Surround yourself with Good

It is difficult to prune relationships. However, it is vital that you surround yourself with people who build you up and push you towards your dreams. It is easy to get stuck with a friend who sucks all your energy and leaves you feeling empty and frustrated. To be our healthiest selves, we must prune away those relationships and allow only positive ones to grow.

This may be difficult, but in the end you will blossom!

Coming to Terms

I believe that coming to terms with ourselves takes time. It may take an entire lifetime, but it something we must strive for or else we cannot grow in love. It has taken me years to come to terms with my anxiety disorder. Years to love myself, just as I am. If we cannot love ourselves, how can we expect to love others? We cannot.

Each day is a learning experience and I strive to make the most of each precious moment. In the past, I have prayed over, and over, for God to take my anxiety. To lift the burden from my shoulders and let me just be “normal”. For years I was angry with Him because anxiety continued to haunt me. I felt as if my faith was not strong enough. That I wasn’t praying correctly. Or, perhaps, I was doing something wrong. I constantly stayed in prayer in hopes that he would take away the thorn in my side. However, He had something different in mind for me. Something bigger than myself. He showed me that my anxiety is not a burden.

I am now seeing that my anxiety is part of who I am. There is nothing wrong with my faith, and it certainly doesn’t mean that I don’t love God. My prayers have shifted in focus over the years and I now ask to see how I can use anxiety to help others instead of asking for it to be take away. I never imagined that my disorder would be helping those around me. I never thought it could be a positive thing! Now that my perspective has shifted, I can now see it as a blessing. It is part of who I am and I can finally accept that.

Whatever your burden is, see if there is a lighter perspective. Is there a way it can be used to the benefit of others?

Sometimes you just have to laugh at yourself!

Do you ever have times when you feel like you are just a hot mess? I do! I feel like my anxiety takes over and I don’t know what is up from down, and my ADHD kicks into high gear and I have word vomit all day long! Not to mention I am running around, jumping, overly excited, all while being nervous at the same time!? What the heck is that all about?! They seem to contradict each other.

I have realized that everyone has a demon they fight behind closed doors. Everyone struggles with something. So why not laugh about it? Making it seem small and insignificant helps with learning how to cope. Clearly our problems are not just jokes, they are real situations and are very painful. But can’t we take time to step outside ourself and view it in a different light?

Try to view your struggles in a different way. Come at them from a different angle. You may be surprise at what you discover.


Work and working out don’t always get along…

I love my job and I love working out, however, I can’t always muster up the energy to do both in one day recently. This week has been NUTS and I can feel my body getting tight and ache-y, and I know I can really use some yoga! It is just difficult to combine going back to work after the summer and using my remaining energy to workout. I know it is not difficult, but goodness, I can’t motivate myself this week! Teaching can drain your day (always in a positive way).

What do you guys do to motivate yourself to workout after a long, tiring day?

Our Body Issue Problem

It is widely known that there is a body image epidemic running rapid across the world. There are many academic studies on this very issue. If you are interested in finding out more facts and statistics about body image, just check out your favorite search engine and you will find hundreds of websites dedicated to educating the public about body image. However, lets start out by defining body image. says body image “refers to the way we perceive our own bodies and the way we assume other people perceive us.” 

The “ideal” body design differs from country to county, but for my post I want to focus on the American idea of the perfect body. I’m positive that just reading those words “American idea of the perfect body”, many of you have conjured up that image in our mind. To ensure we are all on the same page, here is what I have put together. For a woman, America idealizes a thin and slender frame, somewhat large breasts in comparison to the body, gentle curves through the waist, and a lifted butt. Men should have broad shoulders, defined abs, large biceps, strong legs and just all around strength and agility. 

Is this the body that most people have in the US? No! Where are these unrealistic expectations coming from, and how did they become so deeply ingrained in our culture. I’m not an expert, but I believe body envy has been something the human race has been suffering from since the very beginning. In more recent years, Photoshop has become a huge advocate for the ideal body. Advertisements, movies, magazines and countless other mediums show men and women with perfectly sculpted bodies and clear skin. As a whole, we know that these images are false portrayals, however, it seems that we cannot stop obsessing about trying to be like these fictional photographs, regardless of our knowledge of the lie. Something deep within us craves to be seen by others as being perfect. Perhaps it is because we have always felt so imperfect when we compare ourselves to others. Or maybe we believe if our bodies are flawless, our lives will follow suit. I do not know the answers to these questions, but it is something that I often ponder. 

