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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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Dress to Impress

When I was in college, one of my sorority sisters and I came up with this fashion “rule.” It’s a rule that we made up, for ourselves, but it’s a way we ensure that we look presentable at all points in our lives. After all, you never know who you are going to run into at the store, or out running a quick errand after work. Our point was to always look presentable.

To keep up, we came up with a 2 out of 3 fashion rule. Let me break it down for you: we have three things on our scale, which includes your outfit, hair, and makeup. So out of those three things at all times when you are out in class, or you are going to the store, or meeting a sister for coffee, you have to have 2 out of the 3 things done nicely. So, if you are feeling more loungy and want to wear sweatpants or yoga pants to meet a friend for coffee, you have to have your hair straightened or done nicely (no messy buns!) and you have to have done your makeup for the day. That way you still look like you care a little about your appearance, but you still are able to be comfortable in your yoga pants. Same thing if you have a bad hair day (be honest, we all have them). You would be able to throw your hair up in a ponytail or just leave it not so great, but you would counteract that look by having your makeup done and by wearing a cute outfit. And then finally, if you don’t feel like wearing makeup, at least ensure that your hair looks cute, and so does your outfit. Now, ideally, you would be able to have all 3 items checked off each day, to look your best, but we did want to make sure we allowed for days when you didn’t feel so good, or you were running late for an exam.

We devised this rule after a not so pleasant sorority chapter in which we had to discuss personal attire. Now, generally the thought most people have with sorority girls is along the lines of Legally Blonde as far as blonde, dressed in pink, and cookie cutter. This was definitely not my sorority, we were not cookie cutter, we did not all wear pink, and we all were definitely not blonde. Which was great, we did not fit the sorority mold, but we had a great sisterhood. One of the things we did not have that my sister and I wished we did, was an importance of representing ourselves and our sisterhood well through fashion. My Big and I are also very into fashion and like to look our best because we know how quickly first impressions are made (within 3 seconds of someone seeing you), and we never knew who we were going to see around campus. Plus, looking like a slob in class, not exactly something I wanted my professors to think of me as. But, not everyone in the sorority had the same feelings we did, so we actually had to discuss how to dress while representing the chapter. Seems like that is not something we should have had to do, and it was one of the things I did not love about my sorority. But we did, and the presenters of this pretty much said the same things we had said about ensuring that we look presentable at all times, and we dress well, especially when we had letters on. For everyone outside the sorority, they may only see that one girl with our letters, and we always want to represent our chapter well, and give it a good image.

It may seem harsh to some, or even superficial that we were that concerned with how we look, but it’s all based on psychological facts. Humans are extremely shallow, and judge so much based on how it looks, including people. Now, that’s not necessarily how it should be (hence the age old saying, “don’t judge a book by its cover”), but it is how it goes. So unfortunately, you can fight it, or you can go with it. I personally love fashion and clothes, and doing my hair and makeup, so for me, it’s not a difficult task. I have modeled and been in commercials before, and I know if I had not made sure I looked a certain way, I would have never had those opportunities. I also know that I could run into a future employer, or really anyone that I want to impress, and I would be mortified if their opinion of me was that I didn’t care about my appearance at all. That says something about your personality, and many people think that if you don’t care about your appearance, then you probably don’t care about anything else like your job, or your house, etc. It’s not fair, but it’s perception. So while everyone has their own ideas about this, mine is simple. Dress to impress. You never know who God is going to place in your path today, and you never know what opportunities you may be afforded, so you should try to look your best when you get them.

When Women Support Other Women, Incredible Things Happen

The title of my blog is one of my favorite sayings. It goes without saying that we should encourage one another on this journey through life, yet so often we hear or experience the exact opposite. People tear each other down, just to make themselves feel better, but reality is, it doesn’t make anyone better. It just causes pain. And then it starts a cycle. I have had a few toxic friendships where this has happened, and it’s important to me to not be one of those people.

