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This is the 5 minute rule of procrastination as I use it. I’m sure it has been written about many times before but this is my super simple version.

When your brain is exploding with millions of things to do and you are in a hurry, one way to go is to do nothing and feel paralysed (often happens to me). Another way is to try the 5 minute rule.

It can be applied it 2 slightly different ways. First; get just 5 minutes of that horrible task that youve been putting off, done, Second, See how many things you can get done in 5 minutes.

The first way allows you to make a tiny start on something that is hard and you have been putting off. You never know, you might find it isn’t so bad once you get started and go on to do more. If not, you will have made a start.

The second way can get a room tidy, the bed made and a bin emptied, a tricky email sent, a call you have to make, or your make-up done and your bag packed for the day. Go as fast as you can with this. You can get a room straight or a desk tidy with a couple of bursts of 5 minutes.

Because all you are facing is 5 minutes it’s so much easier to make a start.

I would love to know your procrastination solvers, so share them in the comments if you would like. Susi xx

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The Thing About Looking Crap

A couple of weeks ago I made a film with friends for the Glastonbury Film Challenge. It’s here if you want to see it. (It’s funny and worth a look.)

The thing is that when we planned to do this film challenge, I looked at myself on camera for the first time a couple of months ago and thought I looked awful. so I embarked on a programme of weight loss and facial exercises, skin moisturising and hair tidying so that I would look presentable on camera. I wanted to feel good about the way I looked so that I would feel confident on camera. (Something that I am really really not, as a rule.)

Well the programme worked. By counting calories using My Fitness Pal, I lost nearly a stone. I found better make-up for on camera that made me look smoother, my cheekbones reappeared (a little, I have a round face) and I felt ready for anything.

So there we were, at the competition, and we got our genre and title. Just so you know, its a 5 day competition and you are given your genre and title by putting your hand in a bag of options and that’s it! Off you go and turn in a completed film in 5 days. Our genre was, Mockumentary and title was What Happens when you Die. Rachel had a brilliant idea for it and we were ridiculously excited.

Our Fabulous writer and director Rachel Whitelock sent me off to transform into a drug addict instantly along with my lovely co-star Chris Constantine.

I shoved some gunk into my hair painted shadows on my face, ripped my tights,it was great. But here’s the thing, the thing about looking crap that I hadn’t thought of.  It was one of the most liberating weekends ever. When I woke up on Sunday to film again, looking rough, my first thought wasn’t “oh dear” it was “great, less to do!” How incredibly freeing to look like rubbish and to not care. How amazing to have people say that you look the part, how great to be thinking about the job in hand and not to give a DAMN how you look. For it to be a good thing if your eyes run! I tell you, it was a good feeling.

Finally,I had to ask myself, was all that effort wasted? Am I glad or sorry I tried so hard beforehand?

Well I am glad. I think of losing that weight as 100% positive for me. Feeling lighter (and believe me I really did need to lose that stone) has given me more energy, I fit into clothes from 2 years ago which has saved me money, I’m taking better care of my health by not eating so much junk, so yes it was worth it.

And by the way, we won 🙂

Susi xx

6 Things to Focus on in 6 Weeks

Recently I got involved in a film project. It’s a 3 minute film challenge that I’m taking with a friend who is an aspiring screen writer and it looks like it will be fun with a lot of work. But here’s the thing. When I saw myself on camera I was horrified! Every single little broken capillary stood out and my face was so shiny I just couldn’t believe it. Plus shadows under my eyes and a lack of tone in my face that I hadn’t realised existed; though I do some facial exercises I’m not at all disciplined.

So now I am on a mission.

Ever noticed how you suddenly manage to focus, get organised and step up a gear when something you really want is on the table?

Over the next 6 weeks I’m focusing on:

  • Losing weight (something that I have been trying and failing at for the last year).
  • Exploring better coverage make-up for filming.
  • Better make-up for shadows and for the eyes.
  • Facial exercises to do as a simple routine each day.
  • Drinking more water to help with dark shadows.
  • Improve my haircut, especially my fringe which I last cut myself (and it’s too short).

(By the way, I know that I know how to do make-up, just not for this field!)

Maybe I am vain. Maybe I “Should” be thinking differently. And I know that this is not a big movie, I’m no star, but it matters to me to feel good and confident, and it feels like the push I have been needing for a while to get off my (really too large) ass and get on with it.

