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The mental toll of being an entrepreneur + a working woman | By The Weekly Woman

Written by Michelle Blackwell, Founder of The Weekly Woman

With the rise in entrepreneurial drive amongst young adults and many taking to online platforms to build their own businesses and side hustles, are we doing enough to consider the mental toll this can have on us as individuals? Is there a dark side to creativity and pursuing an online presence? 

Last year during the pandemic, I started a side business or ‘hustle’ while working full time and studying for my law qualification. As exciting as this was to start a new venture, I also didn’t quite contemplate the negative effects this would have on my own mental health. 

Although the highs of gaining followers and making sales kept me motivated, I slowly began neglecting my physical and mental needs, running on only a few hours of sleep and burning out quicker than I could put out social media posts. I was stressed and irritable and tying my self-worth heavily to the success of something I had created out of thin air. 

From the dark side of a 9-5 and side business, I’ve acknowledged the three main things I suffered from: 

#1 – increased isolation 

It’s pretty lonely for a significant part of the solo-entrepreneurial journey.  Or for anyone who has been forced to work from home because of the pandemic. 

As someone who has been working from home full-time for the past year and a half, I can definitely vouch for the decline in my work colleague interactions and the incline in loneliness throughout this period, particularly during national lockdowns. 

At one point last year, I also deemed myself ‘too busy’ to facetime, text, or call my friends, which essentially resulting in me self-sabotaging myself and made me feel even more isolated. If you’re like me and find it difficult to ask for help when you’re feeling overwhelmed, it can be comforting to just tell yourself to push on and ‘you just need to get through this next bit, and then it’ll get easier’. But when does this end? When is enough, enough? 

#2 – Lack of boundaries between work and ‘you’ time 

I’ll be the first to put my hands up and say I also need to set better boundaries for myself, particularly when it comes to the work/life balance. 

In an age where it’s becoming increasingly difficult to digitally disconnect and social media addiction seems to be at an all-time high amongst young adults, I often find myself reaching for my phone to mindlessly scroll when I could be using that time to have some real downtime (reading a book, meditating, going for a walk, listening to a podcast, writing). 

#3 – Burnout 

I’m also no stranger to burnout. In the past, I would wear it like a badge of honour, a sign that I had worked hard and pushed myself over my limits. 

But the long-term effects and anxiety that can come with it really aren’t something to be aimed for. 

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Read more of Michelle’s journey via her channels.

@theweeklywoman

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Trends Volume III | Leila’s Spring Favourites

Written by our Leila Care.

Coming out of Lockdown, I’ve been on a path of self-improvement which has meant discovering new products + services (or revisiting old holy grails). I have listed my spring favourites + I cannot wait to share this one with you.

Skincare + Beauty

Wow, this has been a journey! Anybody who knows me well knows that skincare and beauty are two of my great loves. A little background, I started on Accutane back in April, meaning that my skin is going through big changes and sensitive, hydrating and natural products are essential – something that my once oily, acne-prone skin was absolutely not used to! My favourites are based on this new change to my skin, but all of them would be suitable to incorporate into your skincare somehow, no matter your skin type!

  • Erborian CC Water | this product just completely wowed me. When using this gel-like product, you burst the pods within the gel to release a slight colour, bringing an incredible amount of hydration and glow to the skin.
  • Hyaluronic Acid | my two favourites are Vichy’s or The Inkey List. The Inkey List provides products at an incredibly low price point so if you are just starting out I would definitely recommend checking them out.
  • Weleda Skin Food has been an absolute go-to for me this past month, priced below £15 for the full-size tube, this multi-purpose product can be used as a moisturiser or even makeup primer and has been a godsend for those extra dry Accutane days.
  • Another product I have been loving as we come into summer is Chanel’s Les Beiges Bronzing Cream. This really is a game-changer for warming up your complexion without looking overly powdery or dry due to its cream formula.
  • In terms of fragrance, I recently discovered Penhaligon’s Halfeti Eau Du Parfum in Milton Keynes’ new Harrod’s Beauty Store. I often find it difficult to find the perfect fragrance as a typically feminine fragrance doesn’t suit me, I prefer a more musky unisex fragrance. I bought home Penhaligon’s Halfeti on a perfumed handkerchief from the store and my partner has fallen in love with it just as much as me. If you find a Penhaligon’s counter whilst on your next shop, you just have to go and test it out!

Blogs + Audiobooks

My two favourite blogs + audiobooks are hardly surprising as they have been guests before at You & Me. The Weekly Woman has been a fantastic thought provoker and motivation to really push yourself to do what makes you happy and be your very best self.

The Secret audiobook has been something I have been listening to on repeat for the last few months and I don’t see this changing anytime soon. As someone who is trying to learn more about manifestation and bringing positive energy into my life, this in combination with The Weekly Woman is the perfect match.

