You’re not alone if you feel a spell-binding desire to return to the comforting yield of the soil.

You’re not alone if you feel called out of the city and into the country.

You’re not alone if you want to nourish your body with the fruit of your hands.

The call is bigger than you. There’s a shift in the world, you can feel it. It’s a healing of the nation.

This matters because women are nature and nurture. You’re wired to know the decisions you need to make to thrive. It’s no coincidence that you feel the need to breathe cleaner air, eat nourishing foods and find peace of mind.

You feel the shift, but don’t know where to start or know how to get there.

I promise you that if you’re a woman of faith, you’ll know.

It will bring you the people you need to connect with. It will deter you from places that aren’t meant for you, guide you where you need to go, and show you where you need to wait.

How do I know?

I am a woman of faith and I’ve seen it time and time again.

Three years ago I went casual at my nursing job and started travel nursing.

I felt the need to explore the scenic parts of Canada in hopes of finding a new home. Traveling for work allowed me to do so.

It was a scary decision, I didn’t know where it would take me, but do we ever? Our steady job, home, and access to services give us a false sense of security.

Security is the responsible plan but once it’s gone we can spiral into hopelessness. Faith is the ever-resilient plan.

I traveled and worked in the Northern parts of Canada, on Native reserves, in mountainous areas and I’ve found black women with similar stories.

Why it’s important to see like-minded women.

I started traveling to remote locations for work, not expecting to see many women like myself. I was having adventures like:

driving past 12 bears in the mountains

taking part in an Heiltsuk Indigenous potlatch ceremony

getting to work via helicopter

and bathing in a hot spring surrounded by trees in winter.

I saw black women in many of the locations I went with similar stories. It was important to see like-minded people because it affirmed that I wasn’t alone. No matter how hard people try to stereotype us, you can’t take away our uniqueness and adaptability.

We encouraged each other along the way. We exchanged similar phrases like:

“It’s no coincidence that we met”.

“You’re not alone”.

“I needed this reminder”.

“You’re on the right track, we’ll figure it out”.

Bring back community.

Growing and operating a farm is laborious. I was reminded of this when speaking to a woman who said, ‘I’ve lived on a farm before and it’s hard work, at this point in my life I won’t be able to do it alone’.

As someone who cherishes my quiet time, I low-key dread having too many people around, but the truth is, we can’t survive without community. We are interdependent on each other.

The country is right around the corner.

Some people imagine living in the middle of a secluded mountain without a neighbour around for kilometers- that doesn’t have to be the case. You can live in an area as close to half an hour to an hour outside of the city that feels secluded.

I see this frequently living in Alberta. There’s so much land around that you don’t have to go very far to escape.

Start where you are.

You may not be in the position to move right now, but start taking the necessary steps towards the life you want.

This can look like:

getting your finances together

buying seeds

learning about gardening

or changing your diet

Doors will open and help will come.

Takeaway

Feeling the desire to move closer to the country and grow your own food isn’t a coincidence. It can be as small as moving to the suburbs and having a home garden or moving to large acreage. Start preparing for the life you want even if you can’t see the way yet. Find balance in community.

And remember, you’re not alone.

~Arlene~

Originally published on Medium-Assemblage

Give yourself time

Photo by Marlon Schmeiski on Pexels.com

We barely got over one hurt before they gave us another, sometimes dropping them off at the same time. We would run back and forth between them, soothing one while flaming the other.

We gave them names like “never again” and “only this once”. Some stayed many years while others were fleeting.

Some returned to visit although we kissed them goodbye. We treated some like lovers listening to their incantations,

why me?, why me?, why me ?

We handled them gently as they etched their way into our hearts.

We couldn’t let them go. We studied every detail of their memory, we remembered every drench of sweat they made us work for.

We hated them, and we loved them. We loved hating them, though it was fleeting.

Those hurts came in flavours. Some bitter in the same instant, while others a steady sweetness that faded away, but most came in rancid, simply stinkin’ rancid.

