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Self-Love

One thing I’ve come to know is that while self awareness and transparency with oneself is difficult, it is everything. Furthermore, it’s amazing when you candidly share your life experience how many other people share similar stories.

First, we are not alone.

Second, we are not called to be full of shame or guilt.

Third, if we took a look inward maybe we could reveal in ourselves ah-ha moments, areas in need of improvement and a little more compassion for ourselves and the journey that is so individually ours.

Taking care of ourselves physically, mentally and spiritually typically comes second to the needs of others. (guilty)

Finding time for all the things is difficult – but my “selfish” bone is surfacing and near demanding attention.

How thin do we expect to spread ourselves? What gives?

Kim German always says that we have to fill our bucket first in order to pour into others; into all the other things – spouse, kids, career, each other.

As a licensed therapist and mindful enthusiast, Kim will be leading our Self-Love Workshop this Saturday where we have the opportunity to put ourselves first. Furthermore, to absorb and take-away ways we can continue nurturing ourselves from the inside out.

Seats are limited. Link to purchase tickets below:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/self-love-workshop-tickets-31152121835

see you there – xx

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Life Advice [via] Ms. White

In an age that suffers from FOMO [fear of missing out] it is no surprise to me that we can get in a tizzy, worked up, personally bothered & anti-something [or anything].

We insert ourselves into people’s lives as if they were our own — “I mean, I know everything about them [I follow them on Instagram] surely I’m granted a fair opinion on their affairs.”

Transparency? Possibly. 

Fixation on others vs. sharpening ourselves? Most definitely. 

Our days allow for so much opportunity, possibility, sights, acts of kindness, growth & yet we swell our well with the thoughts, actions, food choices, political stances, relationship updates & opinions [on everything] of others. 

 

I raise my hand — I am as guilty as the rest & like everything >> balance is required. B U T a challenge to myself: self reflect, pray, read, write, sing, laugh & be present more + troll less. 

My life is now >> I’m not about missing out. 

#NoFOMO

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M A Y / 1 2

As we prepared for the Mother’s Day celebration at Bartlett Arboretum we were tidying up, pulling tulips for mums, planting more budding flowers & [my newly found interest] pruning. [the heck?]

“Trim the dead right up to the live tree so it promotes growth. The likelihood of it growing back healthy is increased.” • {tree}

Amidst my therapeutic tree pruning, it unfolded within me that this tree and its lifeless, energy drain limbs is no different from our lives and the baggage we carry or hold on to. Just as the limbs of a tree are cropped, we too can trim the dead, the negativity, the nonsense & the unfulfilling branches in our life; the branches that leave us parched, hurting, seeking fulfillment or approval, running in circles & exhausting beautiful days.

Just as the tree exerts energy in trying to contain the damage & the sickly branches continue to prevent new growth, we too find ourselves stuck & empty due to people, things, circumstances & choices.

Insert: pruning.

I have experienced the difficulty in “trimming the fat” within my own life; I have also experienced the joy that comes from it that I never knew existed.

The initial difficulties in saying no, walking away from a hurtful person, loving someone from a distance rather than closely & full of expectation, making discerning decisions based on acknowledging my worth all lead to growth within me & have since offered me joy, restful nights & alive days.

The tree takes years to grow, flower, stretch, canopy, shake the dead, flourish, spread, rise up — with no end to speak of; what makes us think we are not so peculiar?

I am thankful for my foundation, my heart, my trunk.

I am thankful for my branches that stretch out in many directions seeking light, passion, service & my Maker.

I am also thankful for the deadwood that has been shaken off — among the nonessential has been learning experiences teaching me truth, authenticity, what truly matters in our lives & once shimmied down to my core, it is where I truly uncover myself.

Thank you {Mother Nature} | for being my teacher.

Thank you {Tree} | for helping me to become an enlightened wildflower among the wilderness 🌸

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• Ujjayi •

Holy hiatus.

A hiatus filled with many ujjayi breaths.

[Ujjayi Breath: an ancient yoga breathing technique that helps calm the mind & body; victorious breath.]

The season we find ourselves in is continuously changing & our response to the transition is individual. With each season unfolds opportunity for growth, self improvement & realization that we are right where we need to be. The cognitive choice to bend & trust versus resist is ours to make.

Insert: ujjayi breathing.

Among circumstances that have me feeling hectic, scattered & disjointed I turn to the deep, cleansing breaths of ujjayi breathing; to aid in regaining focus of my mind & release stress or tension.

I know that my journey is individual & full of purpose & I am grateful for it. 

As Pastor Groeschel spoke this Sunday: success is not final & failures are not forever. | We are all a work in progress that may or may not require more #ujjayi breaths in some seasons versus others.

“There are no mistakes in life, only guideposts of self-discovery on one’s journey to self-love.” • Walter J. Klimek

 

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{ p i s c e s }

As the month of March comes to an end, I reflect on how much I love this month, this season.

Mine & my mothers birthdays are on the 1st but that is not the only reason for my adoration. I knew this birthday would be slightly different than those of years 27, 26…& so on. My heart is filled with such gratitude this year that I found this March 1 to hold more emotion compared to others past.

