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Transition Complete!

Hey guys! So this is my first post on my very own domain! I’m super excited that I was able to migrate the rest of my posts over, and from now on you will find my musings, fashion tips, and more on this site. So memorize it, love it, and keep on reading. I am so excited to move forward with Rachel Writes Life, and see where this blogging journey takes me. We are heading into the holiday season, so who knows what can happen!

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You’re Exactly Where He Wants You to Be

I believe that God sets us up for exactly what we need, even if we don’t always understand it or see what the bigger plan is. I had been searching for a job for about 2 years after graduating from college and was working full time in retail just to be able to pay my bills. It was tough, but I am a persistent person, and a hard worker, so I always made sure to send out about 5 resumes and applications a day, even after working all day long. I tried everything, I took time on my days off to apply for many more jobs, I went on countless interviews, and I even got a few job offers, but none of them felt “right” to me. There was always some feeling in my gut about those job offers that made me turn it down. I couldn’t really explain it, though I made an excuse for each one. “It would have me making less than I am now,” or “I’m already in a commission based job, I don’t need to switch to another one.” While it seemed odd to me to not just jump at the first job that was offered, I stayed true to my gut feeling, and stayed the course I was on. Then one day, my neighbor walked over to my mom’s garage sale while I was at work. Lo and behold, he worked for a digital marketing company, and with my mom’s amazing sales pitch, she got his email for me, and I submitted my resume to him the next day. I didn’t even know what I was applying for, but I was desperate to get my name out there and find a job in my field. Well, I got an interview with the Project Manager and Admin of the company, and I also got the flu the same day. I went anyway, after taking my DayQuil of course, and walked out feeling like a complete failure. I was certain that I answered everything all wrong, and that they had no place for me in that company, as I hadn’t gone to school for anything they did. A couple of days later I got the job offer. Without hesitation, I accepted, and spoke to my then-employer about my two weeks notice. No excuses about how I would make less money, or that it wasn’t specifically what I went to school for. No nothing, just acceptance of a job that I couldn’t have been more grateful for.

I’ve gone to the same hair stylist for years, because she’s the only one here I trust to touch my hair and not make a mess of it. Because we are similar ages, we always catch up on the latest with each other’s lives, and about a year ago, she and her family had just gone through some serious health issues. Well, I don’t know what else went on in their lives, as far as what people said or did to help, but I know a few months later, I started going through my own personal hell when someone very close to me got a cancer diagnosis and my world turned upside down. I went to this same hair stylist to cut my hair and donate what I could to someone who was fighting cancer and wouldn’t have their hair. Well, of course we started talking and I shared with her what was going on, as we all do with our hair stylists. What I didn’t expect was the woman next to me to also have had a similar experience with someone close to her getting cancer a few years back. She overheard me talking about why I was in there, and what was going on with my life, and she reached over and tapped my arm and explained that she had a similar situation, and then she asked me if she could pray with me, right then and there, and in the future. Let that sink in for a minute. This to me, was an absolutely amazing experience, and something that I needed at that moment. I guess you could say God set me up at the right moment to meet someone who would forever impact my life. I don’t even know her name, she didn’t introduce herself, but yet I feel like I know so much about her.

Now you may be wondering how those two stories connect. A few months after I got the job, that was when the health issues started. If I had stayed in the retail job, I would have gone days without pay, and I wouldn’t have been able to miss much work, because that’s the hard fact about retail. With that job that I accepted, I was able to send my boss a text when the nightmare began simply saying that we were going to the hospital. The next day, I had to send a text saying that it was cancer. There wasn’t mention of how I needed to come in to the office, instead there was just understanding and patience for someone grieving and going through a huge amount of change that she wasn’t ready for. There were countless appointments after that, and two surgeries, and with each one came this amazing understanding. I was allowed to work later on certain days to make up the hours, given the ability to work from home, to work from the hospital, to duck out suddenly if something came up. I was given an afternoon off to sleep, but wound up in the ER instead. I was given a flexibility that I will forever be grateful for, because it’s not something that had to be done. It wasn’t a requirement for me to have that time off, and any boss would have been perfectly acceptable to not allow me the time off when I asked for it. But he didn’t, and he made sure that I had a support system at work when I needed it most. I know that in retail it just wouldn’t have worked out the same way. I wouldn’t have been able to afford all that missed work time, as there aren’t sick days or vacation days when you work in retail sales. It was all a part of God’s plan to set me up in a position where I would be able to do both, where I could learn something new, contribute to my company, and still be able to help my family in that horrible time. Even though it was months out, I was being set up for exactly what I needed, even if I didn’t understand it at the time.

