2016 GOALS | UPDATE

At the start of the year, I talked about my Plans and Goals for 2016 so here's an update on how I'm getting on with the goals I set for myself in that post.

Books Lolita Just Kids Clothes Music Boys Vivienne Westwood

1. READ MORE

I've definitely achieved this one and I knew I would. Any uni student will know that studying leaves little time to read books of your own choice, especially in that final year. Since I finished uni in May I've constantly had a book on the go (currently reading Lolita) and have been reading my favourite magazines whenever I have any spare time. I'm absolutely loving having this extra time to read and I've discovered so many new authors recently.

2. BE MORE CONFIDENT IN MY SKILLS

I outlined three main ways that I could feel more confident in my writing: write more, read back my work and let others read it. I've taken steps for all three of these and have definitely been writing a lot more in the past few months. When I was at my internship at Kerrang! magazine I had a great opportunity to get feedback from several professional writers, which was so valuable. My lack of confidence showed here in that I was actually very surprised by how good the feedback was. I was told that my feature pitch was one of the best they'd seen from an intern and my album reviews were highly praised too. This gave me a huge confidence boost and I also took on board all the feedback I was given in order to improve.


3. IMPROVE MY PHOTOGRAPHY

This is an area I've made a bit of progress in, but not as much as I would have liked. Writing has been my main focus recently so I haven't been spending enough time on my photography to improve it a lot. I have been happier with my Instagram recently though, despite that stupid new algorithm! Next week, I'm going to spend one of my days off working on my photography and trying to take lovely photos for both this blog and my Instagram, so keep an eye out to see how that goes.

4. CHANGE MY OUTLOOK

This has been the hardest goal and the one with which my progress has been the least consistent. I go through phases of being very aware of my thought patterns and actively trying to make them more positive, then after a while I fall back into my old cynical habits. However, I have noticed that I'm generally more conscious about the way I think and often have a little word with myself when I'm getting upset or annoyed about something that's not actually that important. As cliche as it may be, I've been on the lookout for little postcards etc with nice quotes on them to put on the wall next to my desk. Paperchase do lovely ones for about 60p so I usually pick a few up each time I go in, and I now have a nice collection of reminders for myself.

I think I'm doing quite well with my goals so far, and this little check-up halfway through the year has spurred me on to start working harder on the things I've been neglecting. It's so important to assess your progress with things like this, and give yourself a pat on the back for your achievements. I'll do a final update at the end of the year, when hopefully I'll be happy with the changes I've made!

How are you getting on with your goals?

JUNE RECAP

June was a pretty crazy month, with lots of exciting stuff going on, so I just covered the major events here to stop the post being crazy long!

Blow Finnieston Salon Glasgow


My birthday was on the 12th and as it was a Sunday I decided to celebrate for the whole weekend. It definitely got off to a good start when I found out on the Friday that I had got a 2:1 for my degree! I was so happy, and after changing up my hair at the amazing Blow salon in Finnieston, I headed out for some celebratory drinks.

Maison De Moggy Edinburgh Ragdoll Cat Cafe


I spent the Saturday at one of my favourite places - the cat cafe in Edinburgh! As always, I had the best time cuddling the gorgeous kitties and hiding my cake from the very mischevious sphynx Elodie!

Birthday Dinner Glasgow Prezzo


I turned 22 on the 12th and spent the afternoon having tea and cake at Cup tearoom then had a lovely meal with Adam and my parents at Prezzo. Unfortunately I had tonsillitis and the symptoms started on my birthday so I wasn't feeling too great but I had a really nice birthday anyway, even though I had to spend all of the next two days in bed!

Kerrang Magazine Internship

The following week I was off to London on my own for my Kerrang! magazine internship, which was nerveracking and very exciting! I learned so much during my time there and all the staff at Kerrang! are so lovely - they gave me loads of great advice and I feel even more excited now to finally begin my journalism career.

Strathclyde University Graduation 2016


My graduation was at the end of the month and it was such a great way to bring my university life to an end. I has a brilliant day and thankfully the weather held up so there was plenty of opportunity to take nice photos, and there was also a photobooth which I can never resist! We then headed out for a nice dinner and drinks, and later I ended up dancing til 3am at the Cathouse, despite being massively overdressed for a Wednesday night there!

Big Ben London


This was definitely the best month of the year so far for me, as it was my first full month without any university stress and lots of exciting things were happening. I can't believe I'm now a graduate! Next month will be less eventful but I'll be spending a lot of time writing and looking for jobs, and I'm actually quite looking forward to just chilling out for a change!

What did you get up to this month?

ON TRYING NEW THINGS

I’ve never been the best at stepping out of my comfort zone and trying new things, but that’s something I’ve been working on recently, and this new found adventurousness has worked quite well timing-wise with what’s going on in my life at the moment. Graduating from uni has meant that my whole life feels a bit up in the air while I’m wondering what the hell to do next. I know I want to go into journalism but I’m interested in so many different topics as well as different platforms. I’d be just as happy writing for a music magazine as I would be for a news website. I’ve been enjoying looking into different areas and shall hopefully be dipping my toe into them all over the summer to find out what’s best for me.

The Trading House Glasgow Bar


In the spirit of trying new things, I was invited along to The Trading House in Glasgow last month for their #ChallengeTradingHouse event, which centred around cocktails. I love a good cocktail but always stick to vodka or gin-based ones (French Martinis are my fav!) The purpose of the evening was to encourage us to give other cocktails a chance and so head bartender Calum asked each of us which spirit we didn’t like and the challenge was for him to make us love a cocktail with that spirit in it.

