When is it 'too soon' to have sex with someone new?

When is it 'too soon' to have sex with someone new?

S P O I L E R

It's only 'too soon' if ~you~ feel it is.

Guys and gals, if you want to have sex with someone, have sex with someone. As long as you both want to do it, as long as you feel safe and comfortable and as long as neither of you feel pressured by the other (and as long as do it safely and responsibly, obvs), I literally see no reason why you should feel like you shouldn't, and it really annoys me that it's us girls in particular, that are often made to feel bad for admitting to wanting to have sex with someone new. 


This little thought train all started with an episode of Love Island. Montana had exclaimed to Camilla that she'd normally wait 7 months before sleeping with someone, and they were discussing how things move quicker in the villa compared to what they'd normally do on the outside. And it really got to me. They were talking as if doing anything with someone new in the first few weeks/months was terrible and out of the question and omg why would you do that?

Well, here's a few reasons why you are more than entitled to do just that;
  • You like the other person.
  • You feel sexually attracted to them.
  • You both want to do it.
  • You feel safe.
  • You feel comfortable.
  • You realise it's 2017 & you don't need to stick to made-up dating rules and you're allowed to do whatever you want to.

Obviously, this works the other way round, too. If you don't want to have sex with someone, please don't have sex with them, and never feel like you have to do anything with anyone (and if anyone does make you feel like that? dump their ass, quickly). And we shouldn't make anyone feel bad for making this choice, either.

At the end of the day, we're all different, and so are all of our relationships. Sometimes it feels right to wait, and other times you just wanna rip their clothes off after date 2. Personally? I don't think that there's any right or wrong way to do it. 

Like I say, it's all down to you and your relationship, but I think it would be really fab if we could stop making girls feel bad for whichever decision they make. Does anyone else know what I mean?

Soph

Investing in the basics.

Investing in the basics.

I've always loved the idea of creating a simple, staple wardrobe - but I've always thought that I'd never be able to manage it due to the fact that I always seem to have way too many clothes sitting in my wardrobe.. However, since taking a little more notice of the clothes that I wear the most and the most regularly, I pretty much already have one. I've started to realise that there's a general pattern in what I love to wear.

The basics.

The timeless, classic style items that will never disappear from the high street. The things that you can wear all year round. The pieces that you can wear with everything and anything, and the ones that you can dress up or down to suit whatever occasion.


And so, I've made a new promise to myself. With the exception of a few items, I'm going to try and only invest in the 'basics'. I'm going to slowly build up a new wardrobe of these items that I know I'll be able to wear for years, and that I won't be throwing away 6 months from now because they're no longer 'in fashion'.

Here are a few of my faves!



S T R I P E S

Where would we be without stripes? The good ol' Breton shirt has been a wardrobe staple for over 150 years when it was introduced as uniform for the navy (yes I have researched the history of the Breton. Don't judge me, okay?), and then into more mainstream fashion when Coco Chanel used the pattern for her nautical collection. It's a style that suits everyone and that anyone can wear. I love the Parisian-esque vibe that a Breton shirt instantly gives off. And to make it even more French, I love wearing a red neckerchief and red lipstick to go with it!


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G O O D  J E A N S

I'm in the fortunate position that I get to literally wear whatever I want to work. Our office is very casual, and so I'm in jeans most days. Going from business dress to casual every day, was a shock to my then only 1 pair of jeans - they got worn out very quickly! Needless to say, I've invested in a few more pairs since then. I have 2 pairs of the black Joni jeans from Topshop (I wear these on days when I have a few meetings, as they're slightly smarter) but you can never underestimate how effortlessly stylish blue jeans can look.



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B O D Y S U I T S

Apart from being an absolute nightmare when you're bursting for a wee, I adore wearing bodysuits. They're comfortable and easy to style and you don't have to worry about coming untucked half way through the day. One of my favourite things about bodysuits is that you can dress them for any occasion. Wear them with your jeans and trainers for a casual look, or pair them with smart black trousers a killer pair of heels and you're ready for any formal event, too. How beautiful is this lacy version below, too? This would look so beaut & elegant for an evening of drinks.


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B U T T O N - D O W N   S H I R T S

Okay, first up. If anyone can teach me how to master the half-tuck, that would be greatly appreciated. It's one of those things that I can just never seem to get right and it always just looks a little silly on me! But anyway, a good button-down shirt is another versatile piece that I have a fair few of. You can literally throw one on with a pair of jeans and run out the door knowing that you're good to go! Similar to the bodysuits, you can rock a pair of trainers for a more preppy look, or grab your favourite heels to go from day-to-night for a smarter, more dressed up look.

I bought a Polo Ralph Lauren pink one from one of their outlet stores a few years ago and oh my, I didn't take it off for about 3 weeks after. I love it!


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What are your favourite 'basic' pieces?

Soph 

Appearing confident at work... when you secretly don't really know what you're doing.

Appearing confident at work... when you secretly don't really know what you're doing.

Now, I'm not saying you should blag your way through your whole career, because I'm 100% certain that this would never work. But, I'm pretty sure that I'm not the only one who's walked into a meeting having no real idea what it's about or what's going on. We've all been there at least once. 

Not really fully understanding something at work can be a little scary and intimidating, and having been thrown in at the deep end more times than I can count during the last 5 years, I've most definitely been in this situation on a few occasions! 


I've had so many little panics in clients bathrooms before meetings because there's been technical things on the agenda that I have no clue what they mean. Or when you start a new job and there's loads of new systems to get used to, people's names to remember and processes that you've never had before. 

You want to appear confident and like you know what you're talking about. You want to impress your boss or the client and show them that you've totally got this and that you're great at what you do. But OMG if I could've had a little more time to have prepared for this, that would've been fab. 

So, here are a few little tricks I've picked up over the last few years, to help give people the impression that you're confident at work.. even when you secretly don't really know what you're doing.



A S K  Q U E S T I O N S.

Asking questions is a really great way to do two things at once in these kind of situations. Not only will it make you look like you're really engaging in the conversation and debate that's going on around you, but guess what? If you ask the right questions, you'll be able to catch up and ~hopefully~ get your head back to where your boss thought it already was an hour ago.

Oh, and it also means that you're not the one that has to do all of the talking. You get to sit, listen, take notes, and maybe fire a follow up question back at most because I don't know about you, but when I'm feeling overwhelmed and nervous, the last thing I want to do is try and be the one who's holding a conversation.


