Check in/Reflection

How am I feeling? I’ve been having some obnoxious PMS the past few days; the on and off nausea is what’s bothering me the most. I’ve been so irritable and emotional and my period is supposedly coming in a few days, so I’m hoping that all of this goes away. I was going to go out to the bars last night with some friends, but decided to stay in since drinking would definitely not help my nausea. I also have just been feeling like I want to be alone lately; I need to do some self-reflection.

I recently was thinking about how I wasn’t always the nicest person as a kid, and I still find myself being judgmental of others. I was super critical of myself when I was younger, and that also made me critical of those around me. As I’ve grown older and been on my self-love journey over the last couple of years, I’m realizing that when I am being judgmental of someone else, it’s because I am seeing something of myself in them.

Often times how we feel about others is a reflection of how we’re feeling about ourselves. For example, money is a huge trigger for me/my anxiety. A lot of my sense of worth and control is revolved around money, which is another thing I am working on. If I find myself being judgmental of how someone is spending their money, it’s because I have an issue/insecurity about myself and my money habits. What someone else does with their life is none of my business, I can only control myself and my mindset.

I also know that I am a very empathetic and understanding person; I can very easily put myself in someone else’s shoes and get an understanding of why they make the choices they do. It’s also helpful to realize that most people do have unresolved traumas and are the way they are because of that. We couldn’t control our childhood or how we were parented, but today we can control how we parent ourselves.

Diving into what we truly need and finding out how we can give that to ourselves is extremely important. I need loving, healthy relationships, whether with my boyfriend or with friends or family; I can no longer tolerate those who do not respect myself or my boundaries. I get to choose who I spend time with and who is in my life.

I need to feel healthy, and how I do that is try to get my body moving every day, even if it’s just a bit of stretching. I try to balance making sure I get my veggies and fruits in everyday, as well as protein, but I could definitely be better at that. That is something I can try to spend more time/effort on so I feel that I’m living true to my values.

I need to feel knowledgeable, and I have been listening to podcasts more recently as well as reading! I was on a good streak for reading but kind of slowed down within the lag couple months. If I dedicate time to get back into reading, I will feel more fulfilled as I know one of my goals is to write a book one day, and this will definitely be helpful in getting me there. The more books I read, the more knowledge I’ll have and be able to apply to my life and maybe even my first book!

I enjoy experiences, but I also like to do so on a budget. I could look into more local free events and see if friends want to attend, or maybe even just go alone. An experience can really be anything; going to a farmers market, checking out the local library, walking on a new trail… there are truly endless options. Something I could do is set a goal to do at least one new experience a month, and if I want to increase frequency, I can!

I want to heal my traumas and learn how to manage stress and my emotions. I still see my therapist every once in a while, and I make it a point to listen to healing podcasts and follow self-love accounts on instagram, but I know there is more I can do. Writing this blog post is something that is so important, because it is allowing me to talk to myself and figure out my true wants/needs.

I think we all have an idea of what we want, but when we look deeper we find that we aren’t really living a lifestyle that is in alignment with our desires. I want to live a life that is in alignment with my values, and I feel like I am already doing this! However, I also feel that I can dedicate more time to myself and my desires, and I deserve that. We all deserve to live our best lives as our best selves!

Weekend Note

I didn’t feel like writing yesterday, but I did write a note in my phone trying to dissect myself this weekend, so I’ll post that below! I hope everyone has a good week ahead!

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why do i doubt myself?

is it hearing it from the man I was supposed to grow up admiring? is it because I became a people pleaser at the expense of my own authenticity so I don’t trust myself enough? I don’t think I’m strong enough because I’ve felt weak for so long? I feel like my brain is broken, so how could I make the right decisions? I was so sheltered & felt so stupid, but the one thing I knew was money. I knew it & I blew it- but that’s not entirely true. I re-prioritized & got used to living a certain lifestyle. I drive a nice car, I get my nails done sometimes (less often than before), and I feed my iced coffee addition. These are things that make me happy, and having a reliable car is also a must. But I feel like because I don’t save as much anymore, and I “spend money on stupid stuff,” I’m a failure, so therefore a reason to doubt myself. I often feel guilty and get mad at myself after I go spend money on nails or food, I’m like why am I wasting money? How could I keep doing this? But I feel like I’m in a test with money, and I am working to win this battle. I will win.