So we worked. We worked until we knew them well. We worked until they did not sting, until they did not burn. We worked until they did not scratch.

We worked until we were strong.


Originally published on Medium

Ask yourself whose hero are you trying to be? And why? You may find that the life you’re living isn’t even yours.
Photo by Joshua Abner on Pexels.com

You’re struggling with not feeling good enough. Someone told you through their words, actions, or lack thereof that you weren’t enough for them just the way you are, without doing or being anything else- and you believed it.

Feelings of inadequacy are fueled by shame. Shame is uncomfortable. It’s a self-conscious emotion that comes from looking at yourself poorly. It makes you feel anxious, exposed, deceived, and powerless.

Unaddressed feelings of inadequacy create people-pleasing behaviour. This comes at the cost of destroying your core being, who you really are, not the person hidden behind your spouse, gender, or religion.

You were not meant to be invisible. You were meant to enjoy life, add value to it by being yourself, and express your unique personality, talents, and skills.

Women are multidimensional, we are not easily compartmentalized as the world would like to have us seem. We are vines shaped every day by our experiences. We twist, turn, adapt, grow, and continually bloom through different seasons of life. The song lyrics that come to mind when I think of this is Alanis Morissette’s, “ I’m a bitch, I’m a mother, I’m a child, I’m a lover, I’m a sinner, I’m a saint, I do not feel ashamed.”

Shame is a thief that robs you of power. To disarm shame you have to get to its root, which is almost always the thought of, I’m not good enough.

You must have a defiant spirit that is able to take an ego bruise, yet be your unwavering motivator.

It’s that kick, scream, claw blood, and skin, until you break nails, type of determination.

There are two key concepts in taking your power back when you feel like you’re not good enough.

1. Reject the cycle of shame, and feelings of low self-worth by relentlessly choosing yourself.

Reduce people-pleasing.

Make small choices about what you want to do. Take time, scan your body to figure out what feels right, safe, and authentic. At first, it will go against every fiber of your being. It may bring up feelings of guilt, pain, and loneliness. People in your life might get upset but stick to it.

Exercise the discomfort of repeatedly choosing yourself, knowing you will get through. Choosing yourself is not going to tip you over into some self-absorbed world of no return where you don’t care about other people. Caring is too ingrained in your psyche for that.

Continue to people-please and see how you feel. Hey, why not? Take note of the pain, self-loathing, and resentment you feel afterward. I would convince myself to do just one more favour for someone, even when I was tired or just didn’t feel like it. To be fair, I felt that they were for completely valid reasons- it was for my friends, it was for church, it was for someone uber nice, it was for someone who had nobody else, it was for someone who was sick, and the list goes on.

If continually extending yourself to other people turns you into a bitter, unrecognizable person then you’re living in inauthenticity.

A wise quote says that God loves a cheerful giver, being a cheerful giver comes from being happy with yourself and your life.

2. Stop the spread of shame by having grace, empathy, and self-compassion. You must choose to believe more of the good stories about yourself over the negative ones.

I don’t know about you but when I mess up, my default is to beat myself up. I say you should have known better, how could you let this happen? and the negative self-talk continues. I wouldn’t say these things to my friends, so why do I say it to myself?

It’s hard to have self-compassion when you’re a perfectionist, when you see mistakes as a weakness or when you hold yourself to a high bar.

Ask yourself whose hero are you trying to be? And why? Most of the time the things we’re doing, the life we’re living have nothing to do with us.

No wonder you’re hard on yourself and unhappy. This isn’t even your life.

Cultivate self-compassion by having grace, by saying more kind words about yourself. Below are some of my favourites, when I’m present enough to remember (eek face), if not you can always remind yourself after the moment.

I’m still learning

I’m in recovery.

This is something I still need to work on, good to know.

This is still a trigger for me so I need extra support.

When thinking you’ve done something “stupid” you don’t even want to hear about compassion. It’s challenging to talk yourself out of negativity, but no one else can do it for you. Each new experience helps you learn triggers and is a reminder that healing work is continual.