I found myself thinking about the past and people who have put me down in an effort to put themselves up. Now, we all have made snarky comments, it’s a defense mechanism. But when I find myself making snarky comments, it doesn’t make me feel better, and it definitely doesn’t make me a good person. I become the person I don’t want to be. I felt bad, and because of that, I made a comment about someone else to make them feel bad too. That’s not who I want to be, I don’t want to tear someone down just because I feel bad about something they did or said to me. That’s lashing out, and it’s not beneficial to anyone. Me saying those snarky comments is no better than what others had said to me. This led to me start thinking about toxic “friendships” I had in high school, and even in college, and some of them made me feel like absolute crap. In their eyes, and their comments, I wasn’t pretty, or talented, and they were more than happy to tell me that. Not in such an open way of course, which actually makes it worse. We look to our friends for honesty, and also for support, and instead I was getting torn down without even realizing it. One instance I remember was after auditions for a musical. I have always been interested in theatre and acting, and while I’m not the best singer, I can match pitch and blend, which is all that’s needed in high school theatre chorus. The show involved singing, acting, and dancing, and since I wasn’t terrible at two of the three items (like I said, I love to sing, but I’m definitely not the best at it), I figured I had a shot of at least being cast in the chorus and background. Well, they released the cast list during our last period of the day, and because we had an awesome teacher, and were seniors (seniors always get away with more stuff) she let one of the girls go check the list since there were a lot of us that had auditioned in the class. Well she came back and announced to the class that everyone in my group except for me got in the show. Better luck next time. Well, I was disappointed, but I wanted to see what roles everyone got, and lo and behold, when I checked the list myself, I also was in the show. For some reason, it gave this girl pleasure to see me hurting and tell me that I wasn’t good enough to be in the show. I will never understand why she felt the need to do that, it was mortifying and it was bad enough I thought I hadn’t gotten in, but to have the whole class know it too, that was really sad. Needless to say, after high school I didn’t remain friends with that group. While that was only one instance, there were definitely more times that they decided to do little things like that to put me down.

Since then, I have always wondered why women are so mean and horrible to each other. I still don’t understand the point in making someone feel so terrible about themselves. It’s mean, cruel, and the world is cruel enough, we don’t need to turn on each other. It was empowering for me to join a sorority and actually have women support me (and not in a fake way either). Of course there were girls in there that did the same things my old “friends” did, and I just did my best to avoid those girls. But there were true friends in there too, those that are supportive, and will be happy to give you a reality check, but not at your expense. They want what’s best for you, and they are happy to scream in the bleachers as you graduate, listen to you talk endlessly about the audition you went to, and celebrate when you get cast. Those are the women you want in your support system. The women who, even when things aren’t going their way, are still able to be happy for you and your accomplishments. The women who won’t put you down just to make themselves feel better. They know their own strengths, and are confident in them.

It’s so cliche to say that everyone is different, but it’s true. And it’s amazing what we can do when we support one another rather than tear each other down. If you’re an incredibly great singer or artist or writer, that doesn’t take away from another style of creativity that your friend has. There are so many variations of creativity, and no one style is better than another. You can be an extremely talented individual, while still having other aspects that you aren’t as talented in. That doesn’t lessen your talents, it just makes you a human being. I strive for perfection, but I know that I will never sing like Taylor Swift. It’s just not a reality for me. Same thing with art, I will never be able to draw or paint beautiful pieces of artwork, but that doesn’t mean I’m not creative in other ways. Don’t put someone down for a lack of creativity because their creativity is different from yours. Instead, push them up and celebrate the talents they do have.

It can be extremely difficult to remember your worth in a world that is constantly telling you what you’re lacking. We have magazines telling us we are either too fat or too thin, or not attractive enough in some way, and then we have rejection from jobs, and internships, and other career opportunities that we had our hearts set on. Let’s face it, the world is harsh. Surround yourself with a group that doesn’t make life any harder than it needs to be. Finding positive people who will help push you forward is difficult, but it is so worth it. I have a great support system of women who have pushed and succeeded in life, and help push me and others to succeed in life as well. They don’t put others down to make themselves better, they make themselves better by supporting others. They share the talents they have, and they focus on improving themselves by helping improve others.

It’s the Little Things

Today has been a rough day. I had issues with clients, didn’t sleep well the night before, wasn’t able to exercise this morning, the list just goes on and on, and as I’m finally trying to de-stress and prepare for another day (it’s only Wednesday, two more days to go!) I was reflecting on what happened today, and realized there were a few bright spots, and they were completely unexpected, but helped me to feel better during some of the downsides of the day.

After having a flood of clients that had some issue or another (I’m not going to bore you with the details, but it wasn’t a slow email day, we’ll put it that way), I got one that was fine with what I said and included a smiley in the email. Now, to most, that’s not a big deal. But after having a super stress filled day, I really appreciated having that client send me that. Now, they had no idea that I was having a rough day, or wasn’t in the best mood (sleep deprivation, it’s bad), so to them, it wasn’t a big deal. But to me, it made me smile and helped my mood. Sure, it’s a small thing, but it was a happy client, and that meant something to me. It was a nice gesture.

