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Roo Betty Writes

  • How Yoga will help your Mental Health?

    You may be wondering just this?, or perhaps you’ve heard all the sensationalised success stories of “how Yoga has changed my life”.  Yeah I know it all sounds a bit….well...you know….REALLY?  As a Yoga teacher battling a mental health disorder and lifelong depressive illness I may just well be the right person to ask, if indeed Yoga will change your life because I’ve been there, done that ….and got the t-shirt to prove it. (if you taken a look at the Roo Betty store you will in fact already know that)


    So let’s start at the very beginning what makes me qualified to answer this question. Well...I’ve suffered from depression my whole life from my early teens to mid forties.  I’ve been on medication which at times has helped a bit.  I’ve chatted to health professionals and I’ve been diagnosed Bi Polar II. I’ve been suicidal and numb, I’ve cried for days and not wanted to leave my house, and I’ve painted on the smile and talked myself into leaving the front door.  I’ve coped and managed at work, whilst having a family and  I have a million and one coping strategies.  Sometimes they work and sometimes they don’t.  I’m now off my medication and surfing through life's highs and lows.  But how did I get to this point and how did yoga help?

  • Getting back out there. The return after Lockdown

    Are you ready?   It’s a question we’ve been asking ourselves over and over again the last few weeks.  In short I’m not too sure we are, but just like any new job, house, relationship you may always feel a little bit awkward in the beginning. The newness brings up lots of emotions like feeling, scared, worried and anxious or perhaps you’re just excited?  


    When we first went into lockdown way back in March 2019 things went a bit surreal, what about you? Can you remember that far back?  Anyway it all seemed manageable after all it’s just for a few weeks, few months at most.  Jeez how we wish that was the case, but anywho we’re where we are.  To be honest things didn’t get weird until the masks became mandatory ( I still wear one even though I am technically exempt - I wear one because I can't abide the stares or the questions from security guards - quite frankly it's none of your business but then I was never any good at confrontation.  The weirdness started the first time I wore one.  I momentarily blacked up, got very dizzy and had to steady myself by hanging onto a shop fitting.  Things didn’t improve for a long time and even now I still end up with asthma symptoms brought on by an anxiety attack.  For any of you unsure the symptoms here’s a handy list 

  • Clocks change and you'll Spring Forward to fabulous

    I woke up this morning with an extra special spring in my step.  Not only is the cleaner coming round in a bit, so i did the usual clean before the cleaner bit , making beds, picking up shit (not literally) off the floor and making sure there weren't any shit stains in the loo.   Sorry for all the shit so early on in this blog.  But because this day is sunny and bright there is a certain buzz to it.

    So first let's dispel the myth that you need a big house to have a cleaner.  Believe me the day I actually took the plunge to get one was a herald of angels moment, sparkly lights, a chorus sung from the heavens and from that moment on my life took an unexpected turn for the better.  God did I miss her over lockdown.  It’s not that I don’t have to clean on other days because believe me I still do the odd bit and every now and then a complete blitz of all the corners and the cobwebs.  Because you’ll understand that 2 hours of cleaning in a 4 bed house once a fortnight doesn’t quite make it spotless.  But what it does do is make it manageable.

  • Sleep The cure all, to EVERYTHING?! But what happens when sleep eludes you?

    How sleep affects your Mental Health

    I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say something headliney “That sleep cures EVERYTHING!” Yeah, OK, for those wishing to get pedantic, maybe not the cancers and other illnesses of that nature.  But it sure goes some way to making you feel a darn sight better.  From a personal point of view I know that a few hours sleep can make you feel on top of the world.  That 20 minute cat nap does work wonders on your little grey brain cells.  Have you ever had a “Disco Nap” - Oh maybe I shouldn’t be talking about that right now? Because it makes me yearn for a damn good night out.  Anyway, Sleep is like ambrosia, the nectar of the gods and having a decent 8 hours, it’s seen as the gold star of “winning at life”  But if like me your sleep pattern has been one of concern then read on.  If your mental health is not at it’s best, I can offer up a few ideas that may go some way into getting a better night's sleep and in turn a grip on your mental health.  I know how it feels to not get the sleep you need and to feel as if life is spiralling away from you.  I’m here to offer some things to think about, some tried and tested ways and a gentle arm around the shoulders when all above fails.

