Where Does One Find Inspiration?

In accordance with my last post, these past two weeks alone I have focused on taking this new year and well, making it my bitch. HAHA.

What I mean by that is, along with physical health, I am focusing on mental health. Physically, I have set a weekly schedule for workouts. I have acknowledged the fact that I thrive more in a group setting rather than individually in a gym on my own time. Thus, I have taken the resources given to me by my university and planned out my weekly workout routine. Monday, Wednesday and Friday nights are dedicated to trying out a new type of class whether it be strength and flexibility training, yoga, pilates, or even kickboxing (which I have been dying to try for as long as I can remember). On top of these classes, I have also started pole fitness. Each Sunday and Tuesday I am partaking in beginner pole fitness classes. So far, I have only been to two but I have already fallen in love with the instructors, my fellow students and the amount of hard work, flexibility, strength, and dedication that it takes! If you are used to the same old routine, I suggest trying out something you’ve never in your life thought of doing because it may just turn out to be one of the best decisions, which was the case for me!

Mentally, I am working towards not letting the classes and massive amounts of schoolwork take over my life and my happiness. I work my ass off in school and last semester truly stole away my desire to pay attention to my mental health and make sure I am mentally stable. I focused solely on getting the best possible grade I could get whilst forgetting that there’s so much more to life than my GPA. In an attempt to focus on my well-being this semester, I have also begun guitar lessons.

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April of 2012. Right before my first guitar recital.

I haven’t discussed playing much, if at all, on my blog, but I got my first guitar when I was thirteen, took a couple lessons and then ended up quitting lessons to teach myself. With all the moving around from Indiana to Arizona and vice versa that I have done, my guitar hasn’t always followed me which made it hard to progress any furthur in my skills. After not playing for so long, I had also forgotten that guitar is a very helpful coping mechanism of mine for when I am upset, angry, or just dealing with stress and anxiety. I was able to find a student guitar teacher (who is an absolutely incredible musician) and within the first 2 lessons, I was learning how to finger pick several different songs, a skill I struggled with immensely when trying to teach myself. Currently, I am working on learning Blackbird by The Beatles. For those of you who don’t know, this is a pretty difficult song, but with practice makes perfect and I will get there at some point!

My reasoning for writing this post is to show myself that I am striving towards greatness and working my hardest to get there, but with all these classes and my busy schedule, blogging has been placed on the backburner and has led me into a rutt when it comes to creative writing. I have worked so hard to grow my follower base and now that I am starting to build it, my inspiration seems to be lost. Some posts flow better than others which is understandable, but I want so badly to keep a consistent blog with at least one post every week and that is something I will continue to work towards.

If any of my readers have some ideas on blog topics that you’d like to see or that you think would fit in well with my blog, I beg of you to let me know! Yes, I like to write simply for the joy of writing, but I also want to be sure my readers are interested and relating to what I am writing. Due to wanting this blog to be so relatable, I have opened up about many private situations and thoughts in my life, so if there’s something you are struggling with that you think I may have some advice on, please either comment on this post or go to the ‘Contact Me’ page and fill out the contact form because odds are, I have experienced something similar or can at least begin a discussion regarding that topic.

 

Plus, I’d simply just love some feedback from my amazing, supportive readers. Hope to hear from you ❤

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“New Year, New Me” YUCK

Every year, normally around mid-December up until the end of January, all I ever see on social media are New Year’s resolutions and the classic saying “New Year, New Me.” Don’t get me wrong, been there, done that, and I most definitely am NOT criticizing anyone who either this year or in the past has been guilty of saying those exact words. My question however is, why work to change ourselves for roughly 2 months out of the year? IN FACT, change is a bad word.

I personally don’t make resolutions to change or fix who I am, but rather to evolve into a better me.

And why should we evolve solely for two months out of the year when everyday we can strive for greatness, strive for progress, and strive to feel the most comfortable in our own skin?

It seems more and more nowadays that people are making these resolutions to “fix” themselves because they aren’t good enough the way they are. On top of that, the amount of criticism I see when people start going to the gym in the beginning of the year or start a new, healthier diet is so saddening. Our society as a whole needs to pull together and first, end the judgement of people striving for greatness and second, support each other, because I wholeheartedly believe that these resolutions end so quickly because of judgement and lack of comfort and support individuals recieve. You see someone at the gym who looks confused and nervous? Rather than posting an insulting snapchat or tweet, introduce yourself and maybe give them a couple workouts you enjoy doing. You see someone listing off their New Years resolutions online? Comment and tell them you believe in them and you’ll be there to support them along the way!

