Categories
mental health

Embrace Your Weird

How many times have you been called weird or have been made fun of/teased?

I’ve been called weird a lot. I’ve also been teased a lot.

This used to bother me more when I was younger. As someone who just wanted to fit in, any time light was shined on a way I was different from the people around me, I changed that aspect. Girls weren’t interested in playing outside? I didn’t talk about it. No one wore South Pole? I stopped wearing it, even though it was my favorite brand. Throughout my childhood/young adolescence, I changed anything about myself that may have been seen as “weird” to those around me.

Sitting here now, I can look back with hindsight. I am an empath, so the emotions of those around me can be overwhelming (and they especially were when I was a kid). My love languages are Words of Affirmations and Acts of Service, so being made fun of or teased was something that really bothered me. Emotions and words are things that I’m sensitive to!

And now, I am weird. I am interested in “weird” things that the majority of people in my life are not interested in (or at least not as much as I am). Astrology, paganism, psychology, moon phases, the magick of nature, spirituality, plays and films, books, so much more. I am grateful to be at the point of not giving a FUCK because I’m learning I don’t need to change myself for anyone.

I am learning to embrace my weirdness.

I’m also grateful for my fiancé, who also embraces my weird. We goof off around with each other, we have conversations about things that aren’t super important but are on our minds, etc. And seeing him, someone who I admire, love me as I am and encourage me to be myself has jumpstarted my own journey to actually learning more about the things that interest me.

But the thing is, I didn’t need him to love me in order for my weird to “be okay”. I have always been okay – my weird has always been okay, I just was so preoccupied for so long to fit in.

And of course, the clichés we’re all familiar with come to mind – “If you feel you don’t fit in, you were born to stand out”. Maybe you’re not comfortable standing out. I’m not! I’d rather be behind-the-scenes of things. But whether I am cast or crew, in the spotlight or backstage – my true self and the things that make me different are still valid. I am still valid and worthy of existing exactly as I am without changing myself to fit the mold of someone else, or of what someone else may want for me.

If this sense of hiding yourself and not embracing your true self is never something that’s affected you – good for you, my dude! (not sarcasm) That’s incredible and I am so happy for you that you have always felt comfortable in your own skin.

But if you feel like you can only be your true self on your own or with a select few people, then I want you to know that I see you. Maybe you came across this and are in high school – and honestly that is the breeding ground for trying to fit in. After graduation, you most likely won’t keep in touch with many people and you’ll see just how much your environment affects your personality and your-wellbeing.

Whatever your situation is – let this be a reminder that you are allowed to be yourself.

Categories
mental health

Fuck It – The Motto

A lot of people advise to choose a word to embody your intention for the new year. I saw that all over social media last month – and that practice has never really felt like it fit all the way for me. Sure, I could jam the puzzle piece in the spot if I needed to, but choosing one word just didn’t feel like me.

I was scrolling through TikTok as one does and found this video and I immediately felt like it was made for me. And I remembered that “fuck it” was something I’d repeat to myself and it helped me overcome my anxiety and helped me kinda take back my sense of confidence. So we’re bringing that back!

🌼

I’m working on accepting my body as it is. I’m very early on in this process and I’m not a fan of most things about my physical body. But once I changed the narrative in my mind and started calling it my “meat bag” or my “organ vessel” or something like that, my focus started to shift from the way it looks to the way it feels. My worth as a person has absolutely nothing to do with the way I look but about the way I am. So if I’m wearing an outfit that I think looks good on the bed but then not that great when it’s on me? Fuck it – I’m going to wear it anyway.

There was a day the other week where I felt so anxious. I felt anxious about future plans – and I was really getting worked up about not knowing what was on the agenda. And I talked with myself about deep breathing through the anxiety and trusting that everything will work out and that I don’t need to have a minute-by-minute itinerary of what I’m going to do. 1. That’s an old version of me wanting control – the version of me that I’m aspiring to be and cultivating now goes with the flow; and 2. I was making assumptions and getting anxious about scenarios that weren’t even happening. And that’s usually how it goes, right? So what did I do? I asked. “Hey – is such-and-such happening this weekend?” and “Hey, this is my plan so far, what do you think?”. Fuck it – the only thing I can do is ask.

This works with a lot of things too. If it’s cold in the morning and I know a long walk before work will feel good but I’m not sure if I want to put in the effort – some days it’s “Fuck it – don’t be lazy and go for the walk” and other days it’s “Fuck it- there’s always tomorrow. Rest if you need it”. If I think someone is upset with me – it could be “Fuck it – their opinion is not my problem” or a “Fuck it – just ask them”. If I want to go to the grocery store and spend $10 on sushi just because – “Fuck it, you only have this day once” or “Fuck it, save your money and get something this weekend instead”.

Fuck holding yourself back. Fuck putting other people above yourself. Fuck making assumptions. Fuck holding onto expectations that nobody knows about. Fuck living your life for somebody else.

All of these things and more are things I defaultly do. Whether it’s a trauma response or my societal conditioning or whatever – I am a people pleaser. I tend to care more about what other people want or need from me than what I want or need. I tend to hold people to standards that I never verbalize and then get upset when they don’t meet those expectations. I tend to overthink and blow things out of proportion. But I don’t want to be that person anymore. I don’t want to be held back by myself anymore – fuck that.

🌼

Maybe some of you do like to choose a word for the year. Maybe some of you made New Years Resolutions. Whatever the case may be – the number of the year does not determine the quality of the year. I’m writing this post on New Year’s Eve (🤓), and my social media is flooded with people saying “I can’t wait for 2021, it’s got to be better than 2020”. Does it? Do you really think that the clock changing and the calendars going to the next year is going to *snap* magically make everything better?

