How Does Your Garden Grow?

Happy Monday! This Motivation Monday is dedicated to anyone who feels like they are falling behind, can’t keep up, or feels like they are struggling while everyone else is all sunshine and roses. I am here to tell you, the grass isn’t always greener — often it’s not.

Quoteable

It’s really easy to feel like you have to work twice as hard as others for the same results. It can also be easy to feel like your accomplishments are celebrated with a whisper while other’s are trumpeted with resounding excitement. I think everyone wants love, support, and achievement in their lives and I think it takes a lot of hard work to earn those things. So, if you don’t have those and are giving it your all, while others have it made in the shade with half of the effort, just know their grass isn’t necessarily greener. It could be fake.

It’s really easy to be the center of attention, can-do-no-wrong champ when you put 100% of your effort into maintaining that. At the end of they day, it’s exhausting and it isn’t real. The real grass…it’s imperfect, patchy, maybe it looks like it’s been tilled, but guess what? That’s your investment and that’s where you’ll see the most flowers grow. Flowers are better than boring patches of grass anyways.

Happy Monday! xox

Advertisements

The Best Way To De-Stress!

May every joy be yoursthis Holiday SeasonHere’s the thing, even on a bad day I can handle a lot, I think we all can. However, the past few weeks have really challenged my emotional resolve and stress levels. I had a major fundraising event, I worked at least 10-12 hour days for a week and a half–solid, my husband went to the doctor for some pretty scary stuff (hopefully he’s fine) and my father, who I am pretty much estranged from (for good reason), sent my sister a letter explaining he was going to cut ties from all of my sisters and I and he was making grave threats about taking his own life.

Now, having a toxic parent is a challenge and having a toxic parent with a personality and mental disorder is even more of a challenge. Even more challenging beyond that is having people in your life who throw around terms like, “sociopath”, “crazy”, and “narcissist” as pejoratives, when most people have no idea what experiencing someone like that is really like. I speak candidly about this because I feel like there is a lot of ignorance, sometimes cruel, purposeful ignorance, that surrounds mental health issues, which is weird because so many people deal with them.

Needless to say, I’ve been stressed beyond belief and one of the things that helps me manage is yoga and meditation. In fact, as soon as it’s a little bit nicer out I plan on creating an outdoor yoga space in my back yard. There’s something about deep breathing, exercise, and listening to your body that completely melts stress—so if you’re feeling stressed out, I highly suggest one of these 3 sequences to help:

1) Breathing and Meditation: I fully believe in the benefits on mindful thinking and meditation. I even have a relaxation/breathing app on my phone. I’ve even taken 5 minutes at my work desk to go through this routine and it always helps when I need to de-stress. If you have a stressful job, this is a must if you have an office door you can close and spend 5 minutes by yourself.download

2) These yoga poses help alleviate stress and are actually good for beginners. You don’t even necessarily have to have a mat for these—and if you don’t have a yoga block, you can always use a hard pillow or a puppy dog (jk—don’t use a puppy dog). 🙂

b8e5e632a67ad13cfe5b0905fe7cf37a

3) I can’t recommend this video enough, I love this sequence—especially before bed. I don’t know about you, but when I am stressed out, I can’t sleep. My Fitbit says I do 4 hours of sleep at best when I am really stressed. Instead of going to bed with a million racing thoughts and a heartbeat that is jumping out of my chest, I am relaxed, stretched out, and ready for sleep after this sequence.

Screen Shot 2016-03-06 at 1.18.15 AM

What about you, what are your favorite yoga poses?

6 Easy Steps To Kick-Off A Major Life Detox.

DREAMS

It’s been a pretty good week. My lovely boss gave me a very sweet card thanking me for my hard work, I am getting a promotion, AND it’s Thursday! With all of these awesome pros, there have a lot been some cons that come in the form of normal life—people, work, situations, they can all be stressors. Work is never ending, people can be mean, a girlfriend of mine I am meeting for lunch last week was just diagnose with breast cancer. There will always be stressors, but if you can navigate through and manage the toxic things in your life, you can better cope with the curve balls life throws you.

1) Yoga is amazing.

I discovered just how amazing yoga was last year when I was so stressed out at work, I almost had a panic attack before a major event. I bought a crappy mat and joined a class with my friend from work. The instructor was amazing and the class was small enough so she was able to tailor the class for what we requested; stiff back, stress pains, headaches, you name it she had a breathing technique and a sequence for it.