Growing

As I am growing, I am learning that I need to stop muting myself. What I mean by that is I often won’t say what I’m feeling in fear of hurting others, but in reality I know my intention behind my thoughts and I’m never trying to be malicious at all. People even often tell me how nice I am and how I’m great at talking to people, but I don’t always feel that way with the people closest to me.

I just saw this post that said “Let’s normalize asking questions for clarity, instead of moving based on the story you’ve created in your mind, which may not be true;” I feel like I want that from my friends, but how I can expect that when I don’t do it! I want to start vocalizing when I have questions or thoughts that come up, so that I don’t sit with them and ruin my own inner peace or growth.

For example, one of my good friends recently reached out and asked if she could express something without causing problems/drama, and of course I said yes. The conversation went well and we are good, but now I am the one who is wanting to express my feelings about it and I feel like a scared little kid who is avoiding confrontation.

I know that my feelings are valid and I also know I can express my thoughts without being an asshole, but at the same time I never know how people will react and that is what gives me the anxiety. I would hate to unintentionally make someone upset, but at the same time, I can’t make myself upset by holding in all these feelings/thoughts.

My boyfriend has always been very direct and he’s still very polite and easy to talk to- and I don’t just mean with me, I mean with all our friends and family as well. He always asks questions when he wants clarification because he knows he’s not trying to hurt anyone, he’s just trying to understand; and that’s my goal as well! Talking to him definitely helps, but if anyone else has any tips or tricks, please feel free to comment!

Self Care Sunday

Today felt like a very productive day, which always makes me feel very happy and accomplished. I love having days like this, and I know I only have many more to come if I keep working hard on focusing on the positives in every situation.

Grocery shopping is normally something I complain about, but I knew it was a task I had to complete today. I reminded myself that it is important to look at the situation with gratitude; I am thankful that I can afford to grocery shop for my home, and I am thankful that there are so many different food options to choose from! I felt a lot better getting ready to go to the grocery store than I normally would have, and I truly believe that is because I took that time to acknowledge the fact that grocery shopping is a blessing, and a privilege that I am lucky to have.

Something else that was a blessing today was I randomly got a notification on my phone that my aunt from out of town sent me money on venmo! The memo said: “Gas, groceries, meal out, whatever you want. :)” I was honestly taken aback, but immediately was so grateful and I sent her a message thanking her for this sweet gift. I put it right in our account to go towards groceries, and I’m currently making steaks in the air fryer for us! It’s truly incredible how it seems that when you pay attention to your blessings, that more seem to show up!

I may not have gone to the gym today or cleaned out my closet, but I did other productive things and I am happy for myself! I read some of my book (The Power is Within You- Louise Hay) out on my balcony, I listened to a Phil in the Blanks podcast, and I treated myself to an iced coffee! I keep reading posts and listening to podcasts about focusing on one thing at a time, and truly looking at life day by day instead of stressing about the “end goals,” and it’s truly has changed my perspective. For example, if I have the thought that I should go to the gym, but I truly don’t feel like going, I will at least take a few minutes to stretch or do a small workout with some dumbbells at home.

My past, perfectionist self wouldn’t have even done that because if I’m not going all in it’s not worth it, but that’s not true! If I would have done what I’m doing now each time that I didn’t go, I’d likely be a lot stronger/more toned now than I am! Instead of getting down on myself about that, I’m just making more conscious efforts and decisions moving forward; taking it day by day makes life feel a lot easier.

What did you do for yourself today? If nothing yet, please take some time for yourself! It doesn’t have to be something major, simply washing your face, reading a chapter of a book, or lighting your favorite candle can be an act of self care! You deserve time for yourself; remember, you cannot pour from an empty cup!