Streaming

My favourite time to watch YouTube is over my morning coffee, a great way to take up and it comes at a time where my need for inspiration is at its highest. I have been loving Suzie Bonaldi [formerly Hello October] for all things petite fashion, Lydia Millen for all things home, fashion, and lifestyle, and Trinny [yes!] to help you with the logistics behind fashion. Trinny also does Zara edits for those Zara-obsessed, like me.

My partner and I have recently got back into binging Suits on Netflix and we have completely fallen back into love with it! I’d totally recommend watching if you haven’t already, the casting is 10/10.

Apps

I am a sucker for a good app! Working in the Social Media industry and also previously creating client apps, I can truly appreciate what makes an app user-friendly and useful. My favourite app has to be Think Dirty, this app allows you to discover the ingredients of your favourite beauty products breaking down whether they may be irritating to the skin, dangerous, or something to avoid. Think Dirty gives you a rating and a traffic light system on good/bad these products and their ingredients are for your skin, there is also the chance to view user reviews on products to give you further information. The amount of pennies that I have saved instead of blindly purchasing trend products is insane. 

Coming in at a close second, another favourite app is OneZone. Showing you all of the hottest eateries in London, whether it be 5* in Mayfair, cool rooftop bars in Shoreditch, quirky restaurants in Camden, or street food in Chinatown, OneZone gives you all of the inspiration, the information, and the reviews that you need to make an informed decision on where to spend your Saturday evening. Let’s be honest, after Lockdown, we want ONLY the best and OneZone is the way to find it.

Share your favourite spring finds with us! Y&M x

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5 must-reads for a mindful + positive 2021

By now we have started to settle into 2021 and our New Year’s resolutions have slightly dwindled. Yet, we’re ambitious, focusing on mindfulness whilst entering another year of predicted confusion and uncertainly. 

Reading is proven to reduce stress, fights depression symptoms and improves brain connectivity – keeping our minds active during a furloughed season, or allowing us to ‘take a break’ from our home offices.

With this in mind, we have collated a list of our top five mindfulness reads.

5. ‘Goodbye, Things: On Minimalist Living’ By Fumio Sasaki

If you are looking to simplify your life and escape normality and the materialistic nature of today’s society, ‘Goodbye, Things: On Minimalist Living’ is the book for you. Teaching that less definitely is more, Fumio Sasaki teaches his incredible theories on living a simplified, cleaner and more meaningful life.

4. ‘Your Illustrated Guide To Becoming One With The Universe’ By Yumi Sakugawa

One for the dreamers. This book combines beautiful words with even more beautiful illustrations; helping you on your way to self-discovery *listen up Pisces people, this one’s for you*. Reviews of ‘Your Illustrated Guide To Becoming One With The Universe’ have expressed the inevitable need to read this book over and over, to continue reaping the benefits.

3. ‘Tiny Habits’ By BJ Fogg

If you are looking to improve your lifestyle but do not have the time or energy to reinvent yourself or pick up a new hobby, ‘Tiny Habits’ is for you. Fogg encourages just that, ‘tiny habits’ to help you make BIG changes to your everyday life.

It wasn’t until we read this book that we noticed it’s the small things, getting up slightly earlier, moving a little more each day, completing that one extra job that really helps your motivation, productivity and consequently your positivity.

2. ‘Sorry I’m Late, I Didn’t Want To Come’ By Jessica Pan

A hilarious story surrounding the life of an introverted woman who challenges herself to leave her comfort zone and pushes herself into an extroverted life for an entire year.

Combining complete empathy for shy introverts, with useful advice on how she came to push her limits and live a life with no restrictions, this fiction novel is one to add to your list for sure.

1. ‘The Secret’ By Rhonda Byrne

And in the top spot, of course, Rhonda Byrne’s classic, ‘The Secret’. Now this book is renowned for its themes of manifestation and the law of attraction. Allegedly used by the most successful people on the planet, the teachings in this book are ones that we cannot turn a blind eye to.

I’ve recently started reading ‘The Secret’ and I totally recommend, having a positive attitude, whilst difficult to harness at the beginning, is now second nature.

We would love to hear which top five you picked, and the benefits you reaped from them. As always, if you have any recommendations for us to add to our list, we would love to hear from you. Happy reading!

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Loungewear brands for your WFH wardrobe

With most of us WFH, we wanted to share with our favourite chic loungewear brands to serve you in style.

With sustainability at their core.

Tula and Tye are a fabulous unisex loungewear brand, that focus on slow fashion through the use of sustainable and ethical manufacturing. Their main aim is to recirculate waste materials to avoid them going into a landfill. Inclusive and eco-friendly – we love it!

