Rest is just as important as progress to achieve success

 

 

rest and progress
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Hey ya’ll! It’s been a minute, but I’m back! It’s been a busy and crazy set of months. I hope that everyone is well and is staying safe during the quarantine and with everything going on with COVID-19. It’s definitely been an unprecedented time with everything going on, but even with all the loss that many have experienced as a result it can still be a time of reflection, reset, and revamping how we do life in general. This time has really shown us what’s truly important to us and how vital rest on both an emotional, mental, and physical as well as spiritual level are to our overall well-being.

Rest is far from being in a state of stagnancy or inactivity, rather a time to examine whether we are focused on being as much as we are doing. In fact, it is in the being that we are truly able to activate and resonate with the truth of what we are actually PURPOSED to be DOING instead of doing for doing’s sake. It is in our quiet moments, our rest and recovery periods, we begin to realize that that we’ve been doing for the purpose of others that offers no fulfillment and how we can be of better service to ourselves and others, what depletes us, what energizes us, what warms our hearts, what breathes new life into us, and even discover the next great thing that will propel us to the next level of success.

When we get into the habit of just doing for doing sake, we are out of alignment not only within ourselves and with our connection to others but also to divine alignment that we were created for. As much as doing is great, it is often underrated how much rest is the batteries in our clock that make things tick that allow us to progress to success, thus one cannot exist without the other. Rest allows us to connect our being and doing in a purposeful and passionate way. Being allows us to be guided by our true north, character, integrity and what is ultimately right for us. Being connects our hearts to our head so that our decisions are not mechanical and out of touch and effective to affect those that the results are meant to reach. Being keeps us holistically healthy, because we begin to feel when things are not right on every level and can pivot to correct and realign. Being keeps us connected to humanity because it reminds us of our own fragility but also interconnectedness to the next person. Being allows us to show up present and offer our best to the world without being burnt out, on autopilot, or without intention. In our rest periods we get to understand the purpose behind our doing and what vision is best to build that, our doing just guides those actions into reality. May we never lose touch with that, and in those times you feel as though rest must take a backseat to progress and success, remind yourself that rest is the engine to drive your personal life vehicle to success?

rest and progress
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What does rest look like though? It could be a variety of things based off what speaks to your soul and guides your heart but here are a few ways to offer rest to your mind, heart, body, and soul:

  1. Meditation
  2. Journaling
  3. Listening to  soothing music
  4. Dancing to inspiring, upbeat, or uplifting music
  5. Aromatherapy or burning candles and just enjoying relaxation
  6. Often underrated : SILENCE
  7. Sipping your favorite beverage from your favorite cup
  8. Painting, crafts, pottery and anything where you can pour all your heart and soul into a creative energy without a certain expectation or outcome
  9. Coloring or drawing
  10. Writing
  11. Self care (whatever that looks like)
  12. Reading a great book and truly getting lost in it
  13. Redecorating or making your living space comfortable and conducive to you and your peace and joy
  14. Spiritual practices that bring you closer to center and clarity
  15. Sleep or naps that allow you to feel rested
  16. Periods of time away (whether a vacation or staycation) that allow you to relax and unwind as well as reflect on the simplicity and goodness of life

These are just a few to get you started but whatever makes you peaceful and centered and allows you clarity and joy is something that should regularly be infused into the fabric of your life and daily or regular routines.

What are some ways you’ve found to rest during the quarantine? What does rest look like to you? Do you find that you’ve had to teach yourself how to have rest within? Leave me a question or note in the comments, I love to hear from you all and thank you so much as always to each of you that have come on this journey with me.

It’s time to unpack, undress, and address

Hey ya’ll! The last blog I wrote and this quarantine got me to thinking about how we need to really take regular time to  unpack, undress and address those things that we push down, hold back, hide, or simply pack away in the corner to deal with later. (Shout out to those forgotten shoes, accessories, and tops we keep promising we’ll wear or find something to pair with) While this particular topic could relate to our literal possessions and belongings, what I believe we have the tendency to keep hidden or ignore are those things that trigger us or push us to our next level of self-love and a greater understanding of self.

