Challenge Yourself to Pump Up Your Self-Care

Need a little boost in your Self-Care? Need to give yourself a little bit more love?

Here’s Five Challenges to give a try:

  1. 21 Day Self-Care Challenge from Brit+Co
  2. 30-Day Self Care Challenge from Brianna Fae
  3. 33 Questions That Will Boost Your Self-Care Routine from AJAEDMOND
  4. 7-Day Self Love Journaling Challenge from LiveStrong.com
  5. 30-Day Life Makeover Challenge (A Month of Affirmations for Inner Peace and Self Love) from KelseyAida

10 Posts to Read When You Need Some Advice for Life

This one is for my fellow bloggers (and everyone else too!) – Do you ever find yourself in need of a little reminder of your own best advice? When you’re feeling a little off, a little bit more vulnerable than other days and you think hey I totally wrote a blog post about that and I need a little kick in the butt…well I do so I thought “hey, this could make a fun, little round-up post”, are you with me?

When I’m feeling overly self-critical about choices I’ve made in my life: 10 Quotes that Help Me See the Silver Linings in My Mistakes

When I’m feeling a little lonely being a single gal: Why I’m Enjoying Being Single Right Now

When I’m feeling anxious or overwhelmed: 12 Ways to Deflate Anxiety Naturally

When I need to add a boost of some extra self-care into my week: 55 Self-Care Activities to Add to Your Schedule

When my schedule has gotten super chaotic: How to Plan a Healthy Schedule when you’re Super Busy

When I need a some positive inspiration: How Powerful Core Beliefs Will Guide your Life & Happiness

When I need to love myself a little more: You are a Magical, Beautiful Being: 15 Affirmations for Self-Love

When I find myself feeling a bit judgmental: Why It’s Important to Let Go of Toxic Judgments

When I need a little help getting my finances back on track: How to Build a Budget for those that Hate Budgets

When my to-do list has gotten out of control: How to Build a Better To-Do List

5 Easy Ways to Listen to More Podcasts Everyday

I have come across some really awesome, kick-butt podcasts lately…it’s all the buzz right now, and with good reason too. There are so many powerful, amazing, inspiring, empowering podcasts out there! My Castbox subscriptions list is rolling with ones I am eager to listen to – and if I could sit around all day and listen to podcasts, I’m not going to lie, I probably would most days…but time doesn’t quite allow for that. With so many distractions already in the world, in my life, it can be a bit challenging sometimes to find times to listen to podcasts. 

  1. While you’re getting ready in the morning – I love to push play and connect to my wireless speaker and listen to an empowering podcast while I’m getting ready for the day. This is such an awesome way to get pumped up and ready to slay some goals!
  2. In the car on the way to the office – I have an hour commute to the office in the morning so this is a wonderful time to get one of the longer podcasts into my day. I’ll also occasionally pop one on while I’m running errands, just hitting pause in between of being in and out of the car.
  3. While you’re cooking dinner – Instead of turning on the TV for background noise, use this time to listen to the next exciting episode!
  4. At the gym – instead of hyped up music, I use this time to get some self-improvement tips in my mind. I tend to prefer music when I’m running but I like a good podcast while I’m lifting weights.
  5. Taking a bubble bath – wind down after a long day with an inspirational story.

Some Podcasts that are on my playlist right now:

The Lively Show

The Lavendaire Lifestyle

The Mindful Kind

Awesome with Alison

Your Kick Ass Life Podcast

My Four Essentials for Beautiful, Self Spring Renewal

Spring is finally here! Which for me, means it’s time to get out of hibernation and get back at it! My Winter essentials vary a good bit from my Spring essentials. I love Spring because I love to be outside, surrounded by nature. Whether it be hitting the trails, laying by the beach or taking a stroll in the neighborhood in the sunshine, I want to be there.

Spring also means Summer is on it’s way, which means bathing suit weather. With that on my mind, I know it’s time to get back in shape and shake the Winter weight. With the busy schedule I keep, I find it can be hard sometimes to hit the gym everyday so I love being able to get a good Yoga practice in at home. MyYogaWorks has tons of classes for any level, for any time commitment which makes it perfect for me. I can squeeze in a 5 minute practice in the morning, or participate in a longer one on the weekends when I have a little bit more free time. Check their classes out with a 14 day Free Trial and see what you think!

