Relax, Rest and Refresh with Sun Fun You

Back in 2015 when I was running my previous blog, Rach’s Place, I was given an amazing opportunity to spend a week sailing around Turkey and Greece with Sun Fun You. I had so much fun and loved it so much that I returned the following year as a paying customer.

Sun Fun You offers boutique vacation yachting through the Mediterranean. Whether you prefer to book a cabin on a Scheduled Voyage, or book a Private Voyage for yourself, we offer the ultimate balance of authentic and active experiences.

Voyages take place around Turkey and Greece and are full of so much fun and laughter, whether you attend solo or with a partner.

The gulet itself in an amazing 8 cabin (all ensuite!), 16 berth traditional Turkish boat, handmade by the Captain himself.

There’s plenty of activities too, from yoga, hiking, swimming to belly dancing belly, mud bath, Traditional Hammam and more!

And lets not forget the AMAZING food!

Now, you don’t have to be super duper fit to go on the voyages. A bevvy (or two) are also enjoyed as you’re sailing the open seas.

Nothing is compulsory either, but honestly, once you get there you’ll just want to join in with all that fun energy around you.

For example, I am by no means a morning person. Just ask my husband and he’ll tell you that you don’t talk to me before 10am, but I found myself wanting to get up and out of bed. There’s something about waking up at 6:30am, having some fresh tea and then a yoga session on a boat in the middle of the quiet calmness of the Mediterranean sea as the sun is rising. There’s really not many words to describe the feeling.

The hikes are also amazing and even if you’re not the most physically fit person, you will be able to manage and the views alone are worth it!

The guide, Ali, is superb and his knowledge is truly astounding. He know’s all the places to go to that will get you well and truly off the beaten track and show you the truly beautiful countries.

As amazing as everything is on the voyage, I think the one thing I enjoyed the most was the company.

I travelled with a friend, but other than each other, we didn’t know any one else on our voyages, but you cannot help but become friends with the people you’re put together. Somehow, Cynthia, Ali and the crew have this knack of just bringing everyone together and you leave feeling like family.

It’s been two years since my last voyage and it truly was one of my most memorable holidays – although it wasn’t with my husband or children, but us mum’s deserve some chill out time once in a while, right?

I hope to return one day. I think I’ve been saying that for the past two years, but I really do mean it. I would love to have the experience of taking the husband with me (although having someone care for 4 children is difficult). If not, then I would happily return on my own.

If you are looking for that all inclusive, adult only, fun time trip – SUN FUN YOU is the only place to go!

 

*DISCLAIMER: My original voyage in 2015 was gifted to me by Sun Fun You. However, I returned in 2016 as a paying customer. Blog posts were originally posted on my blog, Rach’s Place, which is no longer live. I was not asked to re-write this review. I simply have because I loved my trips so much and think that everyone should know about this amazing company! 

Fighting the dark days

Do you ever have those times when you feel like you have just completely lost your way? Perhaps you have all these amazing ideas and thoughts, but don’t know how to accomplish them. Perhaps your self esteem is flaking and all you feel like doing is staying in and hiding under your duvet?

 

This is pretty much me at the moment. I am stuck in this funk and struggling to see a way out.

I have had this domain for many years and it’s changed avenues over time.

Earlier this year, I decided I wanted to us it as a motivational and inspirational tool – but I also wanted to be transparent.

I am not an expert in this field. I am just your average mother who has spent all her life battling anxiety and depression and using this little space on the internet as a way of therapy.

I find writing very therapeutic – but putting it out here like this is not good for my anxiety. You see, I think too much about what people think of me. I know I shouldn’t and when I am having good days (or weeks), I feel confident and I couldn’t give a crap about what anyone thinks. And then it hits me like a tonne of bricks and I crawl back inside myself and become this recluse who just hides away.

The last couple of years have been tough on us a family. My anxiety has not given me a break and my depression got bad that I had to increase my medication dosage, and still on a higher dose. I just feel like I cannot function as a normal person without it – although the last few weeks in particular I am struggling to function at all.

I don’t know if it’s because the children are on summer break, but I have found this summer really tough going. I’ve also had these great idea’s for blog posts and Youtube videos – and then think, nah, no one will want to read/watch that and I dismiss it.

