Reducing your stress: ways to be more mindful

I’ve always been into ‘mindfulness’ as a concept – even though I had never really done anything to put this into practice. However, I recently have been trying to actively reduce my stress levels and improve my quality of sleep. If that’s something you’d like to look into as well, here are a few things you could try.

Yoga classes

Usually, the first thing that comes to mind when I mention Yoga is a series of perfectly executed poses that require a lot of flexibility whilst opening all your chakras. Truth is, you don’t have to be flexible or spiritual to try Yoga – you don’t even have to register to a class! If you’re looking to get started, there are plenty of videos on Youtube that are adapted to complete novices. I quite like Yoga With Adriene as she has a simple approach to Yoga and has a few videos for beginners. After a few weeks, you can also try joining a class to see how it feels!

Turn off your screens

Between phones, laptops and tablets, our lives are pretty much surrounded by screens. Most of us work all day on computers then go home to watch TV then browse social media on our phones before going to bed. Sounds like you? Having too much screen time can really affect sleep – which can lead to increased stress and is generally not great for our health. Try reducing your screen time outside of work hours (even better if you can take quick breaks from the screen during the day!): avoid starting your day on your phone and set up a cut off time for all devices at least one hour before going to bed. Since trying this out, I can really notice the difference and feel it’s a lot easier to fall asleep when I haven’t spent so much time on my phone in the evening.

Try meditation

I feel that most of us don’t have an accurate vision of what meditation is. Before trying it out, I just imagined something like a Buddhist Monk clearing his mind of all thoughts to achieve absolute peace. After some research and trying the app Headspace, I realised this wasn’t at all what I thought. Meditation is a great way to get some quiet time during your day, wind down, learn to reduce your stress and even get better sleep. The app makes it really easy, so even if you have no idea what you’re doing, it’s accessible to all.

Find a physical activity you love

Exercise is one of the best remedies against stress – so next time you’re feeling overwhelmed, instead of scoffing a pack of crisps in front of your favourite Netflix show (although there is nothing wrong with that!), try going for a run, a cardio class, or any sport you enjoy practising. After exercise, our ‘happy’ hormone is released, endorphins, giving us that amazing feeling after a workout. If running on a treadmill isn’t your thing, just find something you love so you’re always looking forward to it! My favourites include dancing and kickboxing.

Tai Chi

If most people think about Yoga when it comes to relaxing and practising mindfulness, Tai Chi is rarely on the list. I find it a great activity for people who are constantly busy and need to slow down as all movements are made slowly and with extreme mindfulness about how it is executed. You’re likely to find a class in your area so I would recommend giving it a try to see if that’s something that would suit you. I have tried it a few times and found that focusing on slowing down, relaxing and really paying attention to the movements was a very relaxing experience.

Learn something new

Whether that’s a new hobby or a new skill, learning something new through activities or courses is great for mental health and is an important part of mindfulness. I tried a ceramics class a while back and thoroughly enjoyed the experience of learning new things, meeting new people with similar interests and spending a couple of hours focusing on nothing else but the present moment in the class. You could join a crafts class or set to learn something by yourself like a new language! With the abundance of resources online, you can easily get started on your own.

I hope you found these tips useful and that they will help you on your journey to greater mindfulness. Do let me know if you try any of these of if you have any other tips!

My Top Food Spots in Paris

I recently went to Paris for 4 days for a work-related event. I had very little time to do any sightseeing – although I have been to Paris before, I never grow tired of a walk along the Quais de la Seine. I did, however, have some time to check on some of my favourites food spots in the French capital.

So whether you’re planning to go soon or if you needed any good reason to visit Paris, here are my top 5 places for food in Paris.

1. Bakeries

Ok so the first one isn’t a specific spot, but I just couldn’t NOT include french bakeries in this list. From fresh morning croissants to your lunch baguette, tasty pastries and quiches, finding an artisan boulanger or pâtissier is very easy. Whether you’re sticking to big avenues or strolling in smaller streets, you’re bound to find them in pretty much every corner.

If you want to do some research before you go and make sure you’re not missing on anything, you can always look for some of the best bakeries ahead of your trip.

2. Patrick Roger

Again, this isn’t particularly a lunch spot – unless you’re like me and are perfectly content stuffing your face with chocolate for lunch – but Patrick Roger is one of my favourite chocolatiers and every time I’m lucky enough to cross the Channel I make sure to visit to get some of my favourite treats. Their assortments are on the pricier side (but most renowned chocolatiers are over there) but these would make a lovely gift for a special occasion or if you really fancy treating yourself.