We can summarize grace by a quote from Brené Brown, a researcher in shame, vulnerability, courage, and empathy, that says,

Grace means that all of your mistakes now serve a purpose instead of serving shame.

Takeaway

We struggle with never feeling good enough when people tell us through their words, actions, or lack thereof that we aren’t enough for them- just the way we are.

These feelings of inadequacy are rooted in shame. If we don’t reject shame it will destroy our core being, robbing the world of our talents, values, and unique personality.

We can take our power back by rejecting shame through…

-relentlessly choosing ourselves,

-having grace, empathy, and self-compassion by believing more of the good stories about ourselves. We also do this through the words we tell ourselves like, I’m still learning.

Lastly, I want us to remember that shame is all around us, it can be overwhelming, daunting, and discouraging, but the most powerful thing we can do is to decide, decide that we are moving forward no matter how slow or how long we take, continue to reject shame.

Originally published on Medium

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You can help soothe the transition through frequent communication.

Love takes a chance at loss. 

Love is a story about loss.

Love understands that some of its losses are heart wrenching, while others bring the joy of something new.

Making a change to motherhood is a loss of a life you previously identified with. 

Making a change from only having to worry about yourself to that of a spouse or family is a loss of independent decision making.

Though we celebrate these new beginnings, sometimes we feel guilty in seemingly happy moments because we are mourning the things that once were.

You often go through these emotions alone, how can you put in to words that one of the happiest moments of your life is also one of the scariest or even eerily sad? 

You’ve never had to be this version of yourself. You don’t even know what this version of yourself looks like. What if you suck at it?

You’re allowed to have those thoughts. You’re allowed to mourn. You’re allowed to feel a sense loss. All of these life experiences the old, the new; they all contribute in developing the person you are right now. They don’t diminish the excitement of the new experiences. No, they help you to appreciate them more fully.

Love is an action you chose to step forward in, though uncertain, not a feeling to stay stagnant through.

Love isn’t about us at all, but we make it more about ourselves than we know.

We tell ourselves it’s about how much positive emotion we can pour into someone. It’s about how much of ourselves we can give to them, about the sacrifices we’ve made, because we want them to feel good, and — we want to feel good.

It’s a measuring tool used, so that one day we can calculate the amount of pain, hurt, or suffering we’re allowed when they disappoint or leave us.

Let me see, I showed you this amount of love, so I’m justified in harbouring this amount of resentment.

Love keeps no score.

Love takes a chance at loss.

Love says even if I only have a minute, week, or year with you it’s worth it.

I want to take a chance at life with you through the joys, and miseries. I’m willing to see the ugliest side of you, and I’m willing to let you see the ugliest side of me. 

The person you met, the person you married, the child you birth isn’t going to be the same forever.

They will probably radically disappoint you at least once in your life, if you’re lucky enough.

You will lose the person you once knew to change, but you can help save your relationship by trying to understand their thoughts and feelings through frequent communication. In this way you won’t wake up to find a total stranger, but you’ll be aware of the shift happening within them.

The key to not growing apart from each other is having conversations about what’s going on in your head.

The late best selling authour Myles Munroe, spoke about the dangers of having a reason for loving someone. The minute you say I love you because, you put conditions and expectations on the person. It’s almost a guaranteed recipe for disaster, the moment they don’t fulfill your requirements you start feeling like, I dunno it’s just not the same anymore, you know? Admiring traits about a person is different than admiring what they can do for you, or how they make you feel.

You should love because you made a conscious decision.

You should love because that specific person was created and there is no one else like them in the world.

You should love in such a way that the person you love feels free- Thich Nhat Hanh

It’s Not About The Cheesecake 

I was having lunch at my place one weekend, and a good friend of mine was driving into town for a visit.

She came up to my apartment proudly announcing that she made my favourite; cheesecake.

“Great” I said, “let’s put it in the fridge, I don’t know if I’ll have a piece because I’m trying to go vegan.”

She abruptly had somewhat of a meltdown about my new found hipster vegan ways, and inability to eat the cheesecake.

