24 things I did before turning 24

As an aspiring writer, my mood about what my intentions are for the future vary like tidal waves. Mostly, I’m pleased to say, I’m very happy with my progress and confident in my ambitions to strive for goal and ignore (mostly) negative judgement along the way. However, sometimes (sometimes this is a lot) I need that little nudge in the right direction to remind myself of all I have achieved, all that is good about my life and remember how bright the future remains.

Reading other blogs which I frequently do, I came across a lovely idea for a post where the author of The Wellbeing Blogger has written 30 things that they had achieved before turning 30. Not only did this make me smile, giving me an idea for this week’s blog post, it also was an interesting way of looking at life from a different angle.

Everybody, particularly in their early years before lives are settled and anything is certain, has fear of comparison. They compare themselves to others and if they’ve not reached certain goals by certain ages then it’s all doom and gloom until they’ve sunk a bottle of wine and nothing matters anymore. Definitely speaking from experience here!

Yet life isn’t always so smooth and predictable. If you wish to have children by thirty then great, but it may take you a lot longer to conceive than you expect. If you wish to get married by twenty eight then the right man may come along at thirty one, but that is still ok. If you want your career to kick off at twenty three then brilliant and go ahead and try, but often these things take time and if you are striving to make a career out of what you love then what more can you do?

All I’m saying is (and what the fabulous post I read made me realise was) that sometimes it is better to look at life from the enlightening angle of all that you’ve achieved and all of the good things so far, rather than focus on things that are yet to happen and may never happen in the future.

Basically, I think we all need a little reminder that we’re doing a grand job at this wonderful thing we call life and here is mine!

By the age of 24 I…

  1. had a fabulous childhood
  2. made brilliant friends
  3. passed my driving test
  4. skydived over The Great Barrier Reef
  5. appreciated my home, England
  6. did good deeds for others
  7. obtained a degree
  8. gave my smile to a stranger
  9. traveled New Zealand
  10. read lots
  11. inter-railed around Europe
  12. loved dogs
  13. maintained a job and juggled all my work
  14. held a Koala in Oz
  15. found the positive in every day
  16. had my writing published both online and in print
  17. wrote a novel
  18. raised money for charity
  19. made drunken memories
  20. realised the importance of being myself and loving people for who they are too
  21. had confidence about my future
  22. learnt to care less about what others think (though I’m still working on that…)
  23. found the huge benefits in meditation and yoga
  24. had faith

Health and Lifestyle: tips from an amateur

I am no health ambassador and no way am I claiming to be one, especially having just consumed a cheeseburger followed by a Crunchie chocolate bar – delicious! However, recently I have been trying to lose a bit of weight as well as making myself healthier all round, so here are a few tips that I have found useful.

Black coffee

At home I have always drank black coffee, but at work and while out I often treat myself to a flat white or – even worse – a cappuccino. I never thought much about the difference that a splash of milk would make until the other day while at a train station and with a few minutes to spare I bought myself a brew. Looking at the menu, I was gobsmacked to see that a flat white has almost 200 calories in it whereas a black coffee has just 1.

I’m not one to calorie count, but this was an easy change to make to my diet and has definitely contributed to my shaping up (as I am yet to attend boot camp or anything of the sort since I started).

A few nights off the drink

This one was more for my overall health benefits as opposed to solely losing weight. I mean, just change wine for gin and tonic if that’s your goal!

Since I started ‘being good’ I have made Monday and Tuesday nights alcohol free and stuck to water, or if I felt extravagant, then Hot Chocolate. After a hard days work I admit that a glass of wine is oh so tempting, but once I got into the routine which happened quicker than I thought it would, I actually didn’t mind.

But boy do I look forward to Wednesday evenings and my first drink of the week!


I started attending a Yoga class three weeks ago and aside from the many physical health benefits that it has upon my body, the thing I notice the most is how much it relaxes my mind.

Starting at 6:15pm, there isn’t time to settle at home before forcing ourselves to go and we never regret the decision (even if it gets more difficult to drag ourselves down the road each week).

Yoga empties my mind of the to-do lists, the stresses and worries, the future plans and everything in between. As well as stretching my body throughout, strengthening it and releasing tension, I leave every yoga class feeling totally refreshed, relaxed and (it being on a Wednesday) EXTREMELY ready for a cold glass of Sav.

Choosing to walk

Another subtle change I have made to my lifestyle recently is ditching the car where possible and choosing to walk from place to place. Luckily my work is walking distance from my house, as are many places that I socialise at. Rather than noticing the time and jumping in my Ford Focus, I simply walk faster and feel better for it.

I walk daily with my friend anyway and love it, but by doing that extra bit it makes all the difference to my well-being.

Plenty of water

Drinking plenty of water is another key to good health and losing weight. I have a one litre bottle that I carry with me at all times and I try to drink at least two of these daily.

By doing this, when I remember to do it properly, I notice that I’m hungry less frequently, I feel more energized and rarely get the headaches that I would if I were drinking more coffee, fizzy drinks or Ribena, for example.


It’s not always about taking drastic measures and trying extreme dieting alongside silly amounts of exercise. Of course that helps, but I have seen good changes (and received day-making comments) from the subtle changes I have made.

As with everything in life it’s all down to choice, and I realise fully that I am no expert at this healthy living lark, but these are some of the choices I have made and they have all contributed to a continuing big difference to me.