Which then got me thinking, how often do we not do something so simple as smile at someone we pass by, or wave at the neighbor as we drive past them? If we don’t know them, many of us don’t do this. Is it because we think the person may look at us funny? Or may wonder, why are they waving at me? Are we really going to be so wrapped up in our own worlds that we care? A person smiling may be what someone needs after a terrible day. Maybe they have a sick child at home, and they’re grabbing soup for their sick kid, and a smile would help them as they rush through the store. You never know what someone else is going through, and you never know what little thing could make their lives better.

There are some definite things that definitely don’t help though, even if you mean well. I’ve had bad days and had to run to the store after, and someone (usually some guy) would tell me to “stop looking so glum and smile.” Do NOT ever tell me to smile. I am a very cheerful person usually, and someone telling me to smile is not a good way to make me smile. It’s a good way to piss me off even more. So please, you can smile at someone, but don’t tell them what to do. You don’t know what is going on in their lives, I had just recently had a family member diagnosed with cancer when this incident occurred, so I really was having a hard time finding things to smile about. So be considerate, because telling someone to stop looking down, probably isn’t doing much to actually help their mood. If anything, that could make it worse.

So I challenge you: be extra kind to everyone you meet. Wave at the neighbors (even the ones with the obnoxious kid who has hit your car with a baseball), smile and say hello to the cashier at the store (they deal with people all shift long, they could be having a rough day too), and maybe do something small for someone. A little kindness goes a long way, and even if it is something as simple as a smile.

Overall though, I challenge you to stop and find little things to be happy about and grateful for. It’s easy to get wrapped up in our problems, and issues, and it can be easy to forget about the little blessings that are placed in your life. Maybe, it’s a cool breeze after an extremely hot day. Or maybe, it’s the smell of citrus in the air. Or seeing a rainbow after a storm. Sure, those are all little things that we rarely take into account because we are so busy rushing around. But sometimes, those are the little things that can help lift our spirits when life gets tough.

Whatever You Do, Follow Through

One thing I’ve noticed about people is a huge lack of follow through. It’s really a simple concept. You say you’re going to do something, so you do it. Now, there are instances where things happen. Your tire goes flat, you are completely exhausted and fall asleep, or something else unavoidable crops up. Shit happens, and that’s completely understandable. What’s not understandable is when you just choose not to do something because you don’t feel like it, or it doesn’t sound good anymore.

I’m big on follow through, whether it’s at my house, or at my job, or with my friends. In a job, it’s a little easier to be held accountable because you have clients or your boss waiting for you to complete your task, and there are consequences if you don’t actually follow through. In life, there are consequences, but they usually aren’t as severe as disciplinary action, or losing your job because you didn’t do something.

I believe in lists. I love making to-do lists for each weekend, and lists of goals, and even pro/con lists when it comes to making a decision. Lists help keep me organized, and stay on top of things. They also help me stay accountable with following through on things I said I would do. So let’s say, paint the bathroom was on my list. I don’t hate painting, but bathrooms are tricky with all the tight corners, so it’s not my most favorite thing to do. Well, my bathroom has been this hideous lime green, and I hate it. It’s small and cramped, and the color makes it feel even smaller. So this weekend, I got up early Saturday morning and went out and bought paint and primer, and all the other tools I needed to paint. It went on my to-do list Friday, and it’s something I said I would do. So Saturday afternoon, I emptied everything out, and started painting. I figured, it’s paint and primer, it’ll cover in about two coats, can’t be that bad. Boy was I wrong, that room took FOUR coats of paint, and some touch ups near the ceiling and door. It was absolutely exhausting, and I could have spent my Saturday night doing something else, something that was actually fun. But, I said I would paint the bathroom, and gosh darn it, I was going to get that room painted. It wasn’t fun, my back is killing me today, but it’s painted and that horrible green is a thing of the past. I followed through on what I said I would do, even though I really really would have loved to just walk away and leave it. But that’s not how it works.

Same thing goes with promises made to friends, family, etc. It’s frustrating when your friend says they’re going to help you with something whether it’s moving to a new apartment, or installing a new ceiling fan, or anything, and then they cancel. In most cases, you’ve counted on them to come help, because you need a second pair of hands. And while in some cases it’s completely understandable that they can’t (flat tire, medical emergency, migraine, etc.) in other cases because they just didn’t want to wake up early, or had something better pop up, it’s not so understandable. It’s just ridiculous at that point. Sure, not many people actually like moving. I love packing, hate the loading everything onto the truck part, and I am only so/so on the whole unpacking thing. But I still have helped friends move, as well as different family members. No, I don’t want to spend my whole weekend working up a sweat, but it’s worth it to help my friends and spend quality time with them. Same thing with helping a friend clean out a garage; it’s nasty hard work, but if you say you’re going to do it, then you need to do it.