At the time I couldn’t understand what the big deal was, but we’ve since frequently talked about the incident combing through our different emotions. It wasn’t until years later that I was able to understand how she felt- I’m vegetarian now by the way.

It wasn’t about trying to be vegan or not eating the cheesecake per se that upset her. It was the fact that all of the changes I was going through seemed sudden. There was no transition from thought, idea to action. It left her feeling like a stranger in my life, for someone she talked to almost every day.

It seemed like such a small issue but this is what happens in our relations. 

They go hand in hand.

Your partner may not tell you how they feel, and you may not be open to hear what they have to say without casting judgement; youmay not accept what they say, or you may not validate what they say, which then perpetuates the cycle of growing apart.

Communication, active communication is a loss. You have to forget about what you’re thinking in your head, forget about the distractions around and concentrate. You don’t have to agree with what they’re saying, you just have to listen, actively listen. That’s hard work.

Love doesn’t coerce.

Love doesn’t manipulate.

Love doesn’t stop when it faces loss. Loss could come in the form of death or illness. Loss could come in the form of the person changing. Loss could come in the form of the person making different life choices than you wanted for them. Loss could come in the form of physical space or distance.

When you love, you say. I choose to love you for the time I have with you, whether a minute, day, or year. 

We may grow apart, but that’s not want I want. I’ll be open about what I’m feeling and receptive to yours.

Life will bring adversity and break us repeatedly. I want to go through those adversities being close to you. 

I don’t think that as humans we are completely 100 percent capable of loving unconditionally. I think we strive for it, and want to believe that we can. That’s what makes romance, that’s how we really learn selflessness. We want to spend the rest of our lives trying to give this person, show this person, love.

Whether you’re a Mother, lover, or wife. If you’re not willing to suffer loss then love isn’t for you. You can help soothe the transition through frequent communication.

Love is a risk, a risk worth taking, and I’m so sorry that you’ve suffered loss — no buts.

Stubbornness is not a strength.

Stubbornness is when you can’t be reasoned with. It’s when you’re so set in your way that you can’t acknowledge someone else’s point of view.

It’s not about changing the beliefs, goals or decisions you’ve made. It’s about a willingness to understand something different.

Stubbornness is not a strength. It’s determination out of balance. It’s not a trait to be glorified. Stubbornness smells subtly like a lack of humility. It parallels questions of self doubt, low self worth , fear of failure, shame, and fear of disappointment.

Stubbornness is when you’re hanging on the last strings of desperation. You’re not in control. 

Stubbornness leads to tunnel vision. You’re unable to see the warning signs around. What red flags? Stubbornness sounds like saying, “over my dead body” and I’d rather die before…”

Instead, be determined. Determination is diligence. It’s the will to see things through; not in an erratic way but in a methodical self paced way. 

Determination is when you maximize strengths and become aware of limitations. You seek help where needed to gain the best results.

Determination is persistence. It’s keeping your mind and body grounded. The drive comes from within.

When you’re stubborn you may lose yourself because your drive also comes from outside forces.

Stubbornness is fear of failure.

Determination is knowing that even if you fail it doesn’t change your knowledge, ability or worth.

Stubbornness focuses on self.

Determination focuses on the bigger picture.

Stubbornness becomes an obsession.

Determination is a goal with constant re-evaluation about whether to go forward, wait, or stop.

Stubbornness is often glorified and its meaning misused.

The next time you are tempted to use the word stubborn replace it with determined.

These questions will keep you on track…

Why do I feel so determined? Is it from self? You may just want to push your limits, but what is the bigger picture?

Am I keeping my sanity? The reason you’re determined is because there’s an element of challenge to what you’re doing. However with that challenge comes a duty to practice self care. Are you remaining grounded in your personality? Are you remaining true to yourself?

Is this something that I can get another way? Sometimes determination comes because of obligations, you’re bounded to a contract or have a duty. Sometimes you’re just unaware of any alternative options. Take time to explore other possibilities and think outside the box.

