Category Archives: Self Improvement

“There are only two choices: keep it or chuck it. And if you’re going to keep it, make sure to take care of it.” ―Marie Kondō

tidy          I recently finished the book titled “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo. It has truly inspired me. If you haven’t read it, you should! You can find the book here. It is an easy read and very detailed. I even began reading her second book “Spark Joy.” Which you can purchase here. I’ve also seen it at stores such as The Container Store, Michael’s, and Barnes & Noble. I checked the book out at my local library via Amazon so if you don’t want to purchase looking at your library would be a great option.

The thing that sticks out about these books is that we not only clean up and get rid of stuff but the whole thing is about WE KEEP WHAT MAKES US HAPPY. Let me repeat that, we only keep what “sparks Joy” in our lives. Sometimes that means that we have to get rid of something we were gifted many years ago and have held onto it for one reason or another even though we never use it and we barely even enjoy looking at tidy2it.

Another thing that sticks out in this process is to go at it by category rather than by room. This is contrary to most of what we’ve heard which is why it sticks out to me. Marie Kondo maps out 5 categories: clothing, books, paper, komono (miscellaneous), and sentimental. First you gather every clothing item and place them on the floor (or the bed, as I did) and physically touch each item one by one to see if it sparks joy. If it doesn’t, get rid of it. Then you do the same with the rest of the categories. There is a great printable here. Another blog to reference can also be found here.

Here are a few comments from others I spoke with who have done this method:

“It has been great for my mental health. Less anxiety triggering crap. Something I’d mention is that KM is very much a middle class privilege. To be able to throw out perfectly good clothes just because they’d don’t spark joy is something I am very grateful for.” -Nicholas

life’s too short to be surrounded by items you don’t love.” -Robin

“Drastically reduces your interest in shopping when you only buy things you really like and know you need a place to store it.” -Blair

“Definitely brought a sense of calm and tranquillity to my home.
Feels so peaceful in the bedroom especially” -Victoria

“Getting rid of books was/is the hardest part for me until I realized that this was a metaphor for my life. Holding on to stories that in many ways defined me felt safe. Making space for new books also meant making space for new ideas, new line of work, new friends. I see now that not only do you need to make time for new things to come into your life, you also need to make space.” -Maria

“I found the ‘wasted money’ hard to get over. At first I wanted to sell everything as I spent good money on items. I bagged up 8 bags in my first clothes KM but don’t have time to photograph and list items. I took the plunge and donated and chucked them and the relief of things being gone was instant and made me feel lighter. 28 bin bags later and I’ve not regretted not selling anything. I’m always interested to read how people overcome the ‘wasted money’ thoughts.” -Kerrie

I encourage everyone to give Marie Kondo’s method a shot. It may just change your life. If you have done this before, comment below with how it has helped you. I love hearing personal stories. I just started the method so I’m not done yet but it has really helped me enjoy living in our little studio.

As always, thank you for stopping to read my blog. I hope to hear from you in the comments. I enjoy your feedback. If there’s something specific you want to hear about, let me know.

Advertisements

“Running is nothing more than a series of arguments between the part of your brain that wants to stop and the part that wants to keep going.” -Unknown

Have you ever heard someone say or even been the one to say any of these words: “I’m not
a runner.” “I hate running.” “I just can’t run.” Well, then you’re like a lot of other people. Even Hal Elrod told himself he wasn’t a runner but just started running one day because he had tried so many other things. I am one of those people. And as crazy as it is, for me to hate running, I just signed up for a 5K and it’s happening next month. I know that I am going to have to push myself for the next 7-ish weeks but I also know that it’s possible. The 5K that I signed up for is the Bubble Run. One of my friends got me to do it with her and my husband volunteerruned to do it with us. I’m excited but also nervous. If you want to come watch, it’s at the Angels Stadium. There are 2 races and we are in the 9:00am race.