S I T  U P  S T R A I G H T

If you're in a meeting, sit up straight. If you're sat at your desk, sit up straight. If you're meeting someone for the first time, stand up straight. Looking confident can really help you on your way to feeling confident, and kinda like all of the dating tips that get thrown our way, our non-verbal cues can often give away more than what we actually say. 

So, if you're face to face with someone or giving a presentation, remember to maintain eye contact and smile. And if you're sat at your desk on the phone or frantically trying to type an email, push your shoulders back and sit up straight. Getting yourself in the right frame of mind first, can make all the difference. The more you pretend to be confident, the quicker you'll realise you actually are. Fake it 'till you make it and all that, right?


T A K E  F I V E

There's nothing like giving yourself a good ol' pep talk, is there? If I'm feeling particularly stressed or overwhelmed at work, I'll just take myself to the bathroom for five minutes for a little 'time out'. Office's can be really busy places, and it can be really hard to calm your thoughts when there's loads of people and 3 million things going on around you. So trust me when I say, taking yourself to somewhere quiet for a few minutes can be a life saver, sometimes. Collect your thoughts, give yourself a pep talk and go back and smash it.



Soph

How it took just 30 seconds for someone else to put my 'problems' into perspective.

How it took just 30 seconds for someone else to put my 'problems' into perspective.


Okay so picture this; it was 7pm on a Wednesday evening and I was feeling pretty sh*t. I'd spent the last few hours 'arguing' with a very close friend of mine who I care about a lot and I was feeling pretty helpless about our situation. I'd spent 40 minutes locked away in the bathroom because I was so upset. I was tired. I'd been up since 5am and had spent 5 hours on the train that morning, before then doing a whole day at work filled with intense meetings and everything going wrong and well, I was just feeling down and v sorry for myself.

That was until I went for dinner with a friend who lives in London who I hadn't seen in a while. We met each other outside the train station and he was physically shaking. We were meant to grab a coffee first but we instantly realised he probably needed something a little stronger (gin).

You see, this had been his first day as a junior doctor working for our NHS. 

We ended up grabbing a takeaway and cake (the best comfort food!) and heading back to eat at his, where I was greeted by his 3 other housemates, who were all also junior doctors who had just finished their first days in their new hospitals too. 

And while they were all discussing their days with each other, talking about what had happened since they'd left for work that morning and using this time to release their thoughts and feelings about their day, I couldn't help but realise that this had all put my day into perspective. 

One of these girls had had to sit down and tell a lady and her family that they'd found a brain tumour today, and sit there while it slowly sunk in that all of their lives had suddenly changed forever and I'd.... well, I'd sent a few emails?

I mean, obviously I'd done more than that but that's pretty much how it felt in comparison. Even the things going on in my personal life suddenly didn't seem so important anymore and it's only when I hear things like this, that it reminds me to stop getting stressed over the little stuff. It reminds me to stop wasting time on things that don't really matter and it really hits you that life really is too short, sometimes. 

It reminded me that you never quite know what's round the corner and it reminded me to be even more thankful for everything that I'd written about here. It reminded me to be thankful that my job isn't life or death like the possibility of it being just that everyday for these guys, and it reminded me to be thankful that we have people like this working to look after and help every single one of us, every day, no matter what. 

So next time I feel myself getting 'stressed' at work, I'm going to remember that my day could be a lot worse.

Soph

25 very random facts about me.

25 very random facts about me.

It occurred to me the other day that in my 2 1/2 years of blogging, I've never done a 'Get to Know Me' type post, and so this is probably long, long overdue. I actually adore reading these kind of posts from other bloggers, as I find it really interesting to get to know, quite often, a little bit of a different side to people compared to what they normally write about!

So, here are 25 very random facts.


  1. My middle name is actually Rebecca, not Rosie. But 'sophierebecca.com' was already taken so I chose Rosie instead for no particular reason other than it seemed to flow quite well and I liked the name!

  2. Out of the 3 'big' coffee brands, Caffe Nero is my fave, followed by Starbucks and I will only ever have a Costa if there's absolutely no other choice. My friend and I once drove a whole 2 junctions further than we needed to on the motorway in order to stop for a Starbucks services rather than a Costa services. It really is that serious of a matter.

  3. We have a dog back home called Jake. He's a red and white border collie and is certifiably bonkers.

  4. I don't drink. I never have done and I have no plans to start anytime soon.

  5. I am fascinated with aeroplanes. I love learning about how everything works and I get v excited whenever I see one. Air Crash Investigation is absolutely my favourite show and guilty pleasure, but probably explains why I'm actually terrified of flying, despite my love for the planes themselves!

  6. I also love boats. Ever since my family went on our first cruise (once I'd got over the fear of sinking like the Titanic, obvs), I became obsessed with boats too. I used to want to be a Captain of ship when I grew up, until I realised you needed good geography and physics skills... of which I have neither.

  7. Speaking of my Geography skills.. up until the age of 18, I genuinely thought Cumbria was a place in Africa. That was until my old job sent me to a client there and I quickly realised I was way off.

  8. I have the tiniest tattoo of a small cross on my right wrist. No one ever realises it's there as it fits perfectly under my watch.

  9. Yes, I wear my watch on the 'wrong' wrist. 

  10. I'm also left handed.

  11. However, I'm right handed for everything else, including using right handed scissors, and when I used to play golf.

  12. I also used to play cricket and my parents sent me to 'Cricket Camp' one summer when I was about 10. I won 'best bowler' and my prize was a large mens cricket top. Needless to say it didn't fit 10 year old me very well.

  13. I don't like cheese. Except for on pizza.

  14. I was born 4 weeks premature, and I was so tiny that the baby clothes I used to wear now fit on my old dolls.

  15. I trained in ballroom and latin dancing until I was 18. I miss it so much and I'm considering getting back to it when I finally move down to London! And yes, Strictly is my other fave show.

  16. I was so obsessed with High School Musical for about 2 years after it came out, it was very nearly an actual problem. I would watch it every day without fail and I can still recite all of the song and dance routines to you now.

  17. I took Ancient History, Accounting, Maths and Dance at A Level and even my teachers used to comment that I was clearly very confused about my future considering how very random my range of subjects were!

