Guest Post: Goodbyes

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Goodbyes can be difficult. Saying goodbye to someone can be full of heartbreak and a moment of loss.

Of course in our modern technological laden world, a goodbye doesn’t need to be permanent. There are many ways we can keep in contact with someone despite them leaving. This is the joy of social media.

It is time for me to say goodbye. I have written a semi-regular fortnightly guest post for Kooklah for almost six months. It is now time for this stage to come to an end. My blog is growing and I am enjoying putting too much time and energy into it. I want to focus upon my blog in this time of growth. So, unfortunately I need to stop my regular contributions to Kooklah.

I love the style that Kooklah radiates. She is truly beautiful. And, her knowledge! I love this post on embracing headscarfs. I refer to it often and practice at home!

Perhaps one day, I’ll share my writing here again.

I trust that you will continue to be a positive seeking girl. I hope that you will come and visit me at Creating Contentment if you need some more inspiration, but Kooklah is on her own wellbeing journey and can also give you motivation and guidance to become the positive seeking girls you want to be. And you can be! I promise. It just takes a little bit of work, and a whole lot of practice. I speak from experience.

So, smile cause you’re beautiful. You just need to believe it.

Thank you for letting me into your space and reading my words. It has been such a pleasure. I have loved this experience. Writing here has helped me grow and learn. I will always be grateful.

So, goodbye. Take care.

And remember if you want to stay in touch, there are many ways to contact me. xS

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Thankyou to Sarah for this open and honest post, your lovely words will be missed. I wish your own blog well, and look forward to clicking over to read your future posts. KOOKLAH xo

Step Away

For my guest post on Creating Contentment this week I wrote about a change I have been making lately, a way to remove toxic and negative aspects or people from my life. Hoping to make room for the positive.

Click the link to read it, have you also made some changes?

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Kooklah X.O.

Guest Post: the Forgiveness Challenge

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I have been participating in Desmond Tutu’s Forgiveness Challenge.  Each day you are guided through how to forgive.

The Forgiveness Challenge teaches what forgiveness is and what it isn’t. Forgiveness is not forgetting. Forgiveness is not weak. Rather, forgiveness is an essential part of feeling whole.

The forgiveness Challenge aims to teach you how to bring more love and peace into your life, and help the world heal. This is because forgiveness teaches you to see the humanity in others. That is, despite whatever horrendous acts committed, they too have all the rights that you have.

I believe that forgiveness is an important part of acceptance. When you forgive someone or a situation, you are letting go of the possibility of a different past. Through forgiveness, you let go of the hurt and anger that you are holding onto. It is this hurt and anger that is preventing you from being all you can be. After forgiveness you shall be more able to accept the circumstances of your life. All these steps you have taken, and why you have ended up ‘here’ will become more clear. This is acceptance.

Acceptance is the recognition that you are right where you are meant to be. That the world is as it should be. And with such acceptance, will come contentment.

I like to think of contentment as an ‘equanimity’. The world will feel balanced. You will feel … not necessarily in control, but safe. Loved. Guided. Contentment will bring with it an understanding that bad things will happen, but they have a place, and that this too, shall pass. Contentment will allow you to always see all the good, despite the bad.

The Forgiveness Challenge started officially on the 4th May and runs for 30 days. I am only up to Day 6 of my Forgiveness Challenge. I am taking it slow. I am doing this because at times is is emotionally overwhelming. But, it is also because, I like to be doing multiple things at once. I have learnt that the ability to switch from one project to another is what keeps me interested and motivated. Ultimately, I think it is more important to complete the Challenge, to go through this process of forgiveness. I want to give it the attention it deserves, and sometimes I do not have the mental space or the physical time I wish to donate toward the Forgiveness Challenge. And so, I am taking it slow.

We have been asked to choose one person to forgive. One person to focus our learnings upon. One person.

I choose myself.

I need to forgive myself for so many bad choices. I need to forgive the situations I ended up in. I need to stop blaming myself as it is just hurting me. I am only causing myself damage. And it is now time to heal, to let go and to move on.