With getting back into my Yoga Practice, I also will be getting back to running. With the weather getting warmer, I’ll be able to run the trails again by the river which leads itself to beautiful scenery, fresh air, and the wide openness of nature. I am need of some new running shoes though so those made it to the list. Found some picks on Reebok that I’m loving the color choices in.

                    

 Reebok Harmony Racer, $100                        Reebok Print Run Next, $80

Fresh, Spring Make-Up. I been getting my hair done, working towards that Summer blonde and updating my make-up bag. I recently started using Urban Decay Make-Up because I love the staying power it has, the boldness + it’s vegan and cruelty-free. I also love the products that Love Goodly has to offer. I also added some florals and citruses to my Essential Oils collection to help get me in the Springtime mood.

Spring is a renewing period of time for me. A time when I get focused on my health and beauty as I prepare for the Summer months after being tucked away during the cold, Winter months. This is one of my favorite times of year because I kind of feel like I’m reinventing myself in a way. Out with the old, in with the new. Happy Spring!

All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive payments for leads/sales. For more information please reference my disclosure page.

Three Uncompromising Promises to Myself

Uncompromising

When it comes to taking care of yourself.

When it comes to your boundaries.

When it comes to your health.

This is when you should let your stubbornness shine. Making yourself a priority isn’t selfish, it’s healthy.

I will make my health a priority – learning to take time to rest.

I will say no when I need to.

I will love myself fiercely and stubbornly.

What will you choose to be uncompromising about this year?

My Typical Day vs. My Dream Typical Day

I don’t know if you’re like me but there are some times I find myself wondering what my fellow bloggers and colleagues typical days are like…what does it look like for them as they work towards their goals and dreams?

So I thought I’d share with my readers tonight what my typical day looks like…getting to know your blogger…

My Typical Day:

5:30am – wake up,hit snooze…5:35am – wake up, hit snooze…5:40am – wake up, hit snooze…5:45am – wake up, grunt, roll over, stretch, hit snooze…5:50am – wake up, hear mom’s dog running towards my room, sit up and prepare for being pounced…6am – get up, get coffee, sit on bed and practice mindfulness and by mindfulness I mean sit quietly and wait for eyes to finish opening fully…then I grab my phone and scan my work emails…this is how my typical days begin. They aren’t quite as glamorous as I’d like to report they are being a self-care blogger but hey they’re real and they aren’t so bad, they’re better than they were a few years back. Some mornings I even squeeze in a morning meditation.

My typical day at the office (after an hour commute) entails lots of conference calls, lots of emails and some campaign planning and building for the local newspapers I manage marketing for…of course each week includes some extras like event planning and form, templates and process creating among some other varieties that come with a marketing position (that also captures some customer service and retention management) – my position wears a few hats most days. I like my job, actually most days I like my job a lot. I work with some pretty awesome people, have a great boss and am able to have a good bit of creative outlet in my position as well as feed my need for project management but…it’s not my dream life, not yet.

Somewhere between 5pm and 6pm, I wrap up at the office and start on my hour trek home. So the perks of having a daily commute are: get some good thinking time in and if the radio is cooperating I can jam out for a good hour. Some days the drives are good for phone chats. The cons: it sucks up two hours of my day (which I commonly say are loss productivity – cause I’m a nerd like that) and it can be pretty tiring by the end of the week.

I get home somewhere between 6pm and 7pm usually and I sit and have dinner with my mom and we have our “gals time” watching a funny Netflix show – right now we’re on the ‘The Mysteries of Laura’ (we wrapped up ‘Grace & Frankie’ a couple of weeks ago…I’ll share my list of Netflix/Amazon shows I’ve binged through later this week!) – and catch up on our days together. My Mom usually heads up to bed about 8-8:30pm and then it becomes my time.

I grab a cup of hot tea and hook my pup up with a bully stick or tendon to get her settled. I’ll fill my diffuser with fresh water and drops of my Young Living Essential Oils to fill my room with mellow and focusing scents (aromatherapy is a daily thing for me).  Keeping up with my routines that I committed to in writing in my Commit30 Planner, I wash my face, take my vitamins (a Women’s Multi, Vitamin C, and Vitamin D are my staples), power through 30 crunches quick and my newest addition, get in some stretches my personal trainer taught me or a quick yoga routine, switch Netflix or Amazon back on and then I grab my laptop and plop on my bed…this is my time to work on my dreams and goals!

I’ll get lost in my various projects for the next couple of hours – it could be building social media posts, graphics, workshop lessons, writing blog posts, or even socializing my content. Believe it or not, the time will fly by. These things may sound a bit tedious but they are love to me…this is me building my business, working on making my dreams come true…this is where my passions are coming to life.