  18. I may have lived out of home for nearly 4 years, but I still text my Mum photo's of clothes from my wardrobe to ask which wash to put them in, as I've still not mastered this adult thing yet.

  19. I started this blog on 18th November 2014, sat in Central Perk in Liverpool, wearing a denim shirt-dress and a red bowler hat, drinking a caramel latte on an orange sofa just like the one they had in the coffee house of the same name in Friends. Is it weird that I remember it so vividly?

  20. I used to hate the name 'Sophie'. When I was about 5 I remember leaving the house with my Dad and giving my Mum strict instructions to have thought of a new name for me by the time I got back! Good job I love it now, isn't it?

  21. I love being by the water and my dream is to end up living by the sea.

  22. I've never travelled further than Turkey, but I absolutely want to change that soon. I want to visit Australia, New Zealand, America, Canada, Dubai... I have a pretty long list.

  23. I'm left & right dyslexic - to the point where I used to have to wear a bobble on one wrist and not the other during my driving lessons, and my instructor would shout 'bobble' and 'no bobble' instead of 'left' and 'right' as otherwise it would take me too long to work out which way to turn.

  24. I love coffee but I can't stand coffee in chocolate. The same with peanuts; I could eat them all day but in chocolate? No thanks.

  25. I've never been to a music gig and I don't have a favourite artist or band. My music taste is very eclectic and seeing live music has just never really bothered me! The theatre on the other hand? I'd never be out of there if I could!

Soph

7 ways to de-stress after a bad day.

7 ways to de-stress after a bad day.

Bad days. We all have them. Those days when everything that could go wrong, does go wrong, and you're left wondering what on earth you did to deserve such a thing. I've kinda got the hang of remembering that it's only one bad day, amongst the many other fabulous ones, however this does mean that I've also got into the habit of going home and getting into bed to prevent any further damage. This is all fine, until I realised that I didn't quite want to be wasting half of my day every time I got stressed.

So, instead of just hiding myself away, I've started to try and actively do positive and productive things to make myself feel better instead. Here are 7 ways to de-stress after a bad day.



G O  F O R  A  W A L K.

Fresh air works wonders, doesn't it? I have to remind myself of this every time as it's so much easier to convince myself that my bed is the best place to be. Which is silly because I know just how much better I feel after anything if I can get out and go for a little walk, listen to music, and be surrounded by other people going about their day instead of being alone in my room and overthinking. This is the worst thing to do, just FYI.


T A K E  A  L O N G  B A T H.

For me, this a long shower at the mo because I don't have a bath in my bathroom. BUT, give me just over a month and I will have a bath again and I cannot tell you how excited I am. Bath's are so relaxing aren't they? Grab your favourite book, light a candle, and relax with all of the bath oils for an hour or so. Even when I did have a bath, I always felt too busy to take the time to run a bath rather than jumping in the shower, so every time I do get the chance to, it always feels so, so relaxing. 


V E N T.

I think this is the one reason that I could never fully live on my own. One of the first things I do if I've had a bad day is tell my poor flatmate everything. It always feels so much better to get things out, and I immediately feel like a weight has been lifted and I can relax a little more. Bottling stress up is never a good idea, as there'll aways be a tipping point when everything just comes out anyway. 

If my flatmate doesn't happen to be in and I don't fancy talking on the phone, I write stuff down instead. Whether it's typing it in a post for my blog or hand-writing it in a little notebook that I keep, writing things out can be just as effective as talking things out.

C L E A N.

It may sound ridiculous, but cleaning calms me. Cleaning and a good clear out will always make me feel better, and at the end of it, everything smells nice and my room is all decluttered and it's great. I find it really hard to relax and un-wind if my room is messy, so I at least always make sure that I tidy up and that I have a clear space. Does this help anyone else, too?


G O  F O R  A  D R I V E.

Sometimes, instead of going for a walk, I'll just take myself off for a drive, particularly if the weather's bad or if it's dark outside. I find there's literally nothing more therapeutic and good for clearing my head than long drives in the dark. I won't drive anywhere in particular, but I'll just take myself off on a route that I know well, and listen to music or an old podcast that I know will calm me a little.


T R E A T  Y O U R S E L F.

Treat yourself to something small but something that you know you'll enjoy. A large coffee instead of a small one, a bar of chocolate after dinner, or even a takeaway for the evening - sometimes it's the little things that can really feel like the biggest luxurious and make us feel that little bit better.


A  B O O K.

I spend a lot of my time scrolling through social media if I'm at home with not much else to do, but sometimes social media can be more stressful than relaxing. So recently, I've made more an effort to ditch my phone and get lost in a good book instead. I also find that reading makes me more tired, so if I can read for a little bit before I go to sleep, I fall asleep so quickly and don't have time to stress about my day either!

How do you de-stress after a bad day?

Soph

Confession; I couldn't ever last a day without my iPhone. But not for the reasons that you think.

Confession; I couldn't ever last a day without my iPhone. But not for the reasons that you think.

My iPhone is like my own PA. It's an extension of me and my life and I genuinely feel like I've lost my left arm whenever I'm without it. It has everything on there; my calendar, my finances, my life in photo's (literally - I currently have 45k photo's on there!), my emails and of course all of the social media apps I can't last a few hours without. 

I've read a few posts recently about how a lot of us are attempting to have less screen time, in order to feel more relaxed, sleep better and feel less stressed. And I've also tried to do this (and failed miserably) multiple times. And then I got thinking about a typical day in the 'life of me', and I'm not really sure us millennials could ever go a day without our smart phones now. I mean, think about it...


If we rewind 20 years (which is only back to 1997 just FYI), back to our trusty Nokia's that were built like bricks, the only real purpose for having a mobile phone was for ringing people, texting people (but only briefly because you couldn't fit much on the bloomin' screen and you had to scroll for anything longer than 2 lines), and playing snake. Then we advanced and you could play music, have a ~few~ photos and videos and maybe get on the internet if you were lucky - although it cost an absolute fortune so everyone used to switch the feature off anyway. 

And then we had the blackberry obsession before iPhones appeared in 2007 and pretty much changed everything and now we're here. I remember my high school maths teacher used to always tell us that the computers NASA used to send Apollo 11 to the moon had no more power than our calculators do. So just think how powerful our phones could be! Isn't that a little bit crazy?!