I highly suggest classes to progress and perfect technique, but there are also options for you if you wish to do yoga from home. For example, there are plenty of YouTube videos, one of my favorite is a relaxation sequence for before bedtime. I also have a Pinterest board filled with yoga pins. My favorite pose right now is the pigeon pose, however—if you want to do something great for your heart that promotes deep relaxation and improves circulation, do a 90 degree wall sit.

jasonyoga.com

Credit: jasonyoga.com

2) Treat yo’ self. Literally!

Eat better. Sleep More. Pamper yourself. It’s really that simple. Just because you can function on 6 hours of sleep, doesn’t mean you should and just because you have to eat dinner at 8:00 p.m. doesn’t mean is has to be McDonalds.

Try to eat something clean and raw for a meal at least once a day, like my Pink Elephant Smoothie, for example. Not only will you be getting much needed vitamins and antioxidants, you will feel great for feeding your body something healthy and unprocessed. I have days where, even though I try to follow a vegan diet, my body still doesn’t feel like it’s gotten enough fruit/veggies. Be sure to eat them.

Drink 10 glasses of water a day. Your body needs it, it’s mostly water! Add cleansing fruits like lemon or ginger to your water if you can’t enjoy plain water.

Getting enough sleep is imperative and it’s something that I am the worst about. When I am running on too little sleep I tend to binge on it during the weekends and feel terrible about myself for not being as productive as I could be in my free time.

Lastly, pamper yourself. Take an epsom salt bath or get a Lush Bath Bomb, get your nails done, so something that makes your body feel great and makes you feel pretty. Cause you totally are.

f058e30017875049294aa558f9c82029

3) Say “no” to negativity and “yes” to what’s exactly on your mind.

People have a few intentions when it comes to you. They either want to actively ruin your day by being terrible or passive aggressive towards you, passively ruining your day by just being their negative-selves in your vicinity, people who are indifferent, and people who genuinely care about having you in their lives. I think it’s entirely stupid when people tell you to completely dump all of the toxic people from your life because it’s unrealistic. There are going to be people in your life who are mainstays, whether at work or in your personal life. The key is to not their negativity effect you AND put your foot down when necessary.

My mom always used to tell me that being happy is the best revenge—so not giving people the power to have control over your mood is vital to detoxing your life. However, when people in your life are very clear that they do 1) not respect you or your feelings and 2) go out of their way to bring you down, you have two choices—ignore it because they really don’t matter or put your foot down and say exactly whats on your mind, hopefully without using too many curse words :)!

anigif_enhanced-26935-1399995158-31

4) Organize and purge.

There are people who thrive in “organized” chaos. I am not one of those people—and most people aren’t. It’s not fun to be in a physical state of flux. After I have cleaned, organized, and purged my house, workspace, and office of things I don’t need I feel more comfortable in my space and I am more productive. If that means I have to label every single thing in my desk, I will! It’s worth it! I love my label maker. My work calendar is color coordinated. At one point I even had my salad dressings organized by color in my fridge.

5) Volunteer your time.

This might seem like a weird suggestion, but it’s a great way to make yourself feel great and help your community. I have worked in the non-profit sector almost exclusively since I graduated college. Local organizations need volunteers just like you and me to thrive. If fact, even though I work at a non-profit I still volunteer and donate funds to local charities that I really care about. If you wish to donate your time to an organization, just contact them directly or scope them out on Charity Navigator.

You will make great friends, help the community, have an opportunity to network, and rack up some serious karma points!

6) Be your silly self.

Literally. This is all you need to you need to do, but it can be really hard because of family, work, and social expectations. Being authentically you is the easiest way to de-stress. While you shouldn’t censor yourself, this does mean being as polite and authentic you can be, but also being vocal about things you aren’t digging. If you don’t agree with the way a project is going at work—let it be known in a respectful way, if you don’t appreciate how people are acting—don’t be around them, but most importantly, if people go out of their way to make you unhappy choose to be your happy, authentic self–don’t let people’s negative thoughts, opinions, comments, or energy change who you are.

cfee47767a232e3edd2d7d4ba459a134

What else do you do to detox? Let me know!