I guess the point of this is to trust Him. Even if something makes absolutely no sense to you at the time, even if you don’t understand why your instincts and your gut are telling you to do one thing, just go with it. It’s God’s work keeping you on the path you need to be. He won’t lead you astray, and He will always give you exactly what you need, sometimes before you even realize you need it.

Hurricane Matthew After Effects

Hurricane Matthew After Effects

Like many people, I had an eventful week last week thanks to Hurricane Matthew. When it was coming at us, it was making a direct hit on the island I live on. The news reports were crazy, saying that the whole island could possibly be destroyed, that there would be devastating damage, etc. I have never evacuated for a hurricane before. When I was younger we always just stayed at the house, and played cards, listened to the radio, and so on. With that being said, we were going to stay at the house and ride this one out, until we made the very last minute decision to leave and go more inland (It helped that the neighbors were all leaving too, and we didn’t want to be the only ones here). So we packed up the cats, and some valuables, and went over to a friend’s house to wait it out and pray for the best, to pray that our house would still be standing, to pray that we would be able to get there quickly to assess the damage. Our prayers were answered, and the hurricane wobbled away from us just enough that our island was saved from the devastating effects of the storm. Now, we didn’t walk away with no damage, our fence got demolished, but compared to what we saw in other countries like Haiti, and what we were seeing up the northern coasts of Florida, we were very grateful and blessed.

One of the best parts of that storm though was seeing how people acted. Natural disasters can either bring out the best or worst in people. Now, I definitely saw some of the worst in people who were getting ready for it, but I also saw some of the best. We got help putting some boards up on our house, which was great, because by the time we were thinking we should do that, all the screws were gone, and all we could use were anchors. Now, if you don’t know anything about the difference, or really what one does, as I didn’t, let me give you a brief summary. Anchors create bigger holes in the side of the house, and are also harder to get out, whereas screws are easily put in and out with minimal damage. Well, beggars can’t be choosers when you wait the last minute to board up, so we worked with what we had, and thankfully had a friend come help put them up. After the storm though is when we received the biggest help. As I mentioned before, our fence was demolished. Pieces were down all over the yard, and one even was leaning on the house into one of the boarded up windows. It was a huge mess to deal with, and our next door neighbor had the same issue. Well, when we were talking in the driveway, he told me not to worry about the fence, that he would pick it all up and take care of it for me. I can’t even tell you what a relief that was. There was so much to do inside and out, that just the thought of hauling heavy fence pieces was exhausting, but I knew it was something I had to do. Well, the next day he hauled away his and our fence pieces, making my life so much easier than I could have ever imagined. Now, this guy has helped me out before, he fixed a tire on my car, and the front plastic piece, and each time is such a wonderful surprise, especially when I don’t even realize it’s a problem until it’s fixed. This was no different, it actually made my day to know I could focus on emptying stuff from the garage and the back porch rather than picking up debris. Then a few days later, another friend came over and figured out how to get the boards off the walls (take that anchors!) without causing damage to the house. I am fairly handy, but not when it comes to that stuff, so I would have been so lost without his help, but instead it was completed, and he is owed a new set of drill bits, but I promise he will get one.

