DISCOVER HAPPINESS YOGA

DID WE FIND MUCH TO LAUGH ABOUT OVER THE LAST YEAR ?? My guess is that many of us cannot remember the last time we had a good belly laugh. Many people suffer SAD syndrome during the winter months and laughter seems in short supply. On a positive note (as I always am) I love the first couple of months of the year , a new fresh start, new habits to form, cosy nights in catching up on whole series I missed in my long going out Summer days.

LAUGHTER is something we do often as children but it becomes more infrequent as the seriousness of life takes hold. So my fellow stylistas its time to laugh ……..be loud and proud. Laughing is proven to have many benefits.

  • Relieves physical tension and stress
  • Diffuses anger and conflict. Do this exercise with a partner if there is hidden resentment.
  • Decrease pain.
  • Boosts the immune system
  • Increases blood flow which can strengthen the heart
  • Burns calories
  • Releases endorphins the “happiness drug”

As part of my training in the old days to become a Sound Therapist I had to learn and experience Happiness Yoga or…….Laughter Yoga as it is commonly known. This REALLY works and I GUARANTEE will have you laughing and releasing those feel good hormones and lift your happiness levels and fill your endorphin tubes to the brim. It is such fun if you do it with others but even on your own can start your day off the right way. Equally if you have had a hard day do it in the evening and laugh your way into bed great for relaxation and get rid of the days negative energy.

This is SOOOO good I wanted to share it with you………..

  • No special clothing required . Location your own choice. Get the office involved.
  • We are going to laugh your way up the body.

HUH

Stand with your feet apart shoulders relaxed. Hands on your hips. Bounce your body up and down on your heels. On the out breath vocal a series of rapid HUH, HUH sounds (as in the word hug). Feel your abdominal muscles tightening as you make the sound. Focus the sound into your hip/pelvic area. Rest

HO

Place your hands on your belly. Bounce up and down on your heels. On the out breath utter a series of rapid HO, HO sounds (as in the word holy). Feel your abdominal muscles tightening as you make the sound. Focus the sound in your belly area. Rest

HA

Place your hands on your chest. Bounce your body on your heels. On the out breath vocal a series of rapid HA, HA sounds (as in the word happy). Focus the sound in your chest/heart area. Feel your heart muscles vibrating with the sound. Rest.

HEH

Place your hands on or near your throat. Bounce your body by lifting your heels. on the out breath vocal a series of rapid HEH, HEH sounds (as in the word heaven). Focus the sound in your throat. Rest.

HEE

Bounce your body on your heels. On the out breath vocal a series of rapid HEE HEE sounds (as in the word Heal). Raise your arms above the head as you make the sound. Focus the sound at the top of your head. Rest

FLOW

Use all five sounds at random moving from one sound to another in no particular order. Keep the body moving. When you have finished laughing up and down your body, lie down and rest.

Once you really start laughing its a good idea to keep stamping your feet to keep you grounded and stop getting too light hearted.

If you have enjoyed your Happiness Yoga check out this video we did at The Edinburgh Fringe How TO Laugh More.

Courtesy of SoulJunk-E.com

JOJOS STYLELIST TIP: LAUGHING WHETHER FORCED OR NATURAL HAS EXACTLY THE SAME EFFECT ON OUR ENDORPHINS. TRY IT…..AND OFTEN. COME ON GUYS LETS HAVE AGOOD LAUGH TOGETHER !

Mwah mwah

JOJO XXXXXX

GYM : WHY YOU MAY NOT BE LOSING WEIGHT

All my life I was a gym bunny on a regular basis but never really lost any wait. Since giving up the gym completely 10 years ago and discovering yoga I have lost two stone and kept the weight off to maintain a healthy size 10. I purposely do not belong to a club I do my yoga at home alone or with an occasional instructor so it is part of a daily lifestyle. At 50+ it is tough anyway to lose weight so exercise needs to be a lifestyle change just move as much as possible but more importantly it is about a healthy diet. So lets look at 12 traps that I fell into while going to the gym and they may resonate with some of you going to the gym regularly but getting fatter !