NO.

We have to put in the work. Trust in the universe/God/your higher power to provide, and put in the work in the meantime. Pandemic aside, a new year is not going to automatically bring a new you. We all don’t have a software update that’s installed on January 1st at midnight. If we have a resolution to lose 50 pounds or save $5,000, we need to put in the effort to get there, regardless of the date.

So yes, this “fuck it” motto of mine was inspired by the new year, but I’ve been making changes to my diet, my exercises, my mind all year long.

Of course – you do what feels right for you. But a friendly, tough-love-no-bullshit reminder that if you want something different to happen, you have to do something different to get that. If you want something to change, you have to change.

And if you’re just not feeling it? Fuck it – do what will feed your soul in that moment. Sometimes it’s a run, sometimes it’s a nap, and there’s nothing wrong with either.

As the New Year hype starts to die down – just remember that you live your life for you. Fuck it – do what you want 🙌🏻✌

Categories
mental health

Mental Health Awareness

Happy November!

In case you don’t already know – mental health is one of the most important things in my life. I consider myself to be a mental health advocate, and when I’m able to make enough money through my writing to support me (i.e. I don’t have to work for anyone else) I’ll have the time and ability to advocate more.

Early November is the time where I reflect on my experience with my mental health. In November of 2014, I was hospitalized for 8 days in a psychiatric facility because my family was concerned for my safety. After leaving the facility, I went through an outpatient program for about three months, and I graduated from that program in about March of 2015. In July of 2015, I started dating my now-fiancé.

Depression and anxiety plagued me for years, not to mention misdiagnoses that occurred, generational trauma, and PTSD.

🌼

It has been six years since I’ve self-harmed. It has been six years since my stay in the psych ward, and over five and a half years since I graduated from the outpatient program. I don’t have anxiety attacks every day, or even every week. I don’t feel disgusting in my own skin with every breath.

But that’s not to say that I’m “cured”. I still live with anxiety, and depression, and my trauma. I am unlearning so much every day – beliefs and values that aren’t actually mine, coping mechanisms that don’t serve me, and negativity. I still get anxious and deal with depression. And I’m working on my growth. I am in therapy, and I read a lot of personal development books.

I also am realistic and know that I’ll never not be living with anxiety or depression. Even the best version of myself will feel anxious or depressed, but the work that I am doing now is helping me build a strong foundation of self-love, discipline, positive coping skills, and confidence.

🌼

I don’t think I have all the answers for you. There is a solid chance that I don’t have any answers. But I do know that if I can work through my crippling depression, my vivid suicidal ideations, and my debilitating anxiety so it’s all more manageable, then it is possible for anyone to do so too.

November is not Mental Health Awareness Month. And honestly, I don’t care. I don’t care if it’s not #trending to talk about the courage it takes to go to therapy, or to speak up to someone when you think you might need help, or to speak up when you’re worried about someone else. I don’t care of it’s on the Explore Page/For You Page about the different resources available for those who are living with mental illnesses. For me, on my platform, Mental Health Matters 24/7 365 days a year (and 366 days on a Leap Year).

I know that for some people this might feel kinda liberal, or hippie, or any other label with a negative connotation but the reality is, is that we as humans cannot be truly healthy if we’re neglecting our emotions and mental state. Your mental health matters. You are not alone. People care about your mental health, but unfortunately, there aren’t many mind-readers among us who are able to know how you’re feeling unless you say something.

I also don’t think that there’s only one answer for someone who is dealing with mental health issues. If you want to go to a therapist who specializes in traditional psychology, you go for it! There are also therapists who specialize in religious or spiritual approaches. There are counselors and coaches and therapists and so many people who do energy work.
I also know that this can be expensive. Not everyone has access to insurance, or can afford it. And it’s so easy to get into a mindset of “If I was in a country with universal healthcare I could have access to therapy but I don’t so I guess I’ll just suffer” – and I’m sorry you’re struggling. But that is bullshit. You have access to the internet! It is 2020, my dude – YouTube is a free resource. There are so many videos on different topics – give yourself an hour a week to watch videos about whatever it is that’s troubling you! Or check out your local library.

There is strength in asking for help. And if you aren’t at that point yet, you are strong too.

🌼

Your mental health matters. Your health matters. You matter.

It can feel lonesome. There are still so many stigmas surrounding all things mental health, and if you’re in an unsupportive environment you might think that the stigmas are truth. And while I can’t debunk every stigma you ever heard (since I don’t know what you’ve heard!), I can offer the following truths.

✨ You are worthy of happiness. You know yourself best. You are smart and kind and important.

✨ You cannot just not be depressed or anxious. It’s not that easy, BUT not being under depression’s grip or under anxiety’s wrath is possible.

✨ Not everyone will be understanding. Usually the people who have never experienced mental health issues don’t have the best understanding of how to help you with yours. You will find your support system. You are worthy of support and this pain will not last forever.

Categories
mental health spirituality writing

Coming Back Home to Myself

So, things have changed since I last wrote here. My funk has transformed into inspiration, but not after me going through a low.

Whether you want to call it depression, or part of the spiritual awakening, or an existential crisis – for what felt like an eternity, I was feeling like my life wasn’t my own. Not in a dissociation sense, because I know what that feels like and this wasn’t it. But I felt like my life didn’t feel like my life. That if I were given the ability to choose the aspects of my life, the life I am living would not match that. Does that make sense? I was feeling unsatisfied, overwhelmed, lost, and hopeless. This was beyond me feeling like I was in a rut – I truly felt like I didn’t fit in to my own life.