So what’s the point of me saying all of this? It’s that even though these people had their own houses and their own things to take care of, they reached out, and pulled together with others in the community to help. And across the state, you were hearing of neighborhoods were a group gathered with chainsaws and cleared away the damage and tree debris left by the storm, or friends who took people in because they had power, while so many didn’t. This is how we are supposed to react when natural disaster or tragedy strikes. We are supposed to band together, and help one another out, not turn on each other, or leave everyone to fend for themselves. Even when it’s difficult to find the time, because we all have so much going on, take time to help your neighbor. Even if it’s helping the elderly woman carry in a case of water, or picking up trash that got blown all over your neighbors yard. I promise you, it’ll be worth it to help them out in a time when they need it.

It’s also a great reminder that no matter what happens in your life, God sets you up with everything you need. Now, our area was incredibly blessed, but many others were not, and I pray for those areas to band together and heal quickly as well. Some of the damage can’t be undone, but we can always move forward and push on….together.

Fashion On a Budget

Sometimes being fashionable, while swimming in student loan debt, car payments, insurance, and everything else, can be a bit difficult. We all want to wear the designers we know and love, but we don’t necessarily want to pay that high price tag that comes with it. Luckily, there are many ways to get designer clothes, at bargain prices. Now, before you get too excited, you’re still going to have to pay a little more than you would at a normal sale. But, if you think about it, you are getting classic outfits that will last you for years. That trendy suede mini skirt will be out of fashion next season, but the shift dress will never go out of style. That right there is what makes it worth it to spend a little more now, because you will ultimately be saving yourself money in the long run.

So for all the budget-conscious fashionistas out there, here are some tips to save some money and still have a fabulous wardrobe.

  1. Buy during sales. Sure, that’s easier said than done, especially for some places like Lilly Pulitzer who doesn’t often have stuff on sale. But let me tell you, when they do the semi-annual sale, you get some amazing deals. I got a whole bunch of new items, dresses, tops, skirts, scarves, all for under $400. Now, for those who aren’t familiar with the brand, one full price dress can run for half of that. However, I know that while I’m spending the money ahead of time, I am getting work appropriate outfits for years to come. I also got a few nice dresses for the upcoming holiday season, since we all know dressing up for a Christmas party is mandatory.
  2. Buy from the outlets. Yes, yes, I know, the outlet isn’t necessarily what is fashionable this season. Who cares? When you’re buying from outlets like Steve Madden, you don’t need to have this season’s shoes, especially if you’re looking for a great pair of pumps for work. Or maybe you need a new pair of sandals for your weekends. Those items don’t change too much depending on the season, so you’re safe grabbing them in the outlet. Save some money, and get the amazing shoes.
  3. Buy from stores like Ross and TJ Maxx. You would be amazed at what you can find at these places if you try. For example, I just got a new Kate Spade crossbody bag for about $60, when it is normally around $150. That’s a steal! It’s gorgeous, and perfect for me, and I get the classic look her brand is all about. I couldn’t be happier with it. Plus, I know it’s a bag that’s going to be around for a while.
  4. Build a capsule wardrobe. For those who aren’t sure what I mean by this, a capsule wardrobe is full of the classic staples that every woman needs in her closet. So that means a little black dress, a great interview suit, some solid button down shirts, etc. I’m not saying throw out your crop tops, but spend your money where it will be most beneficial to you. Spending a little more on a great suit means that you will look great, and your confidence will help you nail that job interview.
Another great way to always have an amazing outfit, but without having to have all designer pieces, is to choose certain pieces to accent others. Ok, so for example, let’s say I have a basic black skirt from Macy’s, and I pair it with a dressy top from Express, and my beautiful new Kate Spade purse. Add a nice pair of no-name flats, and I have a cute, work appropriate outfit that will get plenty of compliments. Sure, the skirt is a no-name, but I went with a cute top, and a great purse, and those pieces are what make the outfit pop. In some cases, whether it’s a brand name or not, it’s just a great wardrobe piece to have. A solid black skirt being one of those. I got compliments on my outfit, and I felt great about it. I stood out and looked great, while spending the money on certain pieces, not the entire thing. Same thing with an awesome Lilly dress. Find a great shift, add a cute pair of wedges and a clutch, no name or not, and you have a beautiful outfit that will catch everyone’s eye. You don’t have to be in designer from head to toe to still look great. Just grab the right pieces, and your wardrobe will thank you.