Just to start off, I have already starting using my new toy, the My Fitness Pal app. Its amazingly focusing and I have lost 8lbs in the last month, simply by eating less (mostly less Dorito’s). The reason it works for me is that it shows me the calorie value of everything, so you learn to make better choices and naturally eat healthier, lower calorie foods.

I would love your thoughts on this and if anyone can make any suggestions for a perfect skin on camera, please do.

Susi

xx

How to Get the Benefits of Facial Exercises

I looked around for more videos of facial exercises and came across this from Eve Fraser. I found her book a few years ago and loved it. This is a very chatty talk show and so it doesn’t give many examples but it does show some.

It is a very good example of just how amazing these exercises can be. When you look at it, remember that Eve in this video is in her 80’s.

I like this because it gives a great overview of some of the work that she does and it also includes men proving that this is not just for women.

Out of what is shown here I particularly like the exercise for the apple of the cheeks and for tightening a double chin. Along with the exercise that I shared I am beginning to do these every day. How about you? Want to join me and give them a try?

Let me know in the comments if you try them or Tweet me @gorgeousness_

Take a Moment, Enjoy the View

Take some time out. Relax and enjoy the view.
  Take some time out. Relax and enjoy the view.

 

Often as we whizz through our busy days we see something beautiful, A lovely view, a stormy sky, a sky of perfect blue, a field of wildflowers. But how often do we really have time to stop and look at it, appreciate it? Too often we (and I include myself in this) rush along, maybe not noticing the view. Maybe we see but we wish we had time to look and tell ourselves “Next time” Here in England we are having a summer we haven’t had in about 7 years I think. It’s incredibly beautiful. So lets try and make next time, the next time that we stop, even for a moment and enjoy the view.

 

 

How to Make Your Lips Fuller With 3 Exercises

I really liked this little video of facial exercises. They are very gentle and I think are very easy to incorporate into your life. (I love things that are easy.)

I cant really see the need for a mat in this exercise so I haven’t bothered. I’ve just tried them sitting on the floor.

DO remember to ease out your shoulders and take a couple of deep breaths to release any stress or tension in your face or neck before you begin.

PS. I think she is quite right about the trumpet players. I have a girlfriend who plays the Flugel. Her facial muscles are amazing!

PPS. I love simple easy tips on skin care and beauty and de-mystifying the beauty world so I have written a little book explaining all the tricks of simple skin care.

Enjoy the exercises and do let me know if you try them.

Susi

How to Get a Natural Brow Lift, Free!

I’ve done facial exercises periodically over time and loved them but I have fallen out of the habit in recent years. The results can be fantastic, especially if you stick with them (as with any other form of exercise). The wonderful thing about facial exercise is firstly, it’s free and secondly it really does have a positive effect on the tone of your facial muscles. Just think of singers such as Tina Turner, it can’t all be plastic surgery that keeps the tone of her face so good, I think its also down to the powerful way she sings which exercises her face.
Right now I’m away on a short break and have found, as I often do, that being away brings inspiration and new ideas. In fact while I was travelling in the car I suddenly tried some facial stretches and they felt so incredibly good, I thought of Youtube and I thought of you guys.
After a short look around I found this found this video which shows how to do a brow lifting exercise. Try it and see how it feels. I just tried it and it felt great. I didn’t use gloves though as I don’t have any with me, but I think its’s ok for this exercise. I’m off to the spa for a swim and brow lifting!

Susi

How to get the right skin products for you in 3 easy steps.

Have you ever gone up to the skincare counter and asked for a new face cream and found after a couple of days that it just wasn’t moisturising enough or it was too rich?

That’s because knowing your skin type is only a small part of the problem.

There are 3 main skin types: Oily, Combination and Dry.

Oily

Lots of large open pores, blackheads especially on the forehead, nose and chin, and some spots. A layer of grease on your skin by midday and your skin is fairly often shiny and can be a little thick in texture.

Combination

Finer, drier skin on cheeks but open pores on nose, forehead and chin and some shine or oil on skin, especially on your nose by midday or tea time. This is the most common skin type.

Dry

No shine on skin. Often feels tight and sometimes a little flaky. Your pores are mostly quite tight and small and your skin is a fine, smooth texture.