It’s so easy to be vicious and spiteful in a world filled with so much hate, but as the cliché saying goes…

“You are the change you want want to see in the world.”

 

I struggle with finding the silver linings in so many different situations, so I am not here to say this is the easiest thing in the world to do, nor am I saying that I am anywhere near an expert at doing so. What I am saying is that if we first work to recognize the flaws we possess and the hate we sometimes tend to put out into the world without any reason for doing so, then we can begin to work on first evolving into a person who radiates love, positivity, happiness and kindness, as well as a society that radiates love, positivity, happiness and kindness.

So yes, I have the typical resolutions such as going to the gym more and focusing on my well-being, both mentally and physically, but this year and each year following, I want to be the optimist. I want to be the person who searches for the silver lining in any given situation. And most of all, I want to be the person who radiates love, positivity, happiness and kindess. Personally, I believe that is someone EVERYONE should strive to be.

 

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My Rave Essentials

If you know me or have seen any of my social media pages, you’d know my love for EDM and festivals! I’ve swayed away from talking much about the rave scene on my blog due to the negative stereotypes that accompany it, however I am HAPPY and PROUD to say that EDM and all of its added benefits have changed my life for the better.

ANYHOW, enough with the mush. In light of being more open about the life of what some may call a basshead, a raver, a HEADBANGER (please stop me), I wanted to write a post talking about an upcoming festival I am attending soon called Decadence Arizona NYE. I will be talking about a couple of things I consider necessities when attending festivals and I will also be showing you one of my outfits for the event!

MY FESTI NECESSITIES

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  • First, and most important, a camelback. Many festivals take place outdoors and a mixture of dancing, sweating and not drinking enough water IS NOT pretty…trust me on this one. A camelback is so easily accessible that it is almost impossible to get dehydrated with it always being on your back! I went heavy-duty on my camelback and it has yet to disappoint. This particular bag has several pockets for storing any other rave essentials, along with a 2.5L bladder to keep you from having to refill every 30 minutes! You can find this exact bag here for $46.15. My biggest recommendation when searching for a camelback is to search for quality over looks and even though I know we are all on budgets, this bag is well worth the price and thanks to the amazing quality, long-lasting as well.

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  • A fanny pack. You may be wondering, whats the point of a fanny pack when I already have a huge backpack on my back???? Well let me tell you, I’ve found it very handy to have a fanny pack around my hips so I can put things such as my phone, gum and a fan in it so I don’t have to take off my camelback every time I need something. Plus, you have to take into consideration how 2.5L of water tends to take up a lot of space in a backpack. A fanny pack is nice for quick, easy access! I received this particular fanny pack as a gift, but I was able to find a similar one here for $14.99.

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  • Eucalyptus oil. Festivals and raves can get overwhelming, even for those who have gone to several before. With large crowds, the occasional assholes, loud noises and bright lights, it’s very easy to get anxious and stressed out. By simply putting essential oils on my pashmina or on my wrist and getting a quick whiff of it when I feel the anxiety start to kick in, after a couple deep breaths I feel relaxed and ready to dance and enjoy the experience. Essential oils have so many different benefits, several of which help with stress and anxiety. I personally enjoy the smell of Eucalyptus oil but you can find several other oils that are beneficial for anxiety here. You can purchase a bottle of Eucalyptus oil here for $5.99.

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  • KANDI!! My absolute favorite necessity. Pictured above are several of my single kandi, cuff kandi and perlers! I seriously love making all of these bracelets and necklaces, but the best part is trading all of them at the festivals! I remember when I was super young and I used to make perlers all the time. I’ll have to admit, making perlers is a lot more fun now than it was as a kid. All of the materials used to make everything pictured above were bought at Hobby Lobby, Michaels, Walmart or Joann’s. This part is really up to you. Bring out your own style of creativity in each individual kandi!

 

Decadence Outfit

I’m not gonna lie, I tend to overpack and bring ANYTHING I might possibly want because truth be told, the finishing touches to my outfit are typically decided the day of. I took some pictures of definite outfit choices and some pictures of possible accessory choices for this festival!

