When the holidays roll around, it's like life becomes instant chaos. From the week of Thanksgiving until the first week of January we're all scrambling around. Buying gifts, Christmas parties, holiday events, cooking and hosting, we do it all in such a short period of time. With each year, I try to find what helps me keep me most grounded during the craziness.
Meditation for the holidays, is the key.
Mediate to center yourself, keep your mind at ease and get back into normal mode when you feel like you're losing control. It doesn't have to be long, it doesn't have to be planned, you just have to do it. And watch the stress melt away. Below is one of my favorite go-to's from YouTube, when I'm on the go and need something instant. Check it out!
1. Just do it.
2. If it was easy, everyone would do it.
3. Put on your big girl pants and get shit done.
4. You only fail when you stop trying
5. Great things never came from comfort zones
6. Behaved women barely make history
7. The comeback is always stronger then the setback
8. You did not come this far, just to get this far
9. If you were able to believe in Santa for like 8 years, you can believe in yourself for 5 minutes
10. You can't live a positive life with a negative mind
11. You will be exactly as happy as you decide to be
12. You can start over, each morning
13. The best view comes after the hardest climb
14. Be stronger than your excuses
15. You are capable of amazing things today
16. Believe you can and you're halfway there
17. Don't ignore your own potential
18. Smile at strangers, we're all in this together
19. You have to be odd to be number one
20. Be all in or get all out, there is no halfway
I was recently having a conversation with a friend about being grateful. She was complaining about typical issues we all have and it was getting to be a bit much. It was hard to keep the conversation going because it was much more about poor me, than anything else. I totally get it, we all have our shit. I have days where I just want to complain all day too. But what happens when you begin to complain more than not? What happens when that becomes a daily habit?
You become less grateful, less happy. The world starts to feel so much darker then it did before. It's so easy to get caught up in our everyday chaos. It's easy to allow someone who cut you off on the parkway ruin the next hour of your day. But it's also easy to let it go. No one has power over you, unless you give it to them. If you live by those words, you'd never let another individual make you feel anything less than.
I believe that we all have our stories. Sure some people may have had an easier life than others, but we all go through the mud at some point in our lives. But it's how we choose to perceive it that makes all the difference. When I consistently listened to my friend, it began to make me not want to speak to her. The conversation was filled with so much negativity I had felt like the only thing I could do was distance myself. But the truth is, that isn't helping anyone either. We live in a world where, if the going gets tough we run. There is always a replacement, the newest shiny thing that comes out next. But what about what we already have? Why can't we fix the problem at hand? So I decided not to hide and say something. And the most beautiful thing happened.
I said "it sounds like you're going through a lot, do you want to talk about it?". Her entire mood instantly changed. She did want to talk about it. She needed advice and didn't know how to ask for it, so her approach was complaining until someone asked. No we are not all perfect and maybe that's not how I would have gone about it, but that isn't the point. The point is, we got to talk about what was really bothering her. We got to discuss options on how we can make what she's going through, better. She became grateful for our friendship, grateful that she had someone who was willing to listen and help, and grateful that her problems weren't as bad as they felt.
We're human, sometimes all we need is a shoulder to cry on. Be that person for those who may need it.
1. Wake up early / the same time every day
2. Make your bed
4. Drink water, lots of it
5. Cook your meals
6. Move your body
7. Enjoy alone time
8. Turn off your phone
9. Shut down your social media accounts at night
10. Watch more documentaries
11. Don't let your laundry pile up
12. Clean the cups on your night stand
13. Brush your teeth twice a day
14. Don't wear chipped nail polish, just take it off
15. Keep a calendar will your bill payments on it, never miss a bill, never get a late fee
16. Read a book, turn off the reality TV
17. Enjoy a meal with others, with absolutely no phones
18. Get 8 hours of sleep
19. Wash your face
20. Challenge yourself not to complain for an entire 24 hours
Losing weight can be tough. It becomes a mental and physical game. You think about every meal you eat, calculate the calories in and out, when you'll squeeze in that workout. It can sometimes feel like another full time job. I get it. I go through it every day. But I go through it because I love it. I love the way my body feels when I eat right and exercise regularly. What I don't love so much, is when the scale doesn't reflect my hard work.
Have you ever worked your ass off for weeks only to see the scale move down by one pound? Or maybe not at all? How frustrating! But the secret in this is to know the full on truth. The scale is never right. And I can prove that. When I was prepping for my bikini competition back in 2015, I had to measure and weigh myself weekly. I would sometimes weigh myself at home, others at my gym or at my trainers gym. It should come to no surprise that all 3 scales gave me different answers. I realized this was no way to track my progress because it wasn't makings sense.
Second scenario. I had been losing weight for vacation, noticing my clothes were fitting much better but I still wanted to keep track. So each week, I weighed myself at my gym as well as took down my body fat percentage, and muscle mass. I was having great progress as my fat percentage was going down weekly and my muscle was going up. But my overall weight wasn't budging. I was fine with that though, because the fat was coming off. BUT! I then weighed myself the week of my period. I couldn't understand how my weight went up so fast in only a few days. I had felt so discouraged like all my hard work was for nothing. But again, not true! When we get out periods, naturally our bodies hold onto more water, many women because iron deficient and our hormones are out of sorts. Aka your body isn't on the same schedule its been used to the other 3 weeks of the month. So cut yourself a break.