Sometimes we don’t always get to do what we want. It’s a hard lesson to take as kids, and even sometimes as adults, but it’s an important one. When people count on you to do something, you really should follow through on what you say you’re going to do. Now, don’t get me wrong, I have definitely not followed through on some things, and it’s cost me. It’s caused issues with friends, and we’ve had disagreements and fights. Same thing with paperwork, I have pushed that off rather than following through on my agreement to get it filled out and sent in, and that’s definitely caused it’s fair share of problems for me. But, I have tried to learn from my mistakes and do stuff, even if I really don’t feel like it or want to. Sometimes, it’s more important to do stuff for friends because they want to, than it is for yourself. Not to mention, you build trust. Trust me on this, following through and going the extra mile for some things is completely worth it. Find a way to help yourself follow through, whether that’s a to-do list to make sure you get tasks checked off, or if it’s telling multiple people about it, that way they’ll help hold you accountable. Follow through is such an important aspect in our lives, it affects us in work, school, friendships, relationships, fitness, everything. They say it takes 28 days to create a habit. So, for the next 28 days, really work hard on following through on things. You’ll feel better, and you’ll create a great habit of following through on your word. I guarantee you, it’ll be worth it.

Keeping It Short

It’s the middle of summer here in Florida, and I am absolutely melting. The heat index is reaching over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, and it is miserable. What’s even worse, trying to dress for work has become a nightmare. I work for a digital marketing company, so we keep things very casual at the office, and I know many other people that work in a laid back environment where business casual is not the required dress code. It can be a little difficult to adjust to at first. I worked at a retail store, where certain hair and makeup and outfit requirements had to be met, so dressing in a more relaxed style was not a luxury that I was afforded at first. So coming in to my then new job, I was definitely overdressed for quite a bit of time. There was also a factor of I worked with all guys, and wasn’t sure that it was appropriate for me to wear shorts, even though everyone else in the office was. So here’s the solution I found to it.

I definitely am not advising anyone to wear those short shorts, or daisy dukes, that’s not appropriate for work no matter what (unless you work at a place where that’s part of the uniform, but in any type of office setting, no way, not cool). However, there are plenty of shorts out there that are perfect for a casual office, and a great way to combat the summer heat. Lilly Pulitzer has multiple 5 inch Callahan shorts that are lightweight, comfortable, adorable prints, and best of all, long enough to be work-friendly. Also, J Crew chino shorts are great, they’re also longer, and therefore work appropriate. There are some things that you need to be careful about though, when wearing shorts to the office. I always make sure that if I choose to wear shorts that day to work, to make sure I don’t wear a shirt that is low cut, or strappy, or a tank top. I don’t want to be dressed for the weekend, I just want to be comfortable. So it’s important to find that happy medium in your wardrobe.

One of my favorite work outfits that include shorts as a piece of it also includes the Express Portofino shirt. I have both styles, the sleeveless (which isn’t sleeveless, just check out the pic below to see) as well as the three quarter sleeve style. Both are extremely comfortable lightweight options, that are not low cut, or show off too much skin. The sleeveless Portofino shirt would pass my high school’s dress code. Three fingers wide, and you’re good.

Just make sure when you’re wearing shorts to the office, that you’re still dressing modestly. I can’t stress that enough. It’s becoming more acceptable to wear shorts in office settings, but you must do so tastefully. So no spaghetti strap tanks with your bra straps hanging out, and your short little daisy dukes that barely cover your bum. That’s not acceptable, or classy. Instead, go with longer shorts or capri style pants, and go with a sleeved top, or a tank top that has straps at least three fingers thick. Make sure it’s not a v-neck, and that your chest is properly covered.

I’ve included a picture of the outfit I wore to work last Friday. It was cool, comfortable, and I was completely confident that I was still dressed work appropriately. Check it out! Pants are J Crew chinos, top is a sleeveless Portofino from Express, and shoes are some no name from Rack Room (really comfy though!).