  • When picking out my outfits, I always say THE MORE SPARKLES, THE BETTER!! So of course I went with the most dazzling of boots. The cool thing about this purchase is that I will probably wear these boots at least once every festivals because LOOK HOW CUTE?! I bought them on IHeartRaves and you can too here for $28.95!
  • Now onto the actual outfit! For starters, I found the mesh bodysuit here for $9.95. The bodysuit rides up pretty high so I just found some white lace underwear to go underneath. Since this festival is shortly after Christmas, I decided to be festive with my snowflake pasties. You can find those exact pasties here for $9.95. The lovely pink pashmina was a solid find at a thrift shop. The amount of pashminas at just this one thrift shop alone was crazy! Of course, not all thrift shops are alike but if you are interested in buying one, I would definitely check at your local thrift shop first. If you don’t have any luck there, Amazon has a WIDE array of pashminas. Lastly, the face jewels. Face jewels on many sites tend to be expensive and hard to reuse. Every once in a while I will “splurge” on a pack of jewels like these for $11.98, but in the cases where I’m running low on funds, I turn to these single jewels, create my own design and glue it on with eyelash glue!

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  • Decadence Arizona will be my very first winter rave, so I definitely struggled with figuring out how to stay warm throughout the night. I took a bargain with this jacket on IHeartRaves and could not be happier with the product. The jacket was bought solely for Decadence, but has turned into an everyday jacket because IT’S SO FREAKING WARM! Sadly, they are currently out of stock on this item (no surprise there), but if you are interested in purchasing, you can click the link above and give IHeartRaves your email so they can notify you when they are back in stock!

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  • For me, fishnets are a MUST at any event. These adorable lace fishnet thigh-highs, leg garters and fabric mask were all found on IHeartRaves. They have such a wide range of designs for any fashion taste and I would definitely recommend you check out their website to get a taste of the amazing styles and products they have!

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  • Last, but certainly not least, accessories! I tend to bring all accessories I own (because I have a serious problem of over-packing in every instance) and then decide which accessories work best with my outfit that day, so here are a couple of possible hair accessories to go with my outfit! I purchased the two headbands on IHeartRaves and the daisy hair clips in store at Hot Topic.

All together…

 

Now obviously, I’m not wearing any accessories, only the clothes, but I will be posting a recap on Decadence AZ following the event which will include PLENTY of pictures.

I hope you enjoyed this post. If you are unfamiliar with festivals, I hope this gave you a little insight. If you are familiar with festivals, I hope some of my neccesities you take into consideration and try!

Festivals have changed my life for the better and I want everyone to know how amazing the EDM community and the festival experience truly is. I’ve found myself guilty when buying anything materialistic because buying an experience is something you truly can cherish for a lifetime!

So hear me when I say, it is 110% WORTH IT!

 

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REDKEN VOXBOX REVIEW

Hello my snowflakes! First, I wanted to apologize for my lack of posting and social interaction on here. The last couple weeks of this semester had me drowning in school work, study sessions and finals, BUT yesterday was my last final so I have officially completed my first semester of junior year! Whoop whoop! Now normally around the middle of the month, I post a monthly favorites, HOWEVER this month I had the privilege of receiving a complimentary VoxBox from Influenster for testing purposes! How exciting?! As I always say, free stuff is my favorite kind of stuff.

The first VoxBox I received was filled with products from Redken. I personally LOVE Redken products and was more than excited to see what I received.

My hair has had a lot of ups and downs, all thanks to the “wonderful” idea of bleaching my hair all by myself. I have worked hard to get my hair to where it is now and that healing process alone, along with chopping my hair off and letting it regrow has taken well over two years. However, Redken products such as their Extreme Strengthening Shampoo, Extreme Strengthening Conditioner and Extreme Anti-Snap Leave-In Treatment have helped my hair to get to the level of healthy I have desired for so long. With that being said, the excitement I had to try some other products of theirs was through the roof!

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Color Extend Blondage Purple Shampoo

The first product I received is a purple shampoo designed to strengthen, brighten and reduce that pesky brass color we blondes try our hardest to avoid. My first impression of this shampoo was how pretty the bright purple color was and how amazing the scent of the shampoo was! I was able to build up a nice lather while washing and afterwards, I let the shampoo sit in my hair for about 2 minutes before rinsing.