Like I said before, my iPhone now holds my life. As Apple themselves say, 'there's an app for that'. And it's true. There's an app for everything. From online banking and being able to pay with everything on our phones, to tracking your menstrual cycle and contraception, to now even having 'work apps' on my phone that let me book annual leave, view my payslips and log & track feedback on the go.


However, what about all of the other stuff that I use my phone for?

- How would I know what time train I needed if I couldn't look at the National Rail app?
- How would I have ever found anything in London if it wasn't for CityMapper?
- How would anyone find anywhere new without Google Maps?
- How would I remember when my friends birthday's are?
- How would I remember about the coffee date I arranged weeks ago if my calendar didn't remind me?
- How would I know what to wear if I wasn't able to check the weather in the morning?

If I think my bag gets heavy & a complete mess now, just think what it would be like without my smartphone?

I'd need an actual calculator, a separate device to play music on, to carry my camera around every day, a huge paper map that I'd need to learn how to read, an address book, a Filofax, a cheque book and goodness knows what else and I'd have to just randomly turn up at the train station and hope for the best. And if I wanted to share photo's with my friends I'd have to pop round to theirs for a cuppa with my photo album in tow.

This is probably such a 'young person' thing to say, but what the bloomin' heck did people do without smart phones? It's crazy how much we rely on them now when you think about it, isn't it?

Soph

I owe my body confidence to a boy.

I owe my body confidence to a boy.

If you scroll through my Instagram, you'll find that I'm not one to shy away from posting photo's of pretty underwear or bikini shots on the internet. I'm naturally a pretty quiet gal and a lot of people are often quite surprised by it and point out that it's 'brave' of me to do this.

Honestly? I don't see it as being brave. I'm simply happy with my body, I've learned to love it and accept it as it is. This is a totally different story when it comes to loving myself, though. Of course, there are so many things that I would change about myself if I could and I'll always see flaws in everything. I think that's just natural.


If you were to carry on scrolling through my Instagram however, to the summer of 2015 and beyond, you'll find that there are no photo's of the sort, and the thought of posting anything like this was simply terrifying. 

So, what changed?

Well, I met a boy. And this boy managed to teach me that I should love my body. You see, before him, I'd never had anyone tell me that they thought I looked good in my favourite underwear or appreciate my body like he did. And it was like for the first time, I was able to see myself without the harsh criticism filter that I'd had on every time I looked in the mirror. For the first time I wasn't comparing myself to all of the heavily photoshopped Insta-famous girls on the internet, and for the first time, I really started to grow in body confidence and I can't even tell you how good it felt.  

And do you know what's even better? This new found body positivity didn't dissappear when he did and it isn't going anywhere. This boy didn't just 'give' anything to me, but he taught me how and where to find the confidence and now no one can take that away from me again. 

I know there'll be a lot of you reading this and mentally shouting at me that we don't need boys for anything. And no, we most definitely don't and this isn't what I'm trying to say. If you know me, at all, you'll know how independent and determined I am all on my little own-some, and independence is something else that I've talked about a lot

What I am trying to say, is that body confidence doesn't just come naturally for a lot of people, and it can also come from the most unexpected of places. It also take a lot of work. There's not a switch that you can flick and then that's it. It's a gradual process and one that I've found is easier if you have the right people around you.

Sometimes, you just need a little push from others who are older and a little wiser to teach you some of the best and most important lessons, and that's okay.

Do you know what I mean? I think I've explained this terribly. But it was just something that I was thinking about as I was stalking my own Instagram yesterday.

I'm going to shut up now because this is getting weirder.

Have a lovely Sunday.

Soph

Why you should always listen to your intuition.

Why you should always listen to your intuition.

Hands up if you've ever made a decision that's gone against your initial gut feeling, and then it's been proved that your gut was right? *raises hand* I lost count a long time ago how many times my intuition has been right. You'd think I'd have learned to listen to it a little more by now.


I think it's natural for us to turn to our nearest and dearest for advice if we have a big decision to make, or if we're going through huge life change. But in my experience, there's always one option or choice that you're drawn to. There's always one direction that we know is the right one. And I think often, we're looking to our family and friends to simply confirm that feeling for us, because we actually already know ourselves.

Do you know like when you first meet someone, and you can generally instantly grasp whether their your kind of person or not, whether you'd get on, whether they're a good person, or whether you should probably avoid them and never look back? It's that kind of intuition we need to be listening to. 

When I first got offered my job in London, I immediately knew that I had to take it. Even though there were so many other voices in my head telling me that I should stay where I was, play it safe, telling me how terrifying it would be and that it would be so hard to leave everything, there was a calmer voice somewhere in the back of my mind telling me that I needed to do it, and that it was the right thing to do. 

Sometimes, your intuition shouts at you really loud and throws a great big red warning siren over people and situations that you should avoid. However other times, it can be quieter and a little harder to hear. I find it often helps if I'm somewhere quiet, like late at night just before I'm about to fall asleep, and I'll always write out my problems, too. It's amazing how once you start thinking or writing, you start to come up with answers and solutions that you hadn't even thought of before. 

Soph

5 of my favourite places on the internet for everyday inspo

5 of my favourite places on the internet for everyday inspo

We've all experienced a creative slump or two, and when you're constantly trying to come up with new content ideas, sometimes you need a little inspiration to kickstart your own creativity. Before I start writing any of my blog posts, I'll grab myself a coffee and scour my favourite places on the internet for some of the fabulous stuff that's already out there. I find it really helps to get myself in that 'creative' mindset, when I've already consumed a lot of it. 

But even if I'm not sitting down to write that day, I still love to visit some of the following places for a little everyday inspiration.

M Y  F A V E  B L O G S

Of course, one of my first stops will always be my favourite blogs and bloggers that I will probably forever continue to check daily to see if they've posted any new content that I can devour over my coffee. Gals like Audrey, Holly, Martha, and my most recent discovery - Victoria, are all included in here along with so many more, and are always killing it with their fresh content ideas. 


P I N T E R E S T

Ok so who doesn't head over to Pinterest whenever they need a little bit of inspiration? If I'm really struggling to get my creativity going, I'll spend 15 minutes pinning pretty things to my boards and just generally getting myself in the right mind set. I always feel so much better after a good Pinterest sesh!