About 10:30-10:45pm I’ll close up my laptop and start to unwind. I like to unwind by sketching, painting and reading.

My goal is to for my pillow to hit the sack about 11pm but some nights I’ll be totally honest it’s not until about midnight by the time I’m settled.

So there’s my typical week day in my current situation…now what does my dream typical day look like? Here’s what I foresee in my future:

My (Future) Typical Day:

5am – wake up, no snooze, get up out of bed, stretch. Grab a cup of coffee and sit by the window for some mindfulness time to just sit and take in the morning. I’ll sit and record morning thoughts in my journal.

5:30am – Morning Meditation.

6am – wake my body and spirit up with a morning yoga practice.

7am – shower and get ready for the day.

7:30am – make breakfast and start with reviewing emails (blog and business emails!) and review my to do list and write out my plans and tasks for the day.

8am – start into my blog and business tasks – whatever is planned for the day – writing, workshop planning, coaching, etc.

11am – hit the gym for some weight training.

12pm – lunch.

1pm – back to some blog and business tasks.

4pm – wrap up my day. Start/Knock out some home tasks and chores.

5pm – get a run in.

6pm – Cook dinner.

7pm – Evening relaxing – maybe some tv time, some painting or sketching time, whatever strikes my fancy that evening.

9pm – Reading time.

10pm – bedtime.

I think it’s important to be able to visualize a typical dream day, realistically, what would it look like if you met your goals and made your dreams a reality? That would be – will be – my typical day – maybe that day would be by the beach, maybe some days will be full of adventure and business and blog tasks will be in the evening, but what I truly want is the freedom to make up my own day and my own schedule and do it all while serving my passions and purpose. 

What would your dream typical day look like? What will your future look like?

 

All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive payments for leads/sales. For more information please reference my disclosure page.

How I Use the #LoveBlog for Self-Growth

This was my second year co-hosting the #LoveBlog. Each year I’ve discovered more about myself through the challenge and have expanded on my writing. The prompts are thought-provoking and motivating. I absolutely love reading the other participants points of views on the topics and seeing other perspectives. It is such a growth opportunity! 

Through participating in the #LoveBlog, I expand my ways of thinking and discover new views on the world, relationships and life. I am pushed to spend time for deeper thoughts and self-discovery. I am inspired to make my writing style more personal and connected. And the deadlines organize me to be more disciplined with my time.

Today I wanted to share some of my favorite posts from this year’s link up. I am looking forward to next year’s #LoveBlog!

Some of my favorite Posts from #loveblog2018 Link-Up:

Solitude; Let your toes burrow the sand from Sarah Nderi

Intent vs. Impact: The Road to Hell is Paved with Good Intentions from Belle Brita

What I love about solitude from The Blonde Pond

Balance from Sarah Nderi

When Life is Unbalanced from Belle Brita

The Six Dimensions of Wellness from The Blonde Pond

When Your Self-Care Routine Looks Different from Enduring All Things

Love & Wellness: Secure Yourself Before Assisting Others from Join Me In Transit

Self-Care: Lessons from a Chronic Illness from Belle Brita

7 Guilty Pleasures That I’m (Mostly) Not Ashamed Of from Provocative Joy

Why I Don’t Feel Guilty about the Small Pleasures in Life from Belle Brita

Is Self-Care Selfish from Mrs. Imperfect

Round-Up of My Favorite Posts (That I wrote) in the 2 years of #LoveBlog:

The Truth in the Vulnerability of a Break-Up: A Story of Loss and Finding

10 Awesome Things I Do for Health, Happiness & Balance

Setting Healthy Boundaries: Simple Tips for a Happy Life

10 Signs of a Healthy & Happy Friendship

How Indulging in Your Guilty Pleasures Keeps You Happy

10 Quotes that Help Me See the Silver Linings in My Mistakes

Today is my final post that I’m co-hosting for the #LoveBlog2018…I’m sad to see it coming to an end. This is one of my favorite series to participate in. I love so much how the series helps me organize my thoughts and each year that I’ve participated I’ve found my writing becoming more focused and open…which I truly hope has been inspiring to you! Please be sure to check out all of the writers, there have been some absolutely amazing posts this year! Check out this year’s previous prompts and what’s still to come in the next few days at www.bellebrita.com. And make sure to stop by and enter the giveaway for this week! One lucky winner will receive a large cosmetic organizer in their color of choice (black, white, or gray) from Ellis James Designs. The giveaway ends on February 28th. US residents only. Learn more on RafflecopterBrita Long of Belle Brita will verify the winning entry before emailing the winner during the first week of March. If the winner doesn’t respond, she will start the process over again. Good luck!