  • Losing weight is 80% what you eat and only 20% exercise. You may not be burning as many calories as you think you must eat less calories.
  • The reward factor. after a heavy workout you may feel “I deserve” a cake or a large latte. Lunch with friends maybe an extra glass of wine. Most gyms have cafes these were lethal for me to head there straight after with my friends.
  • Refuelling with carbs post workout like athletes do except……we are not athletes are we ?
  • Sports drinks are usually on sale at gyms. Manufacturers convince us we need these . We don’t. They are highly calorific and full of sugar. Water will do.
  • On the subject of water drink loads during and after working out as we sometimes mistake thirst for hunger . Dehydration can make us reach for sugary snacks.
  • Do not eat before a workout go when hungry. Insulin will stop the mobilisation of fat.
  • Drink black coffee before a workout it acts as a stimulant. The caffeine releases adrenaline hormones. I have always found my workouts easier with black coffee taken beforehand. Also it surprises the appetite AND no calories.
  • Mix up your workout to trick muscle memory. Doing the same routine every workout your muscles remember and it gets easier for them.
  • Quick 30 minute short bursts of activity won’t get your appetite raging. Endurance training makes you hungrier. By the end of a marathon there is also a huge appetite.
  • Learn to like the feeling of being hungry ! That is when you know you are in deficit and you are fat burning.
  • Eating healthy does not mean you can have twice as much or over indulge. Many healthy foods are calorie laden e.g. avocados,nuts,smoothies,protein bars, wholemeal bread.
  • Studies have shown that many people with a strict exercise routine move less throughout the rest of the day. So it is no good if you go to the gym every day for an hour but don’t move for 23 hours !!

I hope this will help you to avoid some pitfalls around your workout. Maybe you recognised one or two (or even 3 or 4 ??) to answer the question why you are working so hard and not losing weight. Lets kickstart that weightloss today !!!!!

JOJOS STYLE LIST TIP : ANY FORM OF EXERCISE IS IMPORTANT FOR HEART AND BONE HEALTH BUT IF YOU ARE TRYING TO LOSE WEIGHT IT MUST BE COMBINED WITH HEALTHY EATING . NOT A DIET – A LIFESTYLE !

JOJO XXXXXX

A CHRISTMAS MESSAGE

man standing beside christmas tree

HAVE YOURSELF A MERRY “LITTLE” CHRISTMAS

As we are all being encouraged to stay safe this Christmas with substantially reduced christmases around the world it can still be a fabulous day. In a year where we have learned a lot about ourselves and what is important to us it can make this Christmas even more poignant as we reflect on 2020.

With vaccines being rolled out and hope that the Coronavirus will eventually burnout like other viruses do the light is at the end of the tunnel and we can start to plan for a brighter and exciting future.

So wherever you are spending Christmas we have all got through this together and we look forward to huge celebrations with our friends and family that have been postponed. But really enjoy a less stressful and more quiet and meaningful Christmas this year . Remember to call those that are alone at this time.

A big thank you to all my readers for your support and I am always grateful for the appreciation of the words I write with much thought and care.

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL XXXXXXX

VIRTUAL HUGS TO EACH AND EVERYONE OF YOU

continuously optimistic

MWAH MWAH XXXXXX
JOJO

HOW TO BE ALONE AT CHRISTMAS

IF YOU ARE ALONE AT CHRISTMAS BY PERSONAL CIRCUMSTANCES OR BEING FORCED INTO SPENDING CHRISTMAS ALONE BECAUSE OF THE COVID CRISIS AND HAVING TO MAKE A DIFFICULT DECISION BASED ON HEALTH , I WANT TO SHOW YOU HOW CHRISTMAS CAN STILL BE EXTRA SPECIAL. HERE IS YOUR SURVIVAL GUIDE…….

christmas presents under a christmas tree

THROUGH MY OWN PERSONAL CIRCUMSTANCES I WAS FORCED INTO MANY A SOLITARY CHRISTMAS AS A SINGLE MUM. SPENDING EVERY OTHER YEAR WITH HIS DAD WAS EXTREMELY HARD TO DEAL WITH AND I DID NOT REALLY FEEL LIKE CELEBRATING SO I WOULD TAKE MYSELF OFF TO A LUXURY HOTEL AND HAVE ROOM SERVICE IN BED ALL DAY. THEN SPEND ALL BOXING DAY IN THE SPA. SO STILL MANAGED TO MAKE FOND MEMORIES.

MANY PEOPLE I KNOW WOULD REJOICE AT SPENDING CHRISTMAS ALONE SO LETS SEE IF WE CAN GIVE YOU SOME GOOD TIPS ON ENJOYING THE “BIG’ DAY AND MAKING IT SPECIAL