    Why sleep matters

    So why is sleep important?  Well the body needs a rest, plain and simple as that.  During those sleeping hours your body has the chance to replenish and renew itself.  It’s not just physical either, this is for mental stability too.  Sleeping lets you dream and dreaming helps you order and understand the day's events.  Boy do we love those weird and whacky dreams that come by every now and then.  We all know how we feel when we’ve had a sleepless night, you feel drained exhausted and really out of sorts.  But what happens when you keep getting sleepless nights? What then?

  • What becomes of the broken hearted?

    Oh my god, I used to just love this song ( you can listen here if you’re a noob to it) As I listen back to the words and melody, I am immediately transported to my art college days.  Where, in order to get over my shyness and the fact that I was surrounded by people, I used to  listen to music constantly.  My favourite at the time was anything Motown.  I just loved the beat. It kept me calm and the lyrics were always so heart-bracingly, beautiful and catchy too. At the time I had a boyfriend, and being a teenager, the affair was tumultuous.  The trials and tribulations of my love life, could be written as a screenplay and I may just get round to that at some point (although I could really do with a ghost writer so I can recall and they can do the writing, lazy I know? - putting it into the universe just for laters sake) 

    Anyway, I digress. My heart, at the time, belonged to my first ever “proper” boyfriend. He was sultry, moody and a musical type.  My parents hated him, and as you can imagine, this made me love him more.  But he wasn’t the cause of my broken heart.  The relationship I had with him drove me into the arms of the first real love of my life.

  • Why Mental Health Awareness IS important.

    For years we have battled our mental health.  Trying to hold it all together at school or work, only to get back home and it all to fall apart and unravel.  Either in a waterfall of tears or a torrent of abusive words directed at ourselves and others, all with self hate as the headline.  If you can relate to this then I hope that what I am about to write helps you..  I’m writing this because I get it.  I’m writing this because for years I tried to fit in and as a result medicated myself on a daily basis.  At first it helped with the symptoms but over time gave way to a vicious cycle of wellness, before descending back into self hate and misery only for the repeat to fade technique to be adopted.  Until one day I stood up to my mental health, got to know it intimately and learnt how to make it work for me rather than the other way round.
  • Parenting in a Pandemic - When Parenting is damn hard!

    Lessons in me that made me a better parent.

    As the glistening wet worktop dries to smeary streaks of chalky white , I sigh again as I reach for a clean microfiber cloth and frantically circle the smears away.  Mr Miyagi would be proud of me.  The granite gleams back the sparkling pieces of mirror within its core, glint in the downlighters.  I smile to myself for a short minute pleased with the results, knowing full well that within the hour it won’t look as if I’ve laid a finger on the kitchen.

  • Why Blue Monday just feels the same as any other Monday

    What’s with the label?

    Apparently everything needs a label now. God forbid you have to actually find out something about someone by talking to them. It appears nobody wants to be surprised or  learn to love someone's quirkiness or god forbid open a tin and be amazed with the contents. Because without the label who are you really?.  What makes you tick, which illness do you have , what disability or “fault”  or reason for not being able to do something, can all be defined by the label you’ve given yourself.  We all need to know which label we fit in to.  Supposedly making it easier for us to find our tribe, the people we fit in with. Google at the moment is profiling my searches to offer me the news it thinks I want to read right now, labelling me daily in order to give me “the best news experience for me”.(it doesn’t by the way it just gets really samey and boring and makes me switch off)   In marketing you’re asked to niche down and find your “perfect customer” by listing, to the smallest of detail, anything about your ideal client that may be of use in singling out that client.  It’s quite exhausting, and if you’re interested I have attempted to do it on several occasions. Resulting in a really not very useful profile of a  person, who, I very much doubt, actually exists. 