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This quarantine has given us the opportunity (if we choose to take it and really honor it) the opportunity  to really undress those hurts, the deep emotional wounds, our triggers, the idiosyncrasies of our own personality, what energy we bring into our own lives and the lives of those we love (whether through deep self-reflection or our flaws reflected as a mirror through more intentional interaction with those we love) and the opportunity to really assess who we are and how we heal those things that keep us from stepping into our fullness. I know for me personally, I’ve enjoyed learning, bonding and sharing with those I love and hold dear during this time , examining how I can hold myself accountable and whether I have committed to the self growth and the values that help me get to that place, and really examining what triggers me, what that trigger represents for me,  and how to use that information to either be kinder to myself or develop a deeper sense of self love and awareness that allows me to show up for myself and others happy and whole.  It’s allowed me to uncover patterns, habits, and programming that affect my relationship  with self and others and determine what’s productive and what should be shed. Has this been easy? Far from it! But it’s been worthwhile and insightful.

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So how do you undress and address the things that keep you stuck or in a loop? In a word unadulterated vulnerability. There are moments where you will be okay and then you’ll get hit with a trigger from either a memory, place, thought, or action that either you or someone else takes and that you’d rather shrug off or forget because of the emotion and associated feelings connected to it. But acknowledge both the feelings and emotion even if that means you have to sit and cry, sit in silence, scream, write it out, allowing yourself to process all that comes up, and then examine what your initial thoughts are and why you feel this way and what led you to this feeling or emotion and what causes it when it happens. Don’t judge any of this process, just allow it because it’s very informative and beneficial to your own growth and personal development. And there is no right or wrong way to do this. If you find yourself overwhelmed or unable to process fully what comes up, don’t get discouraged; reach out to your support system as well as professionals and resources within your area or at your disposal designed to help you on your road to self mastery and improvement.  Nami.org has excellent resources to guide you through your journey and stay empowered and informed as you go and therapy as well as other related resources and tools are excellent tools to assist you in knowing that you’re not in this alone.

Unpack, undress, address
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The most important lesson that you can learn as you undress and address is when you stare at your reflection as you move through this journey (believe me, it’s a marathon not a sprint) that you’ll begin to truly walk in your truth and get comfortable with getting uncomfortable to help you get to a place that leads you to true freedom, peace, joy, and fulfillment and wholeness.

Unpack, undress, address
Photo Credit: GIPHY.com

What are some lessons you’ve learned on your journey to greater spiritual growth and personal development? What are some things you’ve been putting off address or undressing? Leave me a comment or question, I love hearing from you and appreciate the support!

Letting Go in 2018

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I am so grateful for this blogging journey. This month marks my 1 year anniversary since embarking on what has been a beautiful experience. With that in mind, I am looking forward to all that 2018 will bring and the amazing things I will be a part of. I want to say thank you to each person that has followed my journey thus far and welcome to those who will join me this year. I am really looking forward to 2018. Why you ask? 2017 was hard and stretched me in every way possible. Mentally. Physically. Emotionally. Spiritually. Just the whole 9. There were so many moments where I was just ready to give up on it all. I was exhausted, burnt out, and was consistently looking at God like ” Okay what gives? What lesson/s am I supposed to be learning from all these things happening and seemingly happening all at once?” I wasn’t sure what to expect for 2018 but I was holding steadfast to my faith but I now know looking back with hindsight it was God’s grace and love that brought me through. Some of my darkest days, my hardest, saddest, unbearable times riddled with nights of anxiety, insomnia, and days battling depression and not knowing or quite understanding why a lot of my days felt like a longer remake of Ground Hog’s Day.

 

I knew God was doing something in me and hadn’t left me but I just couldn’t make sense of it all. Then it hit me    The Holy Spirit tapped me on my shoulder and was like ” Hey you’re carrying on a lot of things I never meant for you to carry, and definitely not on your own” I knew God kept giving me fresh breath in my lungs  DAILY because someone somewhere needed what I had to offer. I had a purpose that I hadn’t yet realized.  Someone somewhere  needed the new strength that I’d grown through a very tumultuous year. And I couldn’t give up on myself or my dreams and heart’s desires because they hadn’t materialized yet or be taken under by the cares of this life and neither can  you.