My only downside for this shampoo would have to be the stain it leaves in your shower and on your hands, although after washing my hands with warm water and soap, I was able to get the purple stain off my hands. For the quality of the product and the benefits that come with, I am perfectly content having purple hands and a purple shower!

You can find this product here for $20.00.

Color Extend Blondage Conditioner

The conditioner, similarly to the shampoo, had an amazing scent and was also purple in color but a much lighter purple. This was a very thick and creamy conditioner (which I love). I left the conditioner in for about 5 minutes and then washed out.

My only downside for the conditioner is that it did not de-tangle my hair whatsoever.

Overall, I did enjoy it and would purchase again. If you are interested in purchasing, you can do that here for $20.00.

Extreme CAT Anti-Damage Protein Rinse-off Treatment

This product is a rinse-off treatment. I decided to use mine right after showering and prior to putting conditioner on my hair. I sprayed it throughout my hair and made sure I soaked the tips of my hair, then I let it sit for about 3-5 minutes and rinsed it out.

My only downside with this product is the spray bottle itself is very user-unfriendly and I struggled with trying to spread the product throughout my hair by myself.

Despite the downside, even after one use I noticed my hair felt stronger and less hair fell out while brushing it. You can find this product here for $19.00.

I do plan on repurchasing all three of these items again and I would definitely recommend them to my blonde ladies looking to add some strength to their damaged hair and get rid of that brassy tone!

I would like to thank Influenster and Redken for providing me with my very first VoxBox! I can’t wait to work towards more in the near future!

Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.

 

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Bondi Sands – REVIEW

Hello my lovely readers! I absolutely HAVE to share this amazing product with you all. Personally, I feel 10x more confident when my skin has a gorgeous, bronzed glow. Sadly, I wasn’t born with naturally tan skin so my best bet is the sun, a tanning bed, or a self-tanner. Around August it becomes too cold to tan outside so I resorted to paying an expensive monthly membership at a tanning salon.

NOT ANYMORE.

Save your skin the torture and the wrinkles in the future and tan at home!

Easier said than done right? Those who have experimented with self-tanners, myself included, can vouch for me when I say that after so many tries, self-tanners become more of a hassle than a pleasure. Streaks, that nasty looking orange tone, and the dreaded ankles/knees/elbows? HASSLE.

I first stumbled across an ad for Bondi Sands on Instagram several months ago. Knowing my past experience with “amazing self-tanners,” I decided to not make a rash decisions and instead followed their Instagram page. After months of seeing raving reviews about this product, I gave in and purchased it.

Before

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Prior to application, I showered, shaved and exfoliated with a sugar scrub. I made sure that I was not wearing any sort of jewelry or clothing that could mess up the tan. I then took the application mitt (which can be purchased here), put a squirt of tanner on the mitt and started blending from the bottom of my leg, upwards.

I was amazed at how smoothly the foam went on and how easy it was to avoid streaks when applying. Not to mention the amazing smell of coconut that flooded my room shortly after.

For a whole hour after application, I remained undressed to ensure that my tan would remain even and streak-free. The directions on the bottle state to leave the tanner on for at least one hour and then rinse off with warm water. I left the tanner on overnight to achieve a deep tan.

After showering, my tan was gorgeous, glowing AND streak-free!

After (Even Littles loves Bondi Sands!)

If you, like me, enjoy that bronzed glow but struggle to find a self-tanner that lives up to the name, I urge you to try this amazing product or the several others they have on their website! I do not have a single bad thing to say about this product and I know you’ll be just as satisfied as I am if you give it a try!

You can find the exact tanner I used here or visit their website at www.BondiSands.com.

Tackle this winter with me feeling like a BRONZED QUEEN 😍

 

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Finding Thanks in Everything…Even the Little Things

Hello my little pumpkins! For me, November is a month where I find it necessary to take a step back and be grateful for even the smallest of things we take for granted on a daily basis. It’s so easy to overlook being grateful for things that are so easily attainable in today’s world. I wanted to use this post not only to give thanks, but to spread awareness that much of what we are used to, much of what we take for granted, are things that are far from accessible in other countries, let alone for many families in this country.

So take a step back…

What are some of the basic necessities you have in your life that others mays struggle to obtain?

  • Food?
  • Water?
  • A home?
  • A loving family?
  • A good job?
  • An education?

The list could go on and on and of course answers will differ for each person, but one thing remains the same.