So, how does one prepare for a 5K when they have always hated running? I’m glad you asked. There are actually a lot of tips on Pinterest. Sadly, the site is down so I am unable to link them to you right now but there are also plenty of tips when you put “couch to 5K” in Google. In my search, I even found an app for Apple and Android phones called Couch to 5K. I have a Samsung so I’m glad it’s not exclusive to Apple, as I’m sure some Apple users are glad it isn’t exclusive to us either.

Another really cool thing I found in my search is this couch-to-5k PDF, (at this link). For this particular training, you want you allow yourself 9 weeks but almost everyone has a different time frame.

Lastly, another helpful site for beginners might be found here. Running For beginners is a great site for anyone. It has so many great resources and training tips, even for me.

I want to see any tips from my readers who have done this before? How did you feel when you crossed the finish line? Did it make you want to do more? Please share your experiences below.

As always, thank you for visiting and drop a comment below and follow me for more content. Have a great day!

“The human body is the best work of art.” ―Jess C. Scott

Today I want to talk about something that everyone has to do: getting dressed. I know that. if you’re like me and many others, you would love to just stay in your nice comfortable pajamas all day. But, of course, for some reason we can’t. There’s almost always a dress code anywhere you go, unless the place you are going is called Wal-Mart.

Recently I watched a free 3 step video course in fashion and how to dress right for me and how to find MY personal style. This course was offered by Dean Street and I felt so excited dean street.pngto go out and try to find things that really fit me. I am one to usually wear jeans and a t-shirt out because I wanted to hide my body. After the videos I was inspired to actually look for things that I really thought were cute.

One things Hilary, from Dean Street, suggested is to go on Pinterest and make a personal style board. With that board, look up celebrities that you like how they dress. I know what you’re thinking “Why would I use celebrities for inspiration, they get all these fancy clothes and it’s just not attainable.” All I have to say is WRONG. Look for the way the dress on an everyday level, not for the red carpet. For example, I found that I love Reese Witherspoon’s casual look, mixed with a little extra color and Disney flare with cute high heels or Toms. Feel free to look at my personal style board for any inspiration, as well as Hilary’s page on Pinterest because she has so many things you can look at.

I know that you might be thinking that it’s all just a waste of time, money, and energy but I just want to tell you that it really helped me look at what I WANT to wear versus what I currently wear. Yes, wearing my jeans and t-shirts are nice but I don’t want to wear them every single day. I mean, seriously, I would really love to wear dresses every day. Not like the ones I wore during my mission because I know I was not very fashionable then, but like what I saw at Unique Vintage. If I had the money I would shop there all the time!

To end this post, I want to tell you that you should wear what you want. If that’s yoga pants then do it. If you are obsessed with wearing neon colors, you do you. You are always going to face someone who looks down on you for what you wear, whether you’re 90 pounds or 390 pounds, you should wear what you want not what society tells you to wear.

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. Take care!

“Some people get an education without going to college. The rest get it after they get out.” ―Mark Twain

Many people now-a-days have attended, are attending, or will be attending college. I didn’t always know that I would go to college nor did I ever know what college I would be going to. It wasn’t until high school that I really thought about college. You’re entire high school career, people talk about all of these colleges and all these different majors that you can choose from. I remember in 8th grade we actually had a representative from FIDM come and talk to my class. I was really interested in FIDM for a short couple of hours but realized it was a dead dream pretty quickly. Starting in 9th grade, I developed a love for BYU Idaho. Yes, BYU is such a “typical Mormon” school and maybe that’s what was pulling me towards it. I had no idea what I wanted to do in college, though.

