Me vs. Me: How to Stop Battling With Ourselves

You are your worst critic.  I know I am mine.    Not a day goes by that I don’t engage myself in intermittent self-berating sessions whenever I fail at something.  No matter how trivial the mistake, I always seem to make a mountain out of it.  The otherwise negligible error is then catapulted to major blunder status.

And where does that leave me?  I end up feeling more miserable than I was at the beginning.  Instead of simply getting over what I did, I keep playing the scenario over and over in my head, making corrections as I go.  Doesn’t help at all, because what’s done is done.  It just tires me like a Despicable Me minion doing a half-marathon.

We all have our respective concerns from which emotions of fear, anger and worry emerge.  We often unconsciously spend so much time trying to steer clear of these concerns.  What happens is, the more we push them away, the more they have a hold on us.

For instance, your major concern is your discontent with your current job.  Then, your fears and worries will revolve around finding a new job which is more fulfilling.  You become stressed out from scouring the net for employment opportunities.  You may find yourself lashing out at your co-workers for seemingly no reason at all.

Once we become more aware of the patterns of habit from our areas of concern, we become more in control of ourselves.  If you start to acknowledge your job dissatisfaction, then you will be able to have more control over the emotions springing from that, instead of having those feelings take over you.

Teach yourself to accept whatever life circumstance you’re in.  Do not resist how you feel.  If you react to things a certain way, don’t punish yourself for it.  Just allow the feelings to pass through your body, in and out.   Purge, instead of repress.

It’s all about being true to oneself.  Accept who you are, and you will be more forgiving of yourself- and others as well.  Everything else will then nicely fall into place.

The Emotional Detox: I Cleanse, Therefore I Am

One particular childhood experience which I don’t intend to relive is deworming.  It was crazy but had to be done.  These days, I have been putting myself through a different kind of purging.  It’s an emotional detox of sorts.  I have made a vow to myself to get rid of the toxic people in my life.

What or rather, who are these toxic people?  They’re the ones who put you down, who use and abuse you, who make you feel like scum of the earth (when in fact THEY’RE scum).   Instead of reveling in your accomplishments, they trivialize it.  They make you drive to far-flung outskirts of the city just to pick up roast pork for a birthday celebration.

Before things take their toll on my overall health, I have decided to let go of these people, to expunge them from my life once and for all.  They’re like the stubbly hairs on my otherwise silky legs which I’d like to get rid of.   They’re the people who stain my rose-colored glasses, blurring my view of the world.

How do I do it, then?  When they try to get in touch with me, I turn a blind eye or a deaf ear.  I numbly run my calloused fingers over our virtual book of memories together.  Those places and events no longer elicit any emotional response from me like they used to.

Negativity is my enemy.  It should be yours too.

50 Shades of Lingerie

Insecurity attacks even the most confident among us.  It’s that double-edged sword which pierces through our self-esteem and leaves us unmotivated to do most anything. There are days when we feel we can conquer the world, while there are days when we feel so ugly that we’d rather hide behind Kim Kardashian’s pregnant butt.  When our supply of self-confidence hits rock bottom, we look for a quick fix, an antidote to revive that dying ego.  If there’s one thing we can count on, we can always turn to lingerie.

The way you look does affect the way you feel.  Lady Gaga wouldn’t be that bold and brazen woman we know if it weren’t for the way she dressed.  Your boss wouldn’t be so confident if she didn’t walk around with her Prada bag in tow.

As for me, I find that putting on some lingerie helps boost my ego.  It’s not because I have a body which would give Hugh Hefner his stamp of approval.  It’s because lingerie makes me FEEL that I have a body like that.  Even if I won’t be spreading my legs in a magazine centerfold nor doing a striptease at a stag party, wearing lingerie makes me feel like a sexy beast.

So whenever you feel that your faith in yourself hangs a little low, why not try getting yourself that corset you’ve been eyeing on http://www.5starslingerie.com.  You’ll realize that have quite a number of options when it comes to boosting your confidence.  We women will venture to go out there brimming with unabashed pride- one bustier at a time…

My Childhood Lawn: Memoirs of Heaven Lost

Spring has sprung.  It feels so good just saying that, as this is the season which brings hope for new things.  Hope is something I am in desperate need of right now.  Things have seemed to hit a blank wall, and I’m dying for direction and purpose.  I don’t know where to go, or how to get to where I should be.

This takes me back a hundred years to when I was 9 years old.  My place of refuge has always been our lawn.  The way my mother took care of it, she would have made the experts at lawn care in Springfield, MO cringe in shame.  The grass was so properly kept, and I remember spending hours just laying down on it, like it was a Persian carpet.  I don’t remember any pesky insects bugging me then.  There was a huge tree whose shade gave me the comfort I needed when I needed it.  I’d sit on the grass and lean against it, like it was my mother’s bosom.  That lawn was my slice of heaven here on earth.