Last Saturday, I decided to do some autumn-cleaning. I wasn’t feeling relaxed in my bedroom, and this is the only space we have in our current living situation that’s ours, which makes it of more importance to me for it to feel like home.
Spiritually, I felt like I had too many crystals out. I had the intuitive thought that all of the energies of the 40+ crystals I had throughout our room was getting to be overwhelming, and as I am a spiritual person I’m more in tune to these energies. I made sure my Google Slides presentation was up to date (this is how I keep track of the names of all of my crystals), and I put the crystals I wasn’t feeling drawn to in a box. I cleansed that box with Palo Santo incense, and put the box in the attic. I then went through my books that I have in the room, and decided to only keep the books in the room that I actually intend on reading in the next few months. The rest of the books – most of my books – are in the attic and are easily accessible should I need them. I then reorganized my other things – my pictures, elephant figurines, dresser, etc.- and anything that didn’t feel necessary, I put in a box. I went through my clothes and organized them too, and anything that I haven’t worn in a long time I put in a garbage bag. I put the box and the bag in the attic. Essentially, I redecorated the room and did a variation of Marie Kondo’s cleaning. Instead of asking myself if each item brings me joy, I asked myself if it resonated with me. They say (I can’t remember who “they” is) that your home is an extension of your mind, so if you’re feeling cluttered/scatter-brained, it may help to clean your room, etc. This did help me feel better, to have my bedroom feel like a reflection of myself.

🌼

I went for a long walk the next day. As I was walking, I whispered out loud all the things that were bothering me and told the trees the things on my mind and on my heart. I had the intuitive thought that the reason my life doesn’t feel like mine is because I am not holding space for myself. I am dimming myself down to be the version of me that I used to be, the version of me I think others are expecting me to be. So if I don’t feel comfortable within myself, how the hell am I going to feel comfortable with anything in my external world?

So I talked to the trees. I said that if a friend was telling me everything that I just said, I need to do for myself what I would advise my friend. Below are a few bullet-points of that conversation.

Me: I don’t feel satisfied with my job. It doesn’t feel like something I want to do, and it doesn’t make me happy.
What I would tell my friend: Your job does not define you. It is a way for you to make money, but if it doesn’t resonate with you it does not have to be apart of your identity. Write out a list of pros/cons of working there, and see how you feel after seeing it all on paper.
Also: My job does not make me happy in the sense of me feeling excited to start the day, but I don’t dread logging in. Apathy isn’t the goal emotion for your career, but sometimes a job is just a job. It’s not forever and it doesn’t have to be my passion, especially if I remind myself that this is a stepping stone.

Me: I don’t know where I want to move to after our current living situation, but I know that I don’t want to stay here forever and I’d like to get our own place soon. I don’t know what to do.
What I would tell my friend: The good thing about where you are living now is also that it’s a stepping stone. You’re not stuck there. But it is where you are now, so I think it’d be beneficial to make the most of it while you’re there. The time is going to go by either way, so if you can help it, don’t be miserable.
Also: If we’re not moving for, at the very least, 15 months, why should I worry about it now? Why should I spend so much energy planning for something that’s so far away and has so many variables? I can think about it, and plan the best I can, but realistically – there is not much I can or should do until it gets closer. So just check ✅ it off the mental list and move on.

🌼

Also, after this conversation, I felt HUGELY inspired with regards to my writing. If I want to be this successful writer and reach the goals that I dream about, then I need to put in the work. I need to do the best I can now, because putting it off until later isn’t going to help me. Would I rather watch seven hours of Parks & Rec or work on writing blog posts and Instagram captions? Some days I’d rather just relax and watch Netflix, and there is nothing wrong with that. But if I ask myself that question every time I go to the app, chances are I’ll be binge-watching shows a lot less.

I’m a spiritual person. Most likely, if you’ve read anything else I’ve written on here you are already know that. A lesson I’ve been struggling to learn lately is finding a balance between surrendering my earthly need for control to the universe but also taking control of my life. While this has been a dilemma and something that’s weighed me down for awhile, today I’m starting to understand it a little better.

I surrender my need for my life to look a certain way, while understanding that I have the power to change my life. I surrender the idea that I need to achieve xyz by the age of 30, but I claim the power to create my own reality and achieve my goals.

For example – I want to be earn a living by being a writer. I say affirmations every morning after my yoga, and I see visions of my future working from home in my gorgeous home office, but I won’t get to that point without doing work. I release the need for the path to getting there to happen a certain way, but I know that I need to actually put in the work to get there.

And so…an announcement. 🥁 Last Sunday, Sept. 27th, I printed the very first draft of my first book. It’s 16,000 words and needs a lot of editing, and I know that it’s nowhere near done, but it’s still an awesome feeling to be holding my words. I sat down to write today and I started to repeat myself from what I’ve said already, so I decided it was time to edit what I have so far, and organize it into chapters so it’s also easier for me to navigate. In one month of writing for one hour every week, I have 16,000 words. It feels uncomfortable to say because of my low self-esteem that I’m working on but – I am proud of myself and of this accomplishment. I hold space for this achievement, and I am passionate about the work that needs to happen to get this book anywhere close to being ready for publishers.

I also am inspired for this blog and my social media presence. I can’t have the audience of my dreams and reach people without consistent content. I can’t schedule inspiration, but I can take advantage of inspiration when it happens and put a plan in motion to be worked on afterwards.

🌼

It’s okay to not feel inspired all the time. It’s okay to feel lost, and it’s okay to feel shitty. There is strength in feeling your emotions, and there is strength in taking back your power.

Categories
General mental health

This Morning’s Musings

I’ve been in a funk, lately. I feel like I’m always saying that, which makes me feel worse.

