Exercising the Mind and Controlling Anxiety

Headspace app stress manage mind exercise meditationA few years ago, whilst studying at university in London, I experienced a particularly difficult situation and found myself totally unprepared to cope with my own reactions and feelings towards the event. I tried counselling, I poured all my feelings out to a stranger in a coffee shop, spoke to friends, spent lots of money and often had a few too many drinks, but no matter how much I tried to escape my own mind, I was trapped.

Today, I’m still very much an anxious person by nature. I have a terrible phobia of flying, something I have been trying to battle with for a couple of years, I over-analyse most situations and I prepare myself for catastrophic scenarios after watching the news. Certainly these are not the makings of a relaxed and comfortable mind. Recently though, I was introduced to a playful little mobile app with the ability to drastically improve my lifestyle and help me control my over-imaginative mind, Headspace.

Founded by Andy Puddicombe, the Headspace goal is to encourage everyone to exercise their mind, whether it be on a daily basis or just once in a while. Having spent ten years on a journey around the world, including time spent as a Tibetan Buddhist Monk in Northern India and training with the Moscow State Circus, Andy has since published several books on the topic of meditation as well as numerous television appearances and the New York Times recently stated that ‘Andy Puddicombe is doing for meditation what Jamie Oliver has done for food‘. High praise indeed.

Having tried out the free Take-10 trial (10 sessions each lasting 10 minutes to introduce you to the app, the process of meditiation and the encouraging animations), I was quick to subscribe to the full version which unlocked hundreds of new mediation sessions ranging from mini SOS bursts to help calm a difficult situation to on-the-go sessions during a workout, sleeping or even eating. There are themed mediations including relationships, health and performance as well as one-off sessions lasting between 10 minutes to an hour. I’m even planning on taking it with me for future plane journeys so I’ll let you know how that goes!

Andy explains that Headspace is ‘like a gym membership for the mind‘ but I would disagree because, whilst I’m constantly looking for a million excuses to avoid my Tuesday evening boxing class, I actually really look forward to my morning meditation. I’m comforted by the fact that whatever situation I may find myself in, I can always take 3 minutes to clear my mind and suddenly nothing looks quite so dramatic!

If you think Headspace could help you too, I really recommend that you check out the website for full details and a very cute animated introduction.

Headspace app stress manage mind exercise meditation

Headspace app stress manage mind exercise meditation

Eiffel Tower Turns Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Paris Breast Cancer Awareness Eiffel Tower Pink October

Tonight, the 7th of October 2014, the Eiffel Tower was lit in pink for the very first time to honor the start of October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month in Paris.  Earlier this week, Liz Hurley switched on the pink lights of the Empire State Building and over the next few days, several famous landmarks will also turn pink for the charity including The Colosseum in Rome, The Bandra-Worli Sea Link in Mumbai, The Burj Al Arab in Dubai and The Peninsula in Hong Kong.

Find out how you can help locally by clicking on the image below and look out for all the fun pink products on sale with a percentage being donated to the cause!

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Stella McCartney x CANON Limited Edition Collaboration

Stella McCartney x Canon

Yet again, London Fashion Week has been one full of stunning designs, outrageous outfits and exciting announcements and not least is this very unique and unexpected collaboration between one of my hero designers, Stella McCartney, and Canon UK.

The limited edition camera bag has been named after Stella’s mother, Linda, and there will only be 1000 bags available exclusively to London’s Selfridges and Harrods.  Unfortunately, for those hoping to snag just the super cute bowling-style bag, it does come as part of a set including the white Canon EOS 100D for a not-too-unreasonable cost of £1,200. Well hey, unique style comes at a price… and it does double up as a designer handbag!

The collaboration was revealed on Sunday night at the 2014 London Stella McCartney Green Carpet Collection, a certified sustainable event co-hosted by the crème de la crème in fashion, Livia Firth, Natalie Massenet, Stella McCartney and Anna Wintour.

The Stella McCartney x Canon UK bag will be available from November 2014.

Sonny Angel x Laduree Collaboration

Sonny Angel Laduree

As you can see I’ve fallen for yet another adorable and very fun collaboration, this time not so much fashion-themed but more macarons and childhood… another perfect combination! These cute figures named Sonny Angel are a total hit in Japan and have just arrived in Europe thanks to a clever collaboration with the Maison Laduree (available in both London and Paris).

During a guilty afternoon of macarons and tea at Laduree, I couldn’t resist picking up a couple of these ‘patisserie heads’ myself and I’ll be giving one away to a lucky reader on the blog at the end of the month! All you have to do for your chance to win this little collectable is enter through the Rafflecopter widget below and then cross your fingers… I’ll pick a random winner on the 31st of August.

Limited Edition Laduree x Sonny Angel collection online and in selected Laduree boutiques.

Sonny Angel LadureeSonny Angel LadureeSonny Angel Laduree

Comme vous pouvez le voir, j’ai encore craqué pour une collaboration super adorable et très amusante, cette fois-ci il ne s’agit non pas d’une marque de mode mais plutôt de macarons et de la joie de l’enfance … autre combinaison parfaite ! Ces petits personnages trop mignon, nommé Sonny Angel, sont déjà un véritable succès au Japon et ils viennent d’arriver en Europe grâce à une belle collaboration avec la Maison Ladurée (disponible à Londres et à Paris).

Lors d’un après-midi afternoon tea et macarons chez Ladurée, je n’ai pas pu résister et je suis parti avec quelques petits personnages ‘têtes de pâtisserie’ donc je propose d’offrir un petit personnage de collection a l’un de mes lecteur chanceux sur le blog à la fin du mois ! Pour tenter de gagner votre propre Sonny Angel x Ladurée , il suffit simplement de participer sur le widget Rafflecopter ci-dessous puis croiser les doigts … Je choisirai un gagnant au hasard le 31 août… Bonne chance à tous !

Edition Limitée Sonny Angel x Ladurée disponible en ligne et dans certaines boutiques Ladurée .

Sonny Angel Laduree

A Working Weekend in London

Sonny Angel Laduree

Last weekend, I headed over to London for a work trip which, between meetings with beautiful designer brands and catching up on emails in Starbucks, resulted in a lot of shopping! Especially with the brand new beautiful Wild About Liberty collection in Liberty London… if you haven’t yet seen the prints, go there. Fast.

With my beautiful new earrings from Gas Bijoux and trusty Miu Miu card holder, I headed over to the Eurostar check in where I honestly thought I might die from the suffocating heat (32 degrees in Paris does not work for me!), hence the much-needed Avene Thermal Spring Water to keep cool.

After a whirlwind weekend, it was already time to head back to Paris but not before discovering the brand new selection of Nars Dual-Intensity Eyeshadows with my favourite shades, Callisto and Subra.

Back in Paris, the weather had turned a miserable grey but I was soon cheered up by the launch of the cutest Sonny Angel x Laduree collaboration! Mini patisserie heads and macaron characters, what’s not to love?

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