Screen Shot 2017-01-24 at 3.06.30 PM.pngIn 10th grade, I moved to Missouri and decided that I wanted to be a OB/GYN and go to Missou or maybe to the small college in West Plains. Really it was whatever my soon-to-be scholarship would pay for. Sadly, after the death of my grandparents, I had to move back to California for 11th and 12th grade. By Senior year, I had it in my head that I wasn’t good enough to go to a university. I wasn’t a straight A student, I didn’t have a lot of extracurricular activities under my belt, and I didn’t have the means to afford the tuition. I finally settled with the community college and picked English as my major because it was my favorite subject. I never took the SAT or ACT because I felt that I would do too poorly on it anyways, nor was it needed to get into a community college. I got in, not that FCC declines many people (if any). I took classes and found what I really wanted to major in: Child Development. It wasn’t until my 3rd semester that I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my degree when I got it. My goal was to one day own my own daycare and maybe teach Child Development in college when I’m older.

screen-shot-2017-01-24-at-3-05-03-pmWhy do I tell you this? Because college is hard. From dealing with parents’ thoughts about college and your major, to picking your field, to paying for college and choosing where you will live. Some parents force a specific college down their child’s throat from their birth and they don’t really have a say in where they go to school or even what they want to do career wise. Others have family that tells them that college is a waste and that nobody really goes to college, that it’s all a scam. Then there are other families that tell you that your passion is pointless to pursue because you won’t make any money and that you should become a nurse.

screen-shot-2017-01-24-at-3-03-41-pmI cannot tell you too much about how living in a dorm is but I have had experiences living in a two bedroom apartment with a complete stranger. It was kind of like living in a dorm and I really got along with my roommate. We shared food and makeup and we went places. in my car. I even went to her graduation and helped her move out into her new apartment. I might even do a post on my experience in that living situation sometime.

Anyway, I want you all to know ten things that I was not told while growing up.

  1. You are good enough to apply for a university
  2. It’s ok to go to a city college and transfer to a university
  3. You don’t have to pick your major during your first year of college
  4. Focus on doing your general education that first year
  5. Your passion absolutely can become your career, it’s not about the money it’s about loving what you do every day
  6. There are many ways to pay for college, it can be affordable
  7. It’s ok to apply at a bunch of schools
  8. Start thinking about college earlier
  9. You can still stay friends with your high school buddies but graduation will change how your relationships are. I’ve lost some friends and gotten closer to others.
  10. Just be yourself. Don’t change who you are just because you feel like you need to be something different in college.

I also want to include 10 resources that you may find helpful. I have used some of them.

  1. Go here to apply for FAFSA
  2. The 10 best sites to look for scholarships
  3. List of colleges in the US (this is not every college in the US)
  4. Resources for College Students
  5. Getting Textbooks from Chegg (I’ve used this one often)
  6. 31 Things You Need To Know About College
  7. You’ll get lost so you’ll need a map
  8. 50 Things Every College Student Should Experience At Least Once
  9. How to Deal with Homesickness Freshman Year
  10. Ten Common Problems Students Face in College

I hope my tips and resources help you or someone you know that is in college. If you have anything you would like to add, please comment below.

As always, thank you for reading. Click follow to read more from me!

Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” -Confucius

Today I want to talk about something that we all go through and that is applying for a job. The process of applying for a job has changed in the past several years. How many of you have heard your parents or grandparents say something along the lines of “Just go in and talk to someone, if you show them you really want the job then they’ll hire you” or maybe something more like this “What do you mean they won’t hire you because of your lack of experience? They have to hire you in order for you to gain experience. You’re just not trying hard enough” and finally, my favorite “If you really wanted that job then you would have it. Obviously you didn’t show your interest.” I don’t know about you but I get tire of hearing this all the time. I was talking to fellow blogger, Redheaded Owl, about how searching for a job can be hard when you don’t have the experience they want you to have which led us to talking about how much the job hunt has changed since our parents were younger and looking for their first job. “My dad literally went up to someone he knew and told them that he was looking for a job. He said ‘Hey, I need a job. I don’t have experience but I’m a hard worker.’ and they hired him right there.That doesn’t happen now.”

All too often the generation before us puts us down and tells us that we aren’t trying hard enough to get a job. However, they don’t realize this difference that we face in the hunt for work.They still think it’s that easy, they think we can just walk in and get a job. Sadly, most of the time they just refer you to their online application, where they don’t get to know you and they never meet you. They just look at your job experience and if you don’t have what they’re looking for they pass you up.