And, I wanted to extend an invitation for you to join me. I want you to take this step in healing yourself, and healing the world with me. I want you to do it because I believe that you will benefit, and I’d like the company.

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Thanks Sarah for this guest post, I am definitely going to consider participating in this.. Kooklah.

 

Guest Post: Let go of your results

Sarah from Creating Contentment has a fantastic post for us to read today. I can identify with what she has written and have been working hard to let go of certain aspects myself… I hope you enjoy the read, and look forward to your comments.
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Make your plan, do your best and lt go of the results.

This is the art of surrender.

This is also, mostly a letter to myself. A list to remind myself of what is needed. But, I’m assuming that my experiences are not unique. As different as each individual is, I believe that there is a common thread between us. I believe that the human experience, that is what it means to be human, is the same, regardless of status, location, age or gender.

So, we need to surrender to the world, to fate, to the gods or whatever you call it. To recognise that the future cannot be manipulated into how you anticipate it occurring.

This is about letting go of control, of going with the flow. Of freeing up constraints so to open yourself up to opportunities.

It is also means that you need to recognise that you cannot control how others perceive you. That your best may not be reflected in the best result. And that this is okay.

Surrendering is difficult. It is recognising your fallibility, that you are human and are capable of vulnerability and regret. It is hard because you need to face yourself honestly, to see your faults and your strengths.

You need to let go off your results.

I mean this literally as well as metaphorically.

Study your best, put in all your effort and then let it go. The mark you receive is out of your control.

Eat well. Make good choices. But good health, or weight loss is ultimately out of your control.

We need to not worry about the future. It only stirs anxiety and stress, creating a mental darkness that swamps our present day pleasure. Don’t let a possible negative outweigh the present moment.

All this is a learning curve. It is hard. I am struggling with it. I don’t want to see my faults. But only when I can see them, only then can I improve.

This is acceptance. This is accepting myself as I am, warts and all. This is the possibility when you let go of your results.

Do you beat yourself up when you don’t perform the way you hoped? Or are you good at letting it go? Any tips for me?

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Talking Happy

Hi Gorgeous readers,

This week my guest post for Creating Contentment focuses on happiness and talks some more about the 100 day challenge I wrote about in 100 Days of Happy. Click over to read it, I have included a small excerpt below:

For the past eleven months I have been on a journey to restore balance, positivity and happiness in my life. This has included creating Project 2014 ‘For the Positive Seeking Girl’.  I have found I become so easily influenced by the negative experiences and want to break this cycle …

Kooklah Xo

Guest Post: Everything is as it should be

Editor: I hope you enjoy this guest post from Sarah as much as I have, I look forward to your feedback.

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These words have been a bit of a mantra of mine of late.

I am running late for a doctors appointment, and traffic is a nightmare. But, it is all okay, because I am exactly where I need to be. Everything is as it should be.

This acceptance that the world is perfect just as it is, is a lovely realisation to come too. The world is perfect in its imperfections. And you are too!

This realisation is a step towards a greater acceptance that I need to come to. I need to accept the autism in my life, that my children are exactly as they are meant to be. I am not there yet. I am not willing to let go of the possibility that I can somehow ‘improve’ them. They need to be better in order to function as adults, and I want this so much for them.

As I said, it is a step forward. A small step, but forward.

I believe that it is easier to start on the inconsequential. If I can accept that we have ran out of coconut flakes, then surely, eventually, I can accept that my pain won’t ever go away. If I can talk myself out of the stress of traffic standing still on the freeway, then there is hope that one day I will accept I was not invited to the wedding of someone who I thought of as a good friend.

Acceptance is tied up with forgiveness. Both are hard. But start small and eventually we’ll get there.

Try to remind yourself that everything is just as it should be and let me know how you go.