Don’t Settle For Less

So lately a few of my friends have been having some relationship issues. And in some cases, it’s just the usual bumps that go along with being in a relationship and sharing your life with someone else. In others, I am noticing that they’re starting to wonder if they made some smart decisions, or if they’re actually settling in their current relationship. Now, I’m not going to share who or what, or anything like that, but instead, I’m going to offer some advice. Don’t settle. I’ve been single for a while now, and I think my last couple of relationships were me settling. I overlooked things that usually would be big red flags, and why? Because I was tired of being single. Yeah, I said it, I didn’t want to be single anymore, so I overlooked some serious issues, and jumped into a relationship anyway. Guess how well that worked out for me. Yeah, not so great. So instead, I’m going to go through why you should never settle. I can assure you, I won’t be settling again. It’s not worth it, and for all I know, it distracted me from meeting the right person.

I am a big believer in soul mates, and finding that one true love. It’s what makes me a hopeless romantic. I also believe that God places people in your lives for a reason, to teach you something. I definitely learned a lot from my past couple relationships about settling, and about what I really want in life. Now, everyone is different, but for me, there are some definite things that I can’t settle on again. I tried to ignore them, or even say it wasn’t so bad, and I could look past it, but I realized that simply wasn’t true. I wasn’t happy, and I was constantly wondering if there was someone else who would be a better fit for me. That’s not fair to me, or to the guy I was seeing at the time. So to me, it’s very simple. Don’t settle.

With one of my exes, one thing I settled on was ambition. I am a very ambitious person, I want to do well in life, and I’m always looking to succeed, and move forward, whether that is in my job, or becoming a healthier person, or becoming a better person. I want to be an asset to any company I am with, and I want to help the company and myself to grow and become better. That means I am always hustling. It means sometimes staying late at work, the day before you’re supposed to go on vacation, because you promised a client some work. It means doing extra work around the house, because you want to help your family out, and don’t want them to stress, even if you’ve been at work for 10 hours. It means getting outside and going for a run even if you don’t want to, because you know it’s going to help you be a healthier person. I am big on improving myself and moving up and forward in life. With that being said, I don’t necessarily have my whole life figured out. With that being said though, I can’t stand someone who has no idea what they’re doing with their lives, and because of that, they just hit pause. They’re not in school learning something, they aren’t working in a field to gain knowledge or experience. They’ve just paused, and are working part time, spending too much time on the internet, and just floating around until something finds them. That to me, isn’t what an ambitious person does. Even if you aren’t in the dream job you always imagined, you can always learn something new, and add to your skill set. There’s a saying, “jack of all trades, master of none, but better than a master of one.” I hadn’t heard the full saying until today, but it really makes a difference, now doesn’t it. I may not be mastering this one area, but I am learning a few different things, that will be useful to me. Imagine if I just focused intently on one thing; I’d miss out on so many different opportunities. And by having all these other “trades” I am actually preparing myself to have a wide skill set, especially when I do get that dream job. So what I like to see in a guy, is someone who is doing the same thing. Maybe he’s not settled in his dream career yet, maybe he doesn’t even know what he wants to do with his life. But, he is trying new things, he is pushing forward, even if he doesn’t know where forward is going. He’s trying to make a better life for himself, maybe he’s even helping his family out. Whatever it is, he’s doing something. Rather than just sitting around, hoping life will give him a good kick in the direction he needs to go. I tried pretending that this wasn’t important to me, and all it did was make me unhappy and a bit of a nag. I don’t want to nag my significant other to go find a good job, to start thinking about his future and what he wants to do. That’s not something that sounds fun to me. Supporting someone who has already thought about his future and is working to improve himself, now that sounds like something I could handle. But don’t complain about going nowhere if you’re not trying to move forward. That just shows a lack of ambition.

Don’t settle on a pushover. I see so many relationships where it is clear that one person is more dominant than the other, and one person is always getting bulldozed into doing something they didn’t want to do. What a boring relationship. In my opinion, a good relationship is agreeing on the big things, and knowing that it’s ok to argue a bit about the little things. Now, in some relationships, one person just gets what they want. The other is so willing to keep the peace, that they just bend immediately to the other’s wishes. In other cases, you argue for a little, discuss the pros and cons, look at other lamps. This isn’t the end of the relationship, it’s not even a big deal, but it’s a discussion, and it’s allowing you to learn something about your partner. Rather than just caving, you instead are fighting for what you like, and more likely than not, you will be able to find a compromise. This also makes it a little more exciting. You’ve gotten to talk with your SO about something new, and discuss reasoning, and you’ve learned some things. Imagine how boring it would be to just have someone agree with you on everything. I would hate that. I know I’m wrong on certain things, and it’s nice to have someone challenge your thoughts and ideas sometimes. That’s how really great ideas are born. Through challenge, you have to think through things a little more than if someone is just always nodding along. Plus, having someone call you out when you are in the wrong, is not always the most pleasant, but it’s important when you’re growing as a human being. Relationships aren’t always about finding someone who completely agrees with every thought you have, I mean with that attitude, you may as well date yourself. It’s about finding someone who challenges your thinking, makes you think outside the box. Challenges you to try new things, and see things from a different point of view. Sometimes it’s refreshing to have an argument here and there.