Stubbornness is not a strength. The meaning is often misused and misrepresented but it’s really determination out of balance. 

It’s time to change the chatter. Purpose that your goals are no longer propelled by a blinded one track mind-stubbornness, but a methodical driven outcome-determination.

The dark night of the soul is a time of spiritual transformation and change that comes from intense pain within ourselves .

Sometimes giving up is your best bet when you are holding on to an unbearable, self harming toxic situation.

Sometimes surrender isn’t about defeat. Sometimes surrender is about freedom.

You recognize that what you’re doing in life isn’t working even though you have changed your environment , changed your habits, and even changed your outlook.

You’ve been rudely awakened to the fact that the only problem you need to face is yourself. You need to accept the person in the mirror, baggage and all.

The common denominator is you. 

You thought you were doing better at life only to realize the same lessons keep resurfacing. This leaves you in a state of desolation, and spiritual depression.

You’ve done so much self work

How much longer will it take?

The dark night of the soul is when nothing is technically wrong. Your life is fine. You should be happy, actually you are pretty happy, but material things don’t bring you as much joy. Maybe you want a simpler life, but it all comes down to an arousal of spirituality.

We are spiritual beings and feel a pull to a greater connection to something more.

The dark night of the soul is rooted in the 16 century poem by John Cross that’s reflective of a journey of getting closer to God. Today many people use the term in reference to spiritual awakening or getting closer to their higher being.

References in this article refer to God, Jesus Christ and Christianity.

The dark night of the soul is when you’ve exhausted all measures of pretending. It’s when you throw your hands up and say,

“I’m done. I surrender. I give up.”

It’s a sense of acceptance that you’re desolate, and you are who you are. It brings a sense of freedom and a sense of sadness.

It’s when the drunk not only says but accepts that,

“I’m an alcoholic, and I need help.”

It’s when the codependent not only says but accepts that,

“ I need constant external validation to feel loved. I need help.”

It can be a time of isolation. You no longer have the mentality that life is just about work, success and getting laid. So now what? You experience an extisential crisis where you question the whole purpose of being. This is when you hear those stories like,

“I think they just went crazy, they sold everything quit their jobs and moved into the bushes.”..or something along those lines.

You may be experiencing the dark night of the soul because you’re no longer hiding, you’ve accepted what you’re struggling with, but you’re still in recovery. This goes beyond therapy and counseling. You’re essentially at war with yourself.

It can get worse before it gets better.

There is a book called Becoming Michelle Obama. I love the title because it insinuates a process of shedding and building to become.

Your dark night of the soul may be marked by reoccurring dreams about your past laced with unresolved issues from your subconscious, increased tiredness, increased intuition, de ja vu’s ,and low moods.

You may feel heavy and sleepy.

This is the stage where,because you have accepted that you’re an alcoholic you decide to drink your face off before trying to seek help.

This is where Christians may leave the Church and God. They finally feel the freedom from pretending to be a “good Christian” and dealing with fake Jesus freaks.

It’s confusing, you might not be able to explain what you’re going through and people start to think that you’re acting funny.

When you return from your dark night of the soul…however long it takes you are closer to your truest, most authentic self.

It’s better to be in the dark night of the soul than in denial of your current reality.

It’s a sobering process but here are some things to remember during this time.

  1. You may feel crazy, but you’re not. God has guided you through this experience by life lessons.
  2. You’re here because you not only persevered but have some humility in you.
  3. You are always in a state of recovery, don’t beat yourself up for slips that happen along the way.
  4. Reject the feelings of being unlovable that come up while going through the process.
  5. It’s not going to happen overnight, be easy to yourself. When negative talk comes up talk to yourself with the same compassion as you would a small child who wants to tell you something.
  6. You’re in recovery, you’re in a process of changing your thought and behaviour patterns. You’re in a process of healing.

Remember you are going through a time of spiritual transformation and change. The dark night of the soul.

Giving up is your best bet when you are holding on to an unbearable, self harming toxic situation that destroy your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well being.

Your surrender isn’t about defeat, your surrender is about freedom.