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Clutter + Mental Clarity

For my fortnightly guest post for Sarah at Creating Contentment I shared something I learnt in the last two weeks, how clutter can affect our state of mind. Find an excerpt below, then click the link to head over to Sarah’s blog to read the rest… Don’t forget to let me know what you think! Kooklah Xo

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It was during this week, as I was coming and going from work, with a few piles of belongings I was sorting through and some deconstructed furniture lying around that I felt really low… I found the clutter only added to my frustration, it made me feel dragged down and overloaded.

I have come to realise that our mental state is very much influenced by the area in which we spend the most amount of time. This realisation is fantastic and such a positive step in my journey.

Happy mind, happy life.

For the rest, click the link at the top of the post. Have a brilliant day…

Time for a Change – Letter to my Readers

 

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you have probably already noticed {+ maybe been confused by} the realisation that this blog has changed from ‘For the Style Seeking Girl’ to Kooklah.

That’s ok. I have written some new information in the about page to explain it to you… I have also adapted that into the following post – a letter for you. It is an exciting change, FTSSG will still be around – this is the category that all the beauty, fashion and styling posts we publish will come under, but you can also look forward to different content and topics for posts.

Looking forward to reading your thoughts + just a little (A LOT) nervous for them too.

Thanks, Kooklah Xo

Hi, I am Sarah the creator & writer from For the Style Seeking Girl, and now Kooklah. From now on not only will this site post about beauty, fashion and styling but also such topics like lifestyle, travel, positivity, mental health awareness, equal rights + current issues.

I have been blogging for ten years, it originally started as a hobby, a vice to indulge my obsession for all things beauty, fashion and styling. I called this ‘For the Style Seeking Girl’, the blog grew from something I wrote just for me to a blog that has been read and shared by many. My aim was to pass on my own passion to others, assisting them to feel beautiful, be confident & sparkle.

As the blog grew and went through different experiences, I did too. I changed blog domains, and at the time thought about changing the name, I was scared to. If I am been honest, I have/had grown quite attached to the name I had created, but started to feel like I had outgrown it. I am no longer a girl, I am a woman, and I have so much more to share. Over the ten years I developed a love and voice for pieces that included lifestyle, travelling, day to day musings and voicing opinions on world issues. I wrote for other people on these issues, even had a side blog to try and release this passion {funnily enough it was called Kooklah} and every now and then I wrote a post FTSSG that wasn’t related to fashion.

I have decided to take my blogging identity of ‘Kooklah’ further and develop it into a fully functioning blog. All of the posts from For the Style Seeking Girl are still available, and can be found in the archives. I’m a dreamer who looks for meaning in life and I wanted to embrace this in my writing.

Kooklah is Greek, and is something that my Dad has affectionately called me – all of my life. It means ‘Living Doll’, I have always used it as a sign off or to brand anything I created. Over time, Kooklah, became a real part of who I am as my creative identity whilst still been affectionately used as a nickname. It feels very fitting that this is now not only my blogging identity but also my blog + website name. My beautiful friend Sarah from Creating Contentment has been a big support to me as I thought long and hard over whether to change things now. It was more emotional for me to do than I thought, but if I didn’t do it now, when would I? {Sarah, I am so grateful to you – thankyou for letting me soundboard my worries, intent and even name ideas off you… it meant a lot to me. Xx}

I really hope my old readers embrace this change, there will still be a large amount of fashion related posts as this is what I LOVE but I am also hoping you will join me in celebrating the other aspects of life too. I look forward to interacting with new readers and seeing how my voice is received on different topics. Have a brilliant day… and please let me know your thoughts! For our latest fashion post read ‘Oscars Fashion’

Currently, each fortnight you can look forward to a post from Sarah at Creating Contentment, as part of a joint project between our blogs to reach out to our readers on topics of positivity, self belief and acceptance. {read Sarah’s latest post Give a Gift to Everyone You Meet}

Sarah Xo

Give a Gift to Everyone You Meet

I am thrilled to be sharing this post with you all {uploading late – sorry!}, a brilliant post gifted to us from Sarah at Creating Contentment with an important message. In life we all give and take, but do we all give enough of ourselves to others? Do we even recognise the gift we have, that we are? It was lovely to read this after a testing week and reflect on what I have to offer….
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I came across this line recently and think it rather lovely.

