Volunteering is good for self-esteem

If you have low self-esteem, then getting out of your comfort zone and volunteering will help improve your self-esteem.
Those that have known me from a previous blog I used to write, will know that Ashfield Play Forum was the first place I volunteered at. At was at my lowest moment prior to starting there; not feeling good because of work, confidence really low and I was depressed. I also started shutting off people close to me by not speaking, if I could.

I started volunteering at Ashfield Play Forum in January 2014 and I am still there, enjoying a wide variety of tasks. I like helping where I can and it improved my confidence and made me speak, which in turn made me feel I could speak up again to family, or close friends. I also felt useful.

July 2015 I started a new volunteering opportunity with Nottinghamshire Hospice, volunteering in a shop. This volunteering role took me out of my comfort zone and I enjoyed it there. Although I started off in the shop itself, I ended up working upstairs, as this was where I felt I was doing something and I felt useful; steaming the clothes and occasionally sorting. Although I loved it, I decided to leave after not quite a year being there, to pursue something different. This was then when I decided to volunteer at Rosewood.
Rosewood was the best move I made, as you will know when I talked about it here in this post. Although it is still early days and I have not yet started my volunteering role in feedback and patient experience, I still feel positive about my chosen volunteering route and I look forward to gaining different experiences.

So I definitely recommend volunteering to anyone. Just find what you’d like to do when it comes to volunteering, as there are different places you can volunteer at and give it a go. As well as improving your self-esteem and confidence, it can also be good for your CV, as well as for the company/charity you volunteer for.


This post is also now tagged to The Daily Post; Daily Prompt: Volunteer.



Virtual coffee – June

If we were having coffee right now, which today I would be choosing a cold drink, so mine would be a strawberry milkshake and we would be sitting at a cafe in the park. I’d be mentioning how I have decided to change the #virtualcoffeedate tag to #virtualcoffee. (You have probably noticed this change already.)

If we were having coffee right now, since our first Virtual coffee, I would be asking how you are and what you have been doing recently?

Since our first virtual coffee, the everyday inspirations has finished that I joined along with, which was where this virtual coffee date idea came from. I had a go with most of these posts, but there were a few I couldn’t. I totally recommend it though, as it gives you fresh ideas and new challenges.

I would also be mentioning since our last coffee, how I have heard from the coach company in response to my complaint. They apologised for the untidiness where I sat and it turned out where I was dropped off, which was different to where I was originally told, the driver should not have dropped us off there. I have been reassured that when I go again in August, that we will be dropped off at St. Georges car par, as it should have been last time. So I do hope this happens.
As for the driver coming back half an hour earlier than time stated on slip, it should have been 5pm, but they could not comment on why he chose to come back at time he did, till they had spoken to the driver.

If we were having coffee right now, I would be saying how I wasn’t long here having a coffee with another friend. We sat inside like we are doing now, because of the weather.

If we were having coffee right now,  I would also mention, yesterday I seen a friend in Birmingham. We don’t see each other often, so when we do, it is always a big catch up.

If we were having coffee right now, I would be telling you that I am still enjoying my time volunteering at Rosewood. It feels right for me and I feel I have made my mind up in the direction I want to go career wise, with how I feel. But I will tell you more later down the line, as I just want to enjoy the experience and keep gaining the experience.

I do hope you have enjoyed our virtual coffee again. Please feel free to join in and I hope you can make our next virtual coffee in July. 🙂


Dermatitis is a real pain and I have suffered contacted dermatitis for 3 years. (But possibly more, as I have lost count.)

It wasn’t until last year, 3 months before Christmas that I finally had it under control with my over the counter 1% hydrocortisone cream, along with a moisturiser that I found really helped me, which was Aveeno hand cream. (The green top one, which contains colloidal oatmeal.) I decided to give Aveeno a go after reading positive reviews from eczema websites.
This year, I also discovered another moisturising cream that was good; Cetraben cream. I decided to try this after is was recommended to my work colleague who was also suffering with her hands.

Both these creams I recommend, but when my Aveeno has all gone, I will probably just stick completely with the Cetraben cream.

From that point last year, until now, I managed to keep it under control. But this last few months, I kept getting flare ups and so I used my 1% hydrocortisone cream time and time again, until very recently I had such a very bad flare up, I felt I had lost the war with it and it was at its worst it has ever been.

I went to the doctors recently, so I could show him at its very worst and to check it was still contact dermatitis from when another doctor had told me it was, but had not seen it at it’s worst like this.
I also took what I had been using, but said how I felt now that my 1% hydrocortisone cream was no longer working now. After answering a few questions, my doctor said that I needed a stronger cream to tackle this, so I could get it back under control. I was prescribed Betnovate cream, along with a prescription for my Cetraben cream. (A large pump bottle of it. Both of these are now on my prescription should I need more.