EACH AND EVERYONE OF US ARE BLESSED IN OUR OWN KIND OF WAY.

When I was in elementary school, my mother traveled to Tanzania, Africa for a 3 week mission trip. She came home with souvenirs, pictures and some amazing memories. I distinctly remember a picture of several children huddled up in a big circle with the biggest smiles on each and every one of their faces. My mom said something that resonated with me from that day on.

These children are living with close to nothing. They struggle to find food, some are lacking in education, and the ones lacking education live their days fulfilling hard labor chores necessary for them and their family to survive. Despite lacking what may seem like “necessities,” each and every day these children find a reason to smile. A reason to laugh. A reason to be grateful for this life they have been given.

We live in a world FILLED with instant gratification. So much to the point that without a sense of instant gratification, our patience wears thin. So let’s all take this day not only to be appreciative of all the little things we take for granted on a daily basis, but to take a step back and recognize the extent of how truly blessed we are in our lives – simply to be living.

I’d like for you to come up with a list of 10 things you are grateful for and after this day, continue to remind yourself of this list because despite Thanksgiving being over after today, we shall remain grateful for this life we have been given.

  1. My family
  2. My boyfriend
  3. My friends
  4. My apartment
  5. My education at IU
  6. Food on the table for every meal
  7. My ability to travel back and forth between Indiana and Arizona
  8. My puppers Hershey
  9. Music
  10. And even though they are under the category of family, I want to emphasize how appreciative I am for my parents. Their unconditional love is what has gotten me to where I am now and I will forever be grateful to have such incredible role models in my life

 

I hope you all have an amazing, mashed potato and turkey filled day. Know that I am so very grateful for each and every one of you as well. Happy Thanksgiving! ♡

 

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Whats the Key to Success? Learn to be a Quitter

Hi everyone! I stumbled across this post from BossBabe.com and oddly enough, it is exactly what I needed to hear. Don’t you love when you read something and you feel like it’s speaking exactly to you and your current situation? I wanted to share with all of you in hopes that maybe, it hits home for you just as it did for me!

“WINNERS NEVER QUIT AND QUITTERS NEVER WIN,” RIGHT?

If you grew up hearing this popular saying, you’re not alone. Maybe it was your soccer coach at your first big game, a parent helping you with homework, or a teacher helping you learn a new skill.

They all encouraged you never to quit, because quitting was equivalent to giving up and giving up meant you didn’t have enough confidence or drive to succeed.

And, to an extent, they’re right. Giving up isn’t good. But quitting, CAN be.

As we get older, it becomes harder to distinguish quitting from failure.

But go with me here…

Quitting is NOT failure.

Quitting is pivoting into something else.

IN LIFE, IN YOUR CAREER, IN A RELATIONSHIP, TRY TO THINK LESS ABOUT WHAT YOU’RE QUITTING FROM AND MORE ABOUT WHAT YOU’RE QUITTING TOWARD.

UK survey found that 6 out of 10 people stay in relationships they don’t find fulfilling. 5 out of 10 people stay in jobs they’re unhappy with, according to a study completed by the Conference Board. Both surveys found that many people stayed in unhappy situations because they consider leaving to be a failure. What if what comes next is better than what’s you’ve left behind?

Are you quitting to move on to something better? Are you quitting to improve your personal or mental health? Are you quitting because the current situation no longer serves you?  Being afraid of quitting, could literally be blocking you from starting that new business, going back to school, moving to a new city or embarking on a new career journey. If you’re still unsure, run through this quick checklist below:

HERE’S 5 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF BEFORE YOU QUIT:

  1. Is my happiness more important than complacency?
  2. Could there be something better on the other side?
  3. Am I making a decision to stay out of fear?
  4. Am I ready to take the consequences?
  5. Do I believe in myself?

If you answered “yes” to most of these, its time to QUIT.

Knowing when to quit or leave something behind is a crucial step toward a brighter, happier, more fulfilled life. So I want you to embrace quitting. You never know what’s waiting for you on the other side.

 

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I Stopped Letting Nicotine Control My Life

For four years, I believed that I would never be able to put down my e-cig. For four years, I grew more and more accustomed to it always being around. The amount of times I SWORE I could never put the thing down are unimaginable and now, here I am one whole month clean of nicotine! HOW EXCITING!