So I am here to share and encourage you to let go in 2018 anything that keeps you from becoming your best self. I’m definitely into numerology and I realized that 2017 (the number 7) was the number of completion and God unbeknownst to me at the time was completing a lot of things in me through a very interesting molding process.  On the flip side of that 2018 (the number 8) is a year of new beginnings. Beginnings cannot truly begin without letting go of something and certain things having a proper ending or closure.

letting go
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Here are some of the things I am letting go of in 2018:

  • I am letting go of the idea of letting go. No matter what I face I will remain a resilient woman committed to moving ahead and keeping my faith and the hope that that produces close to my heart.
  • I am letting go of regrets. I spent a lot of time in 2017 being unnecessarily critical of myself for all the things that I  wasn’t instead of celebrating  everything that I was becoming and all that I already was.
  • I am letting go of the weight of fear, anxiety, depression and the pain associated with such and embracing the abundant life that I know God has prepared for me and has given me full access to.
  • I am letting go of overthinking and analyzing and trying to control every outcome and allowing all the good God has in store for me to just naturally flow to me.
  • I am letting go of unhealthy expectations, thought patterns, and beliefs.
  • I am letting go of people, places, and energies that I have outgrown realizing that as I approach life with  a hands open mentality I will be able to receive and give all that is intended for me to give and receive.
  • I am letting go of disappointments and understanding that they are all a part of God’s divine direction and plan.
  • I am letting go of anything that keeps me from being the complete and whole woman that God intended for me to be from the point of my creation.
  • I am completely letting go and allowing myself to be free and to walk in that freedom.
  • I am letting go of diminishing actions, words, and beliefs and celebrating all that is amazing about me and the life I’ve been gifted.
  •  I am letting go of replaying past pains and hurts and staying stuck because I allow those things to keep me glued to a moment or instance or incident.
  • I am letting go of defining myself with any measuring stick that does not align with God’s Word and truth about me being fearfully and wonderfully made.
  • I am letting go of my life and putting it back in God’s hands, the true masterpiece curator.

I pray that this inspires you to keep going and to never give up on yourself because there are such amazing plans in store for you! I want to encourage you today that when you let go of the version of your life you struggle and strive to make fit  you give God free access to make and mold your life into  the masterpiece he planned it to be long ago!

What are some things you are letting go of? I would love to hear from you!

3 ways to silence your inner critic and celebrate yourself

self love
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Here it goes again.  That little pesky voice that always undermines every SINGLE thing you do. “You probably shouldn’t eat that” “You’re not enough for….” ” You’ll never…” ” You might need to lose or gain weight” ” Why can’t you be more like…..”  And the list and  go on. While a little self reflection definitely allows you to assess whether you are actually moving forward to those things that are vital for you to accomplish, too much introspection can be nothing but a perfect recipe for disaster and blows to your self-esteem, self-worth and self-image. A plain old sneaky culprit of self hate.

inner critic
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Here a few quick tips to encourage kindness to yourself and embrace the fact that you are a wonderfully worthy individual who can and WILL manifest all the amazing things you are working hard for.

Actually celebrate yourself and eliminate all the negative self speeches and talk

self love
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Have you ever realized that it’s super easy to point out and celebrate all the amazing things you love about other people but extremely hard to highlight all the things you love about you? Take some time each day to love on yourself and be excited, proud, and motivated about all the amazing things you have done, are doing, and will do. There’s going to be enough negativity attempting to invade your head space, and pull on your energy without you adding to it. Make a physical list of all the reasons why you are amazing, deserving, and enough, post them somewhere you can see them, and speak those affirmations to yourself until they become reality to you. Because they are real and most of the stuff you are thinking that’s negative isn’t. Additionally, evaluate whether there are certain things you are allowing  be it people, places, shows, things you read, or ingest that are contributing to those feelings of low self worth.  Evaluate and remove or replace accordingly.

Evaluate whether that negative thinking is true, kind, or positive

self love
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As I stated earlier, sometimes self honesty is needed to get to where we want to go and figure out what’s keeping us from getting there. However,  I honestly believe we sometimes don’t take enough time to asses whether all the thoughts we are having are true, lovely, kind, or positive and if they even are reflective of our true identity.  Often those thoughts tend to be reflective of  things we’ve picked up along the way,  and CHOSEN to believe about ourselves. You can always choose your thoughts and if a thought doesn’t line up with your goals, energy, and what you are trying to manifest,  just reject it and send it on its way.