I’d look up into the sky, and make figures out of the clouds.  I’d imagine being a princess riding on a horse with my prince charming.  Everything was perfect whenever I lounged on that lawn.  All my fears and worries seemed to melt away like a popsicle in my hand on a hot summer’s day.

Now, I find myself yearning for that lawn.  I wish I had that place of refuge today.  More than ever, I need reassuring from that shady tree.  I long for the soft grass where I could safely hit my head without suffering a concussion.

Why is heaven on earth so elusive these days?  Has it really vanished into thin air, or is there somehow some form of heavenly bliss here which I’m only blinded to.  Am I looking for heaven in the wrong place?

All I really want is to be a kid again- stripped of paralyzing fear and needless worry.  But I can’t go back.  I have no lawn to return to.  All I have is here and now.

What I want, I can’t have.  There’s one other thing I really, really want, but I don’t think I’ll ever get it.  Even if I threw a tantrum at God, He might just turn a deaf ear.  When will things take a turn for the better?  Maturity sucks big time…

A Summerrific Summer: Fun Times With My Daughter

Image courtesy of Michelle Meiklejohn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

In this part of the globe, at this time of year, the sun is king.  Kids- and adults- all over are chanting Bugs Bunny’s infamous “No more classes no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks…” Yes, it’s finally summertime.

With the sun beating down so heavily and mercilessly, I dream of spending languorous days at the four seasons hualalai with my daughter.  The beach beckons with its undulating waves crashing the shore.  I ache for a pina colada as I dreamily gaze out to sea.

I’ve been to many beach vacations in my life, but I find that the ones I really enjoy the most are those with my daughter.  She enjoys the sun and sand, while I enjoy relaxing and watching her play on the shore.

Going on vacations with my girl reminds me of the things in life which I should be most grateful for.  I may not have some things which others possess, but what I do have, these are enough.  I never really had a body meant for Baywatch, but I do know how to project and exude an aura of undisputed sexiness.  (Yes, I simply had to sneak that in!).  Ours may not be the ideal family, but my daughter and I are happy.

So, the next time you’re feeling stuck in a rut, take a quick vacation.  It’ll help you recharge and change your perspective on things.  It’ll make you feel sexy too!

When Thoughts Shift to a Career Shift…

Too much of anything is bad.  I relearned that life lesson today, as I feel I’ve had way too much coffee this morning.  I’m starting to feel a bit more jittery than usual, that the shakes are surely going to register on the Richter scale.

More than the coffee overload, what’s really gotten to me this morning is this aching urge to just get up and go.  I mean, packing all my office stuff inside a box and quitting my job in true Jerry Maguire fashion.  Truth be told, I have been stuck in a career rut, and I feel I’m going nowhere.  Here in the company I work for, there’s no opportunity for any more career growth.  I can’t go any higher than where I am now.  I am left staring at the glass mosaic floor in my imaginary world, thinking about what is to become of me.

I’m serious about a career shift.  More than money, what really motivates me is the fulfillment I get from whatever it is I do.

Before anything else, I must clearly identify what I want, and what I’m capable of doing.   Yesterday, I took two tests, and found out that I’m left-brain dominant.  That should help in deciding which career path to take.

And then, I’m going to look for jobs which align with my personality and career goals. I’m going to take classes in line with that new career, say a little prayer, and keep my fingers crossed.

It’s never too late, they say.  I feel compelled to believe them…

My Secret Dream: From Hair to Eternity

It was a lazy and lonesome Saturday when I found myself chatting with my aunt on Facebook.  She’s been living in the US for years now, also as a single mom.  That was the first time she opened up to me and told me things about her which I never knew.  The strong woman everyone knew turned out to be a lady with a heart made of Jell-O.

One of the things she told me was that lately she has been looking around for good cosmetology schools in overland park KS, as she wants to start a career in the field of beauty.  That got me thinking of my own secret dream- to be a hairdresser.

Even as a little girl, I used to love playing with my Barbie doll’s hair.  I took the bold step and just cut her hair one day.  Friends laughed at me, but I found shear (pun intended) delight in that. I would have loved to use one of those bleached knot full lace wigs on my best friend’s hair.

I used to frequent salons when I was still single, and I thought that it was so awesome that hairdressers got huge tips from their customers.  That reeled me in, like a fish to a fisherman’s pole- the idea of doing something you loved and getting paid for it.