Now I don’t know if I’ve been feeling more depressed, or if the depression is part of the spiritual awakening I may or not may not going through, I don’t know.

I just finished a book, “Gus” by Kim Holden. I’ve read the first book in the series a couple of times, “Bright Side”, and I finally managed to finish this one too. And dude, I fucking love the feeling after finishing a good book. The excitement and elation of the inspiration of finishing a story – especially a story like this. Overcoming grief and loss, finding yourself, and pursuing the hell out of your passions. I needed that.

Lately I’ve been feeling called for us to plan to get our own place, and move into an apartment. I miss having my own space away from the world. I miss being able to cook in the kitchen whenever I want, having only myself and my fiancé to worry about. I miss not having to share a bathroom with anyone else. And honestly? I miss the independence of being away from everyone else. I miss being able to be alone, truly alone. No other people in my space, not having to worry about who is doing what and where. I miss having a space that is my oasis from the world.

But, to play my own Devil’s Advocate, maybe my lower feelings currently are causing me to feel more antisocial so I feel more called to be away from everyone and everything.
Also, apartment living requires you to share walls with neighbors who could be loud or just generally annoying. And most units don’t have a washer/dryer in-unit. And carrying groceries up the stairs if you live on the second floor sucks. And we wouldn’t have the yard we have now and the garage…but I personally would be fine with that. I am willing to sacrifice the comfort of laundry and groceries for the general feeling of being at peace and being at home somewhere.

My fiancé is not on board, I don’t think. He’s not the most open with his emotions and his feelings, and he’s also stressed because he starts class in less than a week.

So I’m at a loss for what to do. Because I’m not happy with our current living situation…but I’m also not unhappy to the point of dreading being home. I feel indifferent/apathetic about living here. I also don’t feel the happiest inside about myself, which could be affecting my mindset too.

🌼

After our talk this morning that was mostly me building the case for why I want us to move into our own apartment in 6 months and him listening but not engaging and also not 100% agreeing – I decided to finish reading “Gus”. Because I wanted to escape. When I’m not on the phone for work, I was escaping into another world. And it was this excerpt that made me almost cry:

When I got to this point, I gasped out loud and read it again. And then I sent a picture of this to my fiancé and shared to my personal stories on social media. It felt like these words were written just for me to read.
How, specifically, this works into my life I’m not 100% sure yet. I immediately thought of my writing career, and the fact is that I can’t earn a living from writing if I don’t actually do the writing.

I also know that happiness comes from within, so if I’m not happy within myself I’ll never be happy no matter where I live. But I also think it’s a valid argument that staying somewhere out of convenience and ease is a shit choice. If I want to choose happy and live intentionally, and not just let myself fall into a routine of mediocrity, then I need to be intentional with my life. Which leads me back to wanting to move into our own place.

But, I can’t force someone into wanting something that they don’t. Just like I can’t force myself to be happy with something that I’m not. So I’m going to throw myself into work and read the next book in the series (“Franco”, Kim Holden) and see what happens. I’m going to trust in the universe and surrender to the fact that I know this living situation no longer serves me, and that I am ready for our next chapter. I’m going to get out of my head a little and try to give my mind a break from thinking, and just focus on being. ✌

Categories
Current Events mental health spirituality

New Moon Post: Planetary Happenings, Stepping into Myself, Doing the Hard Things (oh my!)

Happy Tuesday! Happy New Moon in Leo! This is also the second full day into Uranus Retrograde, so let me know if this is hitting y’all as hard as it’s hitting me 😅

In case you’re not into astrology stuff (moon energy, planetary alignments, etc.), I’ll briefly discuss what both of these things mean and link articles to read that explain it more eloquently. Also, just follow @truly.intuitive on Instagram! She’s the best.

New Moons are the beginning of the moon’s energy cycle. It’s typically when witches do their work for manifestation, among other things. New Moons signify beginnings, and there have also been studies to show that a majority of women menstruate around the new moon and ovulate around the full moon. So, new moons are pretty powerful. If you do any sort of Law of Attraction practice (writing letters, vision boards, etc.), I recommend paying attention to when the next New Moon is to help boost the manifesting.

🌼

Most of us are aware of our sun signs. This is the answer we would give if anybody were to actually use the “So what’s your sign?” pick-up line on us. This is the “most popular” knowledge people have of their birth chart, but y’all there is actually so much more to know. It’s on my mental list of things to do to study astrology and eventually be able to read birth charts, but for now I’m still in the “collecting general knowledge” phase. We all have the planet Uranus in our chart, and typically, this planet is a symbol of progress, science, and disruption of the status quo. It’s the planet that is linked to surprises, innovation, revolution, and liberation. Uranus is demonstrative of all that is unique, wild, unpredictable, and unusual in our lives.

So what does this mean for this planet going in retrograde? It means our comfort zone will be tested. We are given a choice: change or die. (Die in the figurative sense). Without the influence of Uranus, many of us would nestle deep in our most familiar ruts and never look back. Uranus pushes us past the edge of our comfort.

Y’all, I am feeling all of this energy.

🌼

Recently (like, Sunday night recently), I initiated a difficult conversation that I’ve been avoiding having with someone. And while we actually made progress, kinda, I was in my feels yesterday (as the kids say). I was feeling down, almost depressed. Very sad, insecure.

(Context: This wasn’t a bad conversation! No break-ups or any life changes, just a sensitive topic that is something not openly discussed. A lot of emotions were had).

And the reason I think that all of these feelings have to do with my spiritual awakening, is because I know that I need to go through this. So after yesterday morning of feeling super low, I was sitting outside cuddling with our pupper and had the thought that growth comes after change, and this season is all about shaking things up and teaches us what is really important.