Wishing Well

I feel it is important to think of the people we love and care about, and wish them well. I was just sitting here on my lunch break and I know my boyfriend is back to work after a four-day weekend, and I’m just hoping he is having a good day. I know it’s likely stressful for him, but I hope things go as smoothly as they can for him and it’s not too rough; he works so hard and deserves to have good days!

I also hope my friends who are trying to conceive are able to do so soon. There are a couple different people I know who are struggling to get pregnant, and another friend who recently started trying, and all I can do is hope and pray that they can get their wishes granted. I remember watching an old friend go through infertility issues and a miscarriage after IVF, and it was so heartbreaking to see her so upset; but now she has two healthy boys and every time I see photos of them I get so happy for her. I pray my other friends are able to experience that joy.

To my friends struggling with mental health and insecurities, I hope they are able to find the strength to keep going each day and take the time to work on themselves, for themselves. I just want my loved ones to love themselves unconditionally- we all have “flaws,” but they make us who we are! There is so much beauty in our uniqueness if we just take the time to see it in a more positive light. I know it’s a lot of hard work, but it’s the most important work.

I also hope my fellow blog readers/followers are all doing well! I appreciate you taking time to read my posts, and I hope you can find some time for yourself today; whether it’s taking a bath, reading a good news article, lighting your favorite candle, or simply taking a moment to breathe. You deserve time for yourself. ♡

Thursday Thoughts

With the new moon yesterday, I’ve been thinking about new intentions, and I really want to work on non-judgment. I am a very observant person, but this also makes me very judgmental. I find myself judging others for their “bad choices,” when in reality I don’t know what is a “good” or “bad” choice for that person; it just is what it is.

It’s basically like how I am rewiring my angry/negative thoughts to being thankful, I am going to actively start doing that when I find myself being judgmental. I have read about practicing non-judgment before, and I truly wish to master this skill. I know it will take time, and I’ll never be “perfect,” but I feel like a “bad” person when I’m judging others and I don’t like that feeling.

When I find myself being judgmental, I will instead start thinking about why I am grateful for that person or think of a positive way to look at them. I will also remind myself that “it is what it is, and should be,” because everything truly does happen for a reason. Does anyone else have any tips/tricks for this?

Affirmations.

I have a lovely weekend, although I missed my blog post. Today I’m going to do a little something for me- feel free to join along with some affirmations for yourself! Happy Monday!

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My mind is a peaceful place; I enjoy the time I spend in my head.

I attract what is meant for me, and I release what is not for me.

Good news and positivity flows to me abundantly.

I am deserving of inner peace.

I release all negative energy to make room for positive vibrations.

My circle is filled with positive, motivating people who love me for me.

I do not worry about what I cannot control.

It is what it is, and should be. ♡

Overwhelmed with Emotions.

My last post was a week ago, a day after my mother’s stroke. I am blessed to say that my mother is home now and living a normal life. She is still having some minor mobility issues with her left hand/fingers, but overall she is recovering well! I feel so grateful every day that I still have my mother here, and honestly, things have already changed a lot for her since the stroke. My mother has smoked cigarettes for decades now, and she has not had one since her stroke. She will keep an unlit cigarette by her at home and will sometimes do the motion like she is smoking it, but she still hasn’t actually smoked one. She also has only had one beer- this is the woman who has been drinking beer and hard liquor every night since I was seven years old! She hasn’t had any feelings of withdrawal, and she is doing an amazing job.

Over this week I have had a bunch of emotions come up; I found myself crying randomly at home or driving to/from work. Every time that I found myself crying, I realized that there weren’t sad tears… they were tears of joy. I was feeling so overwhelmingly grateful to the universe that my mother is okay and still gets to live a normal life. I also felt a huge sense of accomplishment for myself, because I am no longer on anxiety medication and I handled this situation better than I ever expected to. My boyfriend said to me: “I am so proud of you. I feel like if this would have happened two years ago, you would have folded up like a lawn chair” (LOL), and he is right!

