Happy Monday Peeps!
The last several months, I've thought a lot about how my life has changed over a few short years.
Most of the changes happened super holistically and gradually; meaning, I didn't wake up one day and say "this needs to change!" and go out and make efforts to shift things.
Instead, my journey unfolded one piece at a time, each block leading me to a more comfortable and happier existence.
For years and years, I binge read self-help and personal development books (who am I kidding? I still do this!).
After a decade, I feel like I have found a personal blend of methods that work really well for me- that keep me happy, that keep me grateful and that keep me living a blessed and blissed out life.
It wasn't always so easy to tune into higher frequencies and vibrations; it took me quite some time to really understand that the key to happiness and bliss was always within me.
It's not this big secret.
It's not complicated.
It's as simple as choosing thoughts/feelings/emotions and activities that make us feel good.
Following our EGS (Emotional Guidance System, or intuition, or gut feeling) will always lead us to the right place. Sometimes life takes us on detours to get there, but the destination is always readily available to tap into.
Here are just some of the major shifts that I've made that have significantly made a difference in my day-to-day life.
Putting Myself First (Radical Self-Love)
This is really important. Really, really important! For years, I existed on shaky ground, seeking outside validation and approval to feel good about myself.
Not focusing enough on self-love and confidence manifested itself into a number of unhealthy patterns.
Codependent relationships, binge eating, anxiety, alcohol dependence, the constant rushed/unrelaxed state that makes you want to "escape" reality because things are just uncomfortable as they are.
Nowadays, I put myself first (in an unselfish way) because I know that I can't give from an empty cup.
I find that I am naturally following my intuition more, trusting my emotions, enjoying moments in life without rushing them, not getting overwhelmed by nerves and genuinely feeling like everything in my life is a blessing. I
've created the reality that I WANT to exist in, because it is pleasant, filled with loving and supportive people, and inspiring.
I used to be surprised when people told me that they suffered from anxiety.
Back in the day, it seemed like I was the only one. When people opened up about their struggles, I would think to myself, "Wow! They GET IT!".
Nowadays, sadly, having anxiety and panic disorder is almost as common as having a Michael Kors purse.
It's just a normal part of life (it isn't normal, but it's normalized).
We glorify working to the bone.
We equate success with having a million responsibilities.
We think that having a jam-packed calendar somehow makes us more special that the next guy.
We go and go and go and never actually enjoy the things we are doing, because we are too busy, stressed and tired to live in the moment.
Then, often, we escape by drinking wine/beer/booze and talk about how we "deserve" a break. Let's get drunk because life is so busy cause we're trying so hard to have a fun-filled life, but it's exhausting, so we're tired, and now we need to drink to escape it for a little while, then tomorrow we'll feel like shit and repeat, and repeat and repeat.
It's like an anxiety-fueled rollercoaster that no one really enjoys, but it's so status quo that few stop to say...wait a second. Is this really the formula that I want to live by?
It's not easy to get off the merry-go-round, because everyone is on it! (not everyone, I know that now). But, a very large percentage of everyone that you know is very likely living something similar to this schema.
And, I did too. For a long, long time.
I GET IT.
I understand how we get there. I understand why we stay there.
I am just glad that I found the EXIT sign.
Not everyone lives their lives to the excesses that I did, I'm very aware of that, but I know that slowing down for me was absolutely essential.
Getting pregnant with my first son was really the Universe sending me a wake-up call.
There is more to life than racing through.
Now, I really, genuinely feel good because my emotions, hormones and mind feel balanced and calm (with some exceptions, naturally!).
I'm giving myself the best gift by staying away from substances that make me feel nervous, frenetic and irritable.
I don't overwork myself.
I take time for myself when I need it.
And because I tap into this calming energy, my family and circle of friends benefit.
We are peaceful and loving in our home.
We rarely argue, we laugh, we show affection and gratitude for each other and we are always aware of the blessings that surround us.
Focusing On Doing The Things I Love
These points ended up being longer than I had anticipated, so I'll wrap it up with this one. Do what you love! Oh ma God, it's the most important thing. Why would we go through life, day after day, just doing things that don't bring us much joy? I have been stuck in this rut before: working a job that I thought would bring me power, security and prestige, only to wind up burnt-out, discouraged and under-appreciated. It wasn't a great feeling, but it was a wonderful lesson.
*side note: read Elizabeth Gilbert's BIG MAGIC for more reasons to do what you love
Leaving the office setting (even though I was great at my job, and enjoyed most aspects of it) to follow my dream of writing professionally has been the most rewarding thing I have done, career-wise. Nowadays, I work my own hours, have lots of time for my family, and enjoy the balance that my day offers. I can still enjoy doing something that stimulates my mind and creativity, while not giving up the pleasures and wonders of being a stay-at-home mom, which was always my dream.
At first, I was worried that I wouldn't make much money, but I feel more prosperous now than I did with a full-time career and salary. We have zero debts, enough money to enjoy life and still safe for the future. Tapping into abundance was as easy as saying "I will do what I love, and the money will sort itself out.". Take the risk! Do what you love. If you're open and trusting, the Universe will always match your frequency and provide you with what you need to live a happy and blissed out life.