I had an interview a couple of weeks ago at a food place. It was actually a very sudden thing. I went in to turn in my resume and the manager set up an interview for me that day. When I went back for my interview, she just told me that she was worried that I had no experience in the food industry. She was nice and I appreciated her honesty but I knew that I wouldn’t get the job because she continued to tell me about how she hired inexperienced people before and they never lasted. I talked to my husband about how the interview went and guess what his response was. “How can you get experience if they won’t hire you?” I think that is the one phrases I really get tired of hearing. Very few companies want to take a chance on someone with no experience. Let alone a 20 something year old who has only had a few jobs that lasted a few months each.

Anyway, I know this is more of a rant but I have been dealing with this issue since I was 16, which is when society expects you to get your first job. I was lucky enough to get the few jobs I did get. My previous boss was kind enough to hire me but that’s because one of her longest employees recommended me.

i-love-my-job

Please share in the comments how you overcame today’s tough job search or what your family and friends tell you all too often when you don’t land a job.

As always, thank you for reading and I hope to see you back here next time.

“If you hire people just because they can do a job, they’ll work for your money. But if you hire people who believe what you believe, they’ll work for you with blood, sweat, and tears.” -Simon Sinek

“In order to carry a positive action we must develop here a positive vision.” -Dalai Lama

We all have goals and dreams and we all have different ways of getting there. The Miracle Morning gives a specific one to try: vision boards. According to Google “A vision board is a tool used to help clarify, concentrate and maintain focus on a specific life goal. Literally, a vision board is any sort of board on which you display images that represent whatever you want to be, do or have in your life.” I decided to try one out. I purchased a poster board from Wal-Mart and began printing a few pictures out from the internet. After I printed a few pictures, I realized I had no idea how I wanted to set my vision board up. Should I just put a bunch of pictures, like a collage? Should I write on it? I stared down at the blank white board, waiting me to do with it as I want but I was blank. I expressed my thoughts to my husband and he suggested I make ideas and a lightbulb went off in my head. I could make a mini version in my bullet journal so I could decide where I wanted things without any regret because I can move them until I like it without getting upset because it’s just in my bullet journal. Of course, I went on Pinterest to find ideas for my vision board but nothing gave me any ideas. I actually took my level 10 life pages that I made and decided I would do it based on my goals for my level 10 life. Everything from publishing my book to getting my degrees and becoming a preschool teacher. I’m not done with it but I want to share pictures of it with you.

So, I’m sure some of you are wondering “Why should I make a vision board?” That’s an excellent question! Have you ever heard of the law of attraction? The Law of Attraction website, yes there’s a website,  says “Simply put, the Law of Attraction is the ability to attract into our lives whatever we are focusing on. It is believed that regardless of age, nationality or religious belief, we are all susceptible to the laws which govern the Universe – one of which being the Law of Attraction.” Also, according to the Huffington Post, “Creating a sacred space that displays what you want actually does bring it to life. What we focus on expands. When you create a vision board and place it in a space where you see it often, you essentially end up doing short visualization exercises throughout the day.”

So, there you have it folks, when we visualize our goals and dreams, there are more likely to happen because we have that reminder every day, staring us in the face. It also offers a great conversational piece and your friends and family can hold you accountable when you share it with them.

As I stated at the beginning, we all have goals and dreams. Hal Elrod says only about 5% of us actually achieve the life we truly dream of though. Through visualization, as well as other things, we can bring that 5% to a greater number. I challenge everyone reading this post to make their own vision board. Please share in the comments so we can all get inspiration. Thank you for reading!

Bliss Inventive is a great place if you want a little help creating your board.

