Unspoken Conversations are the topics that are often swept under the carpet, whispered amongst the closest of friends and bitched about by many. I want to create awareness about difficult things that people face in life; grief, mental health, money, illnesses, family troubles, relationship difficulties and putting yourself first. I want to tell the truth about things that really matter.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Facebook; Why I'm Culling My Friends List

It was a thought provoking and passionate discussion over a few too many wines the other night that got me thinking about the role that Facebook plays in my life.

"Hi, my name is Kirsty,  and I'm 100% addicted to Facebook. The first thing I do in the morning and the last thing that I do at night,  is scroll through my news feed,  checking out the goss and I'm even known for taking my phone on the toilet for a good old facestalk".

But why? Why is it that admittedly, I spend my "spare time stalking?" What is it that I'm looking for or hope to find? Do I really have 500+ friends?

Why did I join Facebook in the first place?

Well....I joined because;

-I saw the potential to share my life, photographs and adventures with my friends and family.

-It's cheaper then sending picture messages.

-I could stay connected to my friends overseas.

-It was a great platform to share my blog with a wider audience.

In an essence, I loved Facebook because I saw the potential that it had to strengthen the relationships around me, especially as we all started going our own ways and could no longer pop around to each others houses to share stories and photos over coffee.

But somewhere along the way my view of Facebook has been tarnished and I couldn't pinpoint why until recently.

I actually think that Facebook is starting to do an injustice to relationships.

What on earth do I mean by that?

Well, once upon a time the only people who knew about your overseas adventures,  latest renovations and purchases, excitement about your child's achievements,  and shared the intimate details of your life were your closest friends and family.

And how did your closest friends come by this information?

You'd arrange a catch up date soon after you'd touched back down in Australia to whip out your slideshow of overseas photos, pop open a bottle of champers,  and elaborately share the details of the time you got lost in Rome, or the disgusting snails you ate in Paris, or when you almost got ran over by the crazy motorbikes in Saigon.

Or as soon as your baby pulled themselves up on their own two feet you'd pick up the phone and tell your best friend, stoked that your child has reached a new milestone, and you'd laugh about hiding everything within arms reach and the craziness that comes with independence.

Now, how many times when you catch up with someone and they begin a conversation with excitement and emotion about the journey they've been on do you find yourself saying, "yeah I know,  I saw it in Facebook" to which the person goes "oh yeah" and the conversation turns to something else?

What are we missing out on here?

Connecting emotionally with another human being?

Do we make as much effort to see our friends and family now that we're "so connected on Facebook" or do we feel as though we "see them enough" and "know what's going on in their life" because they pop up in our news feed?

Do you still arrange to catch up with friends when they return from their holiday to hear about the stories,  excitement and adventures they faced on their trip that can't be captured in photos and tag lines on Facebook?

What are we missing out on here?

But it also got me thinking that perhaps it's not just our close friends who miss out on "emotionally connecting with us" and being fortunate enough to share our lives with us, that maybe it's also impacting our ability to create lasting relationships with other people?

What do I mean by this?

Well, when once upon a time we would've stopped in our tracks in the street to catch up and say hi to someone we hadn't seen in ages, now do we just walk on by because we already "know what's going on in their life" because we've seen it on Facebook?

Are we jumping to conclusions and closing ourselves off to meeting new people and engaging in conversations because we already know about their life?

What are we missing out on here?

Engaging in conversations and making the time in our lives to stop and say hello because our newsfeed keeps us up to date?

I've come to the conclusion that I value getting to know someone face to face,  rather then feeling like I know them through their newsfeed updates.

I've come to realize that the reason I love seeing the photos of my close friends lives popping up on my facebook is because I know the story behind the photograph.

I know the person isn't taking the photos to brag about their life, or to create a false pretension for what's really going on behind the scenes,  I know that I can laugh, cry, empathize and pray for my close friends when photos, quotes and "news" pops up because I have a relationship with that person off of Facebook; Facebook only helps to strengthen my love for that person because I get to share photos and stories that are otherwise more expensive and difficult to share when you live away from each other.

So I've decided that I'm going to cull my Facebook friend list to only those whom I have a relationship with off of Facebook, so that if by chance I see you in the street and I haven't spoken to you in ages, I'll stop and say hello and hear about your life from you; and it'll give our relationship a chance to become personalized.

So don't be offended if you don't make the cut, take it as a compliment that I want the opportunity to get to know you past the pictures you post in my newsfeed.

Don't forget that if you love my blog you can stay connected by searching for regular posts online!

And to my close friends, I look forward to sharing my life with you xx

What do you think?

Look after yourselves and those around you,

Kirsty xxx

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Everyday is an Opportunity

Everyday is an opportunity to make a change,  turn an "I wish" into a "can do" and make a difference.

What are you going to do today?

Look after yourself and those around you,

Kirsty xxx

Monday, 3 November 2014

Anxiety; It's Different This Time - Two Months On

I have come to some sort of understanding with my anxiety; a change of thinking that I know will help me in the future.

I used to fear anxiety; loathe and dread the feelings that would consume my body and mind making the simplest of tasks challenging conquests.

But something has changed; I've learnt to accept that anxiety is an emotion, yes an extreme emotion, and often an unpleasant one, but as with all feelings I know that this one will come and go throughout my life and is not a permanent fixture.

I know the signs to look out for;
-loss of appetite
-heart racing
-hot flushes
-inability to sleep
-loss of confidence
-inability to concentrate
-ruminating negative thoughts

I have more  self awareness. I know my own body and I know when I'm becoming run down, tired and stressed. After seeming somewhat on top of things for four years since my depression, I've learnt that I can't become complacent with listening to my body, as alarm bells were ringing this time around wayyy before the anxiety kicked in, I just chose to ignore them and kept battling on.