I need to get over myself. I need to do something for me, and not care if anyone reads it or watches it, as long as it makes me feel better, right?

So, I think this is what I am going to use this place for.

An online journal for how I am feeling – and sharing tips along the way that I have found useful. I have already shared a lot of my favourite book recommendations, if you’re into the motivational/inspirational kinda book. If people read it, then great. If not, then I still have a creative outlet and somewhere to jot down my thoughts and plot out my way to recovery from anxiety and depression.

 

Change your mindset to change your life

I used to think that motivational quotes were a load of bollocks. I mean, come on, how can a bunch of words actually get you motivated and change the way you think?

I was brought up in a very negative household and often felt like I didn't fit in. Along with being bullied throughout most of my school years, it just fuelled the self-hate I had for myself. I started sinking into depression aged 13 and by 17 I was self-harming and had tried to commit suicide.

This cycle continued for many years - even after meeting my husband, getting married, having children etc. I would have good days and bad months.

Then, a couple of years ago I had a breakdown and decided that I had had enough. I was fed up of feeling angry all the time. I was fed up of being that angry and shouty mummy. I was fed up of taking my husband for granted and constantly thinking that he was only with me for the children's sake.

Change doesn't happen overnight. It can be a struggle and it has it's own ups and downs - but you have to be committed to changing for it to really happen.
Reading:

Once I was in the headspace that I not only wanted to, but I needed to change my mindset - I set about doing what I always do and research.

I love to read, so I read articles and books about changing your mindset. Spending a few minutes a day just reading about mindset and really trying to focus on what the underlying message was.

I downloaded some inspirational quotes. I created a Pinterest board for them, as well as downloading some on to my computer - putting them as my screensaver on both my laptop and my phone. I also printed some of my favourites off and placed them on a pin board in my bedroom so they were the first things I would see when I woke up.

Time for Yourself:

Next up was learning that I needed to take out for myself and that it was ok to do so.

Just 5 minutes a day can really help us to refocus - especially if your day has been particularly stressful. Whether it's a nice relaxing bubble bath, or just lock yourself in your bedroom, take that small break.

Meditation:

I also started attending meditation classes. This helped with regrounding, shifting my mindset and really focusing on what I wanted out of life. I didn't want to spend the rest of my life being defined as just 'mum'. I knew I wanted to make a difference, but I wasn't sure how. Meditation helped me relax my mind and clear all those thoughts running around it at one hundred miles per hour. It helped me to regain a focus and a purpose.

Journaling:

Journaling is a great tool to help focus the mind. You don't have to buy an expensive journal, a simple notebook will do, but make sure you take a few minutes at the beginning of the day to write in it. What you write is entirely up to you. It can be goals you want to achieve that day/week/year. Your thoughts, your dreams, your aspirations - literally anything.

Exercise:

Next up, is one that many often dread. Exercise.

You don't need to spend a lot of money on a gym membership, but by spending just 15 minutes per day doing some form of exercise will help improve your mental health and mindset. Whether you decide to go for a bike ride, a power walk, gentle stroll or even hit the gym and lift some weights (which I prefer to do) - whatever you decide, just get moving.

Eating:

If you're like me, you probably find yourself comfort eating, a lot! I used to go all day without eating and then I would binge on the bad foods in the evening. This would leave me feeling sluggish and ill and hardly any energy to do anything. By changing eating habits and making sure you get three meals and two healthy snacks in per day will really help with not only your body health but your mind also.
These are just the starting blocks that I used to help change my mindset. They sound easy to do when written down, but I know how hard they can be to put into action when you really don't feel like it.

Share what you want to do with a partner or friend. See if they will be your accountability partner - or perhaps do it with you. Make sure you have someone supporting you along the way. That is really important.

If you don't have anyone, drop me a line. I will happily be your accountability partner and walk beside you on this new path.

50 Self Care Ideas

Self-care is so important. Stop focusing on other people are start focusing on yourself. It's ok to be a little selfish and take time out for you. If you are not taking care of yourself, physically and mentally, then how can you be expected to take care of others. You really do need to fill your own cup first.

