New Year Resolutions from Hella Rude
The first time I heard the phrase ‘new year, new you‘ was during my first year working with Lovehoney. As someone who is blinkered to self-depreciating bollocks on the interwebs, this apparent cliche had managed to pass me by for my then 26 years. Since acknowledging the premise, my eyes have really been opened to how much consumerism can make you feel shit about yourself during the festive season…
Hey, everyone! Eat all of this really indulgent food, get pissed, party hard and relax! Spend ALL of your money. Spend time with your family, don’t do much – just rest, you’ve worked hard for this.
December 27th Message:
NEW YEAR, NEW YOU! What did you do this Christmas? Stuff your face? Lose weight, get in shape. Ditch the crap food and join a gym…an expensive one, then buy this dress a size 4 model is wearing. Stop drinking, be more active. IGNORE EVERYTHING THE WEB SAID 7 DAYS AGO… apart from the crap about buying, here’s some stuff you paid full price for before Christmas at 70% off.
Is it only me who finds this shit…SHIT?
The nice thing about Lovehoney is that they’re really positive with their New Year messages – they wouldn’t make you feel bad about yourself to sell a product. However not all retailers are cut from the same cloth, many will aim right for your insecurities and hope you bleed money in their direction. Nice marketing tactics, and ones to be wary of when you read articles and advertorial in the coming weeks.
In my now time-honoured tradition of ignoring my vocations in eCommerce marketing and giving sex advice, I’m going to give you message of positivity, joy and mental health for 2016. I’d like to share with you my New Year Resolutions and the reasons I hope you’ll adopt some of them too.
Hella’s New Year Resolutions
I will ask myself; “Is it really that bad?”
Perspective is a wonderful thing; “Will the world end if Cara doesn’t get her article by the 15th? Will she really be that pissed if I’m 3 days late? What are the consequences? Probably a virtual hand slap? Then why stress? Just say sorry and warn her now!”
Ask yourself if your stress-induced panics are really necessary. Fair play, my example isn’t exactly the be-all-and-end all of worries (and my article will be on time!), but there’s a reason for me being so blase – and it’s because most of my panics and upsets are premature.
A better example is my working life; I often find myself down a week of work due to project downtime, sign-offs and new client switchovers. That means I don’t always have a steady income week-on-week. Instead of worrying for the entire week that I have nothing coming in, I give myself a new earning threshold for the remaining weeks of the month to ensure I’ve covered my ass. That gives me 7 days to boost the coffers by being inventive – a photo shoot here, an article there and a few eBay sales of unwanted stuff – and I’m making dents in the deficit.
Instead of having a panic-driven week that can make me feel depressed, I have 7 days of feeling positive and rested plus some additional cash in the bank. I can then reduce my weekly targets by splitting my inventive earnings between the remaining weeks of the month. The situation hasn’t improved particularly, I will still need to work hard to cover that week of earnings. But instead of feeling doom and gloom, I feel driven to meet my self-imposed targets in a much more manageable way.
Is it really that bad? Yeah, maybe! But I can probably still do the thing and come out smiling, so…
I resolve to just get on with it instead of feeling bummed out and anxious.
I will set myself realistic goals to achieve
I *really* get the message that I should be out husband hunting, breeding, aggressively climbing the career ladder, excessively shopping, correcting my signs of ageing, travelling, brunching, homemaking and taking up new hobbies as a woman in her early 30s. But I am just one woman and if I believed i should be doing all of those things right now, I’d be one depressed bunny.
A big reason for my self-satisfaction is that I make my goalposts flexible. I’m not going to cry myself to sleep because I missed a few bills, tend to cancel first dates for work and haven’t had a holiday since 2012. I’m also not going to make my dreams some unobtainable vision from a movie. Instead of dreaming, I resolve to set myself plenty of achievable goals in 2016. Like ‘work for a Sziget Festival ticket, save for flights to Budapest and have my 2012 holiday with my best gal all over again’.