Skinny Bitches Need To Workout Too

I am a skinny bitch. I am naturally thin, have always been my whole life. Ever since I was a kid, I remember hoping that at my annual doctor appointment, I would be at the normal weight, and every time, I was told I was underweight. I would eat a ton, but as I got older, the talks turned into warnings about anorexia and bulimia, which was ridiculous to me. I was eating plenty, you could ask anyone I know, in high school I could eat a whole large pizza by myself, it just wouldn’t show on me. My dad is super thin, as is my mom, and it’s just something that runs in my family. I’ve always tried to be fairly healthy, despite the fact I am one of those lucky enough to be able to eat whatever I want. The point of this, is that today my coworker and I were talking, and he was asking about my routine after work, and I mentioned that I was going to workout on the treadmill. He then asked why I needed to workout, I’m so skinny. Let me tell you, I do get tired of hearing that. Yes, I am thin, I know this, anyone who looks at me knows this. Apparently what isn’t common knowledge is that I still have to workout, just like every other person who wants to live a healthy lifestyle.

I don’t workout to burn calories, and I certainly don’t count calories, but as my title says, “skinny bitches need to workout too.” For my overall health, I still have to exercise and eat right, otherwise I could get high blood pressure, and heart issues, same as anyone else. I love my body for certain things, and I dislike it at the same time. Unlike some others, my body doesn’t necessarily give me an indication of when I need to workout a bit more, because I don’t really gain weight. The only time I’ve noticed any actual gain, is when I’m building muscle. Now, that’s good too, but it doesn’t help me out if I have something going on that isn’t quite right medically. So because of that, I have to be careful to still eat right, and exercise each day. I would say I’m fairly health conscious, though I do love my cookie dough ice cream, and I pretty much always have been. However, with that being said, I don’t necessarily enjoy working out all the time. I am not someone who has ever gotten runner’s high, and quite frankly there are many days I would rather sit on my butt eating junk food than go run on the treadmill. However, I know it’s best for me, so I do it anyway.

What gets frustrating are the accusations that I am anorexic or working out too much or too hard, because I’m already so thin, I don’t need to anymore. I’ve talked with doctors, they wouldn’t say that I should never exercise just because I’m skinny. Everyone should exercise for the health benefits. I feel better, and I know that my inside is as healthy as my outside appears. As someone who has a family with high blood pressure, I want to ensure that I don’t have issues to deal with later on down the road, and a good start is the treadmill. It also is fantastic for stress relief. While I usually don’t live such a stress-filled life, this past year has been very stressful and hard on me and my family, and a great relief has been exercise. Sure, I gripe and complain about it, but when I feel less stressed and better, it makes it all worth it.

So, yes, I am a skinny bitch. I know what people call me, I’m not naive enough to think it’s not said. But you know what, I may have a metabolism that helps me out now, but I’m building up healthy habits that will help me if it ever slows down. I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know I want to take it on as a healthy version of myself, even if that means working out when I don’t want to.

Take It Slow

Relationships are weird. I mean, think about it. You meet someone who was, at some point, a total stranger and you just decide “hmm I think I want to spend more and more time with that person.” Then, as you do spend more time together and talk more, you realize you have a lot in common, you seem to have this “connection,” not that anyone can ever say what that really is, and you decide to date. Or he/she isn’t interested, so you get your heart stomped on. It just depends on the situation. If you’re lucky, they feel the same way about you. But it’s hard to say, some relationships take weeks and months (even years in some cases!) to develop, while others seem to happen overnight. It makes figuring out timing very difficult.

I can only speak from my personal experience and what I’ve seen with friends, so this is by no means all encompassing, but it’s my opinion. Relationships tend to be better, and last longer, if you take things slow. If you go too fast, they tend to burn out. It’s the concept of starting out as friends. I mean, if you can stand to be friends with someone for a while, they haven’t done anything to drive you off. So there’s something about them that you like. Whereas, if you jump into a relationship first, it can be more difficult to have that friendship, especially if you find some things you don’t like about them, but you’re already dating, so you feel like you should invest more time in something that maybe you shouldn’t be in.