Give The Gift Of You.
YOU are a gift. Share this gift with everyone you meet. Now of course, I don’t mean a literal gift.

Smile at others. Ask after their day. Be kind. Be polite. Listen to people.

The simple act of smiling releases endorphins making you feel happier.

Being kind towards others encourages more kindness. 

By asking the girl at the supermarket how she is, you will develop ties with your community and strong community ties are important for a healthy wellbeing. 

Developing a sense of community can be difficult. You need to put yourself out there. You need to give yourself to the community. But before you can gift yourself to others, you need to believe yourself to be a worthy gift. And I am here to tell you that you are!

I too, have struggled to integrate myself in my local community, especially my children’s school. There are lots of articles like this one that describe the mother ‘types’ at schools and explore the difficulties of the school years. I find such articles unhelpful and hurtful. In this one in particular, I am five of the different mother types listed. It is judgmental and encourages stereotypes. I hope that other mothers can look at me for who I am, rather than the mother that sends her child to school with kale chips. Or, feel the need to be nasty because I enjoy dressing up to drop the kids off. 

If you want to meet new people, a common suggestion given is to do new things. So I signed up to do heaps of stuff at the boys school. I was (and am) on committees and boards, I volunteer in the classroom and help out on excursions. I’m often early to pick up my children and like to chat with other mums and teachers in the school yard. I hang around long after the last bell to give my children a run around on the oval and the playground. I feel like I am almost always there and am very willing to help. Yet, despite all this effort on my part, I didn’t feel ‘in’ or accepted. I still didn’t feel as if other mothers were being friendly towards me or as if I belonged to the school community.  

Over the summer holidays, I decided that a big part of this equation is me. I can control what I do and how I am. So, I decided to be happy (at school). I have decided to smile more. I have decided to approach other mothers, rather than stand apart. I decided to make eye contact. I now always say good morning. I ask how they are. I participate in the school community because I want to, rather than because I am needed.

There is more to community than simply going along. You need to give yourself to others.

It is for this reason that I also share a photo of myself everyday on Facebook and Instagram. I am putting myself out there as a gift. I hope that I am received well, but ultimately that is not something I can control so I am trying not to worry about it. 

But essentially, it is basic physics. Karma if you like. What you put out, you will receive. I am going to be friendly so to make friends. I am going to give myself, so that others will give themselves back to me.

Being apart of a community is something I value, and studies show that it is an important part of a persons healthy wellbeing. So, not only am I going along to everything but I am going to have fun and be joyful, smile and be positive. It does not matter how others perceive my behaviour, I cannot control the amount of themselves they give me. But, I am going to give myself, because I am worth giving.

What do you think? Am I onto something here?

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Ask the Question… Guest post for Creating Contentment

For today’s guest post on Creating Contentment, I have written about something close to my heart. Something I try to do, and something I appreciate when people do it to me. It is reaching out and offering help, a shoulder or listening ear to those who need it. Below I have included an excerpt of the post. ‘Ask the Question’ in full post form {+ a post dedication – the first post I have officially dedicated to someone} can be read here.. we would love to read your comments and/or stories so feel free to share with us.

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I can see your mind ticking over, what question? There are many questions that come our way everyday. The question I am referring to, is not specific, it can be asked in many different ways. It is about reaching out to someone and making sure they have their head above water. It could be a friend, a family member, a work colleague or someone you pass by throughout the day – it could even be something to ask yourself.

If someone is really low, they can be very good with hiding it. Big smiles that don’t quite reach the eyes, answering with ‘fine’, or big pauses before saying good and quickly changing subjects or even avoiding people they know really well.

How do I know this? I know this, because  …… (go on, click over to the full post for the rest!)

Styling Positive,

Kooklah Xo