  • The January Blues won't beat me - and they won't beat you either!

    My hands are red raw from over washing them and my nerves frayed.  It’s Monday 4th January and the stress has already started to rise although i'm not sure it even abated.  School is off or more to the point school is online.  Combined with Monday morning (which in my experience have never been all that great) I am now learning Google Classroom at 8.55am - School started at 8.40am.  The presumption that my 11 year old would be fully literate in this, after 4 months at school is starting to fade.  The tempers have risen, the shouting has commenced, there are already tears from everyone and right now I just want to go back to bed and hide under the duvet. 
  • When Christmas is filled with dread - fear not- My 3 top tips

    In case you hadn’t noticed it’s almost Christmas.  This year we have welcomed in the Christmas spirit a little earlier than usual (although when I used to work in retail, Christmas began in August and in my book, that’s still way too early).  Did you start early this year?  I’m guessing the effects of Covid meant anything to distract, in a kinda “oooh look over here, sparkly lights” sort of way, was welcomed?  I know I feel better with a little bit of light in the darkness of winter. 

    Since having a child, Christmas has become a big thing again, well for our family anyway.  The excitement of a small one has helped heaps.  I love the magic of it, the sparkly lights and the year on year traditions that we continue to make, as our little family.  But that wasn’t always the case for me.  Years gone by, have either been ones of complete disappointment, a drunken haze or a “please can this just be over, so I can get back to real life” rush.  Can you relate?  I guess year on year there have been the great moments, the good times with both friends and family. Many filled with Joy and the obligatory Monopoly game.   But so many of them have been filled with dread, as I’ve got dressed in some extremely itchy jumper, in order to face the ordeal.  To try  and get through the afternoon, with gritted teeth.  I’m sure if we linger on the great and the good, this coming yuletide will feel like a warm hug.  But for many years the gloom and grating relatives used to fill me with dread.

  • International Men's Day - Men need more support than you realise

    As a mother of one lovely boy I’m very much outnumbered by the male population in this house.  I remember the day I found out I was going to have a boy.  We eagerly went in for the scan at 20 weeks, knowing that we could find out the sex of our little bump.  The Sonographer took their time just to make sure, but then without hesitation proudly announced .. “It’s …..a BOY!”.  There was an audible hush and my husband grabbed my hand and squeezed.  I promptly burst into tears and the very timid Sonographer backed out quietly and gave us some space.

    I know I was dramatic, but before the haters commence bear with. I’d already set my heart on a little girl, I guess I was a bit man phobic back then. I guess because I’m a girl and I know about those things.  There were many other reasons for the pink wish.  Since giving birth to my little guy my heart has changed and my feelings towards the other sex has most definitely altered.

    As a mother of a boy and if you are one too I’m sure you’ll agree our job is huge.  The responsibility to bring up well rounded individuals is one hard task.  Each sex has their difficulties, has their challenges in the world but on International Men’s Day I’m singling out the male variety to spread a little love towards them.

  • What does kindness mean to you?

    “Be kind!”  probably the most banded about words of 2019/2020.  The most printed slogan on T-shirts - yep Roo Betty also has a tee especially designed with those very words.  But what does it actually mean and are you really embracing the full meaning of those words?

    Are you REALLY being kind?

    Kindness is important, after all it’s in our DNA, it’s why we thrive.  If we didn’t care and all ran around as individuals all humans would probably become extinct years ago.  When you’re kind it’s like planting a seed, the roots spread out and start to affect others.  But being kind isn’t as easy as you’d think.  The #bekind movement which began to really evolve a few years ago stemmed from a rather unfortunate and unpleasant event.  Remember the death of Caroline Flack?  Let’s not forget that through the unkindness of strangers this lady was led down a very dark path and potentially fuelled her untimely death.  We cannot say for sure the reasons Caroline felt the need to take her life but let’s just say the unpleasantness that was prior to her death was extreme and probably did assist her choices on that dark day.