It’s hard to determine if what I’m feeling is a “normal” part of growing, spiritually. It’s hard to tell if I cried for an hour that night because I was depressed af or if I’m understanding that everything in this world is grey – there is no black or white answer. I am right in my mind and you are right in your mind, so how can we say either of us is wrong? If my upset was because of the realization that I need to learn how prioritize my own needs while simultaneously prioritizing the needs of others. That’s a difficult balance, but it’s so important to have. If my upset was just overwhelm. Or if it was something else entirely, or a combination of all of the above.

And don’t get me wrong, crying is necessary. And I’m not ashamed of the fact that I cry easily. I have grown a lot and am proud of being able to feel my feelings. Holding space for my emotions is hard, honestly. It’s easier to numb or ignore, but at the end of the day, it is so beneficial to feel them and release them so you have more room for happiness.

However, I am ashamed of the fact that I feel shame surrounding my interests and the things that mean a lot to me. A good friend started following me on Instagram (@thatwriterjenna) and dude, I almost dry-heaved. My stomach dropped to my knees and I was about to stop doing this. And she’s a great friend, so it’s not like I don’t want her to see anything. I post this and am working on baring my soul to the interwebs because I want my words to be seen. But the more people in my life who comes across my writing, the more real it becomes. “It” being stepping up to the plate and actually pursuing my dream of being a writer. So yeah, I’m not ashamed that I love to write. I’m not ashamed of my spirituality. I know that writing and spirituality is not for everyone, and that while these things are a part of me, they do not define me. But I feel shame around the guilt I feel for being so…me. And if I’m honest, I guess part of me is a little (or a lot) ashamed of who/what “me” is.

Y’all how the fuck am I supposed to live my damn life and choose happiness if I’m ashamed of myself? How am I supposed to become the person I am in my dreams, my dream version of me, by playing small?

I’ve read in so many memoirs that once they fully stepped into themselves, they felt so much better and accomplished so much more than they ever thought possible. That’s a bit daunting to me, because I’m manifesting a pretty successful writing career. And like, I want that. But all of this work before hand – the unlearning and the healing and the shadow work and all that, is daunting. And it’d be easier to not deal with it.

But I’m already here! I’m already shedding the layers of the past versions of me. I feel like these layers are like a onesie pajama set and I’m standing here with the pajamas to my hips. I can’t just live life halfway out, and I can’t put myself back in. So, the only way out is through.

I need to push through the discomfort and grow into myself anyway. Do the thing even if I’m scared…if not because I’m scared. I am living this life once, so I need to stop waiting for xyz and just jump into the deep end.

🌼

So how does the New Moon and Uranus Retrograde and hard talks and embracing being myself all tie together? Because it’s my life! It’s exactly what I’m going through right now. And being open about what’s going on as it’s going on, before I have any hindsight, is on the edge of my comfort zone. That’s what Uranus Retrograde is all about.
And I’ve had this feeling that’s been persistent for a few days now: that with the platform I’ll eventually build, I am meant to open the door for other people to have difficult conversations. Authenticity is one of the most important things to me, and I think part of my purpose is to show people how to find their truth.

But I have a lot of living and learning to do before I can get there. I can’t pour from an empty cup, and the teeny tiny drop I sometimes have in my cup I gotta save for myself. And all of these realizations are a part of the process.

🌼

We are living through a pandemic. This isn’t exactly the part of the “Roaring 20’s” we wanted, but it’s the part that we got. Some days are going to feel great, and some days will not. It’s not about comparison of pain or comparison of success, of what Jane Doe is doing today and how Joe Shmo can get all that work done. Your best today will look different than your best tomorrow, and that’s okay.

Take some extra time to take care of yourself, there’s a lot going on energetically right now. I wish you peace and happiness. ✨

Categories
mental health spirituality

Halfway Through 2020 Check-In

Yeah, my title is right. Today, July 1st, is halfway through 2020. Isn’t that crazy? This year feels like it’s absolutely flown by but also has been crawling by, if that makes sense.

🌼

Lately I’ve been feeling off. I’m not quite sure if it’s a different type of depression and anxiety, or if it’s part of the spiritual awakening I’m going through, but I don’t feel quite 100%.

I am having a hard time with accepting myself as I am, and accepting my life as it is. I have big aspirations and big plans for what I want for myself and my life, and for some reason I’m going backwards with my mindset. Instead of being inspired and hopeful, I’m feeling suffocated and overwhelmed with how different things are now vs. how I want them to be.

One thing that I have struggled with for years is my self-worth. I am constantly catching myself thinking that I’ll be happy/beautiful once xyz happens. What is xyz? I want my love and I to have our own place. I’ve been missing our apartment, just for the sake of having a dwelling that’s ours. I want my body to look different. I want my hair and nails to look different. I want my job to be different. I want this and I want that…and again, recently I’ve been good about understanding that things are the way they are meant to be right now. But lately in this funk, I’m regressing in my growth and I’m getting angry.

I read somewhere that anger comes from fear, and this has really stuck with me. So if I’m so angry about all the things I want to change, what am I scared of? Or what could I be scared of?

My subconscious may be scared that my love and I will live with roommates forever; that I will never like my body; that I will never have the hair and nails I want; scared that I’ll grow old wishing I could have been a writer because I never chased that dream. And writing it now, I realize how, frankly, dumb that is. Of COURSE we will not live with roommates forever. And yeah, this living situation may not be the most ideal or favorable. But we are young and just starting out, we’re not going to just be given our dream house. We have to work for it. We have to build our credit, save our money, establish ourselves a bit. This living situation is a solid B (in a A-F grading scale). It’s mostly good, but there are some things that could change that would make it better. But if I just focus on the things I don’t like, then I’ll miss out on the good things.