Even that’s a fairly big goal by my standards. Most of my goals are along the lines of ‘go out once a week’, ‘go outside at least 4 times a week’ or ‘exercise 3 times a week’. Little achievements can be just as gratifying as the big ones, the point is – they are achievable things that improve my life instead of daydreams I feel are out of reach.
I resolve to improve my life in small ways that really benefit me.
I will not be the author of my own demise
The thing that keeps me feeling my best is not allowing myself to dwell on the shitty things that make me feel oh-so sad. I’m the kind of person to put myself in difficult situations, so mastering the ability to manage my own mental health kicks the shit out of anything Bear Grylls can teach me about survival.
I’ve experienced a lot of mental health issues over the years; personally, through friends and as a live-in carer for family members. Life is fucking hard and it’s all too easy to become entrenched in a downward spiral of negative thinking when life pressures weigh on you. If you identify with feelings of hopelessness and despair, there is stuff you can do to improve your position, as well as ensuring you get outside help when needed.
The mere act of thinking about your struggles creates biochemicals that make you feel worse about the situation, contributing to ill health and bad sleeping patterns in the long run. The only thing worse than feeling mentally shitty is feeling physically shitty as a result of your own mind acting up.
In order to fight off the funk, you need to create more good, happy hormones that will lift your mood and excite your brain in a more productive way. This isn’t to say that you need to ignore real-life problems – they need to be tackled productively, but by making some time to NOT focus on them, you can benefit from feeling better overall and that puts you in a better position to tackle your issues man-on.
Every day, make sure you laugh. Call a friend or family member. Do something nice for you. Simple, little things that make you feel good add up. They can cost nothing and they can mean everything to your state of mind. No one has to be lonely, sad, fearful or stressed – it’s within your power to start turning things around.
I resolve to not be a victim of my own difficulties and ensure I contribute to my own happiness.
Added bonus – orgasms also boost your happy hormones, so try to keep your sexy quota up!
I will choose my battles
One thing I’m guilty of is not giving up on things, even when it’s clear that they’re not worth my time. It’s a universal truth in many aspects of my life and one that is incredibly draining, physically and emotionally. It’s better to be objective as soon as you feel that twinge of doubt in your convictions.
Playing Devil’s advocate and taking the time to think about situations with a more 360-degree perspective can really change your outlook. In times of struggle and conflict, it’s important to assess your priorities and work towards letting go of the things that contribute to you feeling less awesome than you should. It’s even more important to exact the change you feel is for the best.
How much you struggle in life is often down to the choices you make. Be it a poor partner match you won’t give up on, a job that isn’t paying your bills or a family member who is making you feel bad – whatever it is, find a level of self-control that will help you improve your life instead of hiding from the sources of your woes. You are in charge here, no one else! Your happiness may depend on exercising that truth.
I resolve to give up on messy and stressful situations faster.
If the doctor doesn’t tell me I need to lose/gain weight, I’m all good
Rocking anywhere from a UK 8 – 12 is just fine with me and my frame, and it sure as hell wouldn’t be the end of the world if I was bigger. Even writing that feels weird, given I have history with eating disorders AND spent a long time being pressured into being unhealthy skinny for modelling. But hey, it’s how I feel now – as a single lady too! I’m pretty happy to shout it from the rooftops; I do not give a shit about what anyone else thinks about my body or appearance in general.
Please spare the eye rolls because I’m presently a size 10, for the best part of this year I have actually struggled to maintain a healthy weight/size due to stress and general life stuff. Seeing my belly fill out feels more joyous than the feeding-up I’ve been doing to exact it – which can actually be very physically demanding if you drop too much junk from your trunk.
It works both ways, it’s just as easy to become too thin as it is to become too voluptuous. 3 months ago I was a very poorly girl and my weight plummeted, leaving me as a very bony, small 8 with chronic fatigue, malnourishment and an inability to eat a small meal in one sitting. It sucked, dudes, and my appetite is still way off what it should be but I’m definitely making gains – fat gains. Delicious, tasty fat gains.