Now, I’ve said before that if you like someone, you shouldn’t play those silly games, and I do stand by that. However, I also don’t think you should rush into something. Sure, part of dating is getting to know someone, I get that, and I think it makes sense. Sometimes you can just tell on a first date if it’s going to work out or not, and if you’re more interested in dating than a relationship, this is a great way to do things. If you’re looking for something a little more, then I suggest taking things a lot slower, and spending more time together first as friends. And sometimes it’s hard to wait, if you’ve liked someone for a while, but you’re still having a hard time reading the situation, it can be difficult, because you want to share your feelings, but no one likes being rejected. Sometimes though, it’s best to let nature take its course, and take things slowly to see what develops from it. If you’re friends, then you at least have the chance to keep your friendship intact. If you rush into things, you may not even have that. And if you really like the person, then you don’t want to lose the friendship.

Sometimes we are forced to take things slow because the timing isn’t right. Maybe you were friends years ago, and you liked this person then, but things change, someone moves or is in another relationship. So you put the feelings on the back burner, and then something changes. They somehow come back into your life again, but maybe the timing still isn’t right. Rather than trying to rush something that may not work due to geographical location or life circumstances, just keep the friendship going. Don’t push for more if you or the other person aren’t really ready for something like that. Instead, be content being friends and learning more about the other person. If it’s meant to be, it’ll happen. One thing I’ve learned is that if God wants it to happen, it’s going to happen. It may not be on your time calendar, but it’s on His, and He ultimately knows what is best.

Let’s Talk Gossip

We all gossip, don’t even try to deny that you do, just admit it. You gossip, I gossip, we all gossip! Woo! Now, in some cases gossip is harmless, and in others, it can actually cause issues for all parties involved. In addition, there is good gossip and there is bad gossip. Both can also have repercussions that aren’t necessarily a good thing.

What do I mean by good gossip? Generally, gossip is considered a bad thing, and it has a negative connotation, so how could gossip possibly be a good thing? Well I don’t mean that it’s a good thing, but I mean it is more of a positive thing, such as gossiping about something good. For example, I was once the subject of some gossip in my dorm my freshman year in college. I didn’t even realize I was popular enough to the be the topic of gossip, but it must have been a slow week. I was really close friends with this guy that lived in the dorm, and we also had a class together. Well, we spent a lot of time together going out to dinner, hanging out around campus, you get the idea. While we usually had others with us, we did occasionally just hang out the two of us. It wasn’t anything more than friendship, though I will admit I had a crush on him. Well, you can imagine my surprise when my roommate tackled me one day after class and yelled at me for not telling her. I had no idea what she was talking about, as far as I knew, I hadn’t withheld anything important from her. She then started going on about how cute we were and how I must be so excited, and how could I not have told her I was dating him, and on and on. It was news to me that he and I were dating, but apparently the whole dorm was talking about it. So I dragged my roomie over to his room to find out if he had heard of this and what we were going to do about. I was actually excited, thinking this was a way for us to move forward into something more. Well, while he had no issues with everyone thinking we were dating, he also had no interest in actually dating me. Must be better to just have the appearance than the reality. Oh well. So we got that sorted out, and eventually the gossip died down, but I will say, everyone was very interested in our love lives (or lack thereof) and I had so many girls that I usually just said hi to coming up and talking to me about how great we were together and how we were so cute, etc. It was actually kind of flattering, having all of that attention, and nothing that was said was bad, just that we were dating, so neither of us really cared. He made a great point that it didn’t matter what people thought, we knew what reality was, so why would we change anything. This kind of gossip wasn’t bad. It didn’t hurt any of the parties that were the subject of it, and it didn’t cause any serious damage later on. It was just people reading too much into what they were seeing. Not a big deal.