  • FIRSTLY YOU COULD DO WHAT I DID AND JUST TREAT YOURSELF TO A FEW NIGHTS IN A SUMPTUOUS HOTEL. LET SOMEONE ELSE DO THE COOKING !! MAKE SURE THE HOTEL HAS A SPA TO SPOIL YOU ROTTEN.
  • IF STAYING HOME ALONE. SET THE SCENE. MAKE SURE THE HOUSEWORK IS ALL DONE . YOUR HOME IS TIDY NO WASHING AND IRONING PILES. LOTS OF CANDLES. COSY BLANKETS. LOVELY XMAS TREE. MAKE AN EFFORT ….FOR YOU….YOU DESERVE IT.
cat lying on cloth
  • IF YOU DECIDE TO HAVE A DECADENT DAY IN YOUR PJS TREAT YOURSELF TO SOME GLAMOROUS ONES. SEE BELOW FOR SOME SUGGESTIONS. (IF YOU CANNOT SEE THE IMAGES CLICK ON THE URL LINK AT THE BASE OF THIS PAGE)
  • JOJOS PICKS :
  • TREAT YOURSELF TO SOME LOVELY FOOD AS YOU ARE ONLY SHOPPING FOR ONE YOU CAN GO ALL OUT. TRY M&S STUFFED TURKEY PAUPIETTES WRAPPED IN BACON. AS YOU WON’T WANT A WHOLE TURKEY. SMOKED SALMON. CAVIAR. YES THE MORE EXTRAVAGANT THE BETTER !
  • AND DON’T FORGET THE CHAMPAGNE. BUY MINI BOTTLES OF A GOOD LABEL AS YOU DO NOT WANT TO DRINK TOO MUCH WHEN YOU ARE ON YOUR OWN. THE CHAMPAGNE COMPANY (thechampagnecompany.com)SELL MINI BOTTLES OF LAURENT PERRIER FOR £10 EACH .MY FRIDGE IS STOCKED FULL OF THESE FOR WHEN I WANT ONE AT BATHTIME ! SO GOODBYE TO DAY OLD FLAT CHAMPAGNE .
close up photo of wine glass
  • PUT ON THE CHRISTMAS MUSIC IN THE MORNING !! LIFT YOUR SPIRITS WITH A GOOD DANCE AROUND THE HOUSE. GOOD EXERCISE TOO !
cheerful elderly man listening to music in headphones
  • PLAN YOUR MOVIE AFTERNOON SCHEDULE. REMEMBER THERE IS ONLY YOU TO PLEASE. YOUR CHOICE ! SNUGGLE UNDER YOUR FUR BLANKET ON THE SOFA. PLUS YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SHARE THAT CHRISTMAS CHOCOLATE EITHER.
  • DO NOT FORGET THE PRESENTS. SO SELF GIFTING IS A MUST AND AT LEAST YOU KNOW WHAT YOU LIKE. SELF GIFTING MEANS NO RE GIFTING !!! WRAP THEM BEAUTIFULLY PRIOR TO THE DAY .
  • GET OUT IN NATURE FOR A LONG WALK IN THE FRESH AIR. APPRECIATE THE COLOURS , THE BIRDSONG AND THE PEACE AND JOY OF THE BEAUTY THAT SURROUNDS YOU ON THIS WONDROUS DAY.
  • PLAN A ZOOM PARTY WITH YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY IF YOU CANNOT BE WITH THEM THIS CHRISTMAS. SCHEDULE A TIME IN ADVANCE.
  • IT CAN BE A DIFFICULT TIME AND IF DURING THE DAY YOU GET A TOUCH OF THE BLUES DO NOT FORGET THE TRIED AND TESTED “GRATITUDE LIST”. LIST 5 THINGS YOU ARE GRATEFUL FOR AND FOCUS ON THOSE. THERE IS MUCH TO BE GRATEFUL FOR. PLAN YOUR GOALS FOR 2021 IF YOU WANT TO MAKE CHANGES THIS CAN EXCITE YOU.

SO THERE YOU HAVE IT YOUR PLAN FOR A FABULOUS CHRISTMAS ALONE. AS A SELF CONFESSED CHRISTMAS FANATIC I PROMISE YOU IT CAN STILL BE A MAGICAL TIME. NO ARGUMENTS, NO SLAVING AWAY IN THE KITCHEN, NO MISSING YOUR FAVOURITE MOVIES. THINK OF IT AS A POSITIVE TIME. IN FACT AFTER READING THIS ARTICLE I CAN SENSE THE HOLLY GREEN ENVY AS PEOPLE ABANDON THEIR CHRISTMAS PLANS GLOBALLY ! AS LONG AS IT IS NOT YOU SPORTING GRINCH GREEN!!

Don,t be a Grinch this Christmas !

JOJOS STYLELIST TIP: IF YOU THINK IT IS GOING TO BE TOUGH FOR YOU THIS CHRISTMAS DESPITE ALL THE ABOVE EXCITEMENT PLEASE REMEMBER IT IS JUST ONE DAY IT TOO SHALL PASS. AT LEAST YOU WILL BE STAYING SAFE AND HEALTHY . THE PARTICULAR XMAS THEME FOR 2020 .