Mistakes are something I find that my thoughts revolve around quite often. Naturally I am typically pretty hard on myself when I make a mistake. Maybe it’s being a Virgo or maybe it’s something else but I find it very easy to fall into a nasty judgmental and super critical state of mind  when it comes to me making a mistake…but that’s not healthy and I’ve learned that over the years that it causes more damage than it does motivation. There is a difference between learning from a mistake and beating yourself up for it…one lets you move forward and grow and the other beats you down and roadblocks healthy progress. When I find myself getting a little rough in my thoughts I channel my inner Bob Ross, “We don’t make mistakes, just happy accidents”, and I remind myself of how my mistakes in life have pushed me to be grow and to redirect to a better path made for me. I know that not all mistakes are as simple as that and I hold regret when my mistake has caused someone pain but what I am learning more and more to do is to search for the meaning in my mistakes, let go of the pain and focus on the lesson. Focus on how I can mend my mistakes, grow from them and become a better person and do a better job. Sometimes what seems like a mistake or an accident really isn’t that at all, it’s an opportunity…every time I made a mistake in my life, whether it was at work, a failed relationship or even spilled milk (silver lining – opportunity to the clean the floor right?), I learned more about myself, learned to love myself more, and grew more into the person I am meant to be. So no more beating myself up for making mistakes – we all make them – own them, learn from them and grow. 

“Take chances, make mistakes. That’s how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave.” ~ Mary Tyler Moore

“Each life is made up of mistakes and learning, waiting and growing, practicing patience and being persistent.” ~ Billy Graham

“Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.” ~ Scott Adams

“A man must be big enough to admit his mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them.” ~ John C. Maxwell

“Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.” ~ Oscar Wilde

“Make bold choices and make mistakes. It’s all those things that add up to the person you become.” ~ Angelina Jolie

“If you’re not making mistakes, then you’re not doing anything. I’m positive that a doer makes mistakes.” ~ John Wooden

“We need to realize that our path to transformation is through our mistakes. We’re meant to make mistakes, recognize them, and move on to become unlimited.” ~ Yehuda Berg

“Mistakes are the usual bridge between inexperience and wisdom.” ~ Phyllis Theroux

“There is a fine balance between honoring the past and losing yourself in it. For example, you can acknowledge and learn from mistakes you made, and then move on and refocus on the now. It is called forgiving yourself.” ~ Eckhart Tolle

Meet Your Hosts

Brita from bellabrita.comBrita Long is the pink and sparkly personality behind the Christian feminist lifestyle blog, Belle Brita. While her first love will always be Paris, she lives happily with her husband Daniel Fleck in the Atlanta area.

Facebook – Twitter – Instagram 

Pinterest – Bloglovin

 

Alessia from theblondepond.com. Alessia is a lifestyle blogger, entrepreneur and post-graduate student in History from the best borough in London, up and coming Croydon. She’s a bit like Emma Woodhouse (Pemberley Digital version) and just about no longer the most eligible Catholic bachelorette, as she has found her Mr Knightley in sunny Derbyshire.

 Twitter – Instagram 

Pinterest – Bloglovin

 

Laura from dofivethingsaday.com. Laura is a big dreamer, full time marketing manager, blogger, and part-time artist. She aspires to inspire people in their everyday lives and help them to live towards their dreams and making the most out of every day by sharing her own experiences and stories.

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Pinterest – Bloglovin

Link Up


How to Make “Me” Time

I spent part of my evening today with the music turned up and dancing in the kitchen all by myself…and I was loving it. Last Friday, I enjoyed sipping a beer while watching everyone else buzz around me…I look forward to my time curled up on my bed with my laptop before I hit the sack every night…

Solitude: noun –

the state of being or living alone; seclusion

Some identify solitude as a lonely state but I find it a peaceful state. I’ve learned to enjoy my “me” time quite much. It gives me time to reflect, it gives me time to observe, and it gives me a place to remove all the screens that I put up to the world. Having solitude, ‘alone time’ or ‘me time’ is critical to living a well-balanced life and to a good self-care routine. For both introverts and extroverts (and ambiverts), it is a time to recharge and to reflect, and to relax. There was a time that I had a hard time finding time for my solitude. My schedule was so busy and not living alone can also make it a challenge but I found myself starving for it, craving that down time. It was a challenge I needed to find a solution to.

