Tag Archives: love

So completely inspired by Kristyn’s post last week,  I started contemplating my own spiritual journey. I say journey, because honestly, I don’t think you can ever stop growing in your relationship with God or the church, whatever either of those might mean for you.

Corinthians 13:4 bible verse print

Recently, as in the past couple of years, I’ve felt a connection with the church in ways that I haven’t in a long time. I grew up with church every Sunday, Vacation Bible School every summer (attending and then as a counselor) and when I was in college, there wasn’t a church family on campus that I felt connected to. As an Episcopalian, I wasn’t permitted to take communion at the Catholic service, but the protestant service just wasn’t for me- much more evangelical than what I grew up with. To be honest, the Catholic service would have been a much better fit, with a very similar service structure and basically the same prayers, but communion has been a big part of my church life since I was little. Although my church did have an official “First Communion” service for the kids in my age group, I was allowed to partake after several weekly lessons with my mom and proving to her that I knew what the wine + wafer meant.

When I came home from college though, I became a lot more involved at St. John’s Olney. Unless I was working (dang retail hours!) I went to church. I became active in the outreach committee with Baby’s Bounty and it was nice to go back to surrounding myself with the church family that watched me grow up. As with Kristyn, I found that moving into DC took another toll on my spiritual life, until I went to my friend Matthew’s confirmation and started going to St. John’s Lafayette with him and a group of EpiscoPALS. I had what I like to call at God moment at that church. It was the Epiphany service and there was a bit of a mini pageant when we sang We Three Kings. As we sang the final chorus, for the first time, I cried in church just because I was overwhelmed by God. It’s so hard to explain, but it was a moment I can never forget.

I was very, very lost for a few years, probably more than most people ever even saw. My heart had been broken over and over again and I wasn’t treating myself very well. I often look back on some of my behavior and cringe. But God stood by me, and kept listening. I recently had a long talk with a family friend about my engagement and he asked me, “do you know who had to do what to make sure that you ended up with Kendall? This was planned.” It was planned. I prayed for Kendall not knowing who he was or when I’d find him. So did my (friend’s) Grandma Bernice. She literally walked up to me at Tiffany + Patrick’s rehearsal dinner and said to me, “Hello I am Grandma Bernice. We know each other on Facebook and I pray on my rosary every night that you will get married and I’ll come to your wedding too.”

I believe in the power of prayer. As a little girl, I saw my congregation pray for a girl my age who became paralyzed during surgery and was never supposed to walk again. Within 24 hours, her toes could move and later on we ended up in the same high school dance company. I was stuck in a snow storm in a convertible and lost- Lord’s Prayer over and over until I could make it safely to a family friend’s house. Prayed for a special love all my life (literally since I was old enough to pray silently by myself) and to quote Kristyn: God showed up and showed off! I thank him every day for my blessings and the people in my life and a running list of things that I know are on the hearts of my friends as well. My mom may have been instrumental in getting me to church, but my relationship with God + my many guardian angels is one that I have had to foster on my own through the years. I’m nowhere near where I want to be spiritually, but I’m working on it.

I want to leave you with my favorite words from the Bible, you may have already seen them if you looked it up from my Instagram bio. This describes perfectly how I feel about my faith:

Do not remember the sins of my youth
    and my rebellious ways;
according to your love remember me,
    for you, Lord, are good. –Pslam 25:7

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Throughout our lives, our bodies are constantly changing. Particularly through our teen years. By them time we hit our twenties we have a rough idea of our natural body shape. Some of us will be tall, others short. We have apple shaped figures, pear shape and, of course, the glorious hour glass figure. The problem is, we aren’t always that happy with what we have been given!

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Firstly, it is really important to remember that nearly everyone feels the same about their bodies. Even those friends of yours who are in the gym every day, they are always striving to have a better body, more muscle definition, and a toned stomach. If you ask anyone out running at 5 am if they are happy with their body, most of them will let you know something that isn’t quite right.  You aren’t alone.