MWAH MWAH

JOJO XXXXXX

DISCOVER PAVILION RD CHELSEA FOR CHRISTMAS SHOPPING

ONE OF MY FAVOURITE STREETS FOR ALL MY CHRISTMAS SHOPPING NEEDS IS LONDONS BEST KEPT SECRET ……..PAVILION ROAD.

LOCATED JUST OFF SLOANE SQUARE LIT UP WITH PRETTY CHRISTMAS LIGHTS AND AWAY FROM THE MASSES OF CROWDS USUALLY ENCOUNTERED AT THIS TIME OF YEAR. PERFECT FOR SOCIAL DISTANCING. ALSO ENABLES YOU TO GET EVERYTHING IN ONE MILE FROM FOOD TO GIFTS AVOIDING BUSY DEPARTMENT STORES AND SUPERMARKETS. ALSO IMMENSELY MORE ENJOYABLE AS IT IS SO DICKENSIAN , THE EPITOME OF CHRISTMAS.

GOOD FOR EXCLUSIVE SHOPPING AT ANY TIME OF THE YEAR BUT I PROMISE YOU YOU CAN GET ALL YOUR CHRISTMAS SHOPPING IN ONE 1 MILE STRETCH OF ROAD HERE.

BRING BACK PLEASURABLE SHOPPING………….

LET ME WALK YOU UP THIS STREET STARTING AT THE HANS ROAD END.

PROVENANCE THE VILLAGE BUTCHER FOR YOUR CHRISTMAS TURKEY AND BOXING DAY GAMMON.

WULF AND LAMB VEGAN RESTAURANT OR HANS BAR AND GRILL OPPOSITE A LOVELY RESTAURANT SERVING GREAT FOOD AN INFORMAL BAR FOR SOME FESTIVE CHAMPAGNE. SERVES BREAKFAST, LUNCH OR DINNER DEPENDING ON WHEN YOU ARE STARTING YOUR SHOPPING EXPEDITION. BOOK AHEAD AS NUMBERS ARE NOW LIMITED OF COURSE.

NOW YOU HAVE HAD A BREAK AND WRITTEN YOUR LIST AND CHECKING IT TWICE LETS CARRY ON.

PAPERSMITHS A BEAUTIFUL STATIONERS FOR YOUR CHRISTMAS CARDS AND GORGEOUS BOOKS AND INNOVATIVE GIFTS.

BREAD AHEAD A DELIGHTFUL BAKERY FOR YOUR MORNING CROISSANTS AND PASTRIES AND PANETTONE. THEY ALSO DO HALF DAY COURSES IN BAKING SELECT YOUR COURSE AND BOOK AHEAD FOR 2021.

THE SEA THE SEA A QUALITY FISHMONGERS FOR YOUR SALMON , PRAWNS , OYSTERS OR SOMETHING FOR CHRISTMAS EVE SUPPER.

LONDON CHEESEMONGERS A TRADITIONAL CHEESE SPECIALIST SO LOTS OF ADVICE FOR YOUR CHRISTMAS CHEESEBOARD. THEY ALSO DELIVER IF YOU DONT WANT TO CARRY YOUR SMELLY CHEESES AROUND.

SO THATS ALL THE FOOD TAKEN CARE OF. LETS MOVE ONTO GIFTS FOR FRIENDS AND FAMILY OR EVEN YOUR CHRISTMAS OUTFIT. NOT FORGETTING YOUR BEAUTY NEEDS IT ALL HERE. READ ON………

NEXT WE COME TO THE WHITE COMPANY , NEEDS NO INTRODUCTION. GREAT GIFTS . OR MAYBE SOME NEW BEDDING READY FOR CHRISTMAS MORNING.

SALON SLOANE A CONTEMPORARY SALON WITH A GREAT REPUTATION FOR ALL CUTTING AND COLOURING REQUIREMENTS WHILE YOU TAKE A BREAK FROM SHOPPING.

RIGHT NEXT DOOR THERE IS A STUNNING LITTLE FLORISTS MOYSES STEVENS WITH CHRISTMAS WREATHS IN THE WINDOW. I ORDER ONE HANDMADE. THIS IS ONE OF LONDONS OLDEST AND MOST PRESTIGIOUS FLORISTS. TIE TO ORDER SOME BOUQUETS FOR DELIVERY.

OLIVIA VAN HALLE IS THE NEXT STOP DOWN FOR CHRISTMAS PYJAMAS. I THINK THIS WOULD MAKE THE PERFECT PRESSIE FOR MY MOTHER. THESE PYJAMAS ARE THE PIECE DE RESISTANCE IN PJ WORLD !