 

“Psychologist William James said that possibly the deepest human need is the need to feel appreciated.” -Gary Chapman

Each person feels love in different ways. There is a test you can take the Five Love Languages test here. There are, as it says in the title, 5 love languages; words of affirmation,quality time,receiving gifts, acts of service,  and physical touch. When I first heard about the love languages, I was on my mission. My companion, Sister G., and I were on an exchange and I was with Sister B. She and I were discussing issues I was experiencing at that time and she explained the concept with me. Deciding that physical touch seemed to be my top love language, we continued with that. Sister G hated physical touch, she never wanted any hugs or anything…ever. It was hard for me because I am a hugger, I hug everyone. I didn’t know what to do with that information so I forgot about it. A few months ago, I was thinking about ways I could show love to my husband and the conversation I had with Sister B. came to mind. I proceeded to look up the official quiz and I took it for myself. I was a little surprised to learn that physical touch was not my number one. At 24, when I had taken the official test, These were my results: Words of Affirmation (5), Quality Time (11), Receiving Gifts (4), Acts of Service (4), and Physical Touch (6). The issue with the way we feel love is that its not always the same way those in our lives feel love. Sister G. didn’t feel love with physical touch nor did she feel love with quality time. Looking back, I’d say her number one love language was acts of service. I knew I didn’t want to focus on giving love in the way I feel love so I had my husband take the test after he got home from work. His results were very different from mine; Words of Affirmation (8), Quality Time (6), Receiving Gifts (2), Acts of Service (10), and Physical Touch (4). If we compare my top 2 we get: Quality Time (11) vs. (6) and Physical touch (6) vs. (4). If we compare his top 2 we get: Acts of Service (10) vs. (4) and Words of Affirmation (8) vs. (5). Do you see the difference in our love languages? I do! So, now that I have this information, how to I show him love and how should he show me love? The following image shows what each love language is, how to express it, and what to do after a conflict.

love-languages

I want to extend the invitation to you, reader, to go to the page above and take the test. After you do so, share the test with those you love. Share your number one love language and ask them theirs, you want to know how to show them love and I’m sure you want them to show you love in the way you feel love.

If you have taken the test before, please share your results in the comments below. Thank you for reading!

“Love the life you have while you create the life of your dreams. Don’t think you have to choose one over the other.” -Hal Elrod

More and more people are reading self help books and there are millions to choose from. As most of my readers know I am into Bullet Journaling, see my post here. When I was brand new to the journey back in July 2016, I joined many Bullet Journal groups on Facebook to help me get inspiration for this new journey I was embarking on. Through these groups, I kept seeing pages they called Level 10 Life. I thought it was interesting and I finally decided last week that I wanted to know what it was and why everyone was doing it. I found out where it came from. A self help book, I wasn’t too thrilled. I didn’t want to read it, there’s nothing any book could tell me that I didn’t already here from other people in my life. I brushed it off. Well, curiosity got the best of me and I finally caved and checked the book out from my local library and I am so glad I did. You’re probably thinking “is she ever going to share what the book is called?” I know, I know, I just went on a little tangent and never told you what the book is called. Well, it’s called The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life Before 8AM by Hal Elrod. I started reading it a few days ago and I love it. I thought it was going to be like everything I’ve always heard but it’s not. The Miracle Morning is really life changing but I don’t want you to take it from me. There are thousands of videos from people who have improved their life by incorporating Hal’s morning routine into their day. You can find many of them here.

If you have read the book, please comment with how it have changed your life. I have only done it for a couple of days and exercise alone has made me feel like a better person. I, personally, get up at 4:30am, which is when my husband gets up to get ready for work, and I begin my day. I pray, exercise, and read. I’m trying to get each of Hal’s Life S.A.V.E.R.S. to work and I’m adding a little at a time, as to not overwhelm myself. From there I do homework and house cleaning. Since I have started this routine, I have been getting to sleep earlier, which was an issue for me. I am so glad I started this and I am grateful for all the people in all of the Bullet Journal groups who shared their experiences because if they hadn’t, I may not have ever had the pleasure of reading The Miracle Morning.

the-miracle-morning

life-savers

“If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion. For your passion will lead you to right into your purpose.” -Bishop T.D. Jakes

Today I am having a hard time with my challenge that I gave myself. I have been doing pretty good with doing dishes willingly. I may not have done them every day but I did them and I was happy about it. Today is definitely like it has been. I just absolutely don’t feel like doing the dishes at all. Ya know what, that’s ok. Sometimes we get in those moods. It’s ok to have those moods/feelings. What’s not ok is dwelling on them. I know that if I suck it up and do them, I’ll feel better about myself and I know that I won’t have to worry about it. But how do I find the motivation?