A very common body issue we all share focuses on our breasts. It appears that none of us a very happy with ours! Breasts are very important to women, and we hold them as part of our femininity. We also hear men talk about them so much that we sometimes obsess over our shape. If you are concerned about yours, there are some exercises that you can do to improve the shape of your bust. Although these might be better for preventing breast drop rather than improving it. It will also help if you keep your skin moisturized using a product such as Bio Oil or if you want to go natural, coconut oil. If you are upset about the shape of your breasts, you could consider breast enhancement pills; there are some great products on the market if you are thinking of investing in your body, however you should talk to your doctor first.

Dapper Dance Partner Dress

The way we dress can have a massive impact on the way we look. So it’s important to make sure you are dressing for your figure. Some women say they can’t wear the gorgeous play suits that are so on trend and talk about how much envy they have towards girls who can. The truth is, they could wear a play suit, they just haven’t found one that is cut for them yet. Some girls have shorter bodies and longer legs; this means that a high waisted hemline will make you look heavier on top. Other women are too afraid to wear something that nips in at the waist because they believe they are too big for that. Tighter fitting clothes often show off a curvy figure far better than loose ones. For girls who don’t like their skinny frame, there are also lots of clever cuts which can give the illusion of shape. So, before you start dressing all in black get yourself to a stylist and see what they say. A lot of retailers offer the service for free, so it doesn’t have to cost a fortune!

Learning to love your body is vital, so before you criticize it too much, try alternative ways of dressing and exercising which might make you feel more confident. You are beautiful! We promise!

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Sometimes it’s important to shut that fashion magazine full of skinny models – you know, the one that you enjoy reading while having a sip of your favorite coffee – and to embrace the reality of who you are. First of all, you are beautiful, don’t trust what fashion magazines tell you. You don’t need to be a size zero to look and feel amazing. And unless you are morbidly obese, you don’t need to go on a diet to love yourself. Now if losing weight is what you want, nobody is stopping you. But if the only reason to lose weight is to feel good about yourself, and especially if there is no medical reasoning behind your diet, then you need to look for other solutions.

Fitness Tank Top

Embrace The Fitness Appeal

As odd as it might sound, exercising actually releases endorphin, which is the happiness hormone. It’s not about sweating the excess fat off, but about getting a fit and strong body – which is not the same thing than a skinny body –, and genuinely being happy in your skin. This might need a bit of practice at first, but all you need is to pick fitness gear that motivates you. If you’re one for the pink fashion, embrace the fitness girl power with sparkles, colorful tops, and fancy kicks. You will find that the motivation of wearing fashion fitness clothes will keep you coming back and discovering the key to your inner balance. You can find plenty of activities that are guaranteed to boost your mood, from yoga to Zumba, via power walking. No need to sweat at the gym and to compare your body to those of regular members anymore: Good mood guaranteed.

Rodial Pink Diamond Lifting Body Souffle/6.76 oz.

Clever Non-Invasive Treatments

Feeling good is not only about endorphin hormone. Sometimes, it’s about actually seeing a difference and finding a body that you can love again. When dieting and heavy fitness programs don’t work, you have one more solution before considering an invasive surgical operation: You can find effective body contouring treatments at a dermatologist. From a freezing approach that targets the fat cells with cooling treatments to an ultrasound device that stimulates collagen growth in your face, there are many techniques to address the problems you might be struggling with. But the results are real, and you can begin to notice the differences within a few weeks.

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Dress Your Shape

It’s not your weight that matters; it’s your shape. And you’d be surprised to know that most women can’t dress for their shape. Dressing for your shape requires you to understand whether your body is pear, apple, hourglass shaped, and how to maximize your sexy features and to hide the bits and bobs that you dislike. This might need some body measurements, but it’s only to help you feel and look good in your clothes.

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Be Loved And Love Back

There’s nothing like love to make you feel beautiful. Whether it’s a partner, a spouse, or a trusted group of friends, surrounding yourself with positive statements and emotions, is the best way to be good in your skin.

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We get bombarded with the notion of perfection, we see what others accomplish and how they live, and we can’t help but compare ourselves to what we see. This is what leads so many of us to always second guess ourselves, to always doubt and always drive ourselves to do better without giving ourselves credit for what we’ve achieved so far. Well, enough is enough. We all have to learn some self-love and see just how better and how much more we can accomplish when we stop being so hard on ourselves.