Nowadays, with nicotine being so easily accessible (so much to the point that I have sat next to people in class puffing on a juul), quitting is a little more difficult than it is with cigarettes. The idea of the “hand to mouth” phenomenon switches from having to go outside every once in a while to fulfill the desire, to simply reaching in your pocket in any given situation and fulfilling the desire. And of course many are aware of the juul, but what many aren’t aware of is that a single juul pod is equivalent to AN ENTIRE PACK OF CIGARETTES! YUCK. So I wanted to write this post for anyone out there who, just like me, said “I could never put this thing down!”

Why did I decide to quit?

I had thought about quitting on several occasions but always ended up talking myself out of it for ridiculous reasons such as, “finals are coming up and I am gonna be really stressed out so I should probably wait till after finals.” These nonsense excuses persisted time after time. Roughly a month and a half ago, I got really sick to the point where even the smallest of hits off my e-cig resulted in me coughing my lungs out for the five minutes following. I had stopped bringing it with me to classes and without realizing it, started weaning myself off of both nicotine and the idea of hand to mouth. Wanting to quit was still in the back of my mind so I had brought it up to my boyfriend about how I still wanted to quit and without hesitation he asked me if I wanted him to hide my e-cig. I most definitely didn’t want him to hide it but I said yes and I’m so proud of myself for following through.

What has this past month been like?

The first week was easily the most difficult. If my boyfriend hadn’t hid my e-cig, I don’t think I would’ve successfully made it past that week, but I tried to keep myself busy to stop, or more so mask the cravings. I also took the time to look into some resources I could utilize to help make quitting a little bit easier. Indiana University has a wonderful smoking cessation program that involves a weekly meeting and plenty of resources to help ease the cravings such as nicotine patches and gum. The best part about this program is IT’S 100% FREE! The program has been so very helpful to me and if you are wanting to quit but can’t imagine doing it by yourself, I would most definitely recommend looking into some smoking cessation programs near you.

My challenge to you!

For four years, I relied on nicotine in almost every situation and laughed at anyone who even slightly insinuated that I should quit because I didn’t believe I was mentally strong enough. Now one month free of nicotine and I am so proud of the progress I’ve made. Each day truly does get easier and it helps when you are surrounded by people who want to help you to quit. So if you also have considered quitting smoking but can’t imagine your world without nicotine in it, I urge you to find someone who you trust to help keep you on track (and possibly hide anything you may use to satisfy your nicotine addiction) and look into any resources your town may have to help you quit.

It is not easy. It definitely took all the willpower I had but I knew that it was in my best interest. I went on for 16 years without nicotine in my life and I WILL get to a point where nicotine doesn’t even cross my mind, but for now I will stick to relying on the ones who have my best interest in mind and want nothing but to help me succeed in fighting this addiction.

I stopped letting nicotine control my life and you should too. (Wow I sound like a commercial)

I am MORE than happy to answer any questions that anyone may have regarding this topic. In fact, if you are considering taking that first step to quitting, PLEASE either comment on this post or go to the ‘Contact Me’ page and fill out the form! I would love to help anyone wanting to beat this horrible addiction!

and remember…

You ARE capable of putting it down ♡

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When the Silver Lining is Nonexistent

Normally, I can find the silver lining on a majority of bad situations. Maturity has helped me to recognize that sometimes losing something or someone is for the better. But what happens when you feel like you’ve hit the point of no return?

College for most people is finding life-long friends and soaking up every second of young adulthood, but what happens when it seems as if I am losing more friends than gaining? What happens when the supposed friends I do have, have more interest in what seems like everything else BUT me? Now of course, I know I am not the only one going through this and I’m not going to sit here and whine and complain about issues that I’m sure everyone faces at least once in their life, but now the question arises, where do I go from here and how do I keep from experiencing these feelings in the future?

Self-reflection of course is necessary because I’m not going to sit here and blame my issues on everyone else, but there has to be something more, doesn’t there? In all honesty, I don’t know what I am searching for in writing this, but I do know that writing is one thing that helps me to self-reflect and fully recognize and acknowledge all of the feelings I am experiencing.

Life is a series of lessons and a majority of the time, those lessons are brutal and take time to understand. I am aware that I am in the middle of one of those lessons as we speak, but how do I understand the lesson before its learned. What is the goal in my suffering? In my loneliness? Only time can tell.