People naturally gain and lose weight depending on lots of things. For me it’s usually gaining muscle when I’m especially active, gaining fat during Winter times when I do fuck all because I hate the cold and losing weight when I’m especially busy and forget to eat (or get sick). The good news is, natural weight fluctuation is normal and healthy, so long as it doesn’t happen too fast – this can be a sign of more severe physical or mental health issues.
Dieting is crap for you. I’ve done enough of it over the past 12 years to know that’s a fact. Weight loss diets rarely work long term, even if you initially drop a bunch of lbs. Low calorie diets teamed with increased exercise leaves you in too much of a calorie deficit to maintain good energy levels. Low fat diets make you look like shit and are scientifically shown to do buttkiss for your weight loss. Don’t even get me started on the smoothie-based, dehydrated vegetable crap diets that are all the rage right now. By all means, add ’em to your daily eats but don’t try to live on that shit!
If you feel that you need to lose weight – make it on doctor’s advice, not to conform with some stupid media idea of sexy that’s almost definitely bollocks. If you’re not sure where to start and your doctor suggests you need to reform your diet and activity levels, tell them that you need advice about nutrition and exercise. They will be able to give you the best suggestions as to what YOU can do to be healthier.
Once you know, you can learn how to cook some nutritional, tasty food and introduce some exercise to build up your fitness levels. Cooking is dead easy, washing up is simple – we can all do it a few times a week at least and our beloved internet has a wealth of easy recipes to get you started. Doing a little exercise everyday isn’t so hard either, even if it’s just walking to work once a week instead of driving, as a starting point.
Don’t pressure yourself into a ‘get thin and healthy quick’ scheme. It’s not about swapping diets, starving yourself or becoming a gym buff, it’s about amending some of your weekly eats and behaviour so you have your health in check.
If you need to get healthy, restricting calories won’t help you – even if you are losing body mass. Just ask any front row rugby player if low calorie diets = health & strength and prepare to be laughed at. To be healthy, you need to eat good food and exercise, and the easiest way to exercise more is to have more sex. It’s got the perfect cardio pace, can incorporate HIITs, involves all of the major muscle groups AND it comes with a fucking orgasm (hello again, happy hormones!).
Aside from shagging more, you can try running short laps, lifting heavy shit over and over in different ways (what them gym folk call ‘reps’), at-home aerobics, doing yoga with a YouTube guru or if you’re particularly stupid, get a longboard like I did.
I’m OK for spending £35+ a month to have a bunch of meatheads watch my tits bounce up and down on a treadmill in my local Fitness First when a quick run around my own street does exactly the same thing and comes with added daylight. If you want to invest, £50 will buy a decent beginner’s lifting bar and weight plates, internet workouts are free and £180 will nab you a decent longboard set-up if you’d like to join me in gaining some gnarly scars. All of these things are cheaper and probably less miserable than a gym membership, they also last longer than a year.
I can’t stress this enough, you do not have to be ANY size to be sexy. Hell, you can be considered clinically obese and be a bone fide sex bomb (Tess Holliday, anyone?!), so stop stressing!
Associating your desirability with the size of your undercrackers is the equivalent of valuing your home based on the wallpaper you’ve put up in the living room. It’s just not right, so stop it! What’s important is how you feel; If you don’t feel good or healthy, then my friend – you should make a change and do it with the guiding hand of a medical professional. Please don’t try to buy it from a corporate advert that talks you into a shitty body image!
I resolve to put a middle finger up to anyone with commentary on my weight who isn’t a medically-trained professional. Including myself.
Jeez, this has become one-long ass blog. Kudos to those of you who made it to the end, you’ve done well! Here’s to a kickass 2016 for Cara Sutra readers! If you decide to take on any of my New Year Resolutions, please let me know in the comments. These might be the most sensible resolutions I’ve made to date but that doesn’t make them any easier to achieve.
Again, WE CAN DO THE THING!
– Hella Rude
About the author: Hella Rude works as a freelance writer, model, adult e-commerce consultant and occasional TV presenter and actress. You can find her sassy, sensational and downright sexy writings at her author page here at Cara Sutra.