When I was thinking about putting together this list, there were 100's of ideas out there, but to me, they didn't really seem like self-care. I mean, how can cleaning your house from top to bottom be self-care? For me, that's not really working on myself as it is something I would do on a regular basis.

I wanted to give you ideas to do that are for YOU. Things that will make you feel better about yourself, help you refresh, refocus and recharge. The list contains many different things you can do with different budgets and time lengths.
1. Give yourself a mini spa - long hot shower or bath. Add in a face mask, paint your nails and moisturise thoroughly. Finish off by hiding under fresh sheets in bed.

2. Meditate - a simple 5 minutes out to meditate can help relax and destress you.

3. Watch a movie! Get in your pj's, grab some popcorn and get comfy. Or why not go to the cinema in the middle of the day?

4. Write - whether it's in a journal just about your thoughts, a gratitude list or start a short story or blog.

5. Go for a walk - find somewhere nice to go for a stroll and just take in the fresh air.

6. Binge watch a favourite TV series. With the likes of catchup TV and Netflix, you can now find your favourite TV shows and watch several episodes at one.

7. Listen to some relaxing music or a podcast. Lay down, put your earphones in and just relax.

8. Read - light some candles, cozy up on the sofa and read a good fiction.

9. People watch - I love watching others (not in a creepy way, I just find human beings fascinating). Best places to people watch - a local coffee shop, park, market.

10. Visit a free museum. There are plenty of historical places you can visit around the country that are free or ask for a small donation.
11. Invest in an adult colouring book and some nice pens.

12. Go to a beauty counter at a store and get a makeover.

13. Visit the beach. There's something relaxing about listening to the waves crash on the shore.

14. Do some yoga. There are plenty of yoga tutorials on YouTube that you can try in the comfort of your own home.

15. Create a bucket list of all the things you'd like to accomplish by a certain time.

16. Take a nap.

17. Have a girly night out - or in.

18. Have a night or weekend away.

19. Take a drive. Have you ever just got in the car and driven with no end destination in mind?

20. Unplug from social media - even if it is just for one hour.
21. Exercise - whether that is hitting the gym, going for a bike ride or going for a run, jog or power walk.

22. Bake. Make some yummy cookies, brownies or cakes to share.

23. De-Clutter. There is nothing better to help clear your mind than clearing your surroundings of clutter.

24. Watch the sunrise or set. There is something magical about watching a new day be born.

25. Have an early night. Pick at least one night a week where you will go to bed earlier, with no distractions from your phone or TV.

26. Buy yourself some flowers.

27. Have a relaxing massage. Find a local beauty therapist either in a salon or a mobile one who can come to your own home.

28. Get your hair done. Whether it's a full out change or just a trim.

29. Call someone you haven't spoken to in a while. It will not only make you feel better, but I am sure it will cheer them up also.

30. Plan your self-care days for the next month.
31. Have an ice cream Sundae or hot chocolate with lots of marshmallows (or both).

32. Buy a new piece of clothing or a new outfit.

33. Book a spa day. Go all out on the pampering and make a day of it at a spa.

34. Create a vision board of things you would like to see appear in your life - a new house/car/holiday/money etc.

35. Watch some TEDx talks from inspiring women.

36. Have a coffee/afternoon tea and a catch up with a friend.

37. Go for a swim.

38. Buy a gift for someone 'just because'. (I love gifting when I can).

39. Give out compliments. I love working my way through social media posts and giving compliments to people.

40. Make a gratitude list of all the things you are thankful for in life.
41. Read a self-help book that will inspire you.

42. Write a letter forgiving someone for what they have done to you. Rip it up once you've written it and let go.

43. Have breakfast for dinner. Full english? Pancakes? Whatever you decide.

44. Find a new hobby or something you'd like to learn.

45. Do something new. Something you have never done before.

46. Write a list of everything you love about yourself. Your best qualities and traits.

47. Try on new clothes in a store. You don't have to purchase them - but trying on different outfits always makes me feel good (and don't forget to take those selfies!).

48. Recreate a favourite comfort meal from your childhood.

49. Write down 3 things that have been good about your day. Try to do this every day.

50. Book yourself on a retreat!!