Something great has happened, and great things will continue to come.

To recovery!

INFJs are the not so classic hopeful romantic, but don’t ever let them hear you say that. Skeptical about love, these soul readers are cautious about who they open up to. They have so much love to give but are often late bloomers in the love department due to their ideals about how and who they love.

Let’s explore 4 reasons why INFJs have trouble finding love.

1. There is no middle ground.

For the INFJ there is only complete and utter devotion or nonexistence. Many relationships cannot withstand the INFJs intensity and mistake them for being controlling. However the INFJ really values freedom and solitude above all else. The fact that they even want to spend time together speaks volumes about their comfort level towards you. You can do nothing more to offend an INFJ than accuse them  of obsession…let’s be real, they may be a little obsessed, but it’s only because their primary language is love, they can’t help themselves.

2. They have high expectations.

INFJs wouldn’t give a second thought about giving you everything. The downfall of the INFJ is that they think that people are as thoughtful as them. It’s second nature for them to think of pleasing the people they care about. They are often bewildered when they have to explain to others how to show thoughtfulness. This can come across as being overly critical and demanding. It is difficult for them understand any other way.  If you say you love someone you treat them right…right? This unmet need can leave them feeling hurt and confused.

3. They love hard.

For the INFJ it’s not necessarily about the length of time you’ve been together but about the connection you’ve developed. Because  of this they can love someone they’ve known for 6 months with the same intensity as someone they’ve known for 6 years. They value comfort, connection, and the ability to be themselves. If you can provide these with genuine caring then you will most likely win the INFJ love.

4. They will love you but never speak to you again.

No one shuts down harder than the INFJ. They will forgive you multiple times, they will give you the benefit of the doubt, you may have even used and abused the INFJ. Rest assured when they are done they will zone you out at their leisure. Because they are lovers it’s unlikely that they will forget their love for you quickly …if ever. However don’t be fooled you will experience the blank INFJ stare and indifference that’s colder than any Canadian winter.

What is  your verdict on the INFJ? Terrific or  Terror?

Don’t let these quirks deter you from finding your INFJ love. They are some of the most loyal, intuitive, devoted yet self sustained people you will ever meet.Don’t be intimidated by their intensity but get curious about it.

Do you know an INFJ? Or are you an INFJ? Don’t know? Find out more about your personality type by doing this simplified personality test.

Much love

xox Arlene

 

 

Here I thought I had the perfect excuse to walk around in my underwear while eating Coconut Bliss  ice cream, getting a relaxing massage, and cancelling plans with my friends in the name of restoring my introvert energy. It turns out that self isn’t all about pampering yourself.

We share your distress in learning that our self care Sunday isn’t complete until we actually do healing work on ourselves.

Here’s how to take your self care to a deeper level this Sunday…

 

Validate Your Inner Voice

There are those times where we think of words that should have been said. The truth is we still feel wounded by the hurt we’ve caused by shutting down our inner voice. This is the time to validate yourself and acknowledge that you really did feel hurt when Lisa yelled at you at work. Forgive yourself for not speaking up for your truth and commit to asking for what you want and verbalizing what you don’t.

 

Find Out What You’re Really Hiding From

Nothing will kill your soul faster than your comfort zone. Our behaviours and personal reaction to situations are a protective mechanism. At a subconscious level we are very afraid.  The fastest way to uncover these fears is to be honest with ourselves.  I challenge you to write down your fears, then ask yourself, “Why am I afraid of this?’ Keep asking “why” until you uncover what’s really holding you back.

 

Find Out What You’re Holding On To

Mental and emotional pain can show up in our bodies through headaches, cramping, chest pain, back pain, difficulty breathing, skin breakouts and so much more. Are you inducing illness by holding on to pain? Stop and do a mental scan of your body. Pay attention to when your physical pain flares up. Is it after you’ve been yelling? After you’ve been hurt? Take control of this by learning to ride through emotional waves instead of letting them hold and drown you.