Don’t settle just because you’re “(fill in the blank) years old.” When I was a kid, I had my whole life planned out. By 25 I was supposed to be engaged, and married by 27, and kids by 30. As I am turning 24 this November, and am still single, it’s fairly safe to say that my plans are going to be shifted a little bit. Now, with that said, I am not concerned. I believe in soul mates, and that there is a plan, and my plan was different from God’s plan. His timing is always best, and I’m not going to attempt to mess with that by settling for someone just because he is around. I urge you to do the same. It doesn’t matter how old you are, if it’s meant to be, it’ll feel right, and if it’s not, don’t push it and try to settle because you’re approaching the cut off age that you set for yourself. People don’t have expiration dates, and it doesn’t mean that if you don’t have someone now, that you’ll never have someone. It’s hard to believe that at times, but you need to just ignore the pressures of society to find someone. Everyone does things at their own time, and sometimes what you think is right, just isn’t in the plan. Don’t fight that. Go with the flow, and keep your chin up. What’s meant to be will be. Don’t force it, and don’t settle for someone that doesn’t make you completely happy.

Don’t settle because everyone else is getting married. I have plenty of friends that have gotten engaged, married, and are starting families, some even younger than me. There’s a lot of pressure when everyone around you is getting married, or engaged, and it makes you feel like you need to do that too. Don’t fall for it. Everyone gets married at different times, and there is no “right time” for marriage or getting engaged. Peer pressure is rough, especially when it’s pressure that you’re putting on yourself. Keep in mind, you aren’t your friends. Just because they’ve met Mr. Right, doesn’t mean the guy you’re with is your Mr. Right. Instead, if you’re having doubts and hesitations, don’t try to push past them, and settle because you’re comfortable, and all your friends are in relationships, so you need to be too. It’s just not worth it, and it won’t lead to happiness if you settle and just decide it’s good enough. Eventually, it won’t be good enough, and you may have missed another opportunity.

It’s tempting to just settle in a relationship that is ok or that you’re comfortable in. But there is a difference between settling and bending on a few things. Don’t settle for any reason, even if it seems like time is running out on your personal timeline. Life is too short to settle, so if he/she doesn’t make you happy, and you don’t enjoy spending time with them, then you need to get out. It’s so important to be happy in a relationship, and know exactly what you can bend on, and what you can’t. If there are serious issues, those aren’t going to go away, they will only get worse. So don’t settle, just because you’re old enough to settle down, or there is pressure to do so. Don’t settle for less than you deserve.

One Boring Relationship Please

I’ll take one boring relationship please. What does that even mean? Well, one thing I can tell you, is I don’t want to be bored in a relationship. That’s completely different from what I mean. Let me explain.

Everyone knows that exciting relationships are fun, and it’s great to go out on dates all the time that are fun and thrilling. I’ve gone on a few that are fun, but not every relationship can have you eat dinner at a country club, and party at a marina. Or go on a helicopter ride for the afternoon. That’s an exciting activity, and can make any date seem fun. What I’m looking for though, is something that will last. Since I’m not a celebrity, odds of me having those kind of dates every single day are very unlikely. So instead, since I live in the real world, where there are bills to pay and I don’t have a million dollars, I want a boring relationship.

I want a relationship where we can spend time together doing the most mundane boring things, like grocery shopping, and we make it fun. Or I’m sitting on my side of the couch, and he’s on his, and we are both reading or working on our computers, separately but still together. While I’d like to think that we will always have these extremely exciting moments in our lives, to me it’s more important that we have these quiet moments together. That’s what makes a relationship. That’s what keeps a relationship strong. If you can’t enjoy these quiet moments together, and the every day realities of life, then I hate to break it to you, but you aren’t meant to be. A relationship shouldn’t be about always entertaining each other, you should be able to work separately, in the same room and be content with that.

For so many, the idea of a relationship is doing these exciting dates together, while getting to know a person. Maybe they go hot air ballooning or go to a theme park. Don’t get me wrong, doing stuff like that is fun, and I think it should definitely be penciled in. But at the same time, just sitting together having a cup of coffee while you watch the sunrise can be fun and exciting, if you’re with the right person.

