Oscar Wilde once said "one's real life is often the life that one does not lead". And what a terrifying thought that is.
I often wonder where I'd be in my life if I'd have taken a different path, or dealt with a fork in the road differently. Was my life supposed to be like this, or was there some master plan that I missed out on because I made a wrong choice somewhere along the line?
"What" and "If" are two words that when placed next to each other have the power to rattle me to my very core. I pride myself on the fact that I don't let my past bother me, but I'm a bugger for worrying about the future.
Now we can listen to Beyoncé and Whitney and a million other empowering women tell us how amazing we are until we're blue in the face, but we're only human: we all have our down days, and we all have our fair share of eff-ups.
Another trait to being a human is that we're all hoarders. We have this incessant need to keep things for the sake of it.
Hands up if you've ever held onto something because you were too afraid of what life would be like without it? Whether it's a job, a boyfriend, or issues of Cosmo from 2011 that you still keep in your drawer, chances are, you're nodding in agreement.
So grab those marigolds and a big black bin-liner, we're going to give your life a Spring clean! (Throwing out old Cosmos optional)
1. Your job
This is always the first place to start, because the work environment is where we spend a majority of our day. It's a depressing thought, I know, but no one wants to spend this huge chunk of their life sat at a desk working for a boss they hate or a company that doesn't inspire them. Go out and find a job you love waking up for in the morning, and if that job doesn't exist: create it! Being self-employed is extremely daunting, but it means you get to do something you love on your own terms.
2. Your friends
I'm a self-confessed Made In Chelsea and The Hills addict, but I will never understand why these people surround themselves with so much drama. The beauty of our friends is that we can choose them, so if your friendship with someone isn't working out, don't feel like you need to keep spending time with them to save face. When I moved away for uni, I often felt guilty for not catching up with my girls from home, but then whenever we did make a forced effort to get together, it wasn't really all that fun anymore. Eventually, we all realised we just didn't have anything in common anymore, bbut that's okay. Things change, people grow up, and you drift apart. It's just a way of life.
3. Your love life
There are too many women in my life that have "settled" for the wrong man. They've gone against all their beliefs, morals, hopes and dreams and fooled themselves into thinking they're with the right person, even though they know deep down they're not. One of the most common reasons behind this is because of commitments. You live together, or you have a child, or you've been together since you were sixteen, so you couldn't possibly leave, right? Wrong! Oh, so wrong! Being in love is the most wonderful feeling in the world, and you should never deprive yourself of that because you're "settled".
Once you've filtered your way through the three things above, you'll notice yourself beginning to change as a result. You'll become much happier and more content, and you'll actually have more time to focus on YOU, and hey, who doesn't love a little bit of "me" time every now and then? The best lesson you can ever learn is that being happy is a choice. It's up to YOU to filter out the negatives - there isn't any room in your life for the people, places and situations that are bringing you down. Once you realise that, you'll also realise this: 'yourself' is the only thing you don't need to spring clean.