So for now, I will focus on taking this pain and turning it into strength. I will fixate my attention on the positives in my life rather than dwell on the negatives. I will appreciate all that I do have and I will tackle each day as it comes because that’s all I really can do.

We all have bad days. So while I am in the midst of one, I want to remind you that if you are having a bad day, remember its a bad day, not a bad life. Cliché I know, but life is most definitely an obstacle course and we are just along for the ride. Wow, I am just a book of clichés right now, be that as it may, work with me in taking charge of your life. Work with me in reminding yourself that these difficult times will pass because as I had said before, these lessons may be brutal but the outcome is bright. With pain and heartache lies strength and beauty.

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Social Media Experiment – SOCIAL MEDIA ISN’T EVERYTHING

HI GUYS! So two weeks ago I decided I wanted to take a little social media break and observe how I felt throughout that time. I wanted to remind myself that social media is not the most important thing in my life and I wanted to take that chance to not only build friendships/relationships, but create them as well! Well here I am, two weeks later in good spirits, knowing that my social media break was most definitely needed. As I reflect, I wanted all of you to be aware of the benefits of taking a step back and recognizing the negative impact that social media has on our lives and our well-being.

What did I do best utilize my time?

  • I made DELICIOUS dinners with my Jackson.
  • I went on walks with Jackson and explored the town that we have lived in for several months now but still barely know (LOL).
  • I cleaned the apartment…a lot.
  • I was able to fully focus on my homework without worrying about what was new on my social media.
  • I did some fun DIY projects from Pinterest.
  • Jackson and I made new couple friends in our apartment complex!! (Our first couple friends! How exciting!)
  • I went tailgating with new friends and enjoyed the crisp fall air.
  • I tried to soak in every moment spent with Jackson and friends.

Why is a social media break important?

It’s hard to notice the negative effects that social media has on our lives when it is constantly available to us. So my goal in taking a social media break was to merely acknowledge, without judgement (using mindfulness), how much of my day is stolen from me because of social media. Rather than avoiding an awkward silence by shoving my face in my phone, in a sense, I was forced to make conversation, which my generation is not the greatest at. Face-to-face interaction is such an important part of our lives as social creatures and thats something we tend to forget because of social media.

My challenge to YOU

I challenge you to take the step not only in bettering your mental health and well-being, but to rediscover and reevaluate what truly matters in your life with the absence of social media, whether it be family, relationships, friendships, hobbies, school, etc. You may come to find, like I did, that we place such an emphasis on the importance of social media, but without it, life will still go on. I didn’t miss my social media like I thought I would, in fact, it was refreshing, like a weight lifted off of my shoulders.

So take that step! 

Do something GOOD for your mental health and your well-being.

PUT YOURSELF FIRST! YOU DESERVE IT!

In case you missed:

xo ツ

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Long Distance Sucks

Isn’t is crazy how quickly relationships can be built? Or even crazier, how quickly a relationship that used to be so strong, can diminish when distance separates the two? I’ve been lucky enough to stumble across a select few relationships/friendships in the past couple years that are worth fighting for when distance comes into play. I full-heartedly believe that a friendship is 50/50 and there truly is no point in fighting for a friendship if the other person is giving you any less than 50%. However, when it comes to long distance friendships, sometimes that isn’t always the case. Life gets in the way, it always does, and it tends to get in the way at different times for different people. Some people at my age are busy in college, others are busy working, and some are even beginning their little families. Despite the different stages all of us are in, sometimes life just takes over. And when in comes to having a long distance friendship, those days in the past where you felt nothing but stress and anxiety and you end up eating an entire tub of ice cream and bitching about life with your best friend turn into you coming home, getting done what needs to be done, and sleeping the stress away. Those long conversations on the phone that you had every day turn into once every week until slowly you start to realize its been over a month since you last talked on the phone. The conversations may dwindle down, but the love I have for the individual and the friendship we’ve built does not. “Distance makes the heart grow fonder.” We’ve all heard the saying, and yes, in some cases that is true but in others, distance makes you forget how grateful you are to have such amazing relationships/friendships in your life whether they are 5 miles away or 5,000. So I wanted to write this post as a daily reminder to myself that I have not only gained amazing friendships, but I have gained friendships that are worth fighting for 110%. If anyone reading this is struggling to keep a long distance friendship or relationship alive, take some time to reminisce. Remind yourself of all the amazing memories shared with that person. Randomly give them a call just to tell them you appreciate them. Send them a care package to let them know you are thinking about them. You WILL know when a relationship is worth fighting for, so in those rare occurrences when you find a keeper, cherish them and the relationship ya’ll have built because nowadays, it truly is hard to find the keepers.