WE CROSS THE STREET TO HEIDI KLEIN MAINLY BECAUSE I WANT TO BE BEACH READY AS SOON AS THE TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS ARE LIFTED AND THESE ARE MY BIKINIS OF CHOICE. SELF GIFTING TIME. BUT THEY STOCK GREAT GIFT IDEAS OF BEACH BAGS AND SLIP ON BEACH SHOES. MY SUITCASE IS READY TO GO.

SARAH CHAPMAN FACIALIST TO THE STARS HAS HER CLINIC HERE TOO. WHAT LUCK. OF COURSE IF YOU WANTED TO FIT A FACIAL IN TO YOUR SHOPPING DAY YOU WOULD HAVE TO PREBOOK. BUT THERE ARE SOME DELIGHTFUL SKINCARE SETS THAT ANYONE WOULD LOVE TO RECEIVE.

COSMETICS A LA CARTE NOT ONLY DO THEY HAVE GREAT COSMETIC GIFTS HERE BUT YOU CAN BOOK YOUR CHRISTMAS PARTY MAKE UP 1:1 SESSION OR THEY HAVE MANY EVENTS HEADING UP TO THE MAIN EVENT. CHECK OUT THEIR WEBSITE FOR FURTHER INFO.

KATE SPADE WHEN WE POPPED IN HAD TABLES FILLED WITH LASHINGS OF CHRISTMAS IDEAS. BUT THEY ALSO HAD SOME EYE POPPING PARTY DRESSES TOO OR MAYBE YOUR CHRISTMAS DAY OUTFIT OR J CREW IS DIRECTLY OPPOSITE FOR A COSY OUTFIT FOR A BOXING DAY WALK.

WELL AS WE REACH THE END OF PAVILION ROAD DIRECTLY OPPOSITE IS PETER JONES CHELSEAS’ HUGE DEPARTMENT STORE FOR ANYTHING WE DIDNT MANAGE TO GET ON OUR LIST.

BUT I THINK WE HAVE JUST A LITTLE TIME TO TAKE THE GORGEOUS MAN IM WITH TO TIFFANYS A FEW STEPS AWAY FOR MY OWN PRESENT…….JUST WINDOW SHOPPING I PROMISE …..NOT !

JOJOS STYLELIST TIP: IMAGINE ALL YOUR LUXURY FOOD AND GIFT SHOPPING FOR CHRISTMAS ALL DONE IN ONE STREET WITH TIME FOR LUNCH AND A FACIAL. NO SORE FEET. THIS ONLY EXISTED IN DREAMS UNTIL I DISCOVERED PAVILION RD

Well all that shopping has made me tired so I return to the Hans Bar and Grill for a cup of black coffee before the drive home with all my purchases.

MERRY CHRISTMAS

JOJO MWAH MWAH XXXXXXXX

MIDWEEK MANTRA

HAPPY BUDDHA MEDITATION

Meditation is important in everyday life but I realise its not possible to always fit this into your busy schedule. So, today Im going to gift you a 5 minute meditation to do each morning to start your day the right way !!

Find a quiet place, standing with feet firmly rooted to the floor. Total silence concentrate on your breath.

STAGE ONE

Stretch arms up to the light . Inhale the light through your outstretched palms and top of your head. Visualise that the sunlight flowing through you has positive, spiritual and healing energy in it. As you body fills with light right down to your legs. Start to exhale. Visualise the light flowing down through your feet into the earth. Return your arms to your sides.

STAGE TWO

Stretch arms up to the light. This time inhale energy from the light through your palms and the third eye (mid-eyebrow point). Once again flood your body with light taking it down to your feet. Then exhale bouncing the light back up through your body rushing through your internal organs liver, intestines, heart, lungs cleansing them and filling them with light . Let the light leave through your palms and your third eye. Arms to your side.

STAGE THREE

Stretch arms up to the light. Visualise the light entering your palms and third eye again flooding your body with warmth and goodness and positivity as you inhale slowly. When your body is full of light start to exhale slowly. Now visualise that the light is swirling in a spiral manner up through your body collecting negative energies. Getting rid of harmful chi and sickness, negative thoughts, forgive people. Let the light exit your body through the three main points as it leaves all the negative energy is instantly and permanently burned up. Arms to sides.

Now you are ready to go out into the big wide world …..protected.

JOJOS STYLELIST TIP: I DO THIS EVERY MORNING YOU REALLY DO RECEIVE THE DAY IN A CALM POSITIVE MANNER. THANK YOUR BODY FOR ALL IT DOES FOR YOU.

