The Beauty of an Anxious Heart

You know why they say listen to your gut? It’s because 99% of the time, it’s trying to tell you something that your brain or your heart haven’t realized or wont listen too. There is a reason for anxiousness, for the panic feeling you get, the stomach ache that you can’t shake. For me, these feelings were a pain. I could never fully decipher what they meant, or why they had to appear. All I knew was that something in my life wasn’t working and I had to fix it in order to feel better.

As hurtful as this feeling is, and as much of a pain as it is to deal with, it’s definitely something worth spending some time dealing with. Anxiousness is uncomfortable. I viewed it as a feeling that could potentially bring drama. I viewed it as an unwelcome emotion. This was always my perception.

As I have recently had to deal with these feelings, and come to terms with some things, I realized that anxiousness is one of the greatest gifts God as given us. This might come as shock, or confusing to most of you, so let me explain.

I realized that this feeling was a sign telling me that something in my life wasn’t working. I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to be doing, I wasn’t following God’s path. This thought came as a burden, but also a relief. In certain areas of my life, I was always stressed out, worried, and unhappy. I had made some mistakes, and now I needed to focus on fixing them. This feeling brought a sense of humility, knowing that this plan I had created was not working, and I was not following His path for me. This feeling I then realized, is a way for God to tell us that we are straying, we are making our lives hurt a little too much, but that I also have a way out of this pain.

As I have been a Christian for a very long time, I unfortunately sometimes take advantage of His good works and Glory. I get too comfortable. And over time, I forget whose life I’m really living. Anxiousness is a way of Him reminding me to stop trying to control my own life. When I try to take the reigns, It never seems to work out as well as when He is in control.

Anxiousness is a relief, telling me that I don’t have to hurt any longer. It’s a reminder that I need to take a look at my life again, and make sure I am following the straight and narrow.  It’s a reminder that there is something better out there than focusing on the immediate in my life. And while I don’t believe you can ever “fall off” God’s path as a Christian, someone very important to me put it into perspective. “We each have a path, orchestrated by God. However, we can choose to make this path as straight or as windy as we please. It can be straightforward and focused, or it can take a few turns along the way.” He never leaves us, but we do have the ability to choose how this path looks to us. Notice, how no one ever said it would be easy. Because that, we are not promised. We are told there will be trials and tribulation. However, we can decided how focused we are on The Lord.

We will each go through multiple moments in our lives that are unfortunate, uncomfortable and “un-fun”. Through these though, we will each grow, come to appreciate what we have previously taken for granted, and come through the other side for the better. When you are feeling anxious, take it as a welcome message from God, reminding you of his love and compassion.

Whats Next?: Following THE Path

Life moves faster and faster the older you get. If you are in college, a new young adult in the real world, or a seasoned vet in this game we call life, I don’t have to tell you this. You already know. And we hear it all the time. This is not a new phrase, However, this is something that continues to surprise all of us. And especially more at certain times than others.

In 1 week, my fiance will be graduating from college. This is a dream come true. Most college students awaits this day, counting down classes, tests and days from the day they get to college. (Not all, as some wish to live in this state for the rest of their life, but most want to be done with school forever and never take another test).

The future is bright.

The possibilities endless.

Your dreams can come true.

You can do whatever you want.

But can you really?

If you stop for a second and look at the bigger picture, look at where you are and what you are doing, do you notice anything. For most of you reading this, we are almost all in the same state. You are either in college, about to go to college, or have graduated. This is a blessing, an incredible opportunity we are told. And truly it is! To have a higher education is a privilege. But we don’t treat it as such. Its our “path”. It’s what we are supposed to do.

Go to school: Get into college

Go to college: Get a Job

Get the best Job you can: Always look for something more.

Make more money. Make more money.

Live for that 1 or 2 week vacation.

Repeat.

Are we sure we want this path? Or is this just what we are used to? Is this just what we are supposed to do? At least as best as we can.

There is a trend going around, and I personally know of one person to do this, to drop everything, move to a beautiful place, have a way lower end paying job, and live your life like a dream. While this sounds incredible, it’s almost looked down upon. They are called “crazy”, “flight-y”, and maybe even “irresponsible”. These people are choosing to focus on other joys in life, and not just money.

While I don’t have the personality to drop everything, run with the wind and see where life takes me, I am inspired by these people. Some are actually irresponsible, not making wise decisions. I don’t condone this idea for them. But some of them have a point. You spend all this time to get the money to be able to go to these beautiful places, so stressed out for 51 weeks out of the year, to be able to “recharge” in one week. To me, this is all due to the incessant focus on one thing. Money. Status. Power.