M E D I U M

If you haven't discovered Medium.com yet, where have you been?! Medium is a place where anyone can write and publish articles about whatever they like. It's a platform for everyone to voice their ideas and perspectives and it's one of my favourite places on the internet. The posts range from thoughts on current affairs, to anonymously written personal essays. There's even a 'creativity' section - so go have a good nosey if you haven't visited before!


S T U M B L E  U P O N

In a way, StumbleUpon.com is similar to Medium, in that it shows you a whole range of articles, and allows you to publish your own work, too. However, StumbleUpon is a little more fun. You chose the categories and topics that you're interested in when you first sign up, and then you just press the big red 'Stumble' button at the top of the page, and it gives you a random article from around the web that has been published here too! And then you just keep pressing it each time you want to read something new! I love this website for finding new blogs, sites, and just some really useful and interesting pieces of content. 


I N S T A G R A M  E X P L O R E

I'm half reluctant to put Instagram on here atm (although am I right in thinking it's may be getting ~slightly~ better????), but I have to admit, I do love scrolling through the Instagram Explore page. Again, it's a fab way to find new bloggers, instagrammers, and some bangin' photo's!

Where do you head to when you need a little inspiration?

Soph

100 things I'm thankful for.

100 things I'm thankful for.

The last few months have been pretty hard, and it's like life is throwing as much as possible at me right now to see how much I can take. Seriously though, why does everything always happen at once?? But, I'm trying my absolute hardest to deal with everything, to look on the positive side of things as much as possible, and I know that in another few months, everything will ~hopefully~ have sorted itself out, but I'm just going to have to deal with everything first.

And so, after a particularly tough and emotionally draining few days, I thought I'd make a huge list of everything that I have to be thankful for in a bid to cheer myself up a little!


1. Coffee.
2. Being able to watch the sunrise & sunset over the docks.
3. My wonderful job.
4. My family back home who I love very much.
5. Our dog, Jake, who is also back home, who we arguably love more than each other, at times. ;)
6. All of my past experiences, good & bad, that have made me who I am.
7. My blog.
8. The amazing blogging community & friends that have come with it.
9. A good nights sleep.
10. A cup of tea when I'm feeling down.
11. Netflix.
12. Pizza.
13. Long, tight hugs.
14. Good hair & make up days.
15. Having somewhere warm to live.
16. Rainy days snuggled under my duvet.
17. That feeling after a good work out.
18. All of the chocolate.
19. Bread.♥
20. My health.
21. Freshly washed bedding.
22. Long, hot baths after a hard day.
23. The kindness of my friends in London who have been letting me stay with them.
24. Brunch dates.
25. Red velvet cake.
26. Going through old family photo albums.
27. Laughing so hard that you can't breathe.
28. That one film that always makes me laugh.
29. Funny dog videos (because these always cheer me up!)
30. People that hold doors open for you.
31. Dry shampoo.
32. The internet.
33. Being able to travel if I wish.
34. Walks along the beach and the sea front.
35. My bed. ♥
36. My independence.
37. Finally finding that pair of jeans that fits me perfectly.
38. Lazy weekends.
39. Cosy jumpers.
40. Scented candles.
41. Music.
42. Memes - because the internet is amazing sometimes.
43. Walks in the sunshine.
44. Exploring my favourite city.
45. Taking & editing photos.
46. My glasses. Because I'm blind as a bat without them.
47. Being able to drive.
48. Good body confidence days.
49. Flowers.
50. A good book.
51. Finding money in a jacket pocket I haven't worn in months.
52. That feeling after a good cry.
53. Feeling safe.
54. Sex.
55. Listening back to old songs I used to love.
56. And singing along really loudly.
57. Popping the bubble wrap that came in my latest parcel.
58. The snooze button.
59. When I've collected enough stamps for my free coffee.
60. The cold side of the pillow.
61. My favourite, most comfortable trainers.
62. Harry Potter - because the best way to forget about the real world, is to immerse yourself in a magical one.
63. Ice cream.
64. Clean water.
65. Having a good clear out.
66. Sunshine in the summer.
67. And sunshine in the winter - those crisp & beautiful days when you can get all wrapped up.
68. My phone.
69. Exploring somewhere new.
70. Meeting new people.
71. Google. Seriously, where would we be without google?!
72. The smell of lavender.
73. Having the best work friends.
74. Free wifi. ♥
75. Creativity.
76. Warm socks.
77. Having a good pamper night.
78. Getting my nails done.
79. Strawberries. (They're my favourite fruit)
80. Pineapple. (My second favourite fruit)
81. Those small and silly family traditions.
82. Hearing the birds chirping in the morning.
83. When people ask me for advice - because at least I must be doing something right!
84. Ticking everything off my to-do list.
85. Getting good feedback at work.
86. Hummus.
87. Warm towels straight out of the dryer.
88. My favourite hand cream.
89. The concierge for keeping all of my parcels even when I forget about them.
90. Blue skies.
91. Long drives.
92. Having people to aspire and look up to.
93. Motivation & ambition.
94. Contraception. Because babies are cute but no thank you.
95. People who text back fast (even though I'm the worst).
96. Bralettes.
97. Red lipstick.
98. A stranger giving me a good morning smile in the street.
99. My fairy lights making my room look cute.
100. The fact that I have a future to make whatever I want.

What are the things that you're thankful for?

Soph

Corporate to Creative: how I went from Accountancy to Radio & why it's never too late to change your career.

Corporate to Creative: how I went from Accountancy to Radio & why it's never too late to change your career.

If there's one thing that I've always believed, it's that you have to absolutely love what you do for a living. We spend so much of our time doing it, that no matter how much you try and convince yourself that it's not important, you're never going to be totally happy unless you're happy with your job. I most definitely learned that the hard way. 

As you've probably figured out from the title of this post, I made a jump from accountancy to radio at the very beginning of 2016, and if I'm completely honest? I still can't quite believed that it happened. At the end of 2015, I was the most unhappy I've ever been. Like, I was genuinely miserable and I hated life. I hated my job, I hated the company that I worked for, and I hated my bosses. I cried about 4 times a day, had multiple panic attacks a week and was told to 'get over it' by my manager. Choosing to leave that job, and the whole industry, was without a doubt the best decision I ever made.


