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Depression can strike at any time. For me, it's usually around this time of the year, as we slowly exit winter and start approaching spring. I am not really sure why, but I start getting sad, pensive and withdrawn and everything seems like a chore. It's like a dark cloud of heavy thoughts descends upon me and I can't seem to get out from under it.



10 Simple Tips To Help Fight Depression


I used to believe that going through depression would bring me some great, deep insight. Thinking that I'm just supposed to suck it up it and endure the process, I was waiting for an epiphany. I can now tell you there there is none. There is no great revelation at the end of it. What I do know is that feeling good is the most important thing for my body and my mind - and depression does not make me feel good.



White Flowers


Over the years, I have learned to recognise when my depression kicks in. I notice the first signs of it, and know that this is just what happens. This helps me in overcoming this period of sadness by taking action and introducing the tools I will share with you. I have gathered these over the years, and hopefully they will be useful to you, too. This is as much a reminder list for me as it is advice to you. Please see a professional if you're suffering from depression.

1. Breathe: Take deep, slow breaths, in and out. If you can breath, you are fine. Breathing deeply and slowly will calm and ground you. That's a great first step.


2. Meditate: If you can breathe, you can meditate. When you're depressed, you may seem like a slow-mo version of yourself - but your thoughts can be racing at a perilous pace. The best way to slow them down and get some relief is to meditate. I used to think that meditation is a complicated, mystical thing with a steep learning curve. It turns out that there's nothing easier than sitting down, closing your eyes and focusing on your breath. That's it. That's all you need to do, and you only need 5 minutes. You can follow this simple meditation video, use apps like the Mindfulness App or Buddhify to help guide you, or download free meditation tracks from the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center. The positive effects of meditation have been confirmed by numerous research studies.



Meditate


3. Exercise: Do you want better metabolism and muscle tone, enhanced mood and healthier-looking skin? The benefits of regular exercise have been widely documented. I know that when you're feeling down about yourself, you may not want to go and work out. Let's be honest - the act of exercising is not always fun, but the rush of positive energy and feel-good hormones you get when you're done more than makes up for it. Exercising will also help you sleep much better at night, which is an added bonus.


4. Shower: A nice long shower can do wonders for you. I love feeling fresh and invigorated after I take my shower. It's almost as if the water cleanses your skin, taking with it some of the negative energy in the process. Taking a shower when you get up in the morning will set you up for the day ahead and put you in the right mindset for getting on with things, which then seem to have an easier flow. This is especially important if you work from home - having a shower and getting dressed for work in the morning will help you get things done even if your home is your office.


5. Eat: Remember to eat healthy, wholesome foods that are good for you. Fill your plate with fresh, organic vegetables and make yourself a yummy juice or a smoothie, giving you a burst of energy for the day ahead. Taking care of yourself when you're depressed includes eating regular, nutritious meals. You deserve it.



Eat More Fresh Fruit


6. Declutter: Make room for brand new energy to flow into your life by decluttering. Both you and your dwellings will breathe easier, and the difference that can make to your happiness and productivity is huge. Start small, covering one room at a time. If you have a hard time letting go of things you haven't used or worn, imagine how happy they'll make someone who will actually benefit from them. Plus, getting rid of things you don't use or need will make you feel so much lighter.


7. Reach out: When you're feeling down, your knee-jerk reaction is to withdraw and isolate yourself. Even though this is counter-productive, it's a very common reaction to being depressed. Reaching out to people who care about you can bring some sunshine in your life when you need it. I know what it's like to be depressed and think that nobody cares or understands how you're feeling. We tend to expect people to know that we're in need of help. The problem is that not many of us can read minds. We're all preoccupied with our own issues, dramas and problems, but that does not mean that we don't care. We just don't know what goes on in each other's minds unless we communicate that clearly. Your friends and family need to know how you're feeling in order to be there for you. Call them up. Send them a message. Write a letter. Whatever works for you, but reach out and allow yourself to be vulnerable. Saying that you're in pain and in need of support is not a sign of weakness. It's a sign of great strength allowing others to carry you when you're too weak to do it yourself. Put your pride to the side, and let people into your life. Tell them how you feel and what you need from them. They will be there for you.


8. Help others: Sometimes feeling good can come from doing something that does not focus directly on us. Do good to feel good - support your favourite charity or volunteer for a cause you believe in. Taking some focus off of yourself and being of service to others is a win-win situation.