I have been asking that question a lot recently. “How do I find the motivation to…” Do you motivation.jpgfind yourself asking this question? Almost every day I ask myself how I can get motivation for something. Many times, as of late, it has been “how can I find the motivation to exercise?” or “how can I find the motivation to be more healthy?” Nothing has worked for me. I know it needs to happen but it doesn’t. At times on my mission, as hard to admit it as it is, I asked “how do I find the motivation to get out of bed at 6:30 every morning?” This is ironic now because my alarm goes off at 5:00am Monday-Friday because I have school at 7:00am and then go to work right after (8:30am). Plus, I used to get up between 6:00 and 6:30 every morning in high school during the school year for seminary.

How do you find the motivation to do things that you don’t particularly enjoy? I struggle with working out because I don’t enjoy it. I struggle with being more healthy because it’s expensive and I don’t like exercise. I struggled getting out of bed at one point in my mission because I was having a rough time and I felt lost and confused. How do I get over these hurdles? Well, I very obviously got over that hurdle on my mission. It was different, then, though. I had the Lord in everything I was doing. Being a missionary you are closer to God than you had been ever before. Not to say that I am not close to my Father in Heaven but it’s just not the same. We were given these handbooks called Adjusting to Missionary Life at just the right time. I studied that daily and became such a better missionary. I found my motivation in that book. Perhaps I should crack it out again and see how I can apply it to regular, everyday life. I just need to start a routine with working out and stick to it. I need to just jump in and do it. My main issue here, really, is procrastination.

Anyway, it’s late and I have to get up in six and a half hours so I’d better sign off of here. I know that this post, like many of my posts, was mostly for me but I hope you got something out of it. Feel free to share your “how do I find the motivation to…” I’d love to hear how you can find it, too.

“A man is but the product of his thoughts what he thinks, he becomes.” -Gandhi

12167232_1475581179416942_1658765678_n

I saw the above picture on my Facebook feed and felt the need to share it. All too often we get into those times in life where we do the opposite of what this says. We choose to be everything negative. Why? Why all the negativity in life? I was getting really negative when I was beginning high school and my wonderful grandma, who raised me, bought me a book to help with my miserable lump of “bleh.” I recommend it to anyone and everyone. How to be Totally Miserable is an awesome book! Here’s what it looks like:

how to be totally miserable

Anyway, I was just thinking about all the negativity in my life and, no, we cannot change others but we can change ourselves. I was thinking to myself about what I could change in myself to make my life more positive. One thing I can do is be more patient. I don’t mean more with waiting for things but with myself. I get frustrated with myself sometimes because I may not be as good as I should be at things and I need to remember that I cannot be perfect, no one is, and I need to just do the best I can. Which brings me to another thing, not to beat myself up. Everyone does it. We are our worst critics and boy am I hard. I have told myself for so long now that I am not that great of a writer that whenever someone compliments my writing, I often respond with “Oh, it’s not that great. There’s a lot wrong with it and I don’t think it’ll sell when, or if, I ever get published.” Negative to the max, right? It’s terrible.

I want to hear from you. What are some things that you see in yourself that need to change so you can be more positive? How do you think you can work on them? How do you think I could work on my “issues” that I have with myself? Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to hear from you. Thanks for reading!

10 Tips to Overcome Negative Thoughts: Positive Thinking Made Easy

Positive Thinking Exercises: Change Your Mindset

Positive Provocations

Mrs. Mindfulness