For some reason, I fully believe that if we are being honest with ourselves, this is not truly everything we want. We want a life that means something, a life that is happy, a life full of joy, a life of less stress. These people who have decided to live in a place that you normally wait all year for, in exchange for a high paying salary. Wouldn’t you take half the money to be able to live in your favorite vacation spot?

This is not my dream. I don’t desire to live at the beach. But I do desire to live a life that is not just focused on money. I almost didn’t go to college. Never felt like I needed it. It didn’t feel like my path. But I went anyways. (Don’t get me wrong, college is important, and wonderful, but we forget that we don’t all have to have the same path, do the same thing.) While I don’t regret it for a second, I’m constantly reminded that I don’t want a life like everyone else. I’m not content with graduating college, finding the best job I can, and making as much money as I can. I want more than this. I personally want to make a difference. I want a life that means something.

Everyone wants something different, but as I am making big changes in my life, I encourage you to take a step back, and make sure you are living your life for more than to just be someone who makes more money than others. There is more to life and more to happiness than money. Weigh your options. You can be happy with less money, with a different job, or in a different area. These people might be smarter than the rest of us. They very well might have it figured out.

Find what makes you happy, and stop always looking for more. You’ll never be content.

Just Stop Already! 

While the title of this post may seem a little out there, it serves a purpose. When it comes to life, everyone has different things going on, and different tolerances of situations. This being said, people need to stop complaining. I am fully guilty of it, I know. But certain situations in my life have recently shown me a different light. You’re life does not suck. You are not going to die. Calm down. You get one life only, do the best to enjoy it. 

So you failed a quiz, you’ll still pass. So you never get your way and life’s unfair, try next week-the wind will shift. So a boy broke up with you, now’s a chance to find what (not who) is really worth your time. 

All that can sting for a moment when it happens, sure. I’ve felt it, I know. But stop dwelling on it and stop complaining to everyone who has ears and can hear. Stop telling everyone you’re so stressed out. You get one life, why would you want to spend it miserable. There is light in every dark situation. And there is an end to every beginning. 

Not to mention, plenty of people have it worse off than you: i promise. Your complaining is annoying, and completely unnecessary. Think about all you are blessed with, and all the good you have in your life. For most, the good always outweighs the bad. However some aren’t as lucky at times. We will all go through times in our lives that are worse than others, and that’s when you get to complain if you so desire. But keep things in perspective

I have a very bad habit of this. I am a perfectionist, so every little detail had to be right and perfect always. But the more I grow up and the more I go through, the more I realize I need to see the bigger picture. Complaining gets you nowhere, and makes no one happy. So please, to not only make your life easier, and for those around you, think twice before you complain again. I want all of y’all to live as happily as you can with what you can control! 

Two Stepping with the “It Crowd”

If we are being honest, one of the things we most aspire to be is apart of the “it crowd”. Now this crowd changes depending on our interests, our likes and dislikes, our desires, and what we view as most important. There’s the kicker. What we view as most important. What’s most important could be what truly holds our heart, or what’s most important to get us what we want. Now here is the second part. Most of us don’t ever want to be disliked by anyone. We hold one ground with one “it group”, and turn around and hold another opinion with another group. These groups don’t necessarily have to be against one another, focused in the same area, or even know about one another. The point is that we are not the same person all the time. We change to please those around us, to not feel left out, and to be accepted. But why would you want to be accepted by people that cause you to change something about you. Whether you realize it or not.

Now don’t get me wrong, I totally believe that you can naturally act somewhat different around different people. And I totally believe in the need to feel accepted and wanted by others. Some people pull the more serious or funny side out of you. You do different things with different people, have different likes and dislikes in common. What I’m talking about is the obvious changes in people depending on who they are with. There is nothing more unattractive and un-beautiful than someone who changes themselves for others. Not to mention how fake you seem to those around you.

Stand up for who you are, what you believe in, what you want, and who you want to be. Maybe you don’t need to “stand up” for yourself, but at least have the confidence and courage to be who you are. And maybe you need to find yourself a bit. Maybe you never realized how much those around you influenced you, but you don’t have the same feelings or beliefs as they do. Disclaimer: I’m not talking about bullying. I’m not talking about being with a group who mistreats you, bullies you and changes you completely. But I am talking about being two-faced, and different to please those around you.

If you put in more time into a relationship, while the other party wont give you anything back, they aren’t worth your time. If you feel the need to constantly prove yourself, walk on egg shells, say the right thing, then the group you’re with or the friendship you are in, are not healthy. It’s been said 1000 times before: there is only one you, so be you. Don’t play both sides of the fence. People will find out, people will notice, and as far as I know, no one likes it.

Be a beautiful person, like you are. Be someone you admire, your are proud of.