But why didn’t I pursue that path?  Now I wonder…  Is it too late?  Maybe not.  Just like my aunt who continues to dream and chase after those dreams, I still have time to do what I want.  If she could do it, so can I.

Smells Like Regret- Almost!

My seven-year old daughter learned a new word yesterday: despondent.  When she asked me how I was feeling when I got up from bed that morning, that’s the quick answer I gave her.  I told her that meant sad, hopeless.  My dismal demeanor made my mood plummet from the stratosphere down to the earth’s core.  I felt I desperately needed to open up the sunrooms in my mind and let some sunshine in.

So why was I feeling especially downcast yesterday?  I didn’t particularly lose someone or buy an ill-fitting bikini top from an expensive lingerie store.  Nothing bad happened to me or to anybody I loved.  I simply felt that something was amiss.  Amid all the blessings around me, I still felt a sense of uneasiness.  My spirit wasn’t exactly doing cartwheels.

I knew that I had the option to just divert my thoughts to more pleasant things, like thinking about my daughter’s upcoming academic awards recognition at school.  Instead of wasting my energy on negative thoughts, I could have started coming up with ideas for awesome gifts for her.  She does deserve only the best.

I started to look back on my life and where it has led me thus far.  Admittedly, I have made a lot of wrong turns in this road of existence.  Some decisions have led me to rough terrain which I found extremely difficult to get out of.   On most occasions, giving up seemed like the best option.

I often wish that I could turn back the hands of time and undo the errors I’ve made.  If I knew then what I know now, I might be better off and not sitting here feeling a bit sorry for myself.

But of course, what’s done is done.  There’s no fairy godmother to magically wipe everything clean.  I will not feel regret and instead forge forward.  However which way you look at it, it’s the only way to go…

How Simple Activities Like Picnics can Improve Your Mood

If you’re suffering from depression, a mood disorder, or have a very stressful job, all of these conditions require you to pay special attention to yourself and find ways to relieve anxiety and stress. It may be easier said than done, but finding activities that will not only distract you but will calm you as well is some of the best medicine available. Enjoying nature and going on a picnic is free and it also is a place where you can practice meditation, prayer, read a good book, or journal. Bring a picnic along too and enjoy a beautiful day at the park. Over time you may see your mood begin to improve.

Vitamin D Helps Improve Your Mood

Many times during the winter people may find themselves becoming sad either because activities lessen or they are not getting enough sunshine. Did you know that not getting enough sun effects your mood? When spring arrives it’s perfectly healthy to get more sun and a great way to do this is by gathering up your family or going by yourself to the nearest park. Pack a lunch in your picnic coolers and enjoy the great outdoors. Soak up some sun and look forward to your mood improving over time.

Try Yoga or Something that Allows You to Reflect

Another great way to alleviate stress is by focusing and a great way to focus is by practicing yoga at a nearby studio, park, or even in the comfort of your own home. Yoga will not only help with your breathing, but it will also give you something to strive towards. Build your confidence and realize that anything is possible when you set your mind to it. If Yoga is not your thing then perhaps try journaling or another form of meditation. Discovering the source of your stress will help you cope with this stressor when it comes along in the future.

Exercise at a Local Nature Center

Did you know that exercising helps your endorphins and that endorphins make you happy? Exercise regularly and you should also see a big improvement. It may not happen right away, but exercising alleviates symptoms of anxiety and what’s more, helps you stay healthy. Head to a local nature center, park, or even walk around your neighborhood and be sure to sweat! Get your heart rate up and be proud of yourself for your hard work when your mood improves and you look forward to spring.

 

Sierra is a freelance writer and when she suffers from anxiety likes to exercise or go on a picnic. Stay up to date with Sierra on her blog Ocean Dreams.

 

 

 

 

My Perspective Project: I’m Having a Good Hair Day

If I got paid a penny for every time I said those words, I’d probably have only enough to buy me a burger from the local diner.  But today is definitely one of those days when my hair seems to magically be under my spell.  There’s nary a strand out of place, and every hair cuticle shines like silver.  To top it all off, the sun is shining bright.  Positive vibes are all over the place.  I’m in such a good mood that I feel like giving in to those Toyota Sequioa offers and getting myself a new car!

Yes, you could say this is part of my perspective project.  Being able to appreciate a good hair day is a way of being thankful for my blessings- big or small.  I guess I’m beginning to see the beauty in even the most mundane of things.  I now realize that I have so much to be thankful for.

On the flipside, I also see how other people are envious of me.  This envy inevitably manifests itself in their insincerity.  They pretend to care, but underneath it all is a thick core of covetousness.

Enough about them.

So, are you having a good hair day too?