounter a creative slump every now and again, especially when you're trying to post high quality content on a somewhat regular basis. There is no denying the fact that we're all subconsciously guilty of having an off-day, a day where we would rather eat dark chocolate on our sofa, with Harry Potter and The Philosopher's Stone rolling in the background as we repeatedly scroll through our Twitter feeds, than we would spending time putting pen to paper for half an hour and that's okay.

It's okay to have an off-day or two or three. Believe it or not this can sometimes be a regular occurrence for me; I can't tell you how many times I have rewritten the introduction to this post, trying to perfect it in my extremely blank mind. But funks are a just phase and although at times we often wonder is this now our permanent state of mind, it won't be and that's because there are ways and means of overcoming your slump. Here is; 

How To Get Over Your Creative Slump In Twenty-Nineteen.

#1 - ACCEPT IT

To me one of the hardest parts of experiencing a creative slump is the stress I put on myself during that period. It can be noticeably hard when your Twitter feeds are full of men and women in the same industry, kicking ass but  it's imperative that you don't let yourself to fall into the comparison trap. We're all human, no one is happy or motivated or inspired 24/7 - not even JK Rowling. Of course it can seem like a bit of a downer at times, but just be kind to yourself - take care and remember that sometimes you have to accept it for what it is and find ways to move on.

#2 - TAKE A STEP BACK 

Sometimes it can be necessary to take a step back and do something else for a while. Whether it's going for a shower or walking your pooch, taking time to reflect and focus on something other than the task at hand can be good for you - in a physical and mental way. Allow yourself some time to just relax, instead of fixating on the fact that you really want to write a blog post today - it's unhealthy.

#3 - SHAKEUP YOUR ROUTINE TODAY

If you're doing the same thing day in and day out, then I'm not surprised you're experiencing a creative slump (I know I would). Stop stunting your growth and shakeup your routine - you will be surprised how switching things up can help the flow of creativity. For example; I just removed myself from the sofa to sit at our dining room table and I wouldn't have managed to write this post had I not done so. Remind yourself that small changes can be monumental when you're encountering a slump and you would be very surprised what can happen if you try, try and try again. 

#4 - FIND YOUR OWN KIND OF INSPIRATION

Find your own kind of inspiration; from podcasts to playlists, social media or books - there are endless possibilities waiting for you, if you open yourself up to it. Consume information that will be helpful and insightful, look back at your notes - what's causing this slump? Is it personal or is it work based? Surround yourself with creative people and hone in on the areas you find inspiration most - for me I particularly enjoy career posts or health posts, but sometimes I use my own experiences and emotions to write pieces to (just like this one). 

Have you been experiencing a creative slump recently?
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Rebecca Ellis
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Friday, 11 January 2019

Five Shows You Need To Binge Watch On Netflix This Weekend

Five Shows You Need To Binge Watch On Netflix This Weekend


From the original Netflix series that is; 'Sierra Burgess Is A Loser' to fictional fan favourites such as 'You', is there really anything better than curling up on your sofa on a Friday night, a cup of tea in hand to watch the top trending shows at your fingertips? No, the answer is no - there actually isn't. Well, not unless you're off out with your friends this weekend, something the inner granny in me simply doesn't have time for these days, especially not when we could have people like Joe on the loose. I mean... I'm even looking Matthew up and down at this stage. P.s (only 'You' fans will really understand).

Nevertheless; I'm sure you have clicked on this post hoping to find a new program to binge watch this weekend and you're most definitely in the right place, regardless of which categories you enjoy most - mine just so happen to be; young adult fiction, horror, drama and supernatural, something of which you might notice from the shows listed below. So... in no particular order

Here are: Five Shows You Need To Binge Watch On Netflix This Weekend.

#1 - YOU


YOU is a Netflix Original Series based on the riveting and frankly quite hypnotic book store owner that is; Joe Goldberg (Penn Badgley). Joe is an obsessive New Yorker who exploits today's technology to win the heart of his beloved Beck (Elizabeth Lail), amid the growing suspicions of her best friend Peach (Shay Mitchell). Joe readily transforms himself from stalker to boyfriend, while doing what it takes to eliminate all obstacles standing in his way - even if that means murder. YOU explores how vulnerable we are to stalking and manipulation both online and in the real world.

#2 - CHILLING ADVENTURES OF SABRINA 


Half witch, Half mortal. On her 16th birthday, Sabrina Spellman (Kiernan Shipka) has to make a choice, a choice between the witch world of her family and the human world of her friends. With her aunties (Miranda Otto and Lucy Davis), cat Salem and her boyfriend Harvey Kinkle (Ross Lynch), Sabrina will face horrors and new adventures in the mysterious town of Greendale - but there is more than what meets the eye.