The other kind of gossip though, that’s where it gets to be a little more tricky and cause more damage. Let’s say for example that you have an old co-worker, and you mentioned something that the old co-worker used to do in front of someone else. While nothing you said was false, it somehow got back to that person and they weren’t very fond of it. Now, we all have done stuff we weren’t proud of, and it sucks, but if it’s reality, then it’s hard to fight it. Well, this co-worker then decides to start gossiping about you and your family, making up lies and spreading them to all of your old co-workers. This is where gossip becomes damaging. First of all, the co-worker spreading the lies is damaging her own reputation, as we all know that what Sally says of Suzie says more about Sally than it does Suzie. What it also does though, is damage the other person’s reputation, when it’s not deserved. Sure, majority won’t believe it because they worked with you, and they know the real you, but others feel the need to believe the lies spread by this other person. Now, that doesn’t make either of you bad people, but it definitely tarnishes reputations. And that’s where gossip gets its ugly side.

When something is said, it can’t be unsaid, but if you do feel the need to say it, it should at least be true. I personally am working on not caring what people say about me, but it’s a hard process to work through. It’s important to remember though, that if people choose to believe lies over the reality and the knowledge they have about you, then it again says more about them than about you. It goes to show that they would rather see the bad in a person than the good that they know is in there. And it can be hard, especially if this person that started spreading the rumors and lies used to be a friend. That can actually be one of the worst things. So the most important thing for you to remember is to keep your chin up through it all. And maybe try to tone down gossiping.Sure, it can be fun to participate, but you never know if what you heard and what you’re spreading is reality. And it’s not so much fun when it’s you that’s the subject of the gossip fodder.

Why I Dislike Modern Dating

I’ve said it before and I will say it again. I am an old fashioned person, especially when it comes to dating. With that being said, I am not really a huge fan of modern dating, and there are a few reasons why.

Online Dating and Dating Apps

Maybe I’m a little out there, but I really really really don’t want our love story to begin with “I swiped right, and the rest is history” (I’ll be honest, I have never downloaded Tinder or been on it, so I have no idea which way is good or bad to swipe). I want more than that, a real connection, not just based on a personal statement and do I have a hot picture up there or not. To me, even meeting someone for the first time should be based on something more than that. If a friend sets you up with someone it’s not because they think he is hot, there’s always more to it. Now, some will argue that dating apps like Tinder do allow you to actually get to know someone, but from what I’ve seen and heard, it’s mostly for hooking up, which is not really a great way to a relationship.
Online dating is a little bit better, except it’s again with the same story of “I liked her profile, and the rest is history.” Now, maybe my expectations are a little too high, maybe I still live in a movie, where there will be some serendipitous moment where I meet the one, and maybe that’ll never happen. I can’t say one way or another, but I can still hope for a little more than meeting someone for the first time online. I know, that’s the way of our world now, but I would much rather meet someone in person. I feel like I can read them a little better if they don’t have a screen to hide behind. I’m a big believer in trusting my gut, and it’s difficult to do that if you don’t meet the person in real life until after you’ve been talking for weeks. You’re not able to get a quick idea of their person until after you’ve made a bit of a decision on them from talking for a few days or weeks first. Instead, I’d rather meet them in person immediately, and go from there. 
The Games

I can’t stand playing games, especially when it comes to dating. For example, the whole playing hard to get, really not my thing. I can’t stand that, and you won’t find me playing that game. If I like you, and you ask me out, then I am going to say yes. It’s that simple, I am not going to play games and act like I’m not interested just to force you to keep asking me out. Now, if I really am not interested, I also am not going to say yes just to spare your feelings. That’s not fair to you, and I certainly don’t want to lead you on. So if I say no, it does mean no. It doesn’t mean keep asking me over and over again, because in reality, that’s just going to get frustrating for the both of us. 
The jealousy game. Oh that one I know well, and I hate it. Here’s the deal, I won’t try to make you jealous, and you try not to make me jealous. That doesn’t make me more interested, it just hurts my feelings if you are constantly talking about some other girl to me. Now, if it’s a friend of yours that’s fine, but we all know there is a difference in mentioning someone, and constantly bringing that person up to make us jealous. With that being said, I won’t do that to you. If I meet with an old friend, then I will tell you so I’m being honest, but I’m not going to hound on it or try to make you jealous, I’m just letting you know. I want the same. There’s got to be a level of trust in a relationship, and I truly feel playing games to make the other person jealous hurts that trust and hurts the relationship.