In the past, I would be thinking so far into the future about “what if she has another stroke and she isn’t so lucky that time?” or “what if she stops taking her medications and starts drinking/smoking again?” To be fair, these thoughts have obviously crossed my mind, but I am able to redirect them and remind myself that we can only take life day by day. The other day when I found myself asking those hypotheticals, I said to myself: “Today my mom is alive. She has not had a cigarette, and she hasn’t had any hard alcohol; today is a good day.” I am finding it easier and easier to rewire my bad thoughts into thoughts of gratitude or positivity, and realizing that made me break down in tears (more than once).

For a long time, I truly thought I would never be able to get off of my medication. I thought I would have to rely on them forever and I would never be able to truly handle my emotions or traumas on my own. And don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with being on medications for life, especially if they are working to keep you alive and well. I just always have had this goal of being able to come off of my medications and truly see if I can handle things “on my own.” For this event to occur while I have been off my medication for seven months, and for me to be able to handle it well without shutting down, feeling guilty, or continuously looping terrible future scenarios over and over again in my head, I am impressed with myself.

I always find myself choking up when I tell my boyfriend that I never thought I could handle anything like this without medication or without having panic attacks. I am insanely proud of myself for continuing therapy, reading self-help books, and listening to some eye-opening self-reflection podcasts. I honestly feel like the hard truths and hard questions are what has helped me be able to make progress in my brain. I feel like I’ve just reached this goal that I once thought was unachievable, and I just want everyone else to be able to do the same thing. I want people to cry tears of joy because they can see and feel their own progress. I want people to see life in a new, more positive light. I want everyone to do the hard work for yourself, because you are always worth it! We all truly deserve to be the best versions of ourselves, and we deserve to be proud of ourselves. I hope everyone has a great week ahead. ♡

Late/Tired

It’s late, but I didn’t want to not write at all. I had a good weekend, seeing friends and enjoying time with my boyfriend. I have been watching trash tv (LOL my guilty pleasure is Are You The One on MTV), and it’s honestly been so relaxing.

I have been still practicing the art of gratitude daily and really focusing on the positive side of things, and I can tell an overall difference in my mood. It may we a weird way to describe it, but I feel lighter. Like I just feel as if I am carrying less worry and less stress, and it makes me want to continue on this path.

For now I am going to rest as I have to work early tomorrow- I hope everyone has a great week ahead!

Appreciate.

I always make sure that the ones closest to me are appreciated. My boyfriend is the person who does the most for me, and I tell him every day how much I appreciate him and make sure he feels loved. We’ve been together since we were 16, and I’m 26 now. We always make sure we are supporting one another and caring for one another. I am grateful everyday that I have him in my life, and I make him a top priority as this benefits both of us in our life together.

As we grow older, we tend to grow away from people. I see myself growing away from friendships; I am seeing which friendships are healthy and which ones aren’t. I go through a battle in my head where I debate bringing up my observations to friends in fear of offending them, but at the same time, I feel like a bad friend if I am observing a friend display some unhealthy behaviors and I never bring it to their attention.

I also know I am not a doctor or expert on mental health, but there are truly some things that are just obvious. People also love to share their lives on the internet so more people can observe these behaviors. I honestly truly feel that everyone can benefit from therapy, and especially when you have a known mental illness and/or diagnosis. I mean, why wouldn’t you want to work on yourself so you can have a better life for yourself?

As I’ve stated in previous posts, I understand that therapy isn’t something everyone can afford, but there are things we can do on our own that can help make our daily lives better. One of those things is practicing gratitude: focus on what you have and appreciate your blessings! You tend to forget how good you have it when you don’t take the time to acknowledge and appreciate.

Another good way to take care of yourself is to take social media breaks; I saw that Lush Cosmetics recently deleted all social media platforms in lieu of information that came out about how terrible instagram is for young teens’ mental health. The constant comparing yourself to others, seeing how others are “better” or “prettier” is a sure way to feel unsatisfied in your current life.

I am glad that I have been able to go to therapy and learn to practice better habits in my life. I am so blessed to have a wonderful man in my life, supportive friends/family, and my three beautiful kitties! My boyfriend and I are blessed to have good jobs, a spacious townhome, and reliable cars that we enjoy. Of course we all have struggles and tough times that come about, but it’s so important to count your blessings whenever you can.