2014 brought me growth, pain, struggle & lessons stemming from poor choice making; all prompting me for strength, courage & emancipation from old parts of myself and delight in my newness.

As March “comes in like a lion & goes out like a lamb”, I am reminded that we all stumble upon our lion-like state of affairs filled with disorder, confusion & uncertainty. But I have learned that it is in those times that our inner lioness is awakened & born; that with a little patience, trust, & courage we can find our footing, direction & purpose once more.

Like the tulips that use the month of March to sprout, grow & bloom…{I} will too. {You} will too. {We} will too.

To a beautiful month, my most favorite month, I am grateful to be a part of you.

 

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{ i n s p o }

Last week I was moved to watery eyes & sniffles while reading a fellow friend & blogger’s most recent entry.
[elysesexpressions.wordpress.com check her out!]

I don’t want to spoil anything & I would encourage all to take in her beautiful words for themselves as she begins a new journey “writing herself alive”. She describes a lack of feeling & inspiration as her motive for taking an online class that includes this 30 day assignment.

Assignment 1: a letter to my decade younger self.

While this entry moved me it also inspired me to reflect on what I would say to my younger self. Although I’m thankful for my experiences & growing moments, there are a few “two cents’ worth” that may have aided me or just caused me to smile in encouragement.

[ 17 year old Junebug:

You are a beautiful being with so much heart & soul. You’re officially in California, on your own & unsure of what’s next but from this moment forward I want you to know & remember….

You are f e a r l e s s: don’t be afraid to jump, leap or of the growing pains that come with it.
You are c o n f i d e n t: don’t doubt the gifts, spirit & quirks God bestowed with intention when he created YOU.

You don’t need to rush. Don’t be afraid to live in the grey at times & trust the season you are in. Everything that is meant for you will come to you if only you will trust the plan God has in motion, be thankful for the journey & have discernment when navigating your route.

As you navigate your way keep in mind that it is essential to learn when to walk a w a y from what is not good & how to walk t o w a r d what galvanizes the best in you.

When & if people inquire about your vagabond & wildflower ways don’t become apprehensive of your path. Everyone takes a different route & yours specifically is piecing together a testimony — you’ll see.

At last, as you make your voyage & find yourself among favorable & hindering circumstances alike don’t lose your fire, keep dancing & hold tight to your silliness.

To my decade younger self: thank you for being you. Enjoy the journey. ]

A letter to myself then; a reminder to myself now.

{ Elyse, thank you for providing inspiration. My heart is happy to see your God given art unfold & come alive. }

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jump • leap • fly

Being the oldest sibling provides an interesting route. One minute you are awestruck in the presence of this little human & showering them with squinches, the next you are pulling each other’s hair out in the aisle of a grocery store as a tantrum ensues.

[repeat. x’s 3]

Most people have siblings so the exploitation of our shenanigans isn’t necessary, however, this most recent chapter, quite possibly, reveals the most beautiful gift a sibling has to offer: growth.

Most recently I have been encouraged by the youngest in our crew, my brother.

Short & sweet: my brother is a collegiate baseball player that found himself in an environment, among individuals that, over time, proved to be hindering & adverse to his growth on & off the field.

After stewing over the unrest for a year [+], he made the faith-guided decision to transfer colleges.

It has me reflecting — how often do we stick around for people, companies, relationships & geographical whereabouts being unhappy & disheartened, because we feel this tug of loyalty; this loyalty to someone or something that continues to chip away at us rather than galvanize the best in us.

Rather than scratch the surface of the unknown, we cling to the familiar & safe in hopes that if we stick it out people, circumstances & outcomes will change.

I wish at a younger age I would have released the inner lioness in me & rejected the fear that was commonly chosen over spontaneous happening, approaching opportunity & even a moment to share/use my gifts with others; all hindered & set aside in the presence of doubt.

But my brother did what I &, likely, most of us wish we would have had the strength to do as a young adult: walk a w a y from what is not good & blindly walk t o w a r d the unsung.

I’m thankful for my brothers little reminder in chasing passions, rejecting fear in the midst of life-defining decision making, acknowledging our worth & what it looks like to jump, leap — fly.

“Shine like the whole universe is yours.” – Rumi

#Adventure
#Journey
#InPursuit
#Fly

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2014 | 2015

“Wellllllll…that was a year of transitions.” … [And I say this. Every. Year.]

New jobs
New friends made
New geographical whereabouts
New adventures
New growth spurts

I was once afraid of transition or change. Believing that we are supposed “to know” our direction, set forth to find it & stick with it. But that’s so unlike my life?

And this year was no exception.

However! This year I acknowledged the comfort in knowing:

Tests turn into testimonies
Struggles turn into stories
Trials turn into triumphs

The will, the plan, the flow of life…

It’s sometimes hard to understand & always easy to fight — but my mind and soul are at ease when I take it in stride & know that whatever is happening is for a specific reason & I’m thankful to be a work in progress.