9. Read: There are some amazing books that have inspired me and lifted me up when I've needed it. They are full of wisdom, kindness and understanding. Try: "Ask and it is Given" by Esther Hicks (UK/US), "You Can Heal Your Life" by Louise Hay (UK/US), "Loving What Is" by Byron Katie (UK/US), and "Daring Greatly" by Brené Brown (UK/US). These books have explained and clarified how my thoughts affect me and how I can change the way I react to things, giving me the strength to ride through those dark nights of the soul.


10. Smell: Via our sense of smell, essential oils can enhance our emotional state by directly interacting with the part of the brain known as the limbic system. The limbic system controls our basic emotions and our mood. It's been proven that the more pleasing a certain fragrance is to you, the more effective it is in influencing the limbic system. Choose something that you enjoy smelling - for some people it's the aroma of white chocolate, for others it's rose, and certain people like lavender. You can also Use Essential Oils To Infuse Your Clothes With Natural Aromas, taking their effect even further and making it last longer. You can also benefit from the positive effects of essential oils by treating yourself to a DIY Home Beauty Spa.



Smell the roses


You can use as few or as many of these tips as you want. Try them. Put them to the test. These straightforward pieces of advice may seem simple and trivial, but that's exactly what you need when you're feeling down. It's so easy to forget what actually works when you're depressed and small steps can make a big difference. Pay attention to what makes you feel good, and then do more of that. Stay away from people, places and things that are not conducive to your well-being. If reading the newspapers every morning stresses you out, stop doing that. Sad songs that make you cry? Change the tune. Your well-being is the most important thing right now.

I'd love to hear how you fight depression. What works for you? What makes you feel better? Let me know in your comments below!


Love

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4 Comments | Posted in Organic living By MuLondon Natural Organic Skincare

Ho ho ho! The holiday season is upon us. Whether you choose to celebrate or not, we all seem to allow ourselves to overspend at this time of the year. Well, it does not have to be that way. You can have a happy and joyous holiday season, while at the same time being moderate, compassionate and frugal. It's easier than you think!

Not so long ago, most people in the UK followed a plant-based diet on a daily basis. This was more due to the high cost and scarcity of meat, but it allowed people to become creative with what they had. When Britain entered the war in 1939, British farmers switched from producing meat to growing wheat and potatoes, as it made no sense to waste energy on raising animals. Ten acres of land could feed only 12 people if used for livestock, or up to 400 people is used for wheat or potatoes.


Secret Vegan Barley Roast Recipe

The legend has it that this delicious yet simple barley roast recipe came about during the war period. It has been handed over through generations, and since I got it from a friend, it's been a favourite Christmas dish in our household. I know that the combination of these few simple ingredients sounds a bit plain to be a treat, but trust me on this - you'll be surprised! I was sceptical at first too, but this barley roast rocks. I have slightly adapted, simplified and veganised the recipe.

Here's what you'll need (organic preferred if available):

200 gm barley
200 gm grated vegan cheese (I use 1 block of Cheezly from VBites)
100 gm of olive oil
4 onions
1 teaspoon of sage
salt & pepper to taste

Preparation:

Cook the barley in 1 litre of water for 90 minutes, or until tender. Peel, chop & brown the onions and add to drained barley together with grated vegan cheese and seasoning. Place in a greased baking dish and bake for 30-40 minutes at around 180C. Serve with baked potatoes or freshly cut vegetables.

The gluten-free and vegan barley roast keeps really well, so you can easily make a bigger batch to last you a few days.

Enjoy! ♥

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Comments | Posted in Organic living By MuLondon Natural Organic Skincare

Treat yourselves and your loved ones this holiday season with ethically-sourced, cruelty-free organic skin care products from MuLondon. Get up to £20 off with your purchase of any combination of our award-winning moisturisers and cleansers - or even skin care sets.



Save up to £20 with MuLondon Holiday Offer



Save £5 when you buy any 2 products with the code SANTA5
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Save £20 when you buy any 5 products with the code SANTA 20

 

Moisturisers: Organic Rose, Rosehip & Rosemary Moisturiser - Organic Lavender Moisturiser - Organic Fragrance-Free Moisturiser - Organic Marigold, Frankincense & Myrrh Moisturiser - Organic Hemp Moisturiser - Organic White Chocolate Truffle Moisturiser

Cleansers: Organic Rose, Rosehip & Rosemary Cleanser - Organic Lavender Foaming Face Wash - Organic Fragrance-Free Foaming Face Wash

Skin Care Sets: MuLondon Moisturisers Master Collection - Organic Rose, Rosehip & Rosemary Skincare Set - Organic Lavender Skincare Set - Organic Fragrance-Free Skicare Set

Valid for worldwide orders, ends 24 December 2015. To make sure that your goodies reach you in time for Christmas, please place your international orders by the 1st of December and your UK orders by the 7th of December. For expedited, tracked and courier shipping - or if you have any questions, please get in touch before placing your order.