Going one step further, Tula and Tye use recycled materials for labels and tags, reusable packing and even biodegradable bags when it comes to packaging. If that wasn’t enough, 5% of all of Tula and Tye’s profits go to non-profit organisations to help remove the plastic from the planet’s oceans.

 

Trading since ’95

Thought have been trading since 1995 and pride themselves on using sustainable yet luxury-feel fabrics, hemp, bamboo and organic cotton. Their hashtag #StyleWithThought really says it all, and to add they have a wonderful blog which helps you live more thoughtfully and as a result more sustainably!

Now, Thought offers a huge range of different sustainably made items therefore we recommend having a browse as you won’t be disappointed! They also offer Blue Light Discount for all of you heroes out there (NHS, police, emergency services, social carers and armed forces).

 

As seen on Instagram

One of our luxury favourites, Intimissimi! Worn by Social Media stars Lydia Millen and Suzie Bonaldi, this brand provides the most beautiful and self-indulgent pieces – with the price tag to match! Beautiful silks in daring red, classy pinks to classic black, Intimissimi will leave you feeling elegant, there is no doubt.

If pyjamas just won’t do, Intimissimi’s range is far and wide, spanning from luxurious natural cotton underwear, modal and cashmere bodysuits, bamboo playsuits and silk trousers.

 

Something for everyone – all included!

Here’s one targeted towards the young adults, Oh Polly produces cosy yet stunning loungewear sets. Comfies but make it fashion. Oh Polly are known for their inclusive sizes and ranges they have to offer. Oh Polly offer a petite range for those 5 ft 3 and under, and their size range goes from size 4 – 18. Fashion combined with inclusivity? We LOVE that!

Not only this, but Oh Polly’s business model allows you to mix and match your sets to suit your needs. Leggings and hoodie? Hoodie and shorts? Shorts and Bralet? They’ve got you covered.

 

Honouring Mother Earth

Christy Dawn are one of those loungewear brands that you cannot fault. The materials? Beautiful. Finished product? Stunning. Our favourite is the ‘Sonny Set’ in ‘Oatmeal’. What’s yours?

There’s eco-friendly and there is Christy Dawn. Sourcing ‘dead-stock’ Christy Dawn aim to repurpose fabrics to avoid to need to reproduce where possible. They also stress huge importance on the community that they build with their suppliers, farmers and weavers to ensure fair trading and minimising impact on the ecosystem. An investment that comes with a peace of mind, knowing your loungewear was ethically sourced.

 

An announcement coming soon…

Kiki Loungewear are keeping their new release under wraps.. which makes it all the more exciting. However if you look at their Instagram, you can take a guess at what to expect! We’re anticipating neutrals, fine yet expensive-feeling knits, borg sets, cosy sweaters and matching co-ords!

Kiki Loungewear are what we imagine to fall onto our Pinterest feed, simple, elegant and a classy. Whilst we cannot advise on prices for the upcoming release, we suggest heading over to their site to sign up for first news.

 

 

As seen in Vogue.

Their renowned 100% Mulberry silk pillowcases and scrunchies have taken Social Media (and print by storm) and what would you expect with their anti-aging and anti-frizz claims? Who wouldn’t want to look ten years younger?

The Nap Co. produces simple yet elegant silk nightwear sets which you won’t want to take off, and now thanks to your home office, you won’t need to. An interview with Founder, Siobhan coming very soon.

 

Self-development.. and a comfortable set.

Of course we had to spotlight one gymwear brand, who doesn’t love a multi-use loungewear set? 2021 is the year for money saving and self-development. AYBL pride themselves on their amazing quality, squat-proof design offering fabulous comfort at attainable prices in size range 6-14.

A charitable magic.

Lounge is a fashion brand that has really grown, offering flattering full loungewear sets. What’s more, they offer a diverse range of styles which means that there is pretty much something to suit everyone!

Lounge have been working hard to raise awareness for important causes, such as Breast Cancer Awareness raising £128,513 for Coppafeel and Trekstock charities. It’s always easier to invest in a brand that has your best interests at heart!

The brand that just keeps giving…

Beaumont Organic is a beautiful brand. You can expect beautiful fabrics, ethically sourced and put together with stunning craftsmanship. All of their organic cotton is GOTS certified which specifies where and how it was grown, ensures no chemicals or pesticides and is rotated to reduce water consumption. As for wool, only EU wool is used to follow stringent laws, non-mulesing practices are used to ensure animal rights are at the forefront of the production and where possible Beaumont Organic reuse wool or make use of the often wasted ‘end of roll’ to reduce the need to produce more wool. 

You think it ends there? Of course not! Beaumont Organic increases lead times to avoid overworking their staff and ensure that prices mirror the high standard of work met by their staff to ensure fair wages and eradicate exploitation of workers. You also have the option upon checkout to donate to the Fiji Loloma Foundation to help provide infrastructure and support to communities in Fiji!