Now, all of that may not be the most exciting. Music and movies certainly tell us that we should be with the person that makes our hearts pound, and gives us that thrill and rush. In those movies, there’s also usually a car chase, or some explosion of some sort. Or you know, aliens attacking. With things like that romanticized, it’s easy to think that you need excitement in your relationship. But when you think about what you do every single day of your life. Your day to day experiences, they usually aren’t all that thrilling. You get up, go to work, and come home. Now maybe you do some pretty amazing things after work and on the weekends, but you can’t go mountain climbing every day. For those quiet days, and afternoons, think about what you want. Do you want a man who is climbing up your window just for the thrill of it? I don’t. I want the man that is by my side, while we watch a Netflix marathon of our favorite shows. Sure, it’s not the most exciting life. But it’s more likely what I’m going to do on a Friday night. I mean, it’s that or skydiving, and jumping out of perfectly good planes, not really my thing. It may not be good for you, but for me, a boring relationship sounds great.

One thing I’ve noticed, between my dating history and others, the relationships that tend to last the longest, are the boring ones. The ones where each party is happy doing their own thing at times, and enjoys spending time together, even if they’re just spending time at the house. Sometimes, that’s all you need in a relationship. If you’re in it just for the exciting dates, you should probably rethink your commitment to this person; odds are, you like the dates, but if you two had some quiet time together, would you be able to handle it? Would you be able to just go sit out under the stars, and have comfortable silence? Or would you get bored, because it’s not the person, it’s the activity? Think about it. I don’t want to get bored with my significant other because we aren’t doing something exciting for the day. I want every day with him to be an adventure, even if the most adventurous thing we do is go the Target for new towels.

Powerful Women

Women go through a lot. Each month, we are visited by Mother Nature, and forced to go about our lives, despite the fact that a large majority of women suffer through intense pain each month with that visitor. From there, when we don’t get the monthly visitor, we actually grow another human being in our bodies. That’s mind boggling in itself. My Little sister is pregnant right now, she just started her third trimester, and is handling her pregnancy beautifully. But I know, this is just the beginning. She is going to go through childbirth, and then raising her beautiful baby girl, and sending her off to school, and college, and becoming a grandmother. All from a baby bump in her stomach. Our bodies take a beating. Each month, we get an idea of what contractions feel like (thanks for that, because the bleeding part isn’t enough), and we just go about our business taking pain pills, and hogging the heating pad. I work with all guys, and I guarantee you that none of them even know when I’m dealing with that pain, because our society has trained me to just keep going. Sure, I’m in so much pain that I feel sick, or I literally don’t want to move. But they don’t know any of this, because I have to just keep going with my life. I mean, it’s a monthly event, I can’t take off work just for that pesky visitor I have. Let me tell you, it’s exhausting. By the end of the day, I’m so worn out, I want to just fall asleep on the couch, because I have no more energy left.

This is just a monthly thing. All over the world, women are sending their babies off into the world, and praying that they find their way and are able to catch those lofty dreams. Women sacrifice so much for their children. My mom gave up so much for me, just to make sure I was comfortable. And I know, when she had a bad cold, she didn’t want to take me to my ballet class, she just wanted to curl up and sleep; but she didn’t. Instead, she made dinner, and then drove me to ballet, where she then sat for an hour watching me and a bunch of other miniature ballerinas twirling around a dance floor. The sacrifices that she has made for me are numerous, and there is no way I can ever begin to repay her. When we were barely able to pay bills, she still managed to get me a beautiful prom dress that she shouldn’t have. But because it was my senior prom, she made it happen. She has put herself through physical and emotional pain to be there for me in ways that no one else would. That’s how powerful a mother’s love is. She will go through pain and suffering and not know how she’s going to pay the rent, and not mention a word of it to her child, because she wants that child to have a perfect life. She will put herself below her family, and even when she has absolutely no energy to move off the couch, the minute she hears “MOM!” she is up and running to her child, just to make sure everything is ok.

When you hurt, your mom hurts. She goes through every breakup with you, and her heart aches simply because yours does. She may have hated him, but she hurts over the fact he dumped you through a text because you’re hurting. She can’t stand the guy that led you on, and then disappeared without a word. Because he hurt her baby, and that hurts her. Women go through so much physical and emotional pain, and it’s a truly remarkable thing to think of all women go through for others, especially their children.