I’ve said this before, that like begets like. The thing I focus on is what I will constantly see. And for me, having a positive mindset takes work. Just because I’ve been having numerous good days in a row does not mean that I can stop the things that bring my joy (which is what happened).

So what I was doing was getting up earlyish (around 7:15 am about). I go to the bathroom, wash my face, brush my teeth. I go downstairs and do a sun salutation, say my affirmations, and then pray to the Higher Powers with my Moonology oracle deck. I eat a healthy breakfast and listen to a podcast. If my love is home, I’ll cuddle with him until I have to log into work (since I’m working from home indefinitely). If he’s not, I usually tidy up a bit. I’ll work, eat a decentish lunch, go back to work, and then afterwards go for a 2 mile walk. I eat dinner (usually a quick Lean Cuisine or something similar), shower, and then go in the room to do art or journal until I do my nightly journaling.

All of this was helping me feel great. But, sometimes feeling great can be scary because you feel like you’re waiting for the other shoe to drop, ya know? If you don’t feel like you deserve to be happy, then you’ll constantly be feeling like the happiness won’t last. For me specifically, as I am a spiritual person, I started to doubt the universe and trust in the universe less.

So. To bring all this rambling together. I stopped doing the things that were bringing me happiness and peace because I was feeling happy and peaceful. I started to get suspicious of the constant good feeling. I started to look outwards for validation (which is a TRAP! You can never find true validation externally) and stopped feeding my soul. The foundation of my good perspective start to crumble because I stop with the consistency of prioritizing myself. Now that I am not preserving my mental health the way I was, I am now open to old triggers, such as feeling out of control.

🌼

I have made tremendous strides in my growth the past six months, even amidst all the things going on this year. In the next six months, I would like to make more positive changes to myself.

  1. I’m going to give myself a fucking break. There is no way I am going to have an 800 credit score, $20,000 in savings, six best seller novels, a log cabin on 15+ acres in six months. But I can make an effort to save money. I can make an effort to pay down my credit card debt. I can make an effort to work on my novel ideas. I am going to give myself permission to be a human.
  2. I am going to keep up with my routines to the best of my ability.
  3. I am going to meditate more. Give myself time outside of this human body to be refreshed.

Amidst the chaos, and the #halfwaythroughtheyear motivation we’ll see, remember to check in and give yourself permission to just be.

Categories
General mental health

Honesty Thursday

I’ve been debating writing on here for weeks. My inspiration has been lacking, I have been feeling irritated at a lot of things, and I’ve also been feeling low. I’ve been diving more into my spiritual practice, and I’ve been feeling very opinionated lately and discouraged that no one seems to see things my way.

So I stayed away from this. I stayed away from writing an angry post because I don’t want to be an angry person. And the thing is? I’m not. I’m not angry at all, actually. I just feel strongly in my beliefs, and something I’m currently dealing with is choosing response over reaction.

🌼

There’s a co-worker of mine who I disagree with on the way we should handle our job. She does things a way that I feel is wrong, and I feel anger bubbling inside me right now that management isn’t doing anything about it.

I have read in multiple books/sources that anger stems from fear, and I guess I’m scared of someone receiving the praise and acclamation I feel I deserve? Which also means that my pride is getting in my way. A scarcity mindset. Which means I’m actually feeling insecure and my ego is being a bitch.

In my own defense, there are some people that are just a pain to work with. They’re great out of the office, but you just don’t want to work with them. And that’s fine, it’s rare to like every single person you work with. But we all still need to be respectful to each other. And I can’t let my ego/pride get in the way of my response (which I did). So I’m also angry at myself for reacting in the way that a past version of me would. And as I reached out to a friend to make sure I was in the right…I realized that if I needed to make sure what I was doing was right to someone else, then it wasn’t right to me. A decision I know is right for me, I do not need input on. If I know something is right, nothing can sway my judgement.

I ALSO cannot control or really change anyone else. If I think someone is doing something wrong or incorrect, there is nothing I can do to change them. (I’m also not management, so it’s really not my job 😂). So now, I’m feeling embarrassed. I don’t take back what I said, because it’s the truth, but it’s also not up to me to put myself in the position I was in. I know I am great at my job. I know I am considered to be the #2 in the office behind management. And just because I sometimes need an ego boost doesn’t mean I should go after that by stooping to someone else’s level of passive aggression. It’s also not up to me to have an opinion on what I think management should do, because it doesn’t matter what I think. I am not management. I don’t get paid enough to care about what management should do. I get paid to do my job, which encompasses my responsibilities. And that’s it. So while initiative is great, I also can’t stress myself out about something that isn’t even mine to stress.

🌼

I have also been feeling “blah” lately. I haven’t been feeling super inspired, I haven’t been feeling fulfilled. I’ve been pulling myself away from the things that bring me joy in favor of the things that numb, which lowers my vibration and makes me feel shitty all around.

A good friend asked me the other day “how’s the website going” and I felt hurt by the fact that I was so ecstatic and inspired to pour my heart and soul into blog posts, to start to connect with people, and I just lost that.

But do you know why it hurt? It hurt because of why I lost the inspiration. I lost the inspiration because I started to think about what other people will think when they read my stuff. My dad knows about this site, ya’ll! I love him so much and I know he loves me too but it’s so much easier to bare your soul when no one is looking, ya know? But also, if I’m going to be a writer and live into my life’s purpose, then I’m going to have to lose the shyness a little and just do it.

I’ve also been feeling out of sorts due to hormones surrounding my period, which the feminist in me hates bringing up, but honestly- it’s relevant.