The Trading House Glasgow Bar


I said I didn’t like rum as I’ve tried it a few times and have never found it pleasant at all, and in all honesty I did not expect to like whatever was made for me. Calum decided to make me their signature cocktail, The Trader. It was made from Bacardi rum, elderflower, apple juice and “English Summer Garden” tea leaves. I never really enjoy floral drinks so I was even more skeptical, but I had to admit, the drink looked beautiful! Apparently a previous customer said the drink looked like it had been created by fairies and I totally got that! I could imagine drinking this on a hot summer's day in a magical forest, and who wouldn’t want a drink like that?

The Trader Cocktail Trading House Glasgow


So, the important part: did I like it? Yes! Honestly, I really did, so much so that I ordered another one! It was so light and refreshing, the total opposite of what I imagine rum to be. It tasted very summery and fruity, and not too strong. The rum didn't overpower the other flavours and I really enjoyed it. Calum said it’s a shame when people automatically dismiss a cocktail because they don't like the spirit in it and I'm definitely guilty of that. This event encouraged me to be a bit more open to different ideas and if I like the sound of the other flavours, I'll give it a go! I had a little sip of the other girls’ cocktails too and let’s just say that I can definitely see why The Trading House was named best cocktail bar in Scotland!

The Trading House Glasgow Cocktails



Now that I have the confidence to be more adventurous with my drinks choices, I can work on transferring that confidence to other areas of my life. I want to try loads of new things this summer and I have a few lined up – I’ll be heading on my first-ever solo trip to London in two weeks, finally starting driving lessons next month and hopefully doing a lot of new writing. This will be the Summer of Newness and I’m so excited for what’s to come!

MAY RECAP

May was a very busy month indeed, with quite a lot going on. The first half of the month was completely taken up by uni as it was my final semester. My dissertation was due on the 4th and I'm quite happy with what I produced. It was about the effects of social media on feminism so it was really interesting for me to research and I learned so much.

Dissertation Hand In

I then had three exams which were terrifying but I think they all went okay and the feeling of relief when I finished my last ever exam was insane! I can't believe I'm actually done with uni now, it's scary and amazing at the same time. Now it's just the agonizing wait for my results then I'll be graduating (hopefully!) at the end of next month.

Trading House Glasgow Bar


Just two days after my exams finished I had a lovely night at The Trading House in Glasgow for their Challenge event based around cocktails. Look out for my post about the event very soon, but it was great to hang out with some lovely ladies and relax after all the stress!

Sentido Zeynep Hotel Turkey


Adam and I booked a very last minute holiday to Turkey and left four days after I finished up with uni, so it was a mad rush to get all my holiday clothes on time but it was totally worth it for the amazingly chilled 9 days in the sun! Our hotel was beautiful and we had the most perfect sea view, plus the staff were all so lovely so it was a great holiday. I was able to just lay by the pool or on the beach, drinking cocktails, reading and generally relaxing and it was exactly what I needed. I feel so refreshed and with a much clearer head than before I left.

Kerrang Magazine Internship


Also this month I was offered an internship at Kerrang! magazine which I'm so, so excited about. I really didn't expect to have this opportunity and I'm so grateful for it as it'll be great experience for my career. I'll be spending a week at their offices in London in June so if you have any recommendations for cool things I can do on my own in the city please let me know!

Next month will be very busy too but it's all exciting things that are happening and I'm so happy that my summer has officially begun!

What did you get up to in May?

GANT WHITE SHIRT X WHITE PAGE | OOTD

Gant White Shirt x White Page


Gant have recently launched their White Shirt x White Page project to highlight the versatility of a classic white shirt. It's like a blank canvas for you to get creative with and tailor to your own style. They asked me to show how I would style this key piece and this is the look I came up with.

Gant White Shirt x White Page Project


I wanted to add a bit of an edge to the shirt as that's my kind of style and I don't tend to like looking too pristine or done up. A leather biker jacket is the easiest way to toughen up any outfit and it works so well as a contrast to the clean white shirt.

Gant Air Oxford Shirt White

Forever 21 Black Cord Wrap Choker


A shirt can be styled in so many different ways just by changing up the way it's buttoned - I unbuttoned it quite low to show off this awesome choker for a subtle nod to the Western trend. When unbuttoning it so far, I think the choice of bra is important. A non-padded, non-push-up keeps it more sophisticated and doesn't show too much.

Monochrome Grunge Outfit


I sized up in the shirt for a more casual feel and so that I could have it half tucked in without being too tight, but I probably could have stuck with my usual size as the shirt isn't too small-made anyway. The way you tuck in a shirt is another way to completely change the look and fit of it, so play around with different sleeve lengths and ways of tucking the bottom in to create different vibes.

Leather Biker Jacket Black Skinny Jeans OOTD


I always love a good black and white outfit because it just always looks chic and it's so easy to mix and match monochrome pieces. I do tend to wear mostly black so throwing on a lovely clean white shirt is a quick way to brighten up my look, especially now that we're getting some sun!

Gant White Shirt x White Page Project


Shirt: Gant*
Jacket: Mango (similar)
Jeans: Topshop
Boots: H&M
Sunglasses: Ray-Ban
Choker: Forever 21 (similar)

Big thanks to Adam for being my lovely photographer!

How would you style a white shirt?

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