I realised that my happiness and wellbeing was far more important than any job. And at the time, part of me felt like I'd failed and was taking a step back, but then I realised that it had made me understand exactly what I wanted, or didn't want, from my next job. I wanted to be in a more creative environment, surrounded by creative and like minded people who shared the same goals, values and interests that I did. I wanted to be somewhere fun, exciting and a place where I could be me.

The media industry seemed like the perfect fit for me, and after multiple (unsuccessful) applications and interviews for social media & digital marketing jobs, I came across this job in radio that was practically made for me. I'm not even kidding when I tell you that I did a little happy dance when I saw the job description because the core skill set for this job was exactly what I'd been writing on all my applications previous. It was creative and analytical. It was in an industry that I was already curious about and it was exciting. Needless to say, I screamed down the phone at my Mum when I was offered the job because I was just so bloomin' happy!

I'd proved something to myself that 6 months before, I'd thought was impossible. But I'd done it. And from that point, I was determined to make an absolute success of it.


So, how do you make a career change?

K N O W  W H A T  Y O U  D O N ' T  W A N T.

I think one of the huge things that helped me, was that realisation of exactly what I didn't want. Kinda like when you go through a break up and you realise what you don't want in your next boyf? That. I was actually offered a job 2 weeks before I was offered the one I took, but there was just that little niggle at the back of my mind that was telling me I wasn't going to be happy. There were too many similarities to where I'd just come from, and the last thing I wanted was to go through it all again. So, thanks to wonderful advice and support from my Mamma, I declined the job offer. Even though I needed a new job so, so badly, I wasn't prepared to take anything less than what I wanted. And I normally get what I want. ;)

T R A N S F E R A B L E   S K I L L S.

No matter what job or career you've come from, you'll have picked up more transferrable skills than you realise. Focus on these, and apply your other experiences to prove to your prospective employer that you'd be able to smash the job as well as anyone else. Things like teamwork, leadership, initiative, adaptability (this is a key one), time management and motivation are all wonderful examples to have.

B E  P R E P A R E D  T O  T A K E  A  S T E P  B A C K.

But it's not really a step back. When I was looking for my next job, I understood that I might've had to start again. I wasn't ruling out traineeships for the right job, as I knew that if I was going to really have to start fresh, there was a chance I'd have to work my way up from the bottom again. But it was something that I was more than willing to do if it was a career that I was going to love, and it felt right. 


Personally, I don't think it's ever too late to make a career change. If you want to do it, do it. Because like I said the beginning of this post, you'll never be really happy unless you're happy with your job. And if you're constantly thinking about trying something else, it's probably a sign that you should.

I promise you that it's not as scary as you think.

Soph

F E A T U R E D

Featured in this post are also these beaut Sudio Sweden headphones that were very kindly sent to me. Working in radio, I absolutely love them because I now fit in with the rest of the headphone wearing lot in the studios and the office. I chose the white ones (obvs), and I can't even tell you how much I love wearing them. I've always just used the headphones that came with my phone, but now I've made the switch to wireless, I'm never going back!

If you would like to grab yourself some (and I would v much highly recommend), you can use the code SOPHIEROSIE15 for 15% off!
13 reasons why you absolutely need to have a blog.

13 reasons why you absolutely need to have a blog.

Okay, so this may sound dramatic, but I am in no doubt that blogging has absolutely changed my life. Not only has it allowed me to develop new skills, it's given me invaluable friendships, and it's helped me to get to where I am in my career. It enabled me to get out of a job that I hated and into an industry that I love, and it's brought me some of the best and most fun experiences and opportunities.

Like everyone, I've had a number of different hobbies in my 23 years of life, but none of them have quite brought as much positivity and satisfaction as my blog has. I started blogging 2 1/2 years ago as a kind of personal journal to document my life, my thoughts, my outfits, just anything. I never in a million years expected it to get to where it is now, and I have no plans to stop anytime soon. It may not be the biggest or best blog in the blogosphere, but it's my little blog and I love it. 

And so, here are 13 professional and personal reasons why you should most definitely have a blog.



B E C O M E  A  B E T T E R  W R I T E R 

As with anything, the more you do it, the better you become at it. And one of the core parts of blogging is of course, the words that go along with all of the pretty pictures. Writing is a skill that we'll always need, it's one of the most used forms of communication that we use every day; tweeting, Instagram captioning, emailing - it all requires a different form of writing skill in order to capture your audience. So, whether you're preparing a presentation at work or writing for yourself, blogging will naturally make you a better writer and communicator.

Y O U  H A V E  A  P L A T F O R M. 

And not just any platform, but your very own platform. Somewhere to use your voice if you so wish, for anything that you like. Talk about your interests and things that you're passionate about. Write down your thoughts and opinions or just chat about your life. Showcase your talents, your photography, and show people what makes you, you. Or don't talk about any of that. The beauty of blogging is that there are no rules - make the most of it.

Y O U  M E E T  N E W  P E O P L E.

I briefly mentioned this at the beginning of this post, and I talk about this a lot whenever anyone asks about my blog, but one of the best things about blogging is the people that you meet. The blogging community is huge, there are so many like minded people out there ready to strike up random conversations with you on Twitter, to meet you at events and become a whole new support network. Oh, and actual friends. So many of my closest friends now are from blogging, and I couldn't be more thankful for that.

B E  P A R T  O F  T H E  1%.

I read somewhere (I think it was on the Huffington Post?) that only 1% of people on the internet create content. 9% will interact with or react to it, while the other 90% of people simply consume it. It's pretty cool being part of that 1%, right? And it will most definitely make you stand out.

C R E A T E  A N  O N L I N E  D I A R Y.

Who doesn't love to look back on years gone by and reminisce on everything. The clothes you wore, the things you did, how you felt, the people you used to know, and just generally see how much your life has changed and how far you've come. I started this blog just for that, as a kind of online diary and it's one of the reasons I will always throw personal posts in here. I think it's going to be so, so great to look back on.  

S E L F - C O N F I D E N C E.

Blogging has done wonders for my self-confidence. It's made me comfortable with putting myself out there, it's made me confident enough to walk into a room full of strangers and strike up conversation. Whether you have just 1 reader, or 1 million,  blogging opens you and your life up to the outside world, and you'll become more comfortable with being 'known' by a whole community, and you'll get less nervous with every blog post or Instagram of yourself.



E X T R A  M O N E Y.