#3 - GIRL BOSS


Inspired by the New York Times best selling book #GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso, founder the fashion brand Nasty Gal. The series centers around Sophia (Britt Robertson), who began selling vintage clothes on eBay from her then one bed apartment. We see her thrifting, upcycling and reselling her way to a multi-million dollar fashion empire called Nasty Gal, despite running into troubled waters with a group of sellers online.

#4 - TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE


What would happen if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them... all at once? Lara Jean Song Covey's love life goes from imaginary to out of control when the love letters for every boy she's ever loved - five in total - are mysteriously handed out. We see Lara confronted by each boy, but who will she end up with?

#5 - SIERRA BURGESS IS A LOSER


A wrong number text sparks a virtual romance between Sierra (Shannon Purser), a smart but unpopular teen and a sweet jock called Jamey (Noah Centineo) who thinks he's talking to Veronica (Kristine Froseth), a gorgeous cheerleader who taunts Sierra with cruel comments regarding her appearance at school. Much to my surprise; as the story unfolds Sierra bribes Veronica to meet Jamey, but will she show her true self?

What are you currently binge watching on Netflix?
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Rebecca Ellis
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Tuesday, 8 January 2019

3 Things That Surprised Me About Getting My First Tattoo

3 Things That Surprised Me About Getting My First Tattoo



Getting inked for the first time is an exhilarating experience, but also a daunting one - especially if you're terrified of needles. But regardless of this, you really shouldn't get swept up in your expectations when it comes to getting a tattoo, because you will be surprised to know that no matter how mentally prepared you thought you initially were, or how much you agonized over the design and placement of said tattoo, you are about to learn a few unexpected things about yourself and the process. 

Flashback to September; I was standing in Sakura Tattoo in central Amsterdam, Matthew hot on my heels as Heather presented me with forms to complete. We quickly discussed my vision (a small rose, on my ankle) and within 15 minutes I was in the chair, having my design transferred and inked on. Everyone tells you how painful being tattooed is, but they don't tell you how enjoyable it is either and I don't think that's something you will fully understand until you're in the chair. 

That being said here are: 3 Things That Surprised Me About Getting My First Tattoo.

#1 - IT'S NOT AS PAINFUL AS IT LOOKS

Admittedly my tattoo is small and in a location that prevented a lot of pain (thankfully), but I'm sure if this would have been a larger piece in a location such as my ribs or back the story would have been very different. That being said, it's not as painful as it looks and I was baffled by how manageable it was for me - maybe I just have a higher pain threshold than most or perhaps I managed to stay so engrossed in my conversation with Matthew that I didn't care to notice. 

#2 - A HEALING TATTOO IS WORSE THAN GETTING A TATTOO

Now that you've got your tattoo, be prepared for some painful aftercare. The day after I got my tattoo, I quickly realized that a healing tattoo is worse than getting a tattoo. It felt like the worst bout of sunburn I'd ever experienced and I've experienced some bad sunburn in my lifetime - but truthfully the last thing I wanted to do was touch it. You'll be surprised to know that patting a pea-sized amount of Bepanthen nappy rash cream onto your tattoo, is a crucial part in its aftercare - it actually helps keep the skin moisturized while your tattoo heals. 

#3 - SMALL TATTOOS ARE SURPRISINGLY QUICK 

Small tattoos are surprisingly quick you will be pleased to know and I'm glad that I made the decision to start out small. I'm used to the sensation of piercings, but tattoos are much larger and require a longer sitting time - or so I thought. Fortunately I was surprised by how quickly my tattoo was done, I think at most it took 10 minutes and then I was being wrapped up and sent on my way.

I would love to get more ink done in twenty-nineteen, but I don't know if these will be large or small pieces.

Have you got a tattoo? What was the experience like for you?
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Rebecca Ellis
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Friday, 4 January 2019

Setting Attainable Goals In Twenty-Nineteen

Setting Attainable Goals In Twenty-Nineteen



I'm finding it quite hard to fathom that we are now past the stage of mulling over twenty-eighteen and at a point where we are becoming so engrossed in the traditions of the New Year, that we are mindlessly and frankly a little aimlessly filling our timelines with goals, set out as plain as day for our friend list to see.

It's a fascinating concept, resolutions/setting resolutions. Because whilst some will find it easy, I just think it's tedious and a bit overwhelming and that is probably why I ashamedly experience a post-Christmas dread each year. You know... that time in limbo where we're past the turkey and ham dinners and M&S crackers and are now at the brink of being forced to think more in depth about the career moves, health goals and travels we want to take this year.