Moral of the story? Don't use the scale! I have heard more stories then not about how depressing it is to see how much you weigh when in all reality that's not the number you need to be focusing on. There are plenty of other ways to measure your success like;
-the way your clothes fit
-measure your body with a tape measurer
-measure by body fat percentage and muscle mass
You don't have to torture yourself and step on that scale. Leave your comments below of any scale stories!
"Fear is an illusion.
An illusion can only exist in the absence of reality.
Once reality takes over the illusion dissipates.
Fear mostly comes in anticipation of an experience, not in the experience itself."
We've all been there. You have to have a tough conversation with someone and the fear eats you alive. You have a job interview and the nerves overcome your mind. You have a new client and your anxiety gets the best of you. We have all been there, way too often. It is easy to allow your mind and emotions to take over. I do it all the time, until I calm my mind down and take a few deep breathes to bring me back to earth. Darren Hardy the author of the book The Compound Effect speaks on the courage of 20 seconds. If you want to do something, all you need is 20 seconds of courage. Let's think about that. Let's say you want to ask someone out over a text message but you're nervous for their response. They can say yes or they can say no, and it isn't even in person. You don't have much to lose. All it takes is 20 seconds to type out that message and send it. 20 seconds of courage, to go after what you want and then you can go back to normal. We can all do nearly anything for 20 seconds. You have held planks longer than 20 seconds.
Next time you find yourself in a position where you feel like you "cant" use this method of 20 seconds of courage. Take a deep breathe, give yourself those 20 seconds and boom, its over with. What a weight off your shoulders that will be.
Our world's have become so noisy it is easily forgotten the beauty of silence. When are heads are constantly in our phones and out of present conversations, easily life can feel lonely. We live in a world where busy is glorified and to stay stagnent for more than a moment is less than. But if we never stop going, when does it all stop moving?
If you have ever suffered from anxiety, depression, stress then you know what it feels like to live in that world. You know the feeling of going to bed and waking up with the exact same thoughts that kept your mind racing all night. You know the emotions that come along with it, the stress eating, nail biting, hair pulling, mood changing emotions that make you a different person. Our world is telling us to always be on and never shut off. Do you agree?
You may not even realize you're doing it. But when was the last time you did something you absolutely love that didn't involve technology? When was the last time you were outside in nature or sitting around the dinner table with loved ones? No phones, no tablets, no tv's, just being present. Yes we live in a world where all of those things are very much present daily, but it doesn't need to be the only thing we see.
I have often felt it myself when going through a struggle where you feel over looked but your partner, family or friends because Instagram is more important. Or in the middle of an important conversation a text pops up. We are forgetting the fundamentals that makes us human. The fundamentals that keep relationships alive, that keep us thriving for more, and even the very things that keep us inspired to keep moving forward.
Having a healthy mind is just as important has keeping a healthy body. It's not all about lifting weights and eating salad. It most definitely is not. Your body cannot move and grow in the ways you want it to if you aren't also feeding your mental state. You have heard the term "mind, body and soul" probably from a yogi or someone you think is too hippie for your liking. But that is far from true. Mind, body and soul is for all of us. To be able to lose weight you need your mind to be on board. You cannot commit to something without your mental state ready to rumble. You cannot overcome life battling issues unless all of you is all in.
The next time you are out to dinner with friends or in the car with your mom, put your phone down. Put your tablet, laptop aside, lower the television and enjoy each other's company. When everything else falls to the waist side, people and our relationships are all we have left. To be "healthy" is not just getting your nutrients every day, it is so much more. Be proactive in your life and others, and encourage the change. Encourage more time in the present to make the difference in your lives.
I used to operate on other people's approval. I used to think that if I was accepted that I would be happy and there would be no issues in my life. But when I achieved what I felt pleased others, I wasn't happy, not even a little bit. When it came to the way I looked I always wanted to be in tip top shape. I danced my entire life and never had to worry about my weight or even what I ate. As I got older and moved to college I put on the typical freshman 15 and it was a whole new ball game for me. I wanted to lose the weight because I felt uncomfortable in my own skin. I knew that to live out my truth these extra lbs weren't a true representation of me.
As I was trying to grow into myself I had a lot of influences as we all do. I had a boyfriend who told me I was eating too much Taco Bell, friends who worked out with me daily and family members who would occasionally make the fat jokes. No matter how someone may try to come off, it's very easy to make a negative impression when it comes to someone else's weight.
I remember going home for summer and thinking I need to work my ass off so I don't go back as the fat roommate. And I did. I purchased INSANITY which I fell in love with and lost all the weight and plus some. But this was a decision I made. I didn't do it because someone told me to. I didn't do it because I was ridiculed into it. I did it for me and only me. No one else reaped the benefits of my fit body other than me, so why should I allow any influences speak my truth?
When it comes to "losing weight" or getting healthier, it all has to start and end with you. If you feel like you've been trying and trying and nothing works, maybe its time to look at your truth. Are you doing it for you? Are you doing it to keep someone's love? Are you doing it to fit in? Maybe in all actuality you are living in a place of fear and you can't grow in that space. It took me a long time to understand why it worked for "that girl" but not me. I would look at pictures of other girls on Instagram and think "they must not have any stress in their lives, because I do and that's why I put on extra weight". Not true. We all have our own struggles, we all lead our own lives. It's how we handle the storms and dance in the rain.
Becoming a healthier you is not a one size fits all. Just like your clothes. We all have different sizes and shapes and that is the beauty of our uniqueness.
So next time you complain about the new diet not working or your workouts sucking, think about it. What are you doing it for? Who are you doing it for? Do you actually value the responses you just gave?