JOJO XXXXXX

HOW TO UPGRADE YOUR CULTURAL KNOWLEDGE

life is now neon signage

Don’t waste a moment of lockdown ! Life is now ! While we are forced to spend more time indoors it does not have to be all negative. Think of it as an opportunity to improve your knowledge. There are so many virtual options and if you have found yourself looking for new employment think about your skill set and fill in the gaps or embark on a new qualification. You learn almost anything on line right now from Yoga to language to interior design to poker, whatever takes your fancy.

But today I want to concentrate on upgrading your cultural knowledge. How many of us could previously find the time to visit galleries and museums, theatres and the opera ? Well this article is not designed to replace those visits post lockdown but serves to stoke your interest and it may be that you start to schedule such pleasures into your life.

The benefits of starting your cultural journey on line are that it is more affordable , indeed you will have a front row seat to watch the theatre and the ballet. You have your own art guide to educate you about the paintings. Your own wine connoisseur that you can sample wines with your pre purchased selection. You can learn and watch in the comfort of your own home AND in the comfort of your ‘loungewear’. Go at your own pace and if you miss something or need to reinforce your learning can go over it as many times as you wish. If you live alone you do not need a date to attend any of these glorious cultural delights. Helping pollution and climate change by not jumping in the car to attend events. Exercising the grey matter by learning something new. Establishing more self confidence with your new skills. Enhancing conversation with your family and friends giving you new topics to chat about.

So with all these benefits what are you waiting for ? Cultural events and classes are plentiful on line right now because of the circumstances we find ourselves in so find one ….or several that interest you.

Here are a few suggestions to get you started :

ART

ARTFUND.ORG

Sign up to receive newsletters. On line virtual art tours with an expert at all major galleries. I can recommend ‘Beyond Caravaggio at The National Gallery’ as someone who has attended the Caravaggio Collection in person I learned much more on line ! Catch this currently on their website along with many other tours. FREE.

TATE.ORG.UK

Also have a full digital events programme.

close up of fish over black background

BALLET AND OPERA

The ROYAL OPERA HOUSE is currently streaming all major operas and the ENGLISH NATIONAL BALLET with a weekly programme of on line shows and masterclasses via facebook. Or much easier use #ourhousetoyourhouse on youtube for your front row seat. Even better the operas come with subtitles so you you can gain a full understanding of the storytelling.

active adult artist ballerina

WINE

LAITHWAITES.CO.UK

There are many virtual wine classes but I chose this one as there are a full spectrum of classes to choose from which were user friendly. But also you can purchase the wine and drink alongside them as most of us have a local Laithwaites (although they do deliver). But also Wine Stores have been able to stay open in Lockdown 2 as an essential store ! ( I will second that ).

alcohol bar beverage black background

THEATRE

THESHOWMUSTGOONLIVE.COM

Omg this is a gift ! Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber started this Youtube channel in the first lockdown after a summer haitus I am pleased to announce it returned in September and will continue until further notice. A weekly top West End Show is streamed each Friday goes ‘live” at 7pm and is available for 48 hours for FREE. The best seat in the house !! Grab the popcorn and the ice cream and sing like no one is watching !

food snack popcorn movie theater

PHOTOGRAPHY

EOSTRAININGACADEMY.CO.UK

I own a top of the range Canon camera that I have never bothered to fully understand. It is only in lockdown that I became aware of this totally free on line course with Canon. Several hours of comprehensive on line lessons to taking better photographs. I have gained so much knowledge and hence developed a new hobby I am passionate about.

monochrome photography of person taking photo of a woman

JOJOS STYLIST TIP: All the above cultural experiences are FREE although many sites offer a donation option. Please donate as this industry has suffered monumentally during 2020 it will go along way to helping the industry survive so we can continue our new found passion in person and in full during 2021.

Mwah mwah

JOJO xxxxxxxxx

MENTAL HEALTH: BE YOUR OWN THERAPIST

self care isn t selfish signage

With mental health problems continuing to soar in these anxious times and access to NHS services severely restricted it is not time to give up ! Do not disappear further down a deep dark hole if you feel there is no outside help, it is time to help yourself. Let us do this together.

Here are some helpful points to give yourself a therapy session. After all no one knows you better than you know yourself The worst thing you can do is nothing at all while you are on the waiting list for professional help and who knows by time you have practised this list you may decide you no longer need professional therapy.

The following methods have helped many of my clients with their mental health who have sought my help in my capacity of a professional Sound Healing Therapist and have certainly helped myself too. It is very important to examine your own mental health regularly as you would examine say your breasts for lumps.

So here are the 5 rules:

RULE ONE

What do you need when you find yourself in a difficult period ? Most people at this time will NOT feel like going out to clubs and socialising but you may feel like walking your dog in the countryside or curling up on the sofa with a great movie. So identify what YOU need to feel better and allow yourself the time to do WHATEVER COMFORTS YOU .