Cut yourself some slack and KEEP GOING

self love
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Rome wasn’t built in a day and you won’t be either. Give yourself a break sometimes. Why undermine yourself and all your hard work because it’s not to the point or vision you desire? You’re well on your way as long as you keep going and don’t give up. Keep dreaming, keep working, keep believing, keep loving yourself through the process, and be proud of who you are and who you’re on the way to becoming! Every day indeed won’t be beautiful or Instagram worthy,  but celebrate each little accomplishment and remember there’s purpose on your life, a pulse in your wrist, and breath in your lungs, so you might as well roll up those sleeves because there’s work to be done!

The only way that work stops being valid and far from completion is by listening to a voice that says all the reasons you can’t instead of all the strengths and victories that say you can! You’re wonderful, you’re here, you’re powerful, you’re enough, and that’s that!

self love
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Wellness: I’m fit but am I really living well?

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Photo Credit: freetoflywellness

 

With increasing research supporting healthier food alternatives and active lifestyles, the world has been turned on its head in terms of wellness, health and fitness. In fact, I am pretty proud to say I’ve been living a pretty health conscious lifestyle. I live for a good gym session and a good kale and spinach smoothie and veggie wrap or veggie stir fry. However, even with all that fixing of my physical health and eating habits I can’t help but think does my spirit fully reflect the work that I am putting my outer self through?

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I mean it’s great to be physically fit and to truly care for your temple but sometimes I have to admit that I am tougher on my inner me than I probably need to be. BUT to combat that I have been being intentional these days about being kinder to myself and putting into practice some #selfcare and being mindful especially when it comes to my thought life. Because let’s be honest it will not do me or anyone else much  good to be the strongest woman on the outside but  to be constantly struggling on the inside, or battling with negative self talk or things that don’t align with what God has to say of me.

So in an effort to practice being more healthy spiritually, which is directly related to your mental health and wellness, I’ve put into practice the following:

  1. Meditation (both on affirmations and the word of God)
  2. Intentionality of my thought life.
  3. Laughing with family and friends.
  4. Reading good books or listening to uplifting songs, podcasts, Youtube sessions, or any other similar media outlets that are good for/beneficial to my soul and spirit growth.
  5. Fueling my body with veggies, fruit, and essential vitamins and nutrients that will boost my mood.
  6. Exercising regularly.(heyyyy endorphins and good feelings!)
  7. Fighting negative emotions or spirits vigilantly.
  8. Celebrating myself, my accomplishments, and all the amazing things that are happening in it and focusing on those things.
  9. Focusing on what I want to be and how to get there, goals, the goodness of God and the progress I’ve already made.
  10. Counting my blessings.
  11. Living my life like it’s GOLDEN! (Shout out to Jill Scott!)
  12. Realizing all days aren’t going to be picture perfect but taking it all in stride and finding in the words of my best friend “my happy” and realizing my peace, joy, and contentment comes from God and flows outward from that place and is not dictated by circumstances or situations but by my identity as HIS cherished daughter.
  13. But even if I do have an emotional day or moment, not LIVING in that space and finding the courage and strength to keep moving past that.
  14. Being transparent with those close to me and realizing that those closest to me are built for helping me on my life journey.
  15. Self care (washing hair, soaking in the tub, eating my fave treat foods WITHOUT GUILT, dancing, taking a nap, whatever may feel right in that given moment and that contributes to getting back to a balanced place)
  16. Serving others and taking my eyes off myself.
  17. DOING NOTHING. (Despite what this world tells us or tries to feed us, sometimes rest/stillness is a beautiful thing)
  18. Taking a walk outside.
  19. Encouraging, pouring into, complimenting someone else and talking to a perfect stranger, giving someone else a smile or a bit of hope.
  20. Cooking/meal prepping, reading about new recipes and types of food
  21. Hanging out with family members, friends and loved ones and enjoying the simple things.
  22. The occasional burst of retail therapy.
  23. Foodie/ travel adventures
  24. Walk in confidence and realize all is well with my soul
  25. Call on my alter ego Ms. Thang (every woman has that part of herself she calls up when she needs that extra oomph)

Not an exhaustive list but this is what came to me offhand.

What are some of your favorite wellness promotion activities? Feel free to share! I would love to hear!  In the mean time take care of yourself and remember there are billions of people in the world but there will never be another you with all the gifts and talents God has imparted to you to share with the world so be WHOLE and WELL!

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