How Yoga Changed my Life

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I’m not a gym going kind of girl. Besides hearing the phrase “it goes by so fast”, one of the phrases I hear quite often as a Mom is “how do you stay so fit”. I always smile graciously and credit it to living a healthy lifestyle, but for me personally I think it comes down to genes. Thanks Mom and Dad. I enjoy my sweets and I drink entirely too much Diet Pepsi. Hey, I’m working on it.

With that being said, I am not out trying to loose weight. Sure I’d love to tone and there is ALWAYS room for improvement, but the gym is practically torture for me. I’ve learned over the past few months though, that breathing and exercise are two of the best ways to combat anxiety. I remembering rolling my eyes and expecting some sort of quick fix when my therapist told me that for the first time. I wondered why I came into her office each week not seeing improvement… I wasn’t doing my part.

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IMG_8603-.jpgtop c/o Albion Fit // capris: Fabletics // tennis shoes: Nike (similar here) // watch: Michael Kors 

I noticed a friend of mine going to YogaWorks near my house, so I started to do some research. The more I investigated, the more I realized that Yoga was EXACTLY what I needed. Meditation, relaxation, getting in touch with your inner self, working on strength and balance, staying committed to myself, and most importantly, breathing.

I went down to the studio and signed up immediately. It’s been a game changer you guys. With the hustle and bustle of everyday life, taking time out of my day to meditate and do some deep breathing was just not in my cards. I needed to be put in that zen like atmosphere where it was practically forced for me to get to that place. When I walk in that studio, I am able to close the door on the stresses of the outside world and just focus on me. It’s therapy.

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The world isn’t easy. We are all fighting a hard battle. No matter where your struggles lie, know that there is something out there to help combat it. I have felt so alone in my anxiety for YEARS, but the more I find ways to work through it, the more I learn about myself in the process. I know what works for me and what doesn’t. I know the big things to avoid and the little ones too. I am more opt to speak my mind and deal with problems as they arise which has been huge for me. I started making a gratitude journal that I write in daily of all the things I am thankful for. Positive self thoughts make all the difference. I even got Landyn involved in yoga. My yoga studio has family yoga where your kids come and learn the fundamentals. Landyn busts out the downward dog position like its her job. Had I known at a young age how to really BREATHE, a lot of my anxiety would have been alleviated. A calm mommy is a calm child. It’s SO important. If you can’t get into a Yoga studio, do breathing exercises at home. Watch uTube videos, get a group of friends together and form your own group at the park. Work with what you have.

I tell you this because I believe there needs to be more knowledge on natural ways to combat anxious feelings. I am a work in progress and still have anxious days, but I take them as they come. It’s a one day at a time deal. Take them as they come.

Are there any other Yogi’s out there? I would love to hear from you.

 

A DAYCATION AT THE FOUR SEASONS

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It’s no secret that I walk around like a chicken with my head cut off most days. For some reason, I tend to make decisions that make my life even more complicated than it already is. Like deciding to keep Landyn in preschool near our old home in Agoura Hills this year, and commuting 30 minutes to and 30 minutes from school 5 days a week. It’s draining. Especially when you are a work from home entrepreneur and have to make Barnes and Noble your remote office 5 days a week. Not to mention all the lifestyle stresses of being a single mom, dealing with Landyn’s dad living an hour and a half away, building a life with a guy that makes me a better person with each passing day, trying to keep up with a house that is much larger than I am used to, etc etc. Case in point, finding time for “me” is far and few between. It’s no wonder my anxiety is through the roof most days.

A couple weeks ago, I walked out to my car to take Landyn to school and found a gift bag sitting on the top of my car. Mind you, it was a day before Josh’s birthday and HE should have been the one getting surprises on his car. I opened it up and found a gift card to the Four Seasons Westlake. I asked him what it was for and he responded with “just because”… “you are stressed and I want you to go get a massage and relax”. Dream boat right?

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So relax I did. I planned a day with one of my good friends last Friday and we made it a point to turn off our phones, ignore all responsibility and guilt, and just soak it up for the ENTIRE day. It was heaven on earth you guys. If you are in the LA area, the Four Seasons is the place to go. I have a hard time doing things for me lately. I usually spend the whole time combating the voices in my head that are telling me I don’t deserve such things. But I am learning to kick the negativity in the face and do whatever it takes to be happy.