That's why I am Setting Attainable Goals In Twenty-Nineteen.

#GOAL 1 - START SAVING 

If I had a pound for every time I said that I needed to save in twenty-eighteen, I probably wouldn't be writing or setting this attainable goal. But I think it's imperative at the age of twenty-two, that I open an appropriate ISA savings account and begin the process of setting aside some money. You never know when you will need it. Besides, I would love to travel more often, maybe purchase more equipment for my business and possibly think about a house some day. So what better way is there to start, than by counting up my spare change and generally saving where and when I can.

#GOAL 2 - START FREELANCING

This goal pretty much speaks for itself, but I want to start freelancing. I've already set up my photography business, I just managed to rebrand my blog and I'm now in the midst of setting up a YouTube channel - this year is looking really creative. But whilst freelancing is very much a goal I want to continue into twenty-nineteen, it's the biggest attainable goal I have and I'm already making waves by booking my biggest freelance job of the year - an October 2019 wedding (I get goosebumps just thinking about it).

#GOAL 3 - BE MORE ACTIVE 

Now that we are well and truly over Christmas, I just want to be more active. It's something I failed to stick to in twenty-eighteen, often sitting on my laptop so long I would start seizing up (the perks of freelance editing and all that). So, in twenty-nineteen I need to learn when to take a god damn break and go for a walk, or dance around my room for a change. In general I would love to shift some extra weight and start strength training and working on my endurance again. I did attempt CrossFit once, maybe this is something I could do again.

#GOAL 4 - GO TRAVELLING 

Go travelling is and will be something that remains on my list of attainable goals every year without fail. It's something I have always wanted to do, whether it's a road trip around Ireland or three days in Amsterdam. Travelling with Matthew is honestly my favourite thing to do and I personally like the freedom of writing about my adventures. In no particular order, I would love to see Australia, San Francisco and Canada one day.

#GOAL 5 - START DRIVING AGAIN 

After our car accident in July, driving has been something I've despised. I just hate cars in general and I'm absolutely sure if I could walk everywhere I would... but that simply isn't the case. I would love to start driving on my own again, independently; instead of relying on my parents, or my partner Matthew because I know I'm guilty of doing that and I know it can't continue. I really want to take my confidence back with both hands and get behind the wheel and that's exactly what I'm going to do in twenty-nineteen.

What attainable goals are you setting this year? 
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Rebecca Ellis
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Tuesday, 1 January 2019

Rebranding & Outgrowing She In The Know

Rebranding & Outgrowing She In The Know



Blogging is by far; one of my favourite ways to share content online, besides Instagram. There is just something gratifying to me about taking photographs, compiling a list of ideas and then being able to freely publish them for the world to see. However... I don't think anyone could have anticipated the industry propelling in the way it did, especially not me - as a then sixteen year old girl who would eagerly share her experiences throughout high school, from a PC so old it had solitaire and pinball pre-installed. 

But regardless of this I'm going to go ahead and assume that you are here because you know me as 'She In The Know' - a lifestyle blog situated around a teenage girl from Northern Ireland, in which I managed to set up in 2012 from my then boyfriends bedroom. Imagine; I was just sixteen years old when I signed up for Blogger.com and enlisted in GoDaddy for a domain name. She In The Know saw me moving high schools, successfully completing college and getting my first well paid job. It also saw me fall in and out of love with someone, battle an existential crisis and is now seeing me stretching my metaphorical wings into adulthood. But things have changed around here and although this space is certainly rife with memories, I'm outgrowing She In The Know.

Rebranding has been on my mind for quite some time now and I'm sure that won't come as much of a surprise to my regular readers, who would habitually see me click ctrl, alt, delete. I promise there is a good reason behind this and that reason is; I'm just in a different period in my life right now, than where I was in 2012 and I think that's only to be expected - it has been six years after-all. So while I have built a steady foundation as She In The Know, I'm now prepared to take a step back from the brand and into something a little more comfortable and generally just a little more me. 

I'm Rebecca Ellis; a twenty-two year old, born and bred in County Tyrone, Northern Ireland. I'm a natural light photographer, blogger and occasional vlogger with a self-confessed obsession for online shopping, live music, pink gin, photography and travelling (just to name a few). I hope you find some solace in knowing that rebeccaellis.co is an extension of who I am currently and who I aspire to be. You can expect to see blog posts on career, health, food, travel and more, so whilst you're waiting... 

Happy New Year!  
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Rebecca Ellis
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