3. Les Freres Bretons

A regular feature among the best-rated restaurants in Paris on TripAdvisor, Les Freres Bretons is a traditional crêperie Bretonne where you can eat savoury crepes (galettes) as well as sweet ones as is the tradition in the west part of France. This place is a great choice, not only is it very affordable and with a casual atmosphere, but the service has always been fantastic every time I have visited. As a bonus, it is actually pretty close to the Eiffel Tower so if you’re visiting, this restaurant is a great option.

4. Pierre Hermé

Aside from chocolate, macarons are another favourite of mine! If La Durée is one of the most renowned names when it comes to these colourful treats, my personal favourite are actually from Pierre Hermé. They do have a shop (maybe even 2, I’m not sure but I have definitely seen one in Covent Garden) but I have made a rule never to visit when I’m in London. There something about strutting in Parisian streets with a carefully tied box of macarons that just makes me happy. Macarons are usually present in most bakeries so feel free to try different shops to find your favourite!

5. Le Train Bleu

Le Train Bleu is a fine dining restaurant in Gare de Lyon and as renowned for its food as it is for its name, having featured in several movies including the hilarious – my opinion here! – Mr Bean’s Holidays. Don’t expect adventurous cuisine here, but perfectly executed French classics in a sumptuous decor. It’s not far from the Jardin des Plantes, a lovely botanical garden next to the Seine, so if you fancy treating yourself before or after visiting I would highly recommend the place.

 

I’m hoping to go back to Paris soon so I can try more food and more places – I would love to hear your recommendations!

Prostate Cancer and Your Treatment Options

If you have been diagnosed with prostate cancer, your treatment options are dependent on whether or not the cancer is localised and contained within the prostate, has become locally advanced and spread just outside the prostate or has become advanced and spread to other areas of the body.

In some cases, you will be given a choice of treatment options, which a specialist nurse or doctor will explain to you and help you choose the right treatment options for you. 

When it comes to your treatment options, your final choice is usually dependent on a several things, including:

  •     How quickly your prostate cancer is growing
  •     What stage your cancer is
  •     The advantages and disadvantages of your treatment options
  •     What each type of treatment entails
  •     The potential side effects of the treatment options available
  •     Your overall health and wellbeing

Localised prostate cancer treatment options 

Localised prostate cancer typically grows slowly and may not require treatment.  In some cases, your cancer can be monitored with regular check-ups. If you do decide to have cancer treatment, then this will aim to completely get rid of the cancer.  Both watchful waiting and active surveillance can be used to monitor the growth of localised prostate cancer. 

The main treatment options for localised prostate cancer include: 

In some cases, you may also be offered cryotherapy treatment, however, this is less common.

Locally advanced prostate cancer treatment options

This cancer stage refers to cancer that has started to spread outside of the prostate.  The main treatment options for this cancer stage include:

  •     Hormone therapy
  •     A combination of hormone therapy and external beam radiotherapy
  •     Surgery, followed by radiotherapy and hormone therapy
  •     Watchful waiting

Choosing a treatment option

Your treatment options will be highly dependent on how far your cancer has spread.  If you do have a number of treatment options to consider your doctor will be able to talk you through the treatment options and help you choose the right treatment for you.  

Advanced prostate cancer treatment options 

This cancer stage refers to prostate cancer that has spread from the prostate to other parts of the body.  If you have advanced prostate cancer, treatment will be unable to cure your cancer. However, it will be able to keep the cancer under control and help manage any symptoms.

If you are diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer, the following treatment options may be available:

  •     Chemotherapy
  •     Clinical trials
  •     Hormone therapy

Top questions to ask your doctor 

Before your next appointment, you may find it useful to make a note of any questions you have for your doctor relating to your treatment options.  You may find it useful to ask some of these questions:

  •     How effective will your chosen treatment be?
  •     How quickly do you need to choose a treatment option?
  •     What treatments are available to me?
  •     Is the aim to completely get rid of my cancer or just keep it under control?

Getting into running

Whichever way you look at it, running is a pretty cool sport. From pushing to the fastest speeds, to mighty endurance battles, it really is amazing what the human body can do. And since you don’t need a huge amount of equipment to get into it, anybody can try it out.

If you want to get a bit leaner, stronger, and faster, then running can be the ideal way to do it, although you can’t expect to be running 5km straight away with ease, especially if you are not as fit as you could be. Follow these tips to get into running and keep running.