  1. Evaluate how you are currently spending your time. Take a look at your schedule. Do you spend time doing tasks that aren’t necessary or can be eliminated? What can you take out so that you have more open time?
  2. Schedule some alone time in your planner. Block off a little time just for you. Get up early before everyone else and claim that quiet time as yours, or set aside some time in the evening, whatever works for your schedule, plan on at least an hour to spend by yourself every few days.
  3. Make a list of things you can do alone. – reading, taking a bubble bath, coloring or painting, journaling…even just curling up and scanning Pinterest…whatever strikes your fancy!
  4. Get outside. Nature holds so much beauty and strength. It is a perfect place to find peace and solitude. Take a walk or go for a hike in the woods or take a solo bike ride along the river trail.
  5. Set boundaries. Say no. Don’t be afraid to turn down an invite if you’re cozied up for some down time. This takes a little practice but get into the habit of not overbooking your schedule. Allow time for you to just have chill time. Don’t feel guilty for turning down social activities to have some alone time.

 

Why I’m Enjoying Being Single Right Now

Last night I stopped by a local brewery and grabbed a beer.  It was a last minute decision after running to the store. This was a solo stop and I almost didn’t do it. I almost let fear and society stigma stop me from doing it. But I pushed myself, it was something I wanted to do and I was going to do it. I had to conquer the thoughts of if it was acceptable or not for me being a woman and being alone. I had to push out the face that there was the possibility I could feel lonely there among all the other people. I was totally the solo girl in the corner with her beer and fries (yeah I went all out and went for the fries), face tucked in my phone…but I was happy. I was happy being solo there watching everyone buzz around me. I’m coming along nicely in really starting to enjoy being single. It’s been awhile since I’ve truly been single…meaning I’m not even really thinking about finding a relationship right now. Sure I have some moments where I think it’d be nice to have a partner but it’s a different thought process. Heck, I can even give a you a little laundry list of why it’s better being single. I’ve always thought I had been pretty independent. I’ve always been able to handle things on my own but I’m not sure I even truly enjoyed doing things on my own before now. I truly enjoyed being alone last night. This isn’t saying I’m going to become one of those hard-knock girls that will never need a man (or will I? just kidding!) but it’s saying I am okay and I am happy on my own. I know my worth, I know what I want and I’m not willing to settle just to be in a couple. I’m okay waiting for the right one. Some of my friends are concerned I’m becoming disinterested…maybe I am a little but not out of defeat or negativity. I have other things going on, other things I’m really focused on right now and actively seeking out a relationship seems like an unnecessary distraction for me right now. Okay, there I may have sounded like that hard-knock, super independent gal but so what, it’s real. Being in a relationship is a distraction, not negative always, but still a distraction. It’s something else to tend to and when it’s right it’s totally worth it but right now I don’t have that in front of me and I’m trusting that the Universe (or I will) decide when it’s right to go after it again. I don’t want to go after dating because I’m bored, or I’m lonely, or because it’s what society implies I should do. I want to go after it because it’s what I truly want and what I feel is right for me in that moment of time. Right now, overall I’m happy being single. I’m good y’all. 

There’s simple, trivial pleasures of being single and then there’s big perks that are pushing me to develop myself more and grow more as an individual.

  • I can focus on me and just me.
  • I don’t have to balance my time and schedule with someone else’s.
  • I don’t have to worry about cordials as much.
  • I don’t have to share the bed (except with my dog…she’s a bit of a bed hog lol).
  • I can spend more time working towards my goals and dreams.
  • I don’t have to shave my legs if I don’t feel like it.
  • I didn’t have to buy anything for Valentine’s Day.
  • I can work late and not have to worry about missing dinner.
  • I can ignore my phone for an evening.
  • I can focus on me and just me…this is a big one for me. I am naturally a caretaker so taking that task out of the scenario has forced me to put myself front and center and take care of myself more and not so much others.

I’m not saying I never want to be in a relationship again, because I do, I do dream of a happy and healthy relationship and I foresee that in my future. But right now I’m very “me” focused and I’m enjoying it. I’m rolling with it. I’m focusing on what’s in front of me and my goals. And the next time I am in a relationship, I’ll be a better me in it, a better part of the relationship.