The next thing to know is what your skin condition is.

Sensitive

Feels irritated easily by most products and reddens easily when exposed to many products. Make-up can make it feel irritated or suddenly very dry or sore. Sensitive skin can be caused by using skin care that is too harsh or perfumed for you. Exhaustion, stress and worry can make your skin easily irritated too.

Mature

Skin roughly over the age of 40 that may show lines around the eyes especially or have sagging in the skin tone.  Although everybody’s  skin  gets to being “mature” in time, some lifestyle habits can worsen it, such as over exposure to the sun, too much booze, cigarettes  or unhealthy food.

Dehydrated

Can have the look sometimes of being silvery. If you look closely in the mirror and gently press your skin you see a lot of very tiny lines all over your face.  Dehydration can be caused by not drinking enough plain water, too much salt in our diets, not enough fruit and veg, having the heating on when its cold (although we’re all going to, right?) and even air conditioning.

Acne

Very angry spots with yellow heads coming up frequently, very open pores, blackheads, may be very oily. It’s caused by fluctuating hormones and is most common in teenagers though it can occur at any age. The very first thing to do with acne is to see a doctor in order to find out what you are dealing with and to explore options.

When you know this you can go to the next (and best) bit.

What is your concern? Or: What bothers you about your skin the most?

For example, my skin is combination, mature and dehydrated. My concern is the mature part, I’m not very bothered about the combination part, but I can’t use too many heavy creams without it getting a bit blocked. So I use cleanser  for normal skin  or dry skin, exfoliate once a week with a scrub, a little clay mask once a fortnight and moisturiser  for dry, dehydrated skin and a night oil for anti-ageing to keep lines at bay. This takes care of the little oiliness that I have but addresses my concerns with ageing as my main focus.

So what bothers you? Is it lines? Worry about it getting older? It feels tight? It’s really greasy? Firmness? Sagging under the eyes? Wrinkles around lips? Be honest with yourself because it really is important that you know what you want to work on.

Remember these items as you learn about your skin and remember that knowing your skin will help you choose the right skin care first time.

Happy Shopping!

By the way, I love to hear how you get on so go ahead and share your own tips or questions,  or if you found this useful, please do leave a comment.

Ps. My new book with lots more helpful information is available here

An organised make-up bag

How nice it is to be organised.

I can’t tell you how utterly annoying it is to reach for something and find YET AGAIN that the thingummy you’ve picked up is the broken one or the wrong one that you never ever use. It’s such a complete and utter waste of time, when all you’re trying to do is get out of the door.

When that comes to make-up in the morning it’s incredibly maddening.

A minimal and organised make up bag should be a well ordered piece of kit and designed to have only your favourite essentials for getting you through the day. Don’t cart around half of Boots unless you really have to.

A few suggestions for the daily kit;

Mini Perfume

Brush or little comb

A lipstick/gloss or a small tin of petroleum jelly

Eye pencil, maybe 2 in different colours

Powder

Concealer or light reflecting concealer

Mascara

Mini pack of wet wipes

If you use an eye pencil then you must add a decent eye pencil sharpener. Standard pencil sharpeners don’t work! they will ruin your lovely eye pencil

I always add painkillers a BB Cream and a liquid or gel eyeliner.

So from today, make a promise to yourself that the next time you pick out the wrong eyeliner /lipstick / mascara, you will take it out of your make up bag and either put it away or put the blessed thing in the bin and have done with it.

What are your absolute make up essentials?

Susi

My Challenge

This week has been a real challenge already. And it’s only Monday.

I have, just this morning, published my first book. It’s an e-book called, The Gorgeous Girls Guide to Beautiful Skin. Do have a look at it here.

It was one of the scariest moments of my life. Particularly because this was purely voluntary! It took ages to upload, mostly this was me accidentally deleting information I had already put in. I think I had 6 cups of tea while I went through this process.

When it was done, I sat and stared at the screen and then I burst into tears. I’m still not sure why. A combination of panic and relief I guess. I do think that Amazon could have been more helpful though, I thought a message saying “Are you ok?” or “Do you need a hug?” could have popped up. That would’ve been nice.

This has been a truly big challenge, and now that I’ve done it, I’m really excited and very happy to share it with you.

Love

Susi