These issues with body image often leads to mental disorders such as body dysmorphic disorder, anxiety, depression, anorexia, and bulimia. says that “95% of people with eating disorders are between the ages of 12 and 25” and “only 10% of people suffering from an eating disorder will seek professional help.” As a culture, we are sick because we know the truth. We know the statistics of the harmful effects unrealistic body lust, yet we continue to saturate the media with these images of “perfection” and damn the consequences.

I am most worried about our younger generation. The current pre-teens and teens. As a middle school teacher, I hear a lot of boys and girls discussing their bodies. I hear many girls talking about being fat, when they are only a size 0, and I have even hearing other people calling other kids fat! I see Girls who wear size 2, looking in the mirror and sizing up themselves and finding themselves wanting something different, when in truth they are already perfect. It truly breaks my heart because I have been in their shoes, and even after 29 years of life, struggle with my own body image issues. 

I have never been stick thin. I am a curvy woman and always have been, even as a teen. I wear a size 10-12 and I have the hour glass body type that many woman actually covet. However, those who do not have this body type do not understand that buying clothes in a store can be impossible. ESPECIALLY as a teenager. I recall countless trips to the store with my mom where I would just sob in the dressing room because nothing would fit. My waist looked “small” but the pants never would fit over my hips so I would have to go up several sizes to just reach my waist. Once I was able to button the pants there was almost always a huge gap right above my bum because they weren’t designed for my body type. I deeply thank whomever invented the curvy pant design because now I can actually wear pants that fit me! Now shirts were not as difficult, but they weren’t easy either. I have always been chesty so those little, tiny shirts everyone wore around were out of the question for me, and I found that deeply unfair. Needless to say, I hated shopping. I hated seeing cute clothes that I knew would never fit me. I hated my body because it couldn’t conform to what I thought was normal. I always thought I was fat, and because of that fact I believed that a man could never love me. I only thought skinny women could find true, head-over-heels love. How sad is that!?

As I have grown, I realize that no matter our size we can always experience love. I have also come to be proud of the body I have. I actually even love how I look! I use to ask God to change my body so I could be pretty, but He never did answered in the way I expected. He changed my mind so I could see the beauty I already possessed. I don’t always think I look amazing, and I still find myself wishing I was thinner, but I am no longer ashamed of being curvy. 

It is vital we start teaching our youth that they are perfect, and the perfect American body only exists in very few. We need to educate them about embracing who they are and being proud of being curvy, round, thin, apple, pear and every other shape! We cannot continue raising people who will spend their lives missing out on their own true beauty. 

Remember, you are beautiful! 

I choose to find the good

In the two months since I have started down this road of healing, I have rediscovered so much about myself that I had forgotten. It feels so empowering to be able to feel other emotions and think thoughts that are completely unrelated to anxiety. My mind was so twisted up in an anxious whirlwind that I was unable to think of much else besides my anxiety. However, much of my mind is freed from the chains of worry and now roams free in the newfound land of peace and contentment.

I am also rediscovering passions that had been tossed aside long ago, such as writing and even simple conversations with new people at the grocery store. I’m no longer focused on getting through the store as fast as I can, I am able to chat with others and bond over shared laughter. It’s astonishing.

My commitment to my emotional health has been the best decision I have made in a long time. Along with taking a small dosage of medication to help balance out the functionality of my brain, I also make sure I practice yoga 5 times a week, I set aside time to spend doing a bible study, and I try to be more open with my family and friends about what I’m thinking and feeling. I also have loved blogging, because it allows me to take the thoughts that are bouncing around my head, and put them somewhere concrete. It also is so encouraging that so many of you have enjoyed my writings and have left such wonderful comments!

I have been open with you all about how I struggle with the frustration of dealing with anxiety for the rest of my life, but I want to share with you something one of my students said to me that changed my outlook. They told me that people cannot truly enjoy the good days without the bad days. We, as human beings, cannot fully comprehend happiness without sadness. I thought that was an amazing statement. It really spoke to me. I am going to try and remember that during the the times I feel the most frustration.

Remember, find the happiness in every day!