RULE TWO

Define the situation. Write it down. relationships, money, friends or general lethargy. Be brutally honest with yourself . Are you part of the problem? Self examination is a great tool. But if you are really finding this difficult or this does not fit with your personality type then enlist the help of a friend to talk it through with, but ask them to be honest and open too. The method of self examination works for many but it depends on the type of person you are.

There is a danger of thinking none of this is your fault otherwise then you cannot effect change.

RULE THREE

Analyse the situation. How it happened ? Why it happened ? When did you start feeling this way ? What prompted this feeling? Again write it down.

RULE FOUR

How can you make this better ? What do YOU want ? Step outside of yourself and look in as an outsider. De personalise for a moment.

What would you tell your Son/Daughter/best friend if they were in the same situation ?

Visualise how you would like to feel. Dream how you would like to be. Write down your goals to achieving this.

RULE FIVE

TALK. To someone. Anyone. This does not have to be a trained therapist. Do not bottle things up. Sometimes just releasing pent up feelings can see a marked improvement in mood.

It is time to take control before it gets out of control.

JOJOS STYLELIST TIP:If it is a situation that is causing poor mental health just remember what looks bleak one day to remember there are good times ahead you just never know what is around the corner . Anticipate the good times. Think of a relationship break up you think your world has ended and you will never meet someone like them but the next one is ALWAYS better than the last one. How many of us can relate to that ??

MWAH MWAH

JOJO XXXXXXX

COVID CURES : 10 REASONS TO BE POSITIVE

This post is dedicated to my best friend Dinx who suggested this article. Thank you for bringing positivity into my life on a daily basis x

The curse of Covid continues to live amongst us and is undeniably having a growing effect on health and finances but let us try to look at the positive effects this has had on us as individuals and globally. You subscribe to this blog because you subscribe to positivity so it is my task to find joy and purpose in life on a daily basis.

So lets focus on some positive points as after all we are going to have to live with this virus on a permanent basis. The Spanish Flu epidemic of 1918 is still with us today mutated into our regular Influenza.

10 COVID CURES

  • Time to press the pause button. A period of reflection and thinking. Press the reset button. What a luxury rarely afforded to ourselves
  • Decluttering the home in a mindful steady way. Bit by bit room by room . Developing a charity pile to take to donate to starved charities in this time. We also have learned to live without so much excess and from speaking to you all your needs have been differentiated from your wants.
female shopaholic with laptop shopping online in messy living room
  • Discovering new ways of working. Ways that work for you. Creating lovely office spaces at home. It is great if you have now been given options to combine the two. Many new jobs have been created for homeworkers helping stay at home Mother/Fathers. People have found new outlets for untapped creativity e.g writing books, TikTok, fashion design, Pet youtube videos.
  • Cooking healthy nutritious meals from scratch and more importantly eating them. No need for fast food now ! A skill that will stay with you when we return to a new normal. You will never return to junk food once you have been eating so healthily and realise it takes less time to put a healthy meal together than to order a takeaway.
  • Catching up on movies you have been meaning to watch for years. Even live theatre streaming on YouTube channel The Show Must Go On a front row seat that you may not have had the time or money for pre lockdown.
  • Nature appreciation. Long walks in the Countryside. Noticing colours, smells and the visual stimuli for the first time in many cases. A time to build up an exercise regime that you enjoy.
person wearing yellow jacket walking in forest
  • Less pollution on the roads. A chance to reset globally. It took a surprisingly short period to improve air quality substantially globally proving a massive health benefit for many. The challenge is to use this time to maintain the low levels by reassessing working practices. I personally can notice a difference in the air quality in Central London even today compared to pre lockdown.
  • Appreciate friends and family more. Spending more time together, talking , playing board games, eating together. I know this has exposed some weaknesses in relationships but this provides a chance to air grievances. Or indeed walk away, it is a true test of a relationship tif you enjoying staying in with someone as opposed to going out with them.
  • Restaurants are much more enjoyable now with enforced social distancing. Less people less noise and no one sitting right next to us listening into(and sometimes joining in) conversations makes the whole experience infinitely more enjoyable. I am sure as Customers we will become increasingly demanding on this and not put up with being squashed into tight spaces. I have been campaigning for years to put more space between tables in restaurants as I don’t particularly want people I have not invited to join me for lunch. I consistently ask to be redirected to a table with more space and now I don’t have to ! Loving this point.
interior design of a glass wall restaurant
  • Stimulating my mind with the huge growth of on line courses. Art,wine,photography, piano ,poker, just a few ways I have found to educate myself further.
  • Helping the planet by buying less clothing . No more fast fashion fixes. After all there is nowhere to go ! It does reassess your values and you probably found pieces lurking at the back of the closet when you were doing all that cluttering !