Stuck for ideas? Check out our Gift Guide: www.MuLondon.com/blog/gift_guide/

Enjoy! ♥

www.MuLondon.com

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Comments | Posted in MuLondon specials By MuLondon Natural Organic Skincare

MuLondon is delighted to announce that it has won the title of Outstanding Vegan Business in the annual Vegan of the Year Awards.

The Vegan of the Year Awards specifically recognise ethical vegan individuals, businesses and organisations. The list of nominees for the Outstanding Vegan Business Award is drawn amongst companies owned by ethical vegans – individuals who love and respect animals and who commit to always keep their business 100% vegan.

 

MuLondon Wins Outstanding Vegan Business In Vegan Of The Year Awards

 

Congratulations to MuLondon on their Vegan of the Year Award 2015 in the Outstanding Vegan Business category. Vegan businesses like MuLondon are pioneers: leading us into a new era of sustainable, ethical products. They are the ones to watch.” – Kathy Divine, founder of the Vegan of the Year Awards.

MuLondon's vegan skincare range has become known for its quality, efficiency and ethics. No animal ingredients, animal testing, or selling in countries that require animal testing on cosmetics, like China. No petrochemical ingredients, artificial colours or fragrances. No PVC, phthalates or bisphenol-A in the packaging. No GMOs. Yes to plant-based organic ingredients, biodegradable bubblewrap and support for community projects.

I am humbled that MuLondon has been named Outstanding Vegan Business and a winner in The Vegan of the Year Awards. We have a strict cruelty-free policy for our entire range of products, and work closely with a number of organisations that are helping to stamp out animal cruelty. It's wonderful to be recognised for our dedication to a compassionate and vegan lifestyle.

MuLondon products are 100% vegan and cruelty-free, and are registered by The Vegan Society, PETA, The Leaping Bunny and Viva!. The entire range is endorsed by The Naturewatch Foundation. Some of MuLondon's best-sellers include Organic White Chocolate Truffle Moisturiser and Organic Rose, Rosehip & Rosemary Foaming Face Wash.

More information about the award-winning range of organic moisturisers and cleansers from MuLondon is available at www.MuLondon.com.

Learn more about The Vegan of the Year Awards: www.VegansAreCool.com/Awards

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Comments | Posted in MuLondon - in the press By MuLondon Natural Organic Skincare

During the winter your skin requires more protection than usual. Here are a few simple tips that you can follow to make sure that you get through the winter looking and feeling your best.


5 Quick Winter Skincare Tips

1. PROTECT: Use a heavy-duty balm like the Organic Marigold, Frankincense & Myrrh Moisturiser applied more liberally during the day to protect your skin. At night, indulge in the yummy Organic White Chocolate Truffle Moisturiser for sweet dreams! Oil-based moisturisers are not only more concentrated, but they also provide a more robust physical barrier that additionally protects the skin.

2. HYDRATE: Drink plenty of water throughout the day. This will replenish your cells from within and combat the drying effects of central heating. It can be easy to forget to hydrate - but if you make a habit of having a small bottle of water nearby, your body will be naturally drawn to have frequent sips as you go about your day.

3. EAT RAW: Even though we associate summertime with eating salads, it's important that we remember to consume fresh fruits, veggies, seeds and nuts during the winter. Raw foods are packed with enzymes, vitamins, antioxidants and other nutrients which are needed even more at this time of the year. Try a delicious fresh fruit and nut smoothie for an instant energy blast!

4. GET SUN: Moderate sun exposure can do wonders for your skin. Even a daily 15 minute walk in the park during seemingly cloudy and grey winter days will infuse your body with enough sunlight to help produce vitamin D. This vitamin is essential for a strong immune system and our skin health.

5. HAVE FUN: Enjoy the winter! Even though short, cold and dark days can be a drag, there's lots of fun to be had. If you get snow where you live, go out and play in it during the day, and maybe even make a snowman. Winter allows you to cosy up to a good book, catch up on your favourite TV show or enjoy a candle-lit dinner in the evening. Take a bath and allow your body to relax. Nurturing a positive outlook during the winter will have a direct effect on your overall well-being, and in turn - your skin health.


BONUS TIP: Rosacea, eczema and psoriasis tend to flare up during the winter season. For tips on how to deal with them, see 10 Things To Avoid When You Have Sensitive Skin, Rosacea, Eczema or Psoriasis.


What do you do during the winter to keep your skin looking healthy? Let me know in your comments!

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0 Comments | Posted in Organic skincare Organic living By MuLondon Natural Organic Skincare
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