Banana socks

Make time for yourself

When was the last time you gave yourself a chance to be happy by yourself? Break out of the cycle, shut the computer down, turn off the phone and give yourself some ‘you time’ Take yourself on a date, whether it’s going to the cinema to see a movie you’re excited about or going on a city break to place you’ve always wanted to go. Take a class and start a hobby. Get creative with no goal but exploring your own mind. Every now and then we should take a day of looking after our mood.

Stop the self-neglect

Loving yourself as you are is important, but we are all works-in-progress. No-one feels like they are ‘done’. We all recognize we have some potential, so we should neglect it because we don’t think we’re worth the time. Don’t focus on your flaws and how others might see them, but work on improving yourself for your own sake. If you don’t like your smile, look at modern dental solutions so you can feel confident in your own smile. If you want to lose weight, then find manageable solutions for your own health, not how you worry people think you look. Whatever your goals for self-improvement are, make sure that it’s about the self. That’s the key to confidence, not the perception of others.

Keep your boundaries

When your self-esteem is low, it’s all too easy to let people walk all over you. You squeeze your feelings into a little, dense ball of lead that just weighs on you from the inside. It’s time to put your foot down. This doesn’t mean being nasty, it means recognizing your boundaries. Make a list of what’s important to you and what hurts you the most. Don’t tolerate people that continuously cross those boundaries. The truth is that most people will check their behavior when they realize that it can be so personally hurtful to another. They don’t share your perspective or all of your values, so simply laying the boundaries can cause them to be more respectful and allows you have a more honest relationship with them.

As a final note, the next time you feel like being hard on yourself, talk to the person in the mirror. Treat her as if she was someone different from you. Does she really deserve kind of scorn you can show yourself? Would you say it to her? Treating yourself as well as you treat other people is the minimum we can expect from ourselves.

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One of the hardest things that you will ever learn in life is how to love yourself. There are many life lessons that can be taught as we grow up, and even more so into adulthood, but the day that we truly accept ourselves for what we are, whether good or bad, is monumental; it is something that most people get to the ends of their lives without doing. Sure you can give love to other people and show it in abundance, but it’s Number One that you need to look out for.

Love Yourself 5″ Embroidery Hoop Art

With that in mind, here are some great ways to get back in touch with yourself…

Make a Date

Spend some time alone. Take yourself for a coffee, or even dinner if you’re feeling brave enough. There is some weird arbitrary notion that these are things that you have to do with people, sort of as a socialisation process; this isn’t the case at all. Keep a date with yourself and sit with your own thoughts; the more time you spend with other people, the more you are aware of what you are doing. Have you ever thought about what the other person is ordering to influence what you are choosing? You may want something huge as you haven’t eaten in ages, but you tried to keep up appearances by picking a smaller dish just because your companion had? It’s not on. Stick by your own decisions and honor them.

Make a Change

If you really aren’t happy with something that’s on your body, take the step to get it sorted out. Whether this is something as simple as the colour of your hair or something that needs a tad more consideration such as implant surgery options, there are ways and means to get around it – especially with such open availability to get any change seen to at a time when is convenient to you. You shouldn’t feel pressured by anybody else to make these changes; don’t let anybody bully you into what you should be doing with your body.

Make a Point

Surround yourself with those who are in the same frame of mind as you. If you are insecure about your weight, get involved with the Body Positive/Fat Community – once you start using the same positive language and take the same stance on life with a plethora of people doing the same things and thinking the same thoughts around you, you won’t feel so alone with loving yourself. There are some great examples of people out there to follow to instigate a loving relationship with yourself; you just have to know where to find them. Danielle Vanier is a really body-confident person to follow on Instagram, and Bethany Rutter is a glorious example of kick-ass positivity on Twitter; but these are just two social platforms to get involved with. Do your own research online on the social media of your choice and using the keywords that interest you or are relatable to you to click in with those who will matter in helping you realize just how much you matter too.

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