There’s also a New Moon tomorrow, which I’m going to spend the rest of my afternoon reading about and journaling about (in between work stuff).

Part of me also feels call to write about the witchy/spiritual/mystic stuff that I’m researching, and while I am a bit nervous for any “feedback” I may get from the people less than supportive of the subject, I also am getting to the point where I just don’t care. This is my site and I’m going to write about what I want, and honestly I am interested in earning a living as a writer so I suppose I should concern myself with whatever is #trending, but FUCK THAT. I’d rather write what I’m passionate about, when I’m inspired, than push out weekly bullshit that everyone can tell doesn’t speak to me.

🌼

Lastly, I have been feeling insecure about myself lately. I haven’t felt confident in my body, I haven’t felt worthy, and I started to feel myself slip back into old patterns of self-deprecating jokes and self-hatred. With a relationship with depression, this didn’t really come as a surprise to me. But this isn’t who I want to be. The Best Jenna does not fall prey to her depression because she knows she is worthy. She accepts her bad days as she accepts passing clouds in the sky, and does not berate herself for feeling human emotions.

🌼

So that’s where my head has been, lately. It hasn’t felt the most inspiring, but it’s what has been on my heart. And no matter what I decide to write about, I know my site and anything I create is definitely going to have a lot of heart.

Categories
Current Events mental health

The Truth about Us and COVID-19

It’s no secret that we’ve all, collectively, have been going through something within this pandemic. We have all been affected by this time. Curfews, grocery restrictions, changed plans, stay-at-home orders, to say the least. Everyone has been grieving the loss of their normal routines in different ways. Some people are acting as Facebook News Reporter, sharing every article and “researching” every statistic. There are other people who are cleaning everything all day. Others are binge watching TV. Others are just ignoring all the rules and still having friends over. Others are complaining about not being able to go to concerts, watch sports, go out to eat dinner, etc.

Can we all agree on one thing, perhaps? That the way things were before all this started, was not working? That the way we handled our lives – was not working for us?

I don’t know why you’d say that! I think things were just fine before”.

Really? Then why can’t you sit still? Why are you so uncomfortable with silence? What are you ignoring that you should face? What trauma have you been pushing down that you need the distraction from? Why are you so damn eager to go back to the rat race and the hustle-and-bustle and the diversions from you having a relationship with your mind?

So many of us never process our feelings. We push down our wants, our dreams, our desires, and follow a path that doesn’t feel right. We follow something that’s expected, or that doesn’t match our ideals anymore. We choose divorce over working on something that isn’t even broken. We push our kids into any and all activities to get them away from us and out of the house. We ignore our neighbors. We disregard our friends and family. We choose drugs, alcohol, gambling, sex, food, video games, absolutely anything possible to numb our feelings because it’s easier to ignore it than to face it. We go through our days on autopilot and our nights numbed or altered. Now that we finally have the free time to just relax, we can’t handle it.

What are you running from?

(I’ve said this before and I’ll say it as many times as I need to. I don’t have my psychology degree (yet!). I’m not a psychologist, therapist, shaman, guru of any kind… but I research as much as I possibly can and I love to learn. And just because I may not have any accreditation does not mean I can’t still be right.)

“So what do you do? Just stare at the wall all day? I need to be DOING something”

No, I don’t stare at the wall all day, silly. I write. I journal my thoughts. I do yoga and meditate and move my body. I read. I also work from home. I pray. I research places to visit, things to do, recipes to try, etc.

But, I get that. I used to not be able to sit still for a full minute. (I’m serious, my boyfriend made me try. Multiples times, and I would fidget after 15 seconds). Because my anxiety, my learned trauma, made me feel as though if I wasn’t productive, if I wasn’t actively doing something at all times, something terrible would happen. I would be wasting time. I’d be wasting the whole day if I didn’t get every single thing done. And that’s how most of us live. Constantly on the go, “the rat race”. Chasing productivity with a blind eye to everything else. And now, things are still. We are still. We have food, shelter, technology, etc, but we’re worried about football? We’re worried about not having new seasons of TV shows?

I gotta say it. That’s bullshit. These are clearly first world problems, but we cannot think outside of ourselves to see the big picture.

Well, I can help with the big picture.

Think of Every. Single. Thing. you could possibly be grateful for. And if you think you have nothing to be grateful for, try to imagine yourself from 10 years ago. What do you have in your life now that you used to dream about? Imagine yourself at 10 years old. What lessons have you learned since then?

I have my list below. It’s not everything (that would be way too long and boring for y’all. You’re welcome), but it at least should help a little bit with gaining some perspective.

This took me not even 10 minutes. And I feel happier thinking of all the good things I have around me. Like breeds like. If you focus on the negative, negativity will surround you. If you force yourself to think of the positives, you’ll be open to seeing more good things. (This thought process is Law of Attraction 101 that has been said many times in The Secret, The Four Agreements, and most religions).

I know this feels hard right now. But if all you are asked to do is stay home, then this isn’t difficult, this is inconvenient.

Of course, those of us with depression, anxiety, or any other mental health afflictions may be feeling this harder. And to these people, I say that you are not alone. Not only is the entire world going through the same situation, but I understand the struggle. I have had anxiety for my whole life and depression for most; I understand the sneaky, sly ways they warp your brain. Which is why it’s especially important for us to surround ourselves with positivity. To take away the strength of our mental demons and build of walls of good in our minds.

Emotions, any/all of them, are meant to be felt. So if you’re feeling depressed, then sit with that. If you’re feeling anything, sit with that feeling. Talk through it (even if to yourself, I’m talking out loud to myself all the time). Write about it. But remember that all emotions pass. Don’t hold onto the negative ones, let them pass.