xo ツ

Remembering Your Worth

IMG_7015September 23, 2018 marks a whole year of being in love with the most thoughtful human being. My heart is all mushy and love is most definitely in the air, but its not hard to think back to a time when I felt worthless and irrelevant to the world around me. Now I can’t go blame all of my issues on previous boyfriends, however I can say that getting treated poorly in a relationship tends to diminish the desire to love yourself. I went on for years hating myself and searching for the things I could change about myself in order to be loved by someone else. It took a full year of loneliness and contemplation to realize that I was never going to find what I was looking for until I learned to love everything about myself, the good and the not so good. Wow, that sounds so cliche but it couldn’t be any closer to the truth. I began to realize my worth in one of the most painful, mentally exhausting relationships. He belittled me, called me names, and made me feel foolish for wanting to get treated in a respectful, loving way. One day, he got so angry that he kicked me out of his apartment and told me I was dead to him. Hours later, he called me to say he overreacted and to come back over. Stupid me, I went back over to his apartment where he proceeded to yell at me and NOT apologize because “he had no reason to apologize, I was just being crazy”. Time after time I continued to forgive him and time after time he continued to show me the millions of reasons he didn’t deserve my forgiveness. My self-esteem was diminished and the love I had for myself was nearly nonexistent, so I turned to God. I listened to my favorite worship songs and I prayed that he would give me the knowledge to understand why I wasn’t good enough. And he did answer my prayers, but rather than helping me understand why I wasn’t good enough, he helped reveal to myself the many ways I am more than good enough. He gave me the knowledge to know what I deserve, whether it be in a relationship or in my everyday life. He gave me the strength to remove the negativity from my life and look solely at the positives. During this time of growth, finding myself, and learning to love myself, God placed a wonderful man into my life. A man who doesn’t try to diminish my self-worth but instead shows me reasons every day to treasure my self-worth. A man who, everyday shows me the true meaning of unconditional love. I love my boyfriend for a million different reasons, but everyday he teaches me how to love myself and thats a debt I will never be able to repay. So ladies, if you are in a toxic relationship and have been dragged down so far to the point of not knowing if you’ll be able to make it back to the surface, know that there is hope. Know that there is someone out there who will love you for you, imperfections and all. And lastly, know that you ARE beautiful, you ARE strong, and you ARE capable of living the life you deserve.

xo ツ

Getting Back Into the Swing of Things

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Mid-August always seems to be the start of the most time-consuming yet enjoyable time of the year. Its that time of year where new beginnings are within our grasp and we are given the chance (as college students) to build a home away from home. We pack up our lives and are given the chance to start again in a sense. This year I have had the privilege of starting my junior year of college at Indiana University and lemme tell ya..it has been the most exhilarating, exhausting, fulfilling experience. With these chances for new beginnings comes classes all week and homework to fill up the little downtime we do have. With these chances for new beginnings comes a constant state of stress and exhaustion and AT LEAST one mental breakdown a week, if not more. The transition from a community college to a big university has been everything I could’ve hoped and more. I am so incredibly proud to call Bloomington and Indiana University my home, but I have certainly struggled to make ends meet since classes have started. On the second day of classes my professor told me to expect 2 hours of homework for every 1 credit hour you are taking. Well with the typical full-time student, 15 credit hours in class = 30 hours spent on homework EVERY WEEK!! And lemme tell ya, he wasn’t lying. After about a month of classes, I am starting to learn where my classes are and im not having to use a GPS while riding a bike (it was not a pretty sight HAHA), I’ve met some really great people who are just as motivated to learn and succeed as I am, and I can 100% say that I am finally settling in. One thing I always forget to remind myself of when classes first begin in August is that I will get used to it. I will get used to the running around, the stress, and the lack of downtime. So for anyone reading this, if you feel overwhelmed whether it be because of work or school or just life in general, continue to remind yourself that those feelings will fade, life will get easier, and you’ll be stronger because of it. Be grateful for the stressful downs in your life because those are what make you truly appreciative of the ups.

xo ツ