Walk and run

Getting the right movement and breathing rhythm can take a little bit of practice, and if you’re not used to running, you can quickly find yourself losing your puff. That’s why to begin with you should start out with walking and running intervals. This will mean the time that you run is smoother, and give you a recovery spell. As you progress in your training, shorten the walking periods and lengthen the running ones, until one day you find all you’re doing is running!

Get a good pair of trainers

It doesn’t matter really what you wear initially, but do invest in a good pair of trainers if you are planning on taking up running. Not only will they protect your feet, but they’ll help cushion your joints too, and minimise the potential for repetitive injury strains.

Try the treadmill

Running outdoors can actually be tougher than running on the treadmill, so take things easy and try the treadmill at the gym first. Since you’ll be paying some sort of membership or fee too, it is a great motivation to keep at the running!

For a great exercise buzz, it could be time to get into running.

Keeping it light – holiday style essentials

Are you one of those people that have a serious weight problem when it comes to their luggage? Do you always have a tendency to over pack just in case, yet never have anything useful to wear when you do arrive at your destination?

Especially for summer travel or travel to warmer climates, the key is to keep it light though. With the right essentials you can enjoy the hotter weather without regretting your luggage choices! Check out a few of the essentials you need right here.

Cotton

In hot places, cotton is your friend – it’s cool and airy and will help you to feel more comfortable when the temperature does rise. Cotton shorts, skirts and trousers and all great pieces that can be both dressed up and down, and a light cotton jumper is perfect for cooler evenings. And for layering up, don’t forget a classic pinstripe shirt.

All-purpose sandals

Happily enough, sturdy, sporty looking sandals are back in fashion, and they are such a versatile piece for your holidays. You can wear them during travel, to the beach and even for small hikes and site-seeing. And since shoes are one thing that can eat up both space and weight in your suitcase, it is really handy being able to take such a functional pair with you.

A great swimsuit

Your summer swimsuit deserves some serious consideration. It should be comfortable and flattering in all the right places, without leaving you feeling exposed. For the guys, board shorts are often the best choice since you can easily wear them to and from the beach too. And for the ladies, just pick a bikini or swimsuit that gives you the perfect coverage and support that you need, whilst leaving you feeling fantastic.

These are all small things that really help to lighten the load when it comes to luggage, so invest in them before your hols!

Top Reasons to Visit Oman in 2019

From scuba diving in beautiful tranquil waters to exploring ancient forts and reliving your best Laurence of Arabia memories in extraordinary desert camps, there are many reasons why Oman should be at the top of your 2019 travel bucket list!

We’re sure you’ll agree that a beach holiday in the beautiful Muscat will easily top the sophisticated travellers wish list, but Oman is also the go-to place for desert camps, scuba diving, fossil hunting like Indiana Jones, ancient forts, frankincense and spectacular turtle hatching.

Here’s our top 5 reasons to visit Oman this summer!

A land steeped in diversity

From the rolling lush green south to the desert-scape of the Empty Quarter, Oman offers a truly diverse landscape that is bound to impress nature lovers.  This beautiful country also has the highest mountain on the peninsula, along with hidden canyons, sparking seascapes and enchanting cities.

Get ready to experience authentic Arabia

It’s easy to see how Oman’s rich cultural heritage as a key trading post has created a strong sense of pride in the country’s ancient culture.  You’ll be pleased to hear that towns typically retain their classic Bedouin values and traditional charms. As well as getting to know the friendly locals, you should also enjoy the local cuisine which serves up history on a plate.  Get ready to sample spices from the sea trade with preserved fruit from the impressive Arabian Peninsula.

Fall in love in Muscat

We’re sure you’ll agree that romantic retreats certainly come in luxurious forms and none more luxurious than the accommodation in Muscat.  As well as offering five-star accommodation the city also plays host to a number of wonders. You can find out more about the top things to see in Muscat here.

Amazing sand-filled adventures

Get ready to enjoy the beauty of the desert at Wahiba Sands.  Here you’ll be able to enjoy camel trekking, dune-basking as well as camping under the spectacular starry night sky.

You can also enjoy hikes in the mountains, as well as spot fossils and you’ll find cliffs galore, making it a paradise for rock climbers. If that’s not enough of a reason to enjoy an activity-filled Oman adventure, the pristine waters surrounding this country offer some of the best scuba diving in the world.

A nature lover’s paradise

It’s easy to see why Oman has quickly become a haven for eco-tourists, as its diverse landscapes are home to an incredible array of birds, fauna and flora.  Unspoilt coastlines are teeming with vibrant marine life and if you’re lucky you’ll be able to spot both whales and dolphins!