(I’m not sure if any of y’all are into poetry, but I Am Not My Sadness by Janne Robinson is something I think about every single day. https://thoughtcatalog.com/janne-robinson/2017/04/i-am-not-my-sadness/ and is the best advice you’ll ever get when dealing with uncomfortable emotions).

🌼

So I’m going to assume that you’re in a better head space now. You’re feeling grateful, you’re feeling grounded and less stressed. What’s next?

Being a sports fan or a reality TV show fan or an anime fan or a fan of any show (or anything, really) is nothing to be faulted for. You should have interests and you’re allowed to be passionate about things that make you happy. We all should have hobbies and things that bring us joy. But, in all reality, we can live without most of the things we have in our life. We CAN live without sports. We CAN live without TV. We CAN live without Netflix, festivals, etc. Granted, it may not be as fun or as enjoyable of an experience, but life can still be done without the extras. And realizing just how little we need to live is important.

Well if I’m not watching baseball during baseball season, then I’m not living.”

Yes you are. You are breathing, and your heart is beating. You are living.

I think an issue society faces is all we see is what is shown to us, rather than thinking for ourselves. And we tend to fall into routines and habits, which is a natural thing to do. But we usually forget to make time for being outside. For mindfully eating. For calling our parents or our kids. We forget to be intentional. Why do we do what we do? What is it even that we do? How does that make us feel?

Maybe self awareness isn’t something you’re interested in, and that’s fine. I support whatever makes you happy. (I mean if you don’t even know yourself then you can’t really be happy…)



🌼

So you said that the way things were before wasn’t working. How do you think they should be, then?

I think we should prioritize happiness. And love. I think that we should stop complaining about bullshit, petty crap and be grateful for another day. Be grateful you have xyz to complain about.

(Another poem that has changed my perspective, Rudy Francisco’s Complainers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8NVLq2fGLc. Relevant to my point here and SO powerful).

I’m not going to get into much about politics, but I do think we need to start prioritizing the human beings and living things on this planet. I don’t think money should be more important than health. I don’t think greed should be more prevalent than nature. I think we need to take a step back and realize that we won’t be able to argue about politics if we don’t even have a sustainable environment to live in because we took everything we could from Mother Earth.

🌼

Everyone is struggling right now. And everyone is allowed to feel sad during this time. 99% of the world’s population has never lived through, or even seen, a pandemic. It’s scary. But instead of getting angry about not being able to watch sports, check your priorities and remember why you like them. Think about the traditions, the fun, etc., and find a way to incorporate that into your life now. Play catch with your kids, watch old games on YouTube, etc.

To sum up, I kind of can’t stand what this time has brought out in people. It’s replaced common sense with stupidity, it’s replaced logic with fear, and it’s scary to see how many people cannot think for themselves. How their only thoughts are what they’ve read online, and how asinine of an idea it is to challenge what they’ve read instead of just accepting that as truth.

So accept this as your truth: I am reading this on something that is internet-enabled. I am able to access the internet. I am grateful for all the internet can show me – all the good, all the lessons, all the history and miracles and wonders of the world. I am grateful to have electricity, to be breathing, and to have <fill in the blank here>.

🌼

Challenge yourself to go past the walls you’ve built to keep everyone else out. Read books. Go for a walk. Sit out on your front step. Meditate. Write in a journal. Have some damn perspective. This is not going to last forever, and the way you handle this is going to be how you handle every obstacle you’ll face from this point out. So do you want to be negative, be scared, and complain? Or do you want to learn why you think the way you do and how you want to start thinking? Do you want to accept life as it is, or pursue more? Do you want to push yourself to the best of your ability, push yourself to reach your highest potential? Do you want to stop running from yourself and finally find some peace?

🌼

I want to thank all of the healthcare workers (EMTs, Paramedics, Nurses, Doctors, Techs, CNAs, LPNs, Transporters, etc). I want to thank the teachers. I want to thank the delivery drivers and grocery store workers and those in the food industry. I want to thank the artists and musicians and small businesses for doing things a bit differently. I want to thank all the essential workers and those of us switching things up ans do I want to let the parents know who are now home school teachers that y’all are killing it. I want to acknowledge all the sense of community we’ve been extending to one another. May we find peace during the chaos. May we find love in ourselves, and may we treat our minds as well as we treat our possessions. Wishing you all peace, love, strength, and perspective during this time.

Categories
Current Events mental health

It’s Okay to Not Be Okay

Happy Saturday.

Something that has been weighing heavy on my heart is something I think maybe other people could benefit from right now.

It’s no secret that we are living through history right now. The COVID19 pandemic has affected every single human alive in one way or another.

There have been many good things about this time: ecosystems in nature gaining strength, polluted areas seeing cleaner air, a sense of community with the entire planet, etc.

There has also been many stories shared online of people with anxiety who are handling this time well, because they live with a sense of panic all the time.

I want to check in and make sure you know that if your anxiety is worse right now, or if it has regressed to stages you thought you were not worried about anymore (🙋‍♀️), or if you have never had anxiety but you’re developing it now, or anything other than being “okay”…that’s okay. It is truly okay to not be okay.

I’m serious…It’s truly okay to not be okay.

As long as you’re safe, let yourself feel anxious. Let yourself feel whatever physical symptoms are being manifested in your body. Allow yourself to feel scared, nervous, angry, tired, whatever it is. This time is unprecedented for anyone alive right now. Acknowledge the difficulty in right now, and use this time of heightened sensitivity to check in to your needs.

Remember, we are literally all in this together. And I am here for you, sending all the good energy your way 💛