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I'm way behind on this blog, but I thought to get back into the swing of things I'd talk about something really important to me...kindness. This year I've decided to think about this more in terms of myself and my business so I've done two things.

I wanted to look at doing card ranges that could also support a charity, which is actually a bit more complicated than I thought it would be but I'm thrilled to have launched a new 'KIND' range. 'A little kindness goes a long way' is a set of 4 cards, with a positive message that you can give to anyone you know who needs a little kindness, and in turn we give a donation from every card sold to the charity Crisis, who do amazing work with the homeless, as I really wanted to make sure that a little kindness could go a bit further.  

Shop the 'KIND' charity card range here.

Being kind is such a simple thing, but so important and so often overlooked and particularly to ourselves. So I wanted to talk about something I started doing in January at the start of the year, when everyone is all full of good intentions and ideas, something that if you'd told me a few years ago that I'd be doing this I would have laughed at you...

Positive affirmations! 

I talked about this on my insta stories, and then received lots of messages from people asking how to do it and interested in trying it so I thought I'd write a blog post about it, so if you fancied giving it a try you could, or just to learn a bit more about it. 

I am a quite a sceptical person, and pretty straight talking as you may know if you've ever met me, or had a conversation with me - littered with expletives. A few years ago when I was struggling with stress I started meditating, and I found it an amazing experience, it helped me to relax, to destress and stop all the thoughts from swirling round my head at night, and stopping me sleeping. It's something I'm not as good at doing quite so regularly now, but I do try and make sure I do when I can, and I'd definitely recommend giving it a go sometime, trying guided meditations was a really great way of getting into it for me so they're well worth trying out. 

My year started out in a very challenging way, finding myself very suddenly without my key member of staff, and heading into a very hectic and stressful trade show season, and one day whilst looking for a guided meditation online, I came across something about positive affirmations and thought I'd give it a try, and I've been doing them every day ever since. 

The idea is to start your day with a positive talk to yourself, and the way in which you choose to do that, is of course a very personal thing, for me it's about identifying and acknowledging the things you have and that you are thankful for, and the person you are and then stating your intentions for things you wish to achieve. There is something really quite powerful about being able to say this openly and out loud and more importantly acknowledging and believing in what you're saying. I know it sounds pretty bonkers, and the first time I tried it, I did also feel a bit like a massive tit, but I also found it helpful and it made me feel super positive so I continued, and I thought I'd share how I do it with you, so you can try it, feel like a bit of a tit but hopefully also like it and continue it too... 

I like to do my positive affirmations, whilst I walk the dog, as it's a quiet time and I'm lucky enough to be often walking in very beautiful surroundings and alone and it just seems perfect. But equally I'm happy shouting them out in the shower in my hotel room in New York. So it's whatever works for you. My recipe for positive affirmations is as follows...

Start by saying out loud whatever you are thankful for in your life

I am thankful for...... 

I find this really powerful because you can spend so much time worrying about the money you don't have, success you don't have etc etc that you don't often acknowledge everything that you are, and that you have already. 

After this, I then give myself a bit of a positive talking to, there are lots of suggestions for positive affirmations online, but I tend to go with stating simple things, here are some ideas...

I believe in myself

I can do anything I put my mind to

I will be kinder to myself and to others

I love myself

I am brave

I am smart

I am successful

I am exactly where I should be

I am enough

I am loved

I like myself

I am happy

I am healthy

I like who I am

I am good enough

I am happy with who I am today

Think about anything in your life where you need some positive words of encouragement or acceptance, and give yourself some love. The important thing is to say them out loud and with conviction, to encourage yourself to believe in what you're saying. I totally get it, this might not be your thing, but it also might really work for you, so maybe try it and see. 

Then when you've worked through your own affirmations, I set out my intentions, the things I want to achieve today/this month/this year and say those out loud, but actively as in.

I'm going to do... 

I will try...

Today is going to be a brilliant day. 

I will not beat myself up about things that happened yesterday

I will....

That's it, that's all you have to do, and it only takes a few minutes, but for me it makes such a difference, it helps me to focus my mind, to focus my goals and to embrace who I am and feel happy with my life as it is.

There are lots of suggestions for positive affirmations online, and lots of ideas to help, I've just popped in some suggestions to help get you started, but it's all about what you feel suits you. 

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