I've learnt that it's okay not to feel happy and in control all of the time; it doesn't mean that your life is spiraling down the drain, it's just your bodies way of saying hey you, what do we have to do around hear to be heard; we're making your heart race, preventing you from sleep, sending your brain round and round in circles - listen up?!" Unfortunately were becoming less resilient to feelings of sadness because we only ever see happy images on our screens. Sadness, like happiness, will come and go through out your life - no one is happy and in control all of the time.

I've learnt to listen to my body.

I've learnt that I'm not invincible; even with my new found assertiveness since becoming sick, my self awareness and my knowledge and understanding of anxiety,  that sometimes,  just sometimes it can still creep up on you.

I've learnt that anxiety doesn't always lead to depression (this has been a HUGE breakthrough for me and one that I am so grateful for). I've learnt the difference between the feelings of anxiety and the feelings of depression. Even though anxiety is crippling, and makes day to day life tough, there is still hope when you have anxiety that tomorrow will be better, there's still glimpses of happiness and moments when you don't feel anxious and you still feel very much alive. Depression is completely different, well the depression that I suffered felt completely different to the anxiety that I have just experienced. 

In a strange way I am grateful for the things that I have learnt this time around as I now have the belief in myself that I can manage the feelings and make them go away without needing expert help, medication and spiraling into a great depression.

I am enough.

I am proud to say that two months on, I am completely anxiety free, and I did it all by myself, just little old me.


My best advice for others out there suffering would be to;

-Do a little research about what anxiety is; knowledge is power and understanding the feelings you are experiencing makes you realize that they are normal, and can be controlled.

-Have some tools in your bag for managing your anxiety; different things work for different people. This time around the "stop sign" really helped for me (whenever a negative thought what enter into my head I'd picture a stop sign - it helps your mind to recognize that it's a negative thought and to try and replace it with something more helpful).

-Don't be afraid to take some time off of work; you're not a failure, you're not ruining the company, and you're certainly not going to be fired, you're just recognizing that your body is stressed and needs some down time.

-Make time in your day for exercise. I'm  the worst person to preach exercise as I'm often caught thinking about it more then actually doing it buttttt after hearing that 30 minutes of walking, 5 times a week is equivalent to a low antidepressant I stopped making excuses. If you're experiencing negative thoughts then it's better to be thinking outside with the distractions of the natural senses rather then being curled up in a dark room; you have to create opportunities for happy thoughts.

-Be honest with how you are feeling with those around you - they won't think differently, they'll just want to help.

-Seek medical advice.

What has anxiety taught you?

Look after yourself and those around you,

Kirsty xxx

Saturday, 1 November 2014

Marriage is a Verb

Definition of a verb; a verb is a doing word. Examples of verbs include; a physical action, a mental action or a state of being. 

A good friend once told me that "marriage is a verb not a noun." While I don't have years of experience on my martial resume,  one year is enough to know that this might just perhaps be the key to unlocking an ever growing and fruitful happiness between two people who joined lives with promises to stand strong in the face of life's woes and wins.

While marriage is one of the most beautiful things that you can ever share with another person, the act of being married doesn't necessary make you happy; it's the continual effort and selflessness that you must show another person to understand and respect their love language and goals so that you can both achieve mutual happiness that builds the foundations of a strong relationship.

There is no doubt that there will be times when you can't wait to snuggle in bed and share your day with your partner and there's times when you'll leave a clear message that the couch is his place of respite for the night with a carefully laid out pillow and doona (okay so pillows and doonas clearly ripped off one bed in haste and frustration and dumped on the couch! )

They'll be times when you're both on the same page working towards a joint goal and other times when you almost feel like you're living separate lives as your energy is used to achieve personal goals.

There's times when you'll feel like a little kid in a candy store giggling over calling each other husband and wife and times when you'll have to stop and remind yourself about what made you fall in love with the person in the first place.

Just like any relationship,  they'll be times when you feel inseparable and times when you just want some god damn space before you lose your shit and start throwing things creating World War 3.

So what holds a marriage together? How can two people,  despite their differences,  faults, personal goals, fights, flaws and passion, makes a relationship last?

Is it love?

Is it commitment?

Is it communication?

Is it respect?

Is it gifts?

Is it actions?

Is it quality time?

Is it physical attraction?

I'm no expert but I think that a strong marriage is determined by something more than love....

Two people can be totally insatiable with each other, yet they might not function as a couple.

Two people can share a bond, a journey and a life time together but they might not feel loved and happy.

Two people can respect, communicate and shower each other in gifts but might not feel loved.

So what is it the "key" to happiness?

Marriage is a verb not a noun; maybe it's as simple and as complicated as putting effort into understanding each others needs and wants so that both people feel loved.

I can not recommend the book The Five Love Languages enough; it seriously saved my relationship when we first moved in together. Understanding that there are 5 different ways to show people that they are loved, and working out which love language your partner is so that you can change your behavior, thoughts and feelings to ensure that your partners "love tank" is full, is just one way that our actions can help to create a strong marriage.

Yes, people enter into marriage for life, but it is still a choice to stay with that person; you owe it to your partner and yourself and do everything in your power to make the foundation of your life; your marriage,  as strong as it can possibly be, so that your love is forever a verb (growing, understanding, evolving, loving) and never a noun.

What do you think?

Do you have any secrets to a successful marriage?

You can buy the book here;


Look after yourself and those around you,

Kirsty xxx