I'm just gonna stress that this should most definitely not be the only reason that you start personal blogging, or your highest priority. But, it's still a perk. However, if you're blogging for business, or you have a business plan around monetising from an online space, it's definitely possible with a lot of hard work. If you're a personal blogger, getting approached for brand collabs that pay, is one of the best feelings, and it also shows off a little bit of your entrepreneurship.

I T  F E E L S  G O O D.

And it's addictive. The number of times I refresh my stats page to see if I've had another view or another comment on my latest post is probably quite insane. But it really does actually gives you a little rush every time you get a positive comment on one your posts. It's truly lovely.

O N L I N E  W O R K  P O R T F O L I O.

Just like a blog can be a form of an online diary, it can also be like an online CV. Blogging and writing about things that are relevant to your industry or career, or the job that you want to get into, is an instant win with potential employers. It's a way of showing that you're passionate and that you're willing to spend your own time building relevant experience. And, you never know, you may just be able to teach your boss a thing or two about blogging and social media to help their own business!

I N S P I R E.

My creativity and inspiration levels sky-rocketed when I started blogging. But as well as it doing wonders for yourself, you have the chance to inspire others through your own work and creativity. That's pretty amazing, don't you think?

L I F E  S K I L L S.

As well as writing, blogging helps you develop all sorts of skills. From time management, to photography and editing, to social media, having to know your finances and showing you can commit to a project. Being a blogger means you have to master a multitude of professions all in one go. Oh, and you'll probably be able to reel off the menu of your fave coffee shop from spending so much time in there, too. 

B E  A  B E T T E R  T H I N K E R.

I've always been a thinker, too much of a thinker, if you ask my friends. But I've always been a thinker. Blogging requires you to the think, to think about what you're going to write, about how to get your thoughts onto paper and just generally about everything that you have to say. And I can guarantee that you have more to say than you think. 

I T 'S  F R E E.

And finally, one of the best things about blogging is that it's completely free. I wrote a post here about how you don't have to spend a penny in order to create and maintain a blog. Blogging is free, it's fun, and it brings all of the benefits (and more) that I've just mentioned.

Soph

What it's like being a ~very~ young professional.

What it's like being a ~very~ young professional.

I didn't do the Uni thing. At 18, instead of heading to University, I headed straight into the big, adult, and (very) corporate world. I had an office to go to and I had clients. I had to wear business dress every day and be up at 5.30am. I had a 2 hour commute (each way) and I had meetings. I had a manger and we reported to the partners of the firm. Basically think Suits but much less fun. Although tbh if there was a partner like Harvey Specter I probably wouldn't have left this job tbh. ;)

I stayed in this job for 3 1/2 years until I wanted to do something more fun, more creative, more me, and somehow landed myself a job in radio. Fast forward another year and a half and I've just moved down to London to take up a role as Digital Services Manager for the biggest commercial radio group. And I love it.


Being in this position at still only 23 is amazing. I feel very lucky for the opportunities I've been offered but I also know that I've worked really hard to get to where I am. And while there are many pro's to this, my age along with the fact that I'm a girl and I look about 12, there were a fair few cons to this, too. 

It's a lot harder to be taken seriously. | I don't really find many of these in radio, because well, radio is awesome. But when I was in my old job, it was pretty much a daily occurrence. People who are higher up in a business, particularly clients, will take one look at you and think that they can just walk all over you because you're young. They presume that you'll do everything that they say, that you have no experience or knowledge and it used to drive me insane. 

People can be a lot more strict with you. | You may have only stopped by your friends desk for 2 minutes to ask what they're doing for lunch, but it'll be presumed that you're just trying to avoid doing your work and you'll get stared down right back into your seat. But y'know, it's totally cool when your older colleagues do this because it's good internal networking and all that. 

You get 'I bet you don't even remember xxx!' a lot. | Actually yes Janet, I do remember dial up Internet, cassette tapes and I was around for the Spice Girls. I may look like I'm 12, but I'm not. 

People at the same level as you presume that they're better because they're older. | This one. This one drives me even more nuts. We are at the same level professionally. So clearly someone, somewhere, thinks I'm just as capable at my job as you are. So please don't be all patronising, try and delegate your work to me or act like you're in charge. I'm more than happy to work alongside you, if you are.


However, there are a lot of pros!

Most people actually do respect you, a lot. | When they find out your age and what you must've done to get here, most people actually do respect you, your place in the team and your decisions. It generally starts with a 'oh, I couldn't have done that at your age!', but as I say to everyone - of course you could. We can all do anything we put our minds to, right?!

Surprising people is the best feeling. | I wrote a little post here about proving people wrong, and it's a similar thing. People underestimating what you can do, and then you showing them just how much they did indeed, underestimate you, is the best. It's a total confidence boost and can really make you believe in yourself a lot more.

Life skills & experiences. | There's no doubt that I wouldn't be where I am today if I hadn't had the experiences that I have. Being thrown into the adult world suddenly is very scary, but it also means you have to learn very quickly, and there really isn't a downside to this.

Getting ahead in your career. | Again, there's really no downside to this. I've always been rather career driven, and getting a good job has always been a priority for me that I've wanted to work hard for and it's one that I'll continue to work towards.

If you're a young professional, let me know if you can relate to any of these! I'd love to swap stories & hear your experiences!

Soph

I'm just tired.

I'm just tired.


It's only 10am and today has already not been my day. I've somehow misplaced my headphones so I couldn't listen to music on the tube, I've found a hole in my top that I only bought 2 weeks ago, a coffee date with a friend that I was v much looking forward to has been cancelled, so I'm now sat in a coffee shop by myself typing this instead. However, the trainee barista made my coffee practically cold (and I don't have the energy to go downstairs to get him to make another one), the wifi isn't working so who even knows if this, or any of my other posts are going to ever save, the Instagram algorithm is really getting on my tits now and oh, I've had about 4 breakdows about whether I'm doing the right thing or not, and I kinda just want to jump on the train and go home. Except I can't because I haven't been paid in over 6 weeks so I can't afford the train fare.

*breathe*

Do you know when things just all start getting on top of you, and then the smallest of things can make you break? Yeah, that. I'm just tired, right now. I'm physically and emotionally tired. I'm tired of feeling all over the place and I'm tired of feeling like I've lost myself a little. I'm tired of feeling alone over the last few weeks, I'm tired of things constantly going wrong and I'm tired of people not taking me seriously when I'm trying to tell them that I'm really struggling and need their help.