Sorry to burst your self care bubble by  taking your self care to a deeper level this Sunday, but we will both be better for it. We may even go on to become decent human beings. With that said I will still be lighting my scented candle this Sunday. I’m curious…

What are some of your favourite ways to practice self care Sunday? Leave a comment below.

 

Spring is the best time to crush your health goals. It doesn’t take long before the exhibition of booty building, kale chipping, and personal growth shopping fizzle away after the new year. Winter lasted a little longer than you could bear, summer is not too far away, but spring is now and what a better time to crush your health goals. Here’s why.

 


1. You feel Happy and Don’t Know Why

You have dash of pent-up motivation. You’ve been anticipating the warm weather, you want to  start an exercise plan, or try a new recipe. Winter has left you feeling a little downhearted.

You have probably heard of SAD an acronym for Seasonal Affective Disorder, a kind of depression that happens during certain times of the year. It commonly occurs in the beginning of fall and winter, sometimes called the “winter blues” .

SAD is said to affect approximately over 10 million Americans, with women being four times more likely to suffer. Over 6 percent may even require hospitalization.

You may have had a touch of SAD this winter if you’ve experienced weight gain, a drop in energy level, irritability, moodiness, increased sleep, a change in appetite-craving sweet or salty foods, or avoidance of social situations.

There are several theories associated to its cause. One theory suggests that it could be due to irregularities in serotonin, a mood hormone; and vitamin D. Or perhaps it’s because of the increase in melatonin production due to increased darkness. Melatonin helps in moderating sleep; the darker winter days leaves people feeling tired and with low moods.

Whatever the reason for Seasonal Affective Disorder SAD, being in the sun and fresh air helps to remedy them. You have a renewed burst of energy and life making it the perfect time to work on that health goal. Let’s keep the momentum going.

pexels-photo-590510.jpeg

 

2. Warm Weather Boost Moods and Develops Minds

According to Matthew Keller, the post-doctoral researcher at the University of Michigan. The two main things that determine mood when it comes to weather is, “how much time you spend outside and what season it is.”

Getting at least 30 minutes of warm sunny weather proves to boost moods, expand thoughts (causing receptiveness to new information and creativity), and improved memory.

Why not capitalize on these remarkable benefits? Learn a new skill, start eating clean or whatever goal you want to crush.

3. Spring Cleaning and New Beginnings

Spring can be associated with hope and new beginnings. Plants and flowers bear renewed life. Alternatively the cold has dissipated, leaving melancholy behind.

Marie Kondo, best-selling author and decluttering guru, has dedicated her lifes’ work to helping people clean their living space. She promotes a way of life and state of mind that cultivates appreciating things that ‘spark joy’. Anything that falls short of that is evaluated or discarded, ultimately clearing your space helps to clear the mind. Why not use spring to Marie Kondo your life?

Organize your living space and your personal life. Take an inventory of the things, people and habits that cause clutter and purpose to create hopeful, new and healthier beginnings.

4. Winter’s Too Cold, Summers Too Hot, Spring is Just Right

When it comes to starting a new health routine there are a plethora of excuses used for self sabotage. It’s too cold in winter, and Christmas proves to be a difficult time. In summer the kids are out of school, there are beach activities, camping, vacations, patios, and barbecues. People just get delirious with the warm weather (or is it actually heat stroke?). The sun is sweltering, coupled with assassin mosquitos, making it less than desirable to be  out for long. Researchers found that, “summer was actually attributed to lowered mood levels .

People get miserable when it’s too hot. The end of winter offers the perfect temperature to spring into action (sheepish grin, shrugs shoulders). What are you going to do to take advantage of the momentum? Whatever it is Spring is the perfect time to get started.

We have a few spring challenges coming up. Join our mailing list to keep informed.

Leave a comment below about your spring intentions. I’m starting a 21 detox in May. Follow me on Instagram to see what I’m up to.

Cheers,

A

 

Thirties are the new twenties as it’s commonly stated. Ambitious women are stressed out in their careers, delaying family planning, or even opting out all together.These women appear to have it all under control in the face of being influencers, travellers, entrepreneurs, and health gurus. In reality they may be dealing with secret mental health dilemmas. Let’s elaborate.