Some pictures from our day….

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Now go have a relaxing weekend.

xo

On fear

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photo credit: Bows & Arrow Photography

I’ve come to realize that fear is something I struggle with. Fear of the unknown. Fear of death. Fear of what other people think. I was sitting outside yesterday afternoon watching Landyn play and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I am so blessed. I have my health. I have a beautiful home. I get to be home everyday to watch my daughter grow up. I don’t have a boss to answer too. I have the most supportive boyfriend that loves me unconditionally and makes me a better person with each passing day. I have parents that people only wish for. So if I have so many blessings in my life, why the hell do I let fear hold me down? Why do I let it rob me of joy? Why can’t I live in the present and trust goodness for my life?

I truly believe that the only way to have complete peace in your life it to have a relationship with God. Me and religion comes in waves. I believe, but I am disconnected. I want to find my place in a church, but I am not sure where I fit in. Some of the people I admire most in this life are Godly women. They radiate joy and peace. Their inner beauty shines through. I envy them truly. I wish I could be half the women they are.

I tend to convince myself that I am the only person on this earth that suffers from panic attacks. That I am the only single mother entrepreneur trying to provide for her and her daughter. Should I go back to the corporate world so I “appear” more stable? That I am screwing up as a mother. That because I am a single mom I need to compensate elsewhere by being super model skinny or financially successful.

Where do you draw the line? When is enough enough? I waste so much time talking myself down from fear and worry. I know exactly how to calm myself and the power of breathing and exercise. So why does this stuff continue to paralyze? Why can’t I let up on myself?

I wish I could end this post with all the answers. But the reality is, I have none. I think this is why I have been so distant from this space. If I am going to share, I believe I must have some sort of resolution. I know people out there struggle with similar feelings and want answers. I know that the 30,000 page views a month aren’t just strangers. They are family, friends, acquaintances at my daughters preschool and dance class, my boyfriends family and friends. I fear appearing weak in their eyes. Blogging can be a very vulnerable place. And because of that I wonder at what point will I close the book all together. Do I want to embark on this next chapter of life and let the world in on it too?

For now, I am going to come here and just let my raw emotions unfold. Sometimes my thoughts might be jumbled or sentences won’t be complete. I apologize in advance. Maybe I’ll throw a cuss word in here and there. But I’m working on being more open about my fears because they are real and we all struggle with them.

Why isn’t it the things worth saying that we are most afraid of?

xo

Our bedroom {details}

We have lived at our “new” house for 9 months now, and I have yet to share details of the interior. The reality is, I am an all or nothing girl. If the entire space is not completely the way I want it, I won’t be satisfied. That, and I have problems following through. It would be safe to say that I have 15 unfinished projects staring at me at every corner.

So my point in all that, is telling you that I’ve put off sharing our space because it’s still a work in progress. We’ve completely gutted the upstairs and while it looks AWESOME, Josh and I STILL have no nightstands, the baseboard around the perimeter of our bedrooms has yet to be painted, the back corner of our bedroom looks like my office threw up all over it until I move it downstairs into my soon to be office (another unfinished project).

But there is quite a few details that I LOVE, so I am going to share those for the time being.

“Our Bedroom” {details}

IMG_5454.jpg“you are my bucket list” wood print: I made with reclaimed wood and white paint // bedding: Pottery Barn // headboard c/o Heady Bed // ruffle mustard pillow c/o Jilly Bean Craft

IMG_5449.jpgAmpersand marque light c/o Bomisch

IMG_5455.jpg“lucky us” print c/o Daughter Zion Designs // J&L letters: I made with cardboard letters spray painted gold  // True Love and Forever canvas’s c/o Small Bird Studio 

IMG_5459.jpg1 Corinthians 13 print c/o Red Letter Words 

IMG_5461.jpgmustard flower pillow c/o Jilly Bean Craft

And a special thank you to all the amazing shops that help to make our house a home, including Bomisch for my rad ampersand marque light. I’ve moved this thing around 3 times since getting it in the mail because it’s so versatile. I love it on our mantle and it also makes the perfect “night light” for our bedroom. Be sure to check out there darling shop. Such great gift ideas.

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I am off to Vegas for the weekend for an early birthday celebration. My sister and I have birthdays a week apart, so my Dad is treating us for the weekend. I sure love that guy.

xoxo