As you can see, Oman is a welcoming year-round destination that offers exciting adventures for would-be travellers.  This land boasts palm-lined beaches, lush green mountains, towering deserts and impressive cityscapes where ancient charm meets luxury modern comfort.

Regardless of whether you’re looking to chase breath-taking scenery, enjoy your latest thrill-seeking adventure or in need of a serious culture fix, Oman will likely exceed any expectations!

Work it out with the right sportswear

It happened in the 80s and it’s been happening again now, with no signs of disappearing – there’s no denying it but sportswear is so on trend! Although some of the looks to be transformed from the gym to the high street aren’t always the most practical, one great thing about this trend is that it makes getting the best sportswear easy!

If you’re looking at your ratty old gym shorts and thinking they could do with a replacement, take a look at these sportswear essentials that you should have in your wardrobe ready to use!

Leggings and shorts

This dynamic duo are perfect for base layers, the gym and outdoor training, which is why everybody should have at least one pair of leggings and shorts for their exercise. The shorts should be lightweight and a little loose, and perfect for both team sport and running. As for the leggings they can be as basic as you like, although do look out for models with zip-up key pockets, drawstring waists and reflective detailing.

A sports bag

Whether you prefer a backpack or a more traditional sports bag, it is so handy having everything in one place when you hit the gym or head to training. Forget the old shopping bag that you have a tendency to use, and instead make it a little more stylish and practical with a bag from one of your favourite sports brands. For outdoor training, look out for water resistant styles, and for the gym, check out ones with breathable mesh.

Breathable base layer

From tanks to tees and long sleeved tops, a breathable base layer top that you can exercise in is a must. Not only can you easily add additional layers on top when it’s chilly since it’ll be slim fitting, but it’ll wick away sweat, look good, and be easy to wash and dry.

Make sure you’ve got these sportswear essentials ready to go in your wardrobe.

Making the most of your camping trip

Having somewhat fallen out of vogue thanks to the ease and competitive cost of package holidays, the more traditional camping trip is now once again making it back into fashion. It’s a simpler way of doing things that can leave you feeling refreshed and relaxed.

Whether you’re planning a big camping trip overseas, or simply want to get away with your tent for the weekend, making the most of your camping trip is easy. Check out here some of the things you could be doing to make sure that you get out there and take a deep breath in the great outdoors.

Take your hiking boots

One of the best things about camping trips is the fact that you get to be outdoors and in nature, which is such a good thing for our well-being. So find camping sites that are in the countryside, and check out the local hiking trails. With a good pair of hiking boots, you can leave the car behind and get exploring! If you get a good campsite, your hosts are more than likely going to be happy to recommend the best local spots to hike out to.

And your camping stove

Hiking and exploring in the great outdoors is sure to work up your appetite, so you’re going to have to be prepared! Therefore don’t forget to pack your camping stove! Not only is it more convenient that the traditional campfire, but it’s also more considerate especially when you’re at a campsite.

Remember your swimsuit

And do not forget to take your swimsuit with you! Being outdoors, especially in summer is the perfect chance to take a dip in a lake – it’s so refreshing! Just make sure you choose a spot that’s suitable for bathing, and avoid swimming in rivers.

Camping trips are all about the simple pleasures in life, so make the most of it!

Why Stylish Designer Radiators Will Easily Transform Your Home

Why Stylish Designer Radiators Will Easily Transform Your Home 

Looking to give your home a makeover that oozes sophistication?  The décor of your home usually decides the aesthetic appeal and overall atmosphere for your home.  Nowadays, radiators have become a design feature in their own right and are now a prominent factor when you’re considering a new interior style.  This is one of the main reasons why designer radiators are such a hit.   

 This stylish option is now available in a fantastic assortment of designs, which helps to make sure there is one to suit all types of interior needs, just ready and waiting to be connected to your central heating system.  If you’re tired if plain old panel radiators, then there is a wealth of attractive alternatives to choose from. We’ve picked some of our favourite designer radiators to help you pick something a little more stylish for your living space in 2019. 

Choosing the perfect designer radiator 

Most people decide to use radiators in their heating system.  This means they will make up an integral part of your house’s interior, but the standard white radiator design won’t offer any additional flair to a room.  Fortunately, contemporary radiators have a fantastic aesthetic appeal and most have been carefully designed to offer maximum impact.  These stylish offerings easily complement modern décor and suit most living habits. 