1. Job Stress and Dissatisfaction

It’s not necessarily that you don’t want to work. On the contrary you see work as a crucial part of your identity. The aspect that brings dissatisfaction, is not being able impact people in a meaningful way.

It’s the everyday coordination, politics, and need to actually make a living from your profession that create feelings of frustration. Inwardly you want to provide services to your client in a way that improves their quality of life. This causes distress because most of your time is spent at work, if you can’t make a difference in your job, then besides the money, why are you really working?

2. Loss of Close Friends

You start to evaluate your relationships, even with your closest friends and family. Your earlier years were about discovering who you are and creating new experiences. Friends and family may still see you in this state. Which makes it difficult for them to accept your new ideals and opinions about life. Childhood friendships may have organically run their course leaving you feeling hurt and perplexed, wondering “what just happened?”.

Don’t be alarmed, these things happen. Reasons include needing to distance yourself from anyone who consistently stunts your personal growth, leaves you feeling emotionally drained, or fuels negative thoughts. Anxiety arises with thought of having to develop close connections as an adult. We often tend to be untrusting, fearful, defensive, and skeptical about people, thus limiting our experience.

3. Toxic and Unfulfilling Relationships

You’ve been in your relationship for years, too embarrassed to quit now after all the time you’ve put in, to be honest you’re not even sure you want to spend the rest of your life with this person. Is this it? You know your partner is low-key or high-key verbally and emotionally abusive, neglectful, selfish, and also don’t know what they want.

Why does being in your thirties make it any different? The difference is, you feel that you should have it figure out by now. In your twenties you would just drop them like it’s hot (even though it’s not) and move on. In your 40’s and 50’s you may do the same thing but for a different reason; you’re more accepting of yourself and have already made it this far, so why not?

The thought of having to discarding what’s already so familiar while not knowing what’s ahead is annoying and unbearable. You may also have a case of Stockholm syndrome, making it increasingly difficult to leave.

4. Realizing Your Family Doesn’t Know Everything

To a certain extent you are patterned and conditioned  by your programming. You may do certain things not knowing why. Your parents may have done things not knowing why. Attempting to shift this paradigm may cause some tension.

It’s the moment you realize your anxiety was triggered by Aunt Sofie’s offhanded comment. Perhaps your sister is selfish, or your grandmother is a narcissist. This can lead to mind racing questions like “what does this mean about me?”

Your identity and beliefs can come into question. Realize that your parents and siblings are also dealing with feelings of hurt and trauma, so their opinions are not unbiased. It’s important to maintain an accurate view of yourself by continued work on emotional intelligence.

5. Pressure to Reach Developmental Milestones

You may be single being pressured into getting married, you may be common-law being pressured into getting married, you may be married being pressured into having children, or you may be married and unable to conceive children .

Whatever stage you are in, according to Ericksons developmental theory, the developmental milestone for this age range is  Intimacy vs Isolation. Although the theory doesn’t specify a romantic relationship. It does refer to creating meaningful relationships with someone other than a family member. The inability to achieve this, coupled with infertility and pregnancy.may increase the risk of depression.

Successful completion of this stage can result in happy relationships and a sense of commitment, safety, and care within a relationship. Avoiding intimacy, fearing commitment and relationships can lead to isolation, loneliness, and sometimes depression. Success in this stage will lead to the virtue of love.

6. Body Changes

This is the time where you may notice your first grey hair, frequent backaches, a decrease in healing time, or difficulty with weight loss. These violations to your body can cause feelings of frustration if they are tied to your self-worth. Do you associate gaining weight with being less desirable? Or a decrease in strength and flexibility with the inability to participate in social activities?

The reassuring news is that although there are changes to your body, there is also an increase of wisdom and growth to your mind. You can be in optimum health and wellness. It first starts with choice.

Are there any additional  dilemmas you have dealt with or heard of? Let me know in the comments below.


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xox,  A