The “three day rule.” Ok, whoever started that had a bad idea. No one should wait three days to call a girl back after a date. Sure, we wonder when you’ll call, but as the time progresses we, at least me, are over-analyzing and deciding that you aren’t that interested, or if you are, you probably have another woman you’re talking to, and you can’t decide. Either option isn’t good for getting a second date, so don’t do it. Just say what you feel. If you like someone, say I had a great time. If you say “I’ll call you tomorrow.” Actually do that. We won’t think you’re clingy or desperate, it just shows that you will actually do what you say. We appreciate that, in fact, everyone appreciates that.

The Lack of Romantic Gestures

So one thing that just about every woman loves is getting flowers. It doesn’t even have to be that, just a cute, simple gesture like a nice note saying “thinking of you” or an unexpected cup of coffee at work. Even something small like that is such a grand gesture in our minds, and it just makes us so happy that you thought of us. It’s romantic and sweet, and it just doesn’t happen as much anymore. Sure, there are some guys that still follow up with the romantic gestures, but the majority don’t, and I don’t know why. It’s not anything that takes a lot of time, effort, or money, like I said before, it can be something as simple as a sweet handwritten note. It’s very old-fashioned, but I would love to have something like that, and it makes me long for an older time when love letters were commonplace.

Basically, while modern dating is fine in some ways, I’m just an old fashioned person who loves the idea of old fashioned dating. Hopefully that is something I will be able to find 🙂

Confidence is Your Best Attribute

Have you ever noticed that some people seem to just ooze confidence? They just seem so sure of themselves, and no matter who they are or what they look like, people stop and take notice, because of their attitude. They seem to walk with this total confidence and knowledge about themselves and when they walk into the room, you just automatically feel this pull to them, like they are the leader even if they aren’t.

Well, I’ve definitely noticed, and I’ve also noticed what happens when people kind of shuffle in, without an ounce of self-confidence. They tend to blend into the background and instead just are there. They don’t command the attention of the room, sometimes people don’t even notice that they are in there. It can happen if they are alone, or with a group, they just kind of fade into the background and no one really notices them. Then, if they do try to speak up, they usually do not get the same amount of respect that someone who is a little more confident gets.

So it seems, confidence is the best attribute you can have, in all aspects of your life. Be confident in who you are, what you are doing, and that you are a leader. But of course, all of that is much easier said than done. I know, depending on the day I’m super confident in myself, and then other days I have absolutely no self-confidence in my ability to do anything. And I can assure you, it does make a difference. This happens at work, with friends, even just at the store. It’s amazing what can happen when you add a bit of self-confidence to your life. For example, one thing I learned in one of my high school AP classes was that even if you are wrong about something, go ahead and be confident in your wrongness. Now, I don’t think my teacher meant that you should decide you’re right even if you’re wrong and you’re going to argue with people about it and never concede that you are in fact incorrect; instead, what I think she meant was, to have a good reasoning to back it up, and even if you are wrong, to stand confidently. Sure, you may be wrong and someone may point that out, but you don’t have to let that affect your confidence. People are wrong and make mistakes all the time, it’s a fact of life. But if you are saying something, or believing in something, then believe in it. Be confident that you are right, and who knows, you may even change someone’s mind on that topic. Even if you don’t, generally the fact that you are so confident in your ability will impress the other person, even if you’re not 100% correct about what you’re saying. It’s the trick of politicians in a way. They are so confident in themselves, even when they aren’t right about an issue.

A great trick to help you get a quick boost of confidence is by taking the superhero pose. So go ahead, stand with your hands on your hips and stand tall. Believe it or not, this helps you mentally, and I did it before a job interview, and I got the job. Sure, you look silly, I suggest doing it in a bathroom or at the house before your interview, that way no one sees you, but it works. It gives a quick boost of confidence, and it also ties in with body language. A big thing that confident people have is partly their body language. When you are confident, you take up more space, you stand taller, and you spread out more. When you are a bit more timid, you take up less space, and you just squeeze into small spaces. With this, you are taking up more space, and you are making a change, you are actually giving yourself a confidence boost.