Beauty is Vain

As I may not necessarily have pictures for today’s post, I have something heavy laden on my heart. There are so so so many fashion, lifestyle, and gorgeous blogs out there, and they are mainly all about outer beauty. What to wear to be noticed, to stand out, to fit in, to be beautiful. What to eat to loose weight to get the body to make you attractive to guys and make other girls jealous of you. It can all be about one upping and being better than the rest.  And as much as outer beauty is gorgeous, enticing, and desirable, its really not what life is all about. Its not what we should always be striving for? Aren’t you tired?

Now, I am a huge proponent of looking good to feel good. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to wear something you love and wanting to be accepted by others. It’s a natural human need to feel accepted and loved. However, we are always so focused on how we appear to others. I know this topic has been around for so long, but I just feel the need to get this off my chest as this has affected my life personally and the lives of those nearest and dearest to me. Also, the fact that I currently own and operate a fashion blog and online boutique, I want y’all to understand what it is I truly believe in and what I really want to focus on, and for you to focus on too. This post is about the PRESSURE and FOCUS we so heavily put on the way we look. If you honestly think about it, there are so many pretty pictures and beautiful people, how many do you actually remember? Now how many people do you remember who have beautiful hearts and affected you in an impactful way? I promise you, if you are being honest with yourself, you remember more of the latter.

Not to mention, outward looks are fleeting. It only last for so long. And beauty comes in so many different forms, so many colors, so many ethnicities, so many ages, so many sizes, and especially so many weights. Are you truly prettier 10 pounds lighter? In your mind, maybe you are. But are you happier? Hungrier? More stressed? Are you nicer, or meaner? Are you more prideful, or more humble? Can you now start your life the way you wanted? Or did you forget you were living the only life you were given the entire time? We put SO much pressure on our weight and what size we are. We compare ourselves to other. We rejoice when we are smaller than others and scorn ourselves for when we are bigger. You know where this got us? With the diseases of anorexia, bulimia, depression and anxiety in girls as young as 13. Maybe even younger. I know little girls in 3rd grade being teased for eating tortilla soup because it’s “unhealthy and fattening”. She’s what, maybe 10? Don’t you remember being young and innocent, eating whatever you wanted and not even realizing it? Wasn’t life great back then?

I’m so disappointed in our society. Honestly. I love fashion and style, working out and feeling strong, being comfortable but also accepting that i’m not perfect. All these things are good things! But they have been taken so far out of context. They have been taken to the extreme, and are no longer positive things anymore. They are hurting women and young girls, even guys, more than helping them by any means. I have seen how the influence of the desire to loose weight, be thin, be a specific size, to be the smallest one in a group, can RUIN someones life. And as it ruins that persons life, it ruins the lives of everyone around them.

The hardest part about all of this? As much as we can read this and realize that this is true, that it should change, and it would make all of our lives so much happier and better, it doesn’t change anything. We still want to be thin, we still buy the health magazines, and we still stare in awe at Victoria Secret models and say that we would do anything to be them. Im guilty of it. I know it. And of all people, I know I should know better. So how do we change this? How do we actually go about changing they way we, and society, view beauty? We need to change the meaning of beauty.

Webster’s dictionary defines beauty in two ways:

1. the quality of being physically attractive

2. the qualities in a person or a thing that give pleasure to the senses or the mind

Those are 2 very different definitions. One talks about outward beauty and the other about internal aspects. Who is to say what is physically attractive? Isn’t it said that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. WE DONT ALL LOOK THE SAME FOR A REASON! We don’t get to choose the genes that make us up. So why do we keep judging one another for something they can’t control? Why do we keep trying to change ourselves?

We need to focus on the second definition. Inward beauty is what actually makes up a person. It’s who a person actually is. All things are good in moderation, and working out and loving fashion are not bad. But the way we focus on them is hurting the lives of those around us.

“There is always more than what meets the eye.”

“You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you.” Song of Solomon 4:7

“Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” 1 Peter 4: 3-4

“Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” Proverbs 31:30

Will you be my…?

Very very exciting news! I finally got to do what I have been waiting for since I got engaged! I got to ask my friends and sisters to be my Maid of Honor and Bridesmaids! I stressed out about the perfect way to ask them, how to make it special, and definitely how to make the whole thing unique! After a few weeks of research, I am extremely thrilled at how it turned out!

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I am very proud to say that I came up with the entire “Will you help me tie the knot” saying and finding the rose gold Kate Spade bracelets to match the rose gold of my engagement ring. No pinterest needed! They were absolutely thrilled when they got to open the bags and see all the goodies it had to offer! I actually got to give one of my best friends hers, along with both of my sisters which made for a very exciting moment! My oldest sister will be my MOH, my other little sister will be my Junior MOH and my 3 best friends as my bridesmaids! I am very possibly the luckiest bride to be ever! They are absolutely wonderful!