Maybe I'm being a little harsh here, becuase actually, I have a few amazing people that have really tried to lift me up and help me over the last week or so. And I'm very grateful to have those people right now. In fact, I'm not entirely sure what I would have done without them. But then, I'm about to lose one of these people very soon and I don't even know how I'm going to cope when that happens. So much so, that I'm just trying not to think about it because it hurts too much. 

Many of you tell me that you come to read my blog becuase it's always positive and uplifting. And I love that, and it's always been something that I've wanted to create. But I also made a promise that I'd always be honest and I'd always be 'real'. I'm sorry that this post isn't very positive and isn't very uplifting. But life isn't always easy and we all have days, weeks, or months when life isn't all happy and rosy. 

I'm not even entirely sure what the purpose of this post is, I guess I just needed to write to calm myself down. I hope you don't mind.

Soph

Live kindly.

Live kindly.

Live kindly. I saw these two words on a poster as I was walking around London this weekend, and something about them just really resonated with me, and the phrase has stuck with me ever since. There's so much meaning wrapped up in these two simple words, and they could probably mean such different things to different people.

When we think of living kindly, I think it's quite easy to jump to the assumption that this has to involve big gestures, but for me, it's sometimes the smallest of things that can make the biggest difference to your own, or someone else's day.

We should live kindly for others, but also for ourselves, too.


When I started thinking about this, I realised that we should start with ourselves. Live kindly for yourself. Don't dwell on the past or on things that are out of your control. Don't compare yourself to others. Don't think of yourself in a negative way or put yourself down. Spend time being kind to yourself, because just like you'll never get the best out of anyone else by constantly putting them down, you'll never be your best self if you don't start being kind to you.

I've recently found that it's when things get hard, you really start to notice the smallest acts of kindness around you. Whether it be a friend simply listening to your struggles and saying the things that they know you need to hear to push you on. Or someone remembering your morning coffee order, or simply just smiling at you when you're having a bad day. There are so many little things that we can do to live kindly. 

Send someone an unexpected text message telling them that you're thinking of them, check in on someone you haven't spoken to in a while, leave someone a nice comment on their Instagram photo who you may not normally interact with. If it would make you smile, it'll probably make someone else smile.

It literally costs nothing to be kind, so why don't we start making this a new life mantra?

Soph

5 European cities I want to visit next year.

5 European cities I want to visit next year.


Okay, so I know you've probably read that title and thought; 'Soph you've still got half of this year left yet - go this year?' and I know, I so wish I could jet off somewhere in the next few months because goodness knows I could do with a little break from life. However, I want to wait until I'm fully settled  in London, and I also want to save up a little bit for the rest of this year, so that I can experience everywhere properly. Because as my boss noticed the other day, I don't like to do things by halves. If I'm gonna do something, I'mma do it properly.

That doesn't mean I haven't started putting my wishlist together already though! I've never really 'travelled'. I mean, I've been on holiday to beautiful beaches for a week or two, but I've never really explored any of Europe. So, this is what I want to do. I've started to read more travel posts recently, and it's inspired me to think about where I'd love to visit in 2018. 


P A R I S


Paris is somewhere that I've wanted to visit ever since I was about 7 years old, after all the Mary-Kate and Ashley Passport to Paris movie vibes. It's only 2 (and a little bit) hours on the Eurostar, it's the worlds most romantic city, and let's not even get me started on the architecture that I could spend my days wandering around and photographing. 

I also, of course, would like to go (window) shopping, and visit as many local cafe's as possible to sit in the sun, read the newspaper, drink coffee and eat croissants, because apparently they taste better in Paris. I want to stroll around the gardens of the Palace of Fountainebleau, visit The Louvre, The Eiffel Tower, and walk down The Champs-Elysées and do everything else that a tourist should do on their first visti to this beautiful city.

V E N I C E


I think every single photo that I've ever seen of Venice has been so beautiful and colourful. I want to take a trip on a gondola or the waterbus (I love boats), I want to visit St Mark's Square and I want to see the Canal Grande in the evening when it's all lit up and looking magical. I want to learn about the rich history of this city and see the Rialto Bridge and then, of course, go find the shops that line both sides of the canal.

I've not visited yet, but Venice just seems like no other city in the world, and it's most definitely on my list of places I have to visit soon.

C O P E N H A G E N


My flatmate visited Copenhagen at Christmas and oh my, her photo's are so wonderful and you can literally feel the cosiness and hygge oozing out of them at that time of year. Apparently, you don't fully understand hygge until you've visited Copenhagen, so this is definitely up there on my reasons to visit this city.

I want to go visit the harbour (again, boats.), and experience the city from the water as well as on a bike, because well, if I'm going to explore a city on a bicycle, it's going to be here or Amsterdam, right? I want to photograph the castles and the museums, the old streets and all of the historical buildings I can find, and just really experience the culture here. The people of Copenhagen are the happiest people in the world, so I'm gonna go make some friends and figure out their secret!

M I L A N


Being the architectural lover and geek that I am, Milan would be like my own little heaven. From The Duomo (Milan's gothic cathedral) with it's 135 spires and 500 years in the making, the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, or the Piazza dei Mercanti, I'm 100% sure I'd love this city and would come back with thousands more photo's than I'd care to admit.

Oh, and obviously I'd go shopping too. Not sure I could visit one of the top fashion capitals of the world and not go shopping.

A M S T E R D A M

 
My PT (lol, remember when I had one of those?!) went to Amsterdam last year, and all he came back saying was how amazing all of the sweet treats were and how much he'd eaten on his trip, and to be quite honest, I was already sold just from this. Like most of the cities I've mentioned, I'd head straight to the canal and take a canal cruise as it's meant to be one of the best ways to see the city. 

I've always been fascinated with the story of Anne Frank, so I want to make sure that I make time to visit the Anne Frank house as well as take in and learn about as much of the city's history as I can. Amsterdam is known for it's artistic heritage and charming atmosphere, and while I would obviously spend a lot of time exploring, I think this is one city that I'd also be happy finding a wonderful coffee shop and watch the world go by.


I may be a little optimistic in wanting to visit all of these places in one year, but even if I get to see just a few next year, I'll be a very happy gal.

Where in the world would you like to explore?

Soph