Most radiator suppliers understand the need for customisation and many offer a personalised colour matching service.  One of the easiest ways to add vibrancy to any room is through the addition of a bold accent shade.  By incorporating your designer radiator into your colour scheme, you will ensure that your radiator blends seamlessly with your walls.  Alternatively, you can create a pop of interest by opting for a bold and contrasting colour option.  Some of the latest designer radiator trends also feature intricate patterns that look more artwork. 

 

Shape also matters when it comes to your designer radiator 

As well as carefully selecting the colour of your new designer radiator, it’s also worth taking the radiator’s shape into consideration.  A classic flat panel radiator will offer a seamless finish along your wall, whereas a radiator with individual piping will draw attention, creating a focal point within the room.  Some of the latest designs utilise copper detailing to create modern, twisting designs.  Looped designs are becoming increasingly more popular in bathrooms, and it’s easy to see why. 

Curved radiators can provide a chic update 

If you’re looking for an updated look, a radiator design with bars can help create interest.  These squared off tubes can create sophisticated edges and help to make a big statement.  If you’re more of a minimalist, you can easily create a delicate look by using narrow bars for your radiator system. 

Space-saving radiator tricks  

If you’re working with limited space, a vertical radiator can often work best.  This design option will take up wall height rather than length.  This makes it a popular choice in kitchens and small, awkwardly shaped rooms where space is at a premium.  If you’re looking to make a real statement, why not opt for a radiator with an integrated mirror? This option will offer coveted multi-use functionality for the modern home.  

The Best Subscription Boxes for Men

If you’re currently thinking of the perfect gift for the man in your life, then this post is the perfect place to start.  If you’re on the hunt for the perfect subscription for an upcoming birthday or for Father’s Day, we’ve got you covered.  With boxes ranging from £14 to £40 a month, you’ll easily find the ideal gift here. 

Looking to Treat Your Feet? London Sock Company has the answer! 

 Is 2019 the year you look good from head to toe?  One of the easiest ways to make good on your New Year’s resolution is to upgrade your sock game!  Sock subscription boxes are the perfect way to inject patter, colour and quirk to your wardrobe.   

 If you’re looking to add comfort to your sock drawer, you’re bound to love London Sock Company’s Sock Club subscription.  This is a fantastic modern gift to suit the modern man in your life.  Get ready to enjoy stylish sock choices every day!  One of the best features of this subscription box is the fun ‘Surprise Me’ option, where a new style will be chosen for you based on trends and seasonal colours.  You can easily log in, pause or cancel your subscription, at any point. 

Even better…this subscription is now available outside of the UK! Simply hit the ‘Shipping Outside the UK’ option and find the plan that best suits your sock needs.   

Prices start at £30 for 3 months. 

For the Cocktail Connoisseur 

We can all agree that serving a delicious cocktail adds a touch of class and sophistication to any dinner party.  Why not elevate a drink at home with something a little more special?  For most of us, we never have the right liqueurs or spirits to make the tasty tipple we want. This problem is easily solved with the Cocktail Man.  

With this subscription service, all the ingredients you need to make a cocktail for you and three others will be delivered directly to your door. Plus, the box handily fits through the letterbox. 

Prices start from £17 per month. 

Is Firebox’s Mystery Box the Perfect Gift? 

We can all agree that there aren’t many surprises left in the world these days. Except this box. Firebox have created the perfect subscription for both the bored and the brave.  We won’t spoil the surprise here, but we’re happy to report it is very good indeed! 

Price is set at £34.99 a month.  

Sample the Perfect Fragrance with Sniph 

Many of us dread buying a new bottle of cologne if all you have done is politely sniffed the sample in a shop.  This is where Sniph are here to help!  For just £14 a month, this brand will ship miniature versions of fragrances to you each month, which you can then buy if you really love one.  The Sniph subscription is a great way to regularly change up your scent.  

Prices start from £14 a month. 

Get Ready to Enjoy the Perfect Fresh Pasta 

We can all agree that fresh pasta is truly food of the Gods.  Both nutritious and delicious, this stylish and sophisticated subscription box from Pasta Evangelists is a great foodie gift!  This company deliver delectable fresh pasta, sauce and accompanying garnishes straight to your door.  Plus, the handy recipe cards take you through the simple steps for assembling your top-notch Italian treat. 

Prices start from £13.90 a week. 

We Can See Why People Favour Flavourly 

With a light box, mixed box and dark box of 10 carefully curated beers from small-batch breweries, this subscription is the perfect wat to upgrade the drink options in your home.  Just think, your supply of Stella can be switched up for something far more flavoursome! 

Prices start from £25 a month.