I want to have kids in the future, and I want to be able to be strong for them. I also don’t know how I will ever be half the mom that my mom is. Every setback is just a bump in the road, and every heartache is something that you push through for her. There are times when I want to cry just thinking about all she has had to go through, and how ungrateful I have been at times. And she never cares. Even when the one causing her pain is me, she continues to love me through it. I can’t imagine the kind of self sacrifice it takes to be a mom, and I only hope I can step up to the plate. I do know with this type of role model, I have a great guide to follow. And hopefully, with her guidance, and God’s trials, I will have the strength to follow through. To be the one jumping up and finding energy somehow when I’m physically feeling extremely weak. To be able to put my own thoughts and feelings aside, just for someone else. And to survive the heartbreak all over again, when my child gets hurt by someone.

Women go through a lot. Between the emotional struggles, the physical pain, and everything in between that life throws at them, women have to handle a lot. Women still have to fight for equality in the workplace, and even at the store. But, because of the strength we have been instilled with, we fight on. For our future children, for our future fellow women. As far as what I have seen, women are some of the strongest people, put in some of the tiniest bodies. Not someone to ever be underestimated.

I know it’s a week past Mother’s Day, but I wasn’t able to write about this then because I was spending valuable time with my role model, and best friend. I was trying to pay back my mom a little bit of what she gives me every single day. So this one is for you. To the strongest person I know.

Why I Remain The Perpetually Single Girl

I have been perpetually single my whole life. I date here and there, but it never seems to last long, or work out, and usually it’s me that feels it isn’t working out. That’s because I am a hopeless romantic at heart, and I have extremely high expectations. Now, maybe you’ll say I’m just picky or even that I have my expectations set too high. That’s your opinion and you’re welcome to it.

Now here’s my point of view. I don’t play games. I think playing hard to get is dumb, if I like you and you like me, I don’t see the point in playing games and hard to get, and acting like you’re not interested. If you act like you’re not interested, I’m not going to waste my time on you. You’re sending me signals that you don’t want anything more, and I’m going to respect that and protect my heart. I also don’t think it’s fair to string anyone along, so I try not to do it, and it just causes pain for the person being led on. I’ve been led on before, it’s not fun, especially if you’ve fallen for that person. It almost hurts worst than if they just acted uninterested or said they weren’t because then you didn’t have the false hope that it was going to work out. Instead, just say not interested, and then the interested party will have a chance to move on. But don’t talk about getting together all the time, or act like you’re interested if you’re just bored.

I am not the girl who will sleep with you on the first date. If that is all you’re interested in, then please move along and make way for someone who is actually interested in getting to know me. I value myself and my body more than to just give that away after one date. Sorry to disappoint, but I have a belief system that puts that on a high level, and it’s something that should be done with someone you love, not a random stranger. If you want that right away, you’ve found the wrong girl. That ended quite a few potential relationships for me, which is fine. I need someone who actually cares about me, not just getting in my pants. Again, those high standards kicking in.

I will continue living my life, and I want you to keep living yours too. I am not going to cancel my girls night outs just because you don’t want me getting drinks with my friends. Too bad, I have friends, not all of them are in relationships, and I’m not going to abandon them because you want me to. I don’t want you to cancel guy’s nights either. We are both adults in this relationship, which means there is a certain level of trust. I will trust you until you show me a reason not to. I need you to do the same and trust that I would never cheat on you. That means, I don’t want to have you texting me all night when I said I was out with my friends. Trust me that I’m out with my girlfriends just having a good time.

If I’m in a relationship with someone, I want to talk to them. Not all the time, and I understand life is hectic, and we can’t talk on the phone every day. That being said, I will lose my patience with you if you are constantly calling or texting. If I said I have to work, then I have to work. Don’t call me during work hours just to chat, that’s just going to piss me off. I respect your boundaries, you have to respect mine too.

Maybe I am too picky, maybe I expect too much of guys, I’m not sure which it is, and honestly I don’t care. That is who I am and how I feel, and I am not going to compromise myself or my beliefs just to be in a relationship. I tried that once, said it didn’t matter, and guess what, that relationship ended badly. I tried to compromise who I was, and say it didn’t matter, but it did, and whether he knew it or not, he could tell.

I don’t mind being single right now, because I am a hopeless romantic, and I believe the man who doesn’t play games, isn’t clingy or controlling, and just wants me for me is out there. I haven’t met him yet, or maybe I have and it just wasn’t meant to be then. Either way, I believe that I will find him, maybe not now, maybe in a week. And it’ll be great, because neither of us will compromise on anything. He will be able to be himself, and I will be able to be myself too. And that to me, is one of the most important parts. And until I find him, I’m not going to fall in the trap of attempting to find someone. When it’s meant to be, it will happen. I have faith in that.

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