My doctor also reassured me on questions I had with the previous cream I once used; 1% hydrocortisone cream and now the Betnovate cream I have to use.

I have been using the Betnovate cream since Monday evening and although I am in discomfort and occasionally pain with my left hand, as this is the worst hand, I can see already the improvement, visually. So hopefully, I will nip this in the bud again.

About contact dermatitis

You cannot catch contact dermatitis from me. This term is used because contact dermatitis   appears on skin exposed to a substance that sets it off. Although it can occur anywhere, it is usually the hands and face where you will find it. In my case, it is work related because of the job I do. You can read more about contact dermatitis here, which will take you to the NHS Choices website.

This may help your tense, or sore muscles.

3 years ago, I pulled my neck so bad, that my muscles in my back went into a spasm. I was sore for quite a few weeks from this and I had to take it easy from work and I missed a session or two of Pilates. (I did some gentle stretches at home.)
When I did go back to Pilates, I had to take it easy with the moves given and I was in no predicament to do the same exercises as others were doing, as it would have aggravated the condition, so they were adapted.

When it was suggested I take a break, I was given a Spiky Ball. I had to stand with my back near a wall, then place this ball between my back and wall. I was to then bend my knees a little bit, then back to standing, so that this ball was rolling up and down my back. The Spiky Ball, you allow it to go on soft tissue either side of your spine. (Don’t use the ball directly on your spine itself.) It massages your back while you are doing this, helping your muscles to relieve tension and relax. I had never used one before, till then. But after using one in class and finding relief, I ended up buying one myself.
The one pictured below, I bought from Amazon.

blue spiky ball


Don’t rush

Don’t rush is my phrase I use to myself, most of the time. I learnt in my 20’s that it is no good from rushing, after I burnt out one time from doing too much. But yesterday, my phrase went out of the window. My fault, as I chose to not set my alarm as I was thinking I’d get up when I get up.
I have not being sleeping good at times and because of it, I was feeling very tired. The not sleeping properly has been partly myself, for staying up much later than I normally would, so knocking my sleeping patterns. The weather has also been humid and so this has not helped.

Getting up much later yesterday morning, meant that things I was planning to do were delayed getting done. So I started rushing.

When it came to preparing my lunch, which was a simple job to do went wrong, while doing other jobs, meant a delay having my lunch. This was simply because I did not turn the oven on. I was surprised and laughed at myself, (after ticking myself off first,) by my simple mistake and not realising that the oven wasn’t warm when putting in my meal. After the oven had warmed and it was in the oven, I went to the shop for bits and bobs I needed. I panicked a little, as I thought I may be holding up the next person behind me. He reminded me when he said, “Not to rush, it is not worth rushing.”

Rushing can cause mistakes as a simple mistake I made. But in the end, what I was most concerned about not getting time to do, I did. So this was a simple case of panicking over nothing and also a reminder that regardless how tired I am, set the alarm.

Embracing my inner child

Reading ‘Heart Thoughts, A Treasury of Inner Wisdom,’ by Louise L. Hay, I came across this quote that made me pause and reflect.

“Each one of us is always working with the three-year old child within us. Most of us, unfortunately, spend our time yelling at that child and then wondering why our lives don’t work.”

As well as this quote that made me pause, it was also some further writing on the opposite page, that goes onto taking care of your inner child.

It made me pause and reflect because through from my child years to early adult life, everything I felt, felt like it was that inner child in me. As an adult, the way I am in with regards to my low self-esteem, low confidence and generally the way I felt, felt like that inner child. The child that was not allowed to grow.
Those that are new to my blog, if they read my blog posts from the beginning, will understand afterwards, that the difficulties I had in my childhood, through to adult life, is it it any wonder. But now as you know, if you have followed most of my posts, I am getting there and I am in a much better place now than I have ever been.
But seeing this quote and reading further on the opposite page, it reminded me to make sure I continue to look after my inner child. Sometimes we can be our own worst enemies and easily put ourselves down, which is something I did a lot of, but for sometime now, I  have got better with this.

Look after your inner child.
Look after yourself.


Heads Together


Heads Together is a new campaign, which started this year, to end stigma around mental health. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry have joined together with this campaign and its their biggest single project they have undertaken together.

Heads Together are partnering with inspiring charities to change the national conversation on mental health. Their aim together, is to end stigma, raising awareness and help people with mental health challenges.

To find out more about, visit Heads Together.