You I am sure noticed that there are in fact 11 Covid Cures and not 10 , testament to my positivity. In fact I could think of several more. Why not try writing your own list.

JOJOS STYLELIST TIP: New routines take 21 days to become a habit and a consistent part of our new normal. We have had a good deal longer than 21 days so get going Stylistas !

MWAH MWAH

JOJO XXXXXXXXX

LIFESTYLE: LIVING A MORE BEAUTIFUL LIFE

woman in the back of a van looking at mountains

Well you guys I hope you utilised your time in lockdown effectively to make your surroundings more beautiful and streamlining your routines. It is so important to envelop yourself with a gorgeous environment and lovely rituals. Making every day as beautiful and pleasurable as possible is a way to live a happier life. A word about rituals , they are established patterns that make our every day existence and the journey of life, our real life, more enjoyable.

Let me share some of my own ideas with you:

BATHING

Use a beautiful bath oil or foam. Its no secret that mine is L’Occitane Lemon Verbena Foam Bath. Allow yourself time to soak. Have a glass of wine/champagne or freshly squeezed juice topped with spring water. Soft classical music. Neom candles. DOOR SHUT. Big warm fluffy terry towels and robe. Your whole evening has a fresh new beginning.

STATIONERY

I love to write notes in beautiful Smythson notebooks with brightly coloured inks. I have a beautiful set of Kate Spade cream and gold cards for thank you notes that actually make you want to write notes. Everyone should have at least one beautifully expensive fountain pen for ritual note writng i.e gratitude notes in the morning, To Do lists in the evening.

AT HOME MEAL TIMES

Always lay the table with the best tablemats, best china, fabulous cutlery and a charming set of colourful napkins. My mantra is save nothing for ‘best’ use them now, daily. Meal times should absolutely be a ritual to get into the habit with your family or loved ones or just make it special for one.

BEDLINEN

We spend a large amount of our time in bed. Keep your bed linen fresh, egyption cotton . Lots of comfy huge pillows on the bed and i beautiful cashmere throw . Stunning pile of books on the bedside table. Your bed is not just for sleeping but can be a sanctuary for rituals like a Sunday afternoon nap . Curling up under the throw with a good book early evening. Watching movies on a cold winters day. Saturday morning breakfast in bed on a tray.

EMRACE THE SEASONS

Mark new seasons with childhood reminiscences: In Spring fly a kite. In Summer, make a sand castle. In fall go for a brisk walk crunching in the leaves. In Winter build a snowman. Take time to look at the changing landscape as nature runs its course. Listen to the changing sounds too the different bird chatter from each season, the sound of lawns being mowed, the new buds on the trees.

autumn autumn colours brown countryside

BAKING WITH A FRIEND

Book a regular baking day with a friend in your kitchen. Then gift the goodies to elderly people in the area or friends that need cheering. This is a rewarding ritual both for your friendship and the recipients. If baking is not your thing then choose photography, pottery or Art classes with a friend, equally bonding while you learn a new skill.

ORGANISE A GIFT WRAP STATION

In my office i have on cupboard constantly stocked with beautiful gift wrap, ribbon, bows, labels and scotch tape. a beautifully wrapped present is a gift in itself. When someone spends time elegantly wrapping a gift for me it is immensely touching that they went to such effort. Make gift wrapping an enjoyable experience and never a chore with a hurriedly wrapped present. Get creative.

assorted gift boxes on red surface

DINE OUT WITH ELEGANCE

A weekly ritual of dining out at a special restaurant. Im not talking pub grub here or Nandos but an elegant, renowned restaurant in your area. The food and wine become the pleasure. Really admire the presentation, taste , smell and textures of the food and the wonderful service you receive. Choose your Company wisely an exceptional meal can be ruined by obnoxious company. Try to experience Michelin star restaurants whenever possible this is a real treat for the senses.

So there were some of my rituals to be enjoyed together or simply alone. but rituals are regular and require effort but they soon become encompassed within your regular life. But they all make life feel a little more special. Why wouldnt you build one or two or several into YOUR life.

SHOP BELOW TO MAKE YOUR LIFE MORE BEAUTIFUL TODAY. If you received this by e mail then click on the URL at the base of the mail.

JOJOS STYLELIST TIP: WE ALL CHOOSE HOW WE LIVE . LIVING A BEAUTIFUL LIFE NEED NOT BE EXPENSIVE BUT JUST REQUIRES A LITTLE EFFORT WITH GREAT REWARDS. CHOOSE SOME THAT WILL MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE TO YOU WITHIN YOUR PRICE RANGE.

MWAH MWAH

JOJO XXXXXXX