So while I love the idea of resolutions, history continues to prove itself that it just doesn’t seem to work out the way I [maybe you too?] originally thought it would. Therefore, I aim for mini goals, improvements, adjustments I can make to my everyday behaviors, my everyday flow of life.

• begin each day with thanksgiving, prayer & meditation.

• serve in the House that serves me. LifeChurch continues to fuel my thankful heart for an amazing House to call home.

• I am switching yoga studios in order to increase my knowledge, strength & ability; [mini goal] I plan to go confidently despite my insecurities.

• learn a new skill & this year I’m striving for Spanish.

• rekindle an old joy: sitting down to play the piano.

• become an even better dietician to myself & continue working toward an alkaline body. [Bulletproof Diet]

• give into my wanderlust & experience new cultures.

• listen more, talk less.

• look people in the eye.

• say thank you.

• unsubscribe from junk mail, any company I no longer want mail from & GROUPON. [you know what I’m talking about.]

• remember that the log in my eye is much more important than the speck in someone else’s.

• to be a continual seeker of goodness, light & my maker.

Cheers to 2015: May it be a year of thankfulness for all we have, serving those who need us, growth, continuous laughs & adventure.

#HappyNewYear.
#CelebrateLife.
#Adventure2015.

“What you seek is seeking you.” – Rumi

#InPursuit.

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Celebrate Me Home…

This is my favorite time of the year & my first holiday season back in Kansas from my stint in Texas; chalking up another journey of “self discovery”.

Five years ago I would have laughed in the face of anyone who told me I would ever reside in Kansas once more; and this time, it’s by choice.

My journey in Texas collected miles & I missed my family & loved ones more & more. I was absent from graduations, birthdays, reunions; the absence from simpler day-to-day excursions was just as annoying.

Seeing as this wasn’t the first time I packed my car & went vagabond, I knew these yearnings for home were coming from a different place.

Maybe a “grown” place.
A “seen enough” place.
To some, a “quitter” place.
But in fact, a place of “growth”was ensuing.

A place where I had realized that my geographical whereabouts do not define me; nor does my status, things of monetary value or the job that I possess. That my spirit is not hindered or altered by my surroundings but by my own mindset, insecurities & inhibitions.

That because He is within me I am able to be the vessel He has created me to be; present & purposeful, no matter where I am.

The change I was once praying for, in fact, would be a change of my own heart.

It took nearly a year of patience & courage but I was able to wave goodbye to Texas knowing that my growing pains lead to growth that lead me home.

#GratefulHeart.
#KansasChristmas.
#CelebrateMeHome.

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Sun•Day (Yay)

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Sundays are the best days (my fav in fact)…especially when you have the pleasure of spending the evening with an awesome group of warm, wise folks, yummy food and [near] endless vino. An event hosted by the wonderful Robin, owner of the Bartlett Arboretum along with husband Kenny, who delivered her true to form specialty: delight.

In her speech to friends she expressed gratitude for their support, reminisced stories & uncovered lessons learned from longstanding friends she now calls family.

The woman has a way with words & I admire it so much because I am a lover of vocabulary.

During her speech she shared a few key words & phrases that stuck with me as I began to reflect on experiences & loved ones of my own:

•Patience
•Tenacity
•”Do it anyway”
•”With the end in mind”
•”Have fun & enjoy the view”

In the last year I have been a student to patience while being reminded it is a virtue for a reason.

My patience was tested while trying to decide whether I was being called to stay in Texas or come back to Kansas where my heart was. To make a long story short, patience eventually lead me home.

It was also tested when I met my Tree. I had no idea when we met that I was stumbling upon a wonderful human with the greatest heart & soul; that he would later teach me so much about letting go, letting God & the flow of life take it’s course, to believe in myself & my gifts. We began as friends but patience proved to bring us together in it’s own time. #thankful.

My yoga practice continues to test my patience as well — rather than envisioning where I want to be in my practice, yoga helps bring me back to the present moment to notice just how far I have come. I know one day I will be as developed as I envision but for now I am learning to be thankful for the voyage, setting my intention on trust & continued diligence.

Chutzpah, spunk, guts, backbone, willfulness…tenacity. Does anything worthwhile come to fruition without it? Or without the acknowledgment that sometimes despite our mindset, mood or plans we have to just grin, bear it & “do it anyway”?

I was a fan of listening to Robin reflect on times of “doing it anyway” especially on days where #TheStruggleWasReal.

There have been times when I’ve needed reminding that the situations I’m in are temporary & that without my personal tests I would never have my own testimony. “Doing it anyway” has offered me growth and has provided me with “entertaining” stories of my journey [typically after the storm, of course]; suggesting along the way to not necessarily be focused on the “end result” but rather keep “the end in mind”. We always hear people referring to the journey rather than the destination; go figure, they’re right. But sometimes the journey isn’t dang roses & Earth, Wind & Fire but rather a pain, rocks & glass [thank you Kid President]. I suppose life calls for us to get our hands a little dirty on occasion.

And lastly, she spoke of “having fun & enjoying the view”. A self explanatory reminder but how easily we forget.

Sunday adventure.
Monday jots.
Daily reminders.

Thankful heart, always.

#HappyMonday.