I know having confidence in anything is a lot easier said than done. I struggled with confidence in my looks a lot during high school. I felt I wasn’t the prettiest, and because of that, I carried myself that way. I didn’t stand tall, and even though people told me I was pretty, I didn’t really feel like it not compared to (fill in the blank).Well, I colored my hair, got a slight confidence boost, and decided I wanted to enter the acting and pageant world. I wasn’t sure about it, but I was feeling slightly more confident, and wanted to give it a try. Well, it was a little rough at the beginning, especially when I didn’t win the pageant, and when I wasn’t able to get a job. I was told it always came down to me and another girl. The other girl always got the job. It sucked, and it didn’t help my confidence. But then I realized some things. When it comes to acting and modeling, the casting directors usually have an idea of what they are looking for in their heads, before they even see a single girl for the part. Once I realized that, it became much easier to enter a casting and hear them talk about me (too short, not the right hair color, etc.). Well, I also realized with certain things like my height, that I can’t really change that. So I stopped caring. I am average height, I will never be a runway model, and that’s ok. I was created this way, nothing I can do to change it, so I just learned to accept it. Once I realized this, I got more confidence in my acting ability, and in my looks, and soon after, I started getting some jobs. From there, my confidence grew. Now, even if I don’t get the job, I still am confident in my abilities and in my looks. I am me, and that’s perfectly fine, if it’s meant to be, I will get the job.

Finding this confidence wasn’t easy, but it made me so much happier when I did find it. I walk taller, and am more confident in so many aspects of my life. So go pose like a superhero, you never know what you can do with your newfound confidence.

When We Think Positively We Change Our Lives

I am a huge proponent in positive thinking and in positive actions. I believe that when you have positive thoughts and do things that support these positive thoughts, that you will have a positive outcome from it. Well, my mom spent some time in the hospital this weekend, and while we were there we had a doctor come in who had the same mindset. He has been practicing for over 40 years, and is still going strong, and he said the most important thing was having positive thoughts. He’s an oncologist, and that means he has seen the absolute worst of things. So we were talking and he was saying how if you think positive, and you truly believe in something, you will be able to affect your outcome in a positive manner. While I don’t believe that we can actually control our fate, as that is in God’s hands, I do believe that positive thoughts lead to positives in your life. Think of it as the placebo effect. For those who don’t know, the placebo effect is when your mind believes that you are being healed from a placebo (a sugar pill) and your symptoms actually decrease or disappear altogether. It’s very common in psychological and medical studies, and all the research shows just how powerful our minds are.

Here’s five examples where powerful positive thinking actually makes a difference in our lives.
  1. Medicine. As mentioned before, the placebo effect is common in the medical field, and shows us that even with a sugar pill, in some cases, our mind just has to think we are being healed to actually heal itself.
  2. Cancer. According to many doctors and nurses in the oncology field, it really is all about that positive mindset that you are going to beat it. While there are several studies that push for that being true and being false, there is no definitive answer on that yet. You just have to believe that it helps.
  3. Increased life span. According to the Mayo Clinic, having a good positive mindset actually helps you to live longer.
  4. Lower levels of depression. 
  5. A better immune system.
The last three are all cited from the Mayo Clinic website, and are actually still tied to the placebo effect. While they do not know why or how this correlation is there, they do know that it exists. There could be a number of reasons, some being that positive thinkers are more likely to handle disappointments and life obstacles better because of their positive mindsets. Or perhaps because they are more positive about things, they exercise more and lead healthier lifestyles. It’s hard to say when it’s a correlation, and while correlation does not mean causation, a correlation should not be ignored. 
So overall, when life gets you down, try to remain positive. It will get better, just have a little faith, and try to find a positive each day that you can really focus on. Some days it’s easier than others, but think of it as a challenge. I’m trying to do the same thing myself, that way I